Product Highlight: New SMA Sunny Boy TL-US Inverter

With a flick of the switch, you could be using solar energy when the grid goes down during the daytime.

Harry, our solar customer in Long Beach, previously worked as the financial manager of the Energy Supply and Management Department at the Southern California Edison company.  It was his department that did all the buying and selling of SCE’s power needs to the Power Exchange.  Because of his position, Harry experienced the California electricity crisis of the early 2000s firsthand.

The crisis made him realize that the price of electricity from the grid was not going to be reliable in the future. “I saw the writing on the wall. Energy prices were only going to go up,” he explained. By installing solar panels on his home, he could generate his own solar energy and avoid the rising costs of electricity.

AMECO installed his first solar system back in 2002. Since then, Harry has become even more energy independent by installing a solar hot water system and adding more solar panels to the original solar electric system.

Inverter as an Alternative to Battery Backup Systems

The new Sunny Boy TL-US inverter is on the forefront of solar inverter technology.

After 12 years, Harry decided to replace the original SMA Sunny Boy inverter even though it was doing fine. Most inverters are expected to last for ten years, so Harry’s inverter had already lasted two years longer than expected and could have potentially lasted longer. We at AMECO Solar aren’t surprised that the equipment was still working well; the inverter manufacturer, SMA, is known for their reliable and advanced inverter technology.

Harry asked AMECO for advice on which inverter he should choose. “Pat is very knowledgeable about solar technology and one of the smartest guys in the business,” said Harry.

Pat recommended a new, groundbreaking inverter called the Sunny Boy TL-US from SMA. Not just an efficient transformer-less inverter, it also allows for a small amount of secure power supply when the electric grid goes down. Since it is cheaper and easier to install than a battery backup system, this specific inverter serves as a good alternative.

How the Sunny Boy TL-US Works

When your inverter is installed, a special electric plug is connected to it. If the grid goes down, you simply flip the switch on the plug and turn it on. It uncouples itself from the grid (for safety) and powers a 120-volt AC electric outlet. As long as the sun is shining, you can use the plug to power small appliances up to 1500 watts (such as a laptop, gaming devices, small fan or cell phone charger). Once the electric grid is back up, just flip the switch to the off position and the inverter will go back to its normal operation.

SMA has implemented certain checks to ensure safety. One safety feature is that the plug will automatically disconnect if you try to draw more than 1500 watts. Then, it will try to reconnect every 20 seconds until the load is below 1500 watts.

Use Solar Power During Blackouts

In the event of a blackout, Harry has some peace of mind now that he has the new SMA Sunny Boy TL-US inverter. While his neighbors will be out of electricity during a blackout, he’ll be using energy from his solar panels to power some of his electricity needs.

Want to install a solar system or replace your old inverter with the new Sunny Boy TL-US ? Contact the experts at AMECO Solar by emailing us at or calling us toll-free at (888) 595-9570.