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Updated Australian Standard For Solar Installers Now In Effect

Updated Australian Standard For Solar Installers Now In Effect

To meet the increasing solar demand and improve energy efficiency, the rooftop solar industry in Australia has undergone a critical change in its national standard.

An updated standard for solar installers has now been introduced and is in effect to eliminate the requirement for rooftop PV installations to include a DC isolator.

What’s The Update?

As per the latest change, the new standard AS/NZS 5033:2021 is removing the mandate for direct current (DC) isolators to be installed on residential solar PV systems, only if other safety measures are followed.

Though the updated standard was introduced in Nov 2021, solar installers were given the option to either apply the new AS/NZS 5033:2021 or the previous AS/NZS 5033:2014 version when installing a rooftop solar system for a timeline of six months.

This timeline period ended on 19 May 2022, and the solar installers all over the country are now required to comply with the updated standard.

Why This Update Was Introduced?

DC isolators provided an additional safety mechanism designed to shut down a solar PV system in case of an emergency.

They were installed with the rooftop solar panels and often got exposed to the exterior elements, which made them the primary cause of solar-related fires.

As per the Standards Australia, “the new standard provides installers with various options on how solar systems can be isolated and fire risks can be avoided”.

How Will This Update Benefit The Installers & Community?

With solar PV systems booming in Australia like never before, the safety of installers, households, and businesses is of paramount importance and clear, relevant standards play a great role in ensuring safe practices and compliance in the long run.

The new AS/NZS 5033:2021 is formulated for:

  • Better readability
  • Improved PV panel installation
  • Safety requirements for PV arrays
  • DC array wiring
  • Electrical protection devices
  • Switching & earthing provisions
  • Microinverter installations
  • DC conditioning units
  • Increased limit to 1000V

The new standard aligns with international standard IEC 62548:2016 for Photovoltaic (PV) arrays design requirements.

For more information, feel free to consult our solar instructors at Energy Training Group.

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