Most popular inverters

The most popular inverters on EnergySage in 2022

Before going solar, one of the biggest decisions you’ll need to make is which equipment to install. But there are many different inverter products to choose from – so where’s the best place to start? In this article, we’ll explore the most popular inverters on the EnergySage Marketplace. If you’re curious about the most popular solar panels on EnergySage, check out this article.

This is an unbiased review: EnergySage is not paid to review brands or products, nor do we earn money from affiliate advertising in this article. The content of this blog is based on research and information available at the time of writing. Learn more about our mission and how we make money as a company.


Most popular inverters: key takeaways


  • On the EnergySage Marketplace, most popular inverter brands include Enphase and SolarEdge.
  • In 2021, the most commonly quoted and selected inverter on the Marketplace nationwide was Enphase’s IQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240.
  • Many factors impact a specific inverter’s popularity, including availability, distribution channels, preference, and cost.
  • Compare quotes on the EnergySage Marketplace to find the right inverters for you.

What you’ll learn in this article

Most popular inverters on EnergySage

Though the solar market has largely been dominated by two inverter brands (Enphase and SolarEdge), more and more inverter products are starting to hit the market. So, given the increasing variety of options, which inverters do residential solar shoppers compare–and choose–most often on the EnergySage Marketplace? There are a few different ways to assess the popularity of inverters; below, we do so in two separate ways:

  1. The inverters installers most frequently quote
  2. The inverters solar shoppers most frequently select and ultimately install

It’s important to note that the top quoted and top selected inverters are not identical – so, if there’s an inverter brand you’re particularly interested in but don’t see in your quotes, always make sure to ask your installer! 

A quick overview of inverter technology


Before we get into the most popular inverters on the EnergySage Marketplace, let’s take a quick look at the primary inverter technology available today:

String inverters

  • Centralized power conversion
  • Only offer string-level monitoring unless combined with module-level power optimizers
  • With power optimizers, the power output of each panel is optimized independently
  • Future system size increase may require an additional central inverter
  • Maximum output power (AKA the “size” of the inverter) should be close to the overall system size
  • Example: SolarEdge

Microinverters

  • Panel level power conversion 
  • Offer panel leaving monitoring
  • The power output of each panel is optimized independently
  • System size can be easily expanded in the future
  • Maximum output power should be close to the panel wattage
  • Example: Enphase

To learn more about the differences between string inverters and microinverters, check out this article

Most quoted inverters

First, we’ll take a look at the top 10 quoted inverters on the EnergySage Marketplace: Enphase steals the top five spots with its IQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240 coming in first. The sixth through 10th spots are all occupied by SolarEdge products, with SE7600H-US [240V] topping the list for most quoted string inverter. 

Top 10 inverters (quoted) on the EnergySage Marketplace, nationwide

RankProductManufacturerTechnologyMaximum output power (kW)Rating
1IQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
2IQ7A-72-2-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.349 kWExcellent
3IQ7PLUS-72-x-ACM-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
4IQ7-60-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.24 kWExcellent
5IQ7X-96-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.315 kWExcellent
6SE7600H-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter7.616 kWExcellent
7SE10000H-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter9.994 kWExcellent
8SE7600A-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter7.625 kWExcellent
9StorEdge SE7600A-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter7.625 kWExcellent
10SE7600H-US EnergyHubSolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter7.6 kWExcellent

Most selected inverters

Enphase’s IQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240 was not only the most commonly quoted, but also the most commonly selected inverter on the Marketplace in 2021. Spot number two is also occupied by the same product for both most quoted and most selected inverter – Enphase’s IQ7A-72-2-US-240. However, while spots one through five are all occupied by Enphase for most quoted inverters, SolarEdge’s SE7600A-US [240V]  takes the third spot for most selected inverter. The only product that doesn’t make the 10 most quoted list but falls in the top 10 most selected inverters is Enphase’s IQ7PLUS-72-2-US-208.

Top 10 inverters (selected) on the EnergySage Marketplace, nationwide

RankProductManufacturerTechnologyMaximum output power (kW)Rating
1IQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
2IQ7A-72-2-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.349 kWExcellent
3SE7600A-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter7.625 kWExcellent
4IQ7X-96-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.315 kWExcellent
5IQ7-60-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.24 kWExcellent
6IQ7PLUS-72-x-ACM-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
7SE10000H-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter9.994 kWExcellent
8StorEdge SE7600A-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter7.625 kWExcellent
9SE7600H-US [240V]SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter7.6 kWExcellent
10IQ7PLUS-72-2-US-208Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent

As with almost every data point in the solar industry, the results vary depending on state. However, when you compare the lists above with the most commonly selected solar inverter in a few top solar states, it follows a similar trend: Enphase’s IQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240 (the most frequently quoted and selected inverter) tops the list for six of the eight states we examined, including California. Larger, solar-friendly places like California have higher populations interested in and moving forward with solar, so naturally, the popularity of Enphase’s inverter in these states drove high volumes for the product in solar quotes and installations on a nationwide scale. 

Most popular inverters (selected) by state on the EnergySage Marketplace

StateProductManufacturerTechnologyMaximum output power (kW)Rating
ArizonaIQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
CaliforniaIQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
FloridaIQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
Illinois11.4 kW 3ØGeneracString inverter11.4 kWVery good
MassachusettsIQ7PLUS-72-x-ACM-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
New JerseyIQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
New YorkIQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent
TexasIQ7PLUS-72-x-US-240Enphase EnergyMicroinverter0.29 kWExcellent

Well, why is any book, TV show, or gadget more popular than others? As anyone who’s experienced the Twilight series knows, there isn’t always a perfect correlation between quality and popularity. Multiple factors impact the demand for particular inverters: 

Distribution networks

Distributors serve as liaisons between manufacturers and installers. There are a few major solar equipment distributors in the United States, each with their own relationships to specific manufacturers and installation companies. If certain inverter brands are more popular in your area than elsewhere in the country, it’s possible that a distributor with closer ties to particular manufacturers has a stronger presence in your market.

Availability

Like other products on the market, the solar industry gets hit by supply constraints. Material shortages and shipping restrictions can impact the availability of equipment, including inverters – though inverters seem to be less impacted than solar panels or batteries at the moment. Even in a world without supply issues, you’d find that some inverters are more readily available than others simply because larger inverter companies have more factories and build more products.

Installer preference

Every type of contractor–solar installer or otherwise–has likes and dislikes towards the type of equipment they work with. In solar, you’ll come across installation companies that prefer and recommend installing certain inverters because of the ease of installation, quality, and/or cost (which we’ll dive more into later).

Brand loyalty is also prevalent in the solar industry: many reputable installers have direct relationships with manufacturers through their endorsement programs, meaning they can access special opportunities or better deals by selling products from a particular company. In fact, according to our most recent Intel Report, almost 50 percent of installers only offer one inverter brand. This isn’t a bad thing; oftentimes, it means passing on cost savings, stronger warranty offerings, and their product expertise to you and other solar shoppers!

Consumer preference

Consumer demand plays a huge role in the popularity of a particular inverter or manufacturer. Think about it: if you really want to install a particular product and make those preferences known to your potential contractor, they will do what they can to provide you with that equipment – or at least, present an attractive alternative. The more solar shoppers ask for particular brands and products, the more likely installers buy, store, install, and recommend that equipment in the future. 

Cost

Another factor that influences how popular inverters are is cost. That doesn’t mean cheaper inverters are more popular – in fact, the majority of shoppers on EnergySage reject the lowest-cost option, and most installers on the Marketplace propose higher quality, more expensive equipment. Popular inverters often offer good value, balancing cost and quality.

Among most quoted and most selected inverters, the top two most popular brands – Enphase and SolarEdge – fell within a $0.06 per watt ($/W) range on the EnergySage Marketplace in 2021. However, it’s important to note that these costs are also greatly influenced by the solar panels included in the quotes. Overall, quotes with Enphase and SolarEdge tended to be pretty moderate in cost compared to SunPower (on the higher end) and Hoymiles or SMA America (on the lower end). 

Average $/W of the most popular inverter manufacturers on the EnergySage Marketplace

ManufacturerTechnologyAverage $/W
Enphase EnergyMicroinverter$2.73
SolarEdge TechnologiesString inverter$2.79
SunPowerMicroinverter$3.46
HoymilesMicroinverter$2.41
SMA AmericaMicroinverter$2.52
GeneracString inverter$2.81

Are the most popular inverters the best inverters?


Yes and no – the inverters listed above wouldn’t be popular if they weren’t high-quality products with a proven track record. That said, there isn’t a single inverter that’s the best at everything. When deciding what equipment you want to install, you need to balance various factors based on your preferences and site-specific conditions. And naturally, some manufacturers outshine more in one category than others. Learn more in our overview of the best inverters.

Key factors to consider when choosing solar inverters

Like we mentioned above, consumer preference is a driving force behind solar inverter popularity. As you’re choosing an inverter product, here are a few questions to ask yourself:

  • Technology: are you looking for module-level inverters or a central inverter with power optimizers? This may depend on the amount of shading your roof gets. 
  • Efficiency: how efficiently does the inverter convert the generated direct current (DC) to usable alternating current (AC) power?
  • Warranty: does the manufacturer offer a comprehensive warranty for their product?
  • Voltage range: a wide range of voltages means that the inverter can perform well across a variety of solar output conditions – does the inverter have a wide range?
  • Maximum output power: is the DC rating of your solar panel system similar to the output power of your inverters? This will help you avoid clipping. 
  • Storage compatibility: if you’re looking to install storage, is the inverter compatible with the battery you want to install?
  • Monitoring app: what do you think of the monitoring app that goes along with your inverters? Does it provide you with the insights you’re looking for?
  • Quality rating: how does the quality and durability of the inverter compare to other options on the market?
  • Manufacturer reputation: does the company standing behind the warranty offer good customer service? Are they bankable?
  • Country of manufacture: are you willing to pay more for American-made inverters?
  • Cost: will you get your bank for your buck? Is a more expensive inverter actually worth the extra cost?

Learn more about choosing solar equipment.

How to find the right inverter for you

The most popular inverters aren’t always the right ones for your home. The best way to make sure you’re installing the right equipment for the right price is to compare multiple options. Register for free on the EnergySage Marketplace today to get up to seven custom quotes from pre-screened, local installers. Already have a specific inverter in mind? Simply note it in your account so installers can include the inverter in their quotes.


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About Emily Walker

Emily is a Content Marketer at EnergySage, where she's an expert in making energy fun and easy to learn about! She has a background in environmental consulting and has degrees in Environmental Science and Biology from Colby College. Outside of work, Emily is pursuing a Master of Science from Johns Hopkins University in Environmental Science and Policy. She also loves hiking, tending to her collection of houseplants, and trying out new restaurants and breweries whenever possible.

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