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Inverters on a balcony power plant: Some models from the manufacturer Deye need to be retrofitted or replaced

Photo: Matthias Kremp / DER SPIEGEL

Thousands and thousands of owners of balcony power plants are faced with a dilemma. Because one component of their systems lacks a mandatory safety switch, they do not comply with German regulations and must be taken off the grid. Now a remedy seems to be in sight. According to a report by heise.de, a solution that can be used to retrofit the protective function in question has been certified by TÜV and the certification organization Intertek.

Specifically, it is about a so-called inverter, which converts the direct current generated by the solar panels into standard household alternating current in solar systems. Deye describes itself as the world's leading manufacturer in this field, having reported more than one million units of this type sold for the past year.

Retrofit kits to come by air freight

There are now problems with the Deye SUN600G3 microinverter, which is missing an important relay in series production. The electronic component is designed to disconnect the balcony power plant from the grid if a malfunction occurs and another protection mechanism does not shut down on its own. This component was still present on devices submitted to Intertek for certification. However, it was missing in the production models. This also extinguished the certification of the devices. As a result, such plants must be shut down and may no longer be connected to the public power grid.

Some manufacturers of affected plants have reacted. For example, Anker and Solovoltaik, manufacturers of balcony power plants that were sold at Aldi, for example, have begun recalls of the inverters in question.

Now Deye wants to send German customers a retrofit relay that is to be plugged into the inverter's connection cables. The company informed dealers by e-mail that the retrofit solution had now been certified by TÜV and Intertek, writes »heise.de«. The company also sent copies of the certificates. A reaction from the Federal Network Agency is still pending.

Apparently, the Chinese company now wants to fix the problem as quickly as possible. According to »heise.de«, it has announced its intention to deliver the retrofit kits to Germany by air freight. Whether Deye will supply the MC4 special keys necessary for opening solar plugs remains open so far.