Microinverter Clipping: What is it and are you affected?

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The Efficiency of Matching Inverter Size to Solar Panels

A crucial aspect of solar system design that plays a significant role in this quest is the sizing of the inverter relative to the solar panels. While intuition might suggest that bigger is always better, this is not the case when it comes to the relationship between inverters and solar panels.

Graph from AC Solar

So what is clipping? Well one of our installer partners, AC Solar Warehouse has the answer:

“Clipping refers to the situation where the AC power output of an inverter is limited due to the peak rating of the inverter, even though additional power may still be available from the solar module/s. This phenomenon occurs with both string inverter and microinverter systems. While the discussion here refers specifically to microinverters, many of the same principles apply to string inverters.  In practice, clipping results in the top of the daily AC output sine wave being flattened off, as shown in the image above.” – AC Solar Warehouse

Understanding the Dynamics

Solar panels rarely run at full efficiency due to environmental factors. A slightly smaller inverter can operate closer to its optimal capacity more frequently, offsetting times when panel performance dips.

The Strategic Approach

Choosing an inverter that’s smaller than the solar panel output, termed ‘oversizing’ the panels, means the system remains efficient across varying conditions. This approach not only boosts performance but also offers savings on installation costs, as larger inverters not only cost more but also contribute to inefficiencies when not fully utilised.

Ensuring Compliance

Aligning with clean energy regulations, this method avoids mismatching panel and inverter capacities, safeguarding against system inefficiencies or damage. Regular maintenance and performance monitoring are crucial for sustaining efficiency throughout the system’s lifespan.


Opting for a smaller inverter in solar setups ensures compliance, maximises efficiency, and accelerates investment return, reinforcing the strategic advantage of this approach for sustainable solar solutions.

If you would like to better understand clipping and solar configurations, get in touch with us.

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