This course is intended for PV System Inspectors and covers Photovoltaics combined with Energy Storage Systems (ESS) and the 2020 National Electric Code (NEC).
This is the best way to prepare for and pass the NABCEP PV System Inspector Certification Exam and it is also an excellent way for PV Inspectors to understand how the NEC applies to Solar + Storage and how to properly inspect systems.
This course is self-paced, so you don’t need to be logged in at any specific time. You can get started immediately after you enroll and the course materials will remain in your account with minimum guaranteed access for 12 months (1 year) after enrollment.
Intro to Course
2017 NEC Free Download and 2020 NEC Free Access
Set up email notifications and your student profile
Introduce yourself on the discussion board
Books and resources
Live Online Proctoring (LOP) for All NABCEP Exams!
Connect with your instructor Sean on LinkedIn
Before we dive deep into NEC articles specific to PV and ESS, we are going to get more familiar with the rest of the NEC, from a PV and ESS point of view.
Module 1 Organization
Memorize and Familiarize Video 2: NEC Articles 100 Definitions and 110 Requirements for Electrical Installations
Memorize and Familiarize Video 3: NEC Articles 200-250 including 230 Services, 240 Overcurrent Protection and 250 Grounding and Bonding
Memorize and Familiarize Video 4: NEC Chapter 3 Wiring Methods and Materials, including the 310 Tables and different Articles on installing Conduits, such as EMT or Cables
Memorize and Familiarize Video 5: NEC Chapters 4, 5 & 6. 4 is Equipment for General Use and includes 480 Storage Batteries, 5 is Special Occupancies and 6 is Special Equipment and includes 690 PV!
Memorize and Familiarize - Video 6: NEC Chapter 7 Video 1 of 2 including Articles 705 Interconnections, 706 Energy Storage Systems and 710 Stand-Alone Systems
Memorize and Familiarize - Video 7 NEC Chapter 7 Video 2 of 2, including Articles 710 Stand Alone Systems and 712 DC Microgrids
Memorize and Familiarize - Video 8: NEC Chapter 9 Tables and Annex C Conduit and Tubing Fill Tables for Conductors and Fixture Wires of the Same Size
Audio 2020 NEC Article 690 Reading - Radio 690!
NEC Article 100 Definitions Part 1
NEC Article 100 Definitions Part 2
NEC Article 100 Definitions Part 3
NEC Article 110 Requirements for Electrical Installations Part 1
NEC Article 110 Requirements for Electrical Installations Part 2
NEC Article 200 Grounded Conductors Part 1
NEC Article 200 Grounded Conductors Part 2
NEC Articles 210 Branch Circuits, 215 Feeders and 230 Services
NEC Article 240 Overcurrent Protection Part 1
NEC Article 240 Overcurrent Protection Part 2
NEC Article 250 Grounding and Bonding Part 1
NEC Article 250 Grounding and Bonding Part 2
NEC Article 300 General Requirements for Wiring Methods and Materials Part 1
NEC Article 300 General Requirements for Wiring Methods and Materials Part 2
NEC Article 310 Conductors for General Wiring Part 1
NEC Article 310 Conductors for General Wiring Part 2
NEC Article 310 Conductors for General Wiring Part 3
320 to 358 Common Wiring Methods like EMT Part 1
320 to 358 Common Wiring Methods like EMT Part 2
NEC Chapter 4 Featuring Article 480! Part 1
NEC Chapter 4 Featuring Article 480! Part 2
NEC Chapters 5, 6, 7 & 8
NEC Chapter 9 Tables Part 1
NEC Chapter 9 Tables Part 2
NEC Chapter 9 Tables Part 3
NEC Article 690 PV Systems
Article 690 was first put into the NEC in 1984.
Read NEC Article 690 PV Systems
Listen to Sean read NEC 690 on his podcast
2017 Versus 2020 National Electrical Code (NEC)
2017 NEC Video 1 - Introduction to 690.2
2017 NEC Video 2 - 690.7 Voltage
2017 NEC Video 3 - 690.8 Current
2017 NEC Video 4 - 690.9 Overcurrent Protection
2017 NEC Video 5 - 690.10 Stand-Alone Systems and 690.11 DC Arc-Fault Protection
2017 NEC Video 6 - 690.12 Rapid Shutdown Showdown Part 1
2017 NEC Video 6 - 690.12 Rapid Shutdown Showdown Part 2
2017 NEC Video 7 - 690 Part III Disconnecting Means
2017 NEC Video 8 - 690 Part IV Wiring Methods
2017 NEC Video 9 - 690 Part V Grounding and Bonding Part 1
2017 NEC Video 9 - 690 Part V Grounding and Bonding Part 2
2017 NEC Video 10 - 690 Part VI to End of Article 690
2017 NEC Video 11 - 691 Large-Scale Photovoltaic
Bill Brooks on Rapid Shutdown Part 1 Outside of the Array Boundary
Bill Brooks on Rapid Shutdown Part 2 inside of the Array Boundary
News: 690.12(B)(2)(1) Rapid Shutdown UL Listing
Module 3 Energy Storage Systems (706) and Interconnections (705)
If you are studying for the NABCEP PV System Inspector (PVSI) exam, you do not need to focus as much on ESS. ESS is a hot topic and very important in real life, which is more important than what NABCEP puts on exams.
Article 706 ESS was new in the 2017 NEC and much of it came out of Article 690. It was originally meant to replace Article 480 Storage Batteries, however 480 was kept in the NEC. Article 690 points us to 706 when using energy storage systems and not 480. Different AHJs interpret this differently and the NEC can sometimes contradict itself as we will learn.
Article 705 Interconnected Power Production Sources is very important for both PV and ESS and is definitely a part of the PVSI exam.
2020 National Electrical Code 706 With Bill Brooks Part 1
2020 National Electrical Code 706 With Bill Brooks Part 2
2017 NEC Video 12 - 705 Interconnected Power Production Sources Part 1
2017 NEC Video 12 - 705 Interconnected Power Production Sources Part 2
Bill Brooks talks Energy Storage Systems Part 1
Bill Brooks talks Energy Storage Systems Part 2
Bill Brooks talks Storage Batteries Article 480
Bill Brooks talks EV Power Transfer Station (EV charging and EV to Grid)
Bill gets excited talking about 705.13 Power Control Systems
Bill Brooks on 705 Video 1 Supply and Load Side Connections
Bill Brooks on 705 Video 2 with ESS Implications and Markets
Bill Brooks on 705 Video 3 More 705.13 PCS and MIDs
More EV to Grid-Full Circle with Bill Brooks
Bill Brooks on 705 Video 4 Supply-Side Connections and Microgrids
Bill Brooks on 705 Video 5 Wire Sizing and Supply-Side Connections
Bill Brooks on 705 Video 6 Load-Side Connections
More NEC and some Building Codes
Here we have some extras.
Answer to Question on Connecting PV System to a Split Bus Panel
Code Compliant Conductor Sizing: a 2021 take on a 2011 SolarPro Article Part 1
Code Compliant Conductor Sizing: a 2021 take on a 2011 SolarPro Article Part 2
Wire Sizing (Chapter 12 PV and the NEC)
Building and Fire Codes with Bill Brooks Part 1- 2020 NFPA 855 Energy Storage Systems, IRC, IBC, IFC, NFPA 1, ICC
Building and Fire Codes with Bill Brooks Part 2 Roof Setbacks
Building and Fire Codes with Bill Brooks Part 3 The ICC i-codes
PV UL Listing 1703 transitioned to UL 61730
UL PV Listing 61730 replacing UL 1703 for making the test work around the world and UL 3741 listing for Rapid Shutdown (Hazard Control Systems) with Bill Brooks PE
UL 3741 Rapid Shutdown solution where the PV array can stay up to 1000V using SMA inverters with Sollega or Ironridge racks!
Grounding electrode schemes and transformers with emphasis on utility-scale (double advanced topic).
PV System Inspector (PVSI) Exam
Here is a good representation of the PVSI exam, with some added energy storage questions.
There is a lot of learning to be had here, especially when you read the explanations of the answers with the downloadable PDF. For those of you taking the PVSI exam, this PDF is the most valuable part of this course.
Remember, the PVSI exam is the least expensive NABCEP Certification exam at $150 and has no prerequisites, so even if you were not planning on taking it, hey you got this far, why not! Maybe it will be the best investment of your life!
Even if you are not going to take the PVSI exam, all of this information is relevant, so you do need to take the exam in order to complete this course. Remember, all of the answers are on a downloadable PDF right after the exam, so you too will pass.
When asking questions about test questions
PV System Inspector Exam
PV System Inspector Exam Answers with Detailed Explanations
Feedback and Additional Resources
This is our last module but you still have access to the all of course materials for 12 months (1 year), so keep working and you'll be able to complete the course at your own pace. After your year of access expires you can optionally extend access with a HeatSpring Membership. Enjoy the course and keep in touch!
PVSI exam will be updated someday
1 Year of Access to
Feedback: 2-minute Exit Survey
Consider Joining as a HeatSpring Member
Certificate of Completion: Request a Certificate
2014 IREC Trainer of the Year
Sean White was the 2014 Interstate Renewable Energy Council Trainer of the Year. He is an ISPQ Certified Solar PV Master Trainer and has authored several books on solar. He contributed to the development of the NABCEP PV Installation Professional Job Task Analysis and has been a member of the NABCEP PV Installation Professional Technical Committee. Sean is a... Learn more
Principal, Brooks Engineering
Bill Brooks PE, of Brooks Engineering LLC, has over 30 years of experience designing, installing, and evaluating grid-connected PV systems. More than 12,000 installers and inspectors have attended his courses throughout the U.S. and abroad. His field troubleshooting skills have been valuable in determining where problems occur to focus training on those issues of... Learn more
87 students have taken this course
by Tim Suddoth 11/04/2022
I highly recommend this course, especially for those who will be inspecting PV and ESS systems regularly.
by Blair Buselli, Owner/Operator, Buselli Solutions 10/04/2022
I am a NABCEP PV Professional in a rural area where the inspectors actually look to me for their standard for enforcing codes. It puts a lot of pressure on my company to help work with the inspectors on providing the best installation standards for our area. This course helps me to maintain the respect of the local professionals as well as the integrity of the trade. Thank you
by Ken Stewart, President, Easley Electric Inc. 08/17/2022
Sean is the best! He motivates you to learn in a fun way. He's responsive when you send in questions or comments, thoroughly qualified to enable you to succeed in passing NABCEP exams!
by Prithviraj Shelke, Senior Project Engineer, RWE Renewables Inc. 07/27/2022
Having few years of experience I was already familiarized with NEC but after taking this course I do feel more confident about where and what to look for when designing for solar PV projects.
You can begin this online course instantly upon enrollment. This 5 module course is delivered entirely online. This course is self-paced and you can set your own schedule to complete the materials. You can begin the lecture videos and other course materials as soon as you enroll. During your year of access the instructor will be in the course answering questions on the discussion board. After successfully completing the course, you will be able to generate a certificate of completion.
How long do I have access to the materials?
Students get unlimited access to the course materials as soon as they enroll and for one year (365 days) after enrollment. Rewatch videos and review assignments as many times as you want. View updates the instructor makes to the course as the industry advances. Return to your course anytime with online access from anywhere in the world. After the one year of access expires, access can be extended by joining as a HeatSpring member. A single membership extends access to course materials for all past enrollments.
Is there a certificate of completion?
Yes, when you complete this course you are eligible for a certificate of completion from HeatSpring. You can download your certificate as soon as you have completed all of the course requirements. Students can easily share their verified certificates on their LinkedIn profiles using our LinkedIn integration.