How To Pick Out The Best Battery For a Solar Panel System, Battery Bank, or Off-Grid System
Or have you wondered what makes one deep cycle battery greater than another? If so, this article will answer these questions and give you specific things to check on before buying your new battery (to make certain you get the most bang for your buck)!
When picking a battery (or batteries) for your solar panel system, there are 3 categories of batteries that work best. We’ll do this in 2 parts:
Part 1) Quickly compare the three main kinds of solar batteries (lead acid, saltwater, and lithium). And,
Part 2) Compare the components of batteries, such as: depth of discharge, power and capacity, efficiency, battery life, and maker.
By the conclusion of the article you will know exactly how to pick out the best battery to your own solar panel system!
So let’s get started…
Part 1) The Three Best Types Of Batteries For Solar Panel Systems: The best type of battery for your solar panel system will depend on what you’re looking for. So the first decision to make is the type of battery that will fit your system.
They’re also among the longest-used and most dependable batteries in existence. When compared with the other batteries we’ll discuss in this report; they are the cheapest option but you exchange price for some battery life and depth of discharge. But for homeowners needing a great deal of storage for a lesser price, or whether you are just making the transfer to a solar panel system, lead acid batteries may be a very good option. They’re the sort of battery we use in the majority of the battery banks in our solar panel systems.
Saltwater batteries are more expensive than lead acid batteries, but also have a greater lifespan. Unlike lead acid batteries, saltwater batteries are essentially brand new to the market and remain both somewhat untested and more difficult to come across. Of the three kinds of batteries, saltwater has the greatest depth of discharge, so you’ll find the most output per fee before needing to recharge.
Lithium batteries are the most expensive and the longest lasting of the three types of solar batteries. Their depth of discharge is less than that of a saltwater battery, but more than that of a lead acid battery. Comparing all three options, the lithium ion battery is probably the highest rated, but also the most expensive. A good example of a lithium ion battery is the Tesla Powerwall.
Part 2) Assess the components of batteries. Once you’ve picked the best battery type for your solar panel or off-grid system (that meets your system’s needs), there are elements to explore to find the ideal battery to your system.
Cost is probably one of the more obvious components. But the old saying,”you get what you pay for” holds true when buying batteries as well. In some instances though, certain batteries may be overkill for your system so the most expensive battery might not be the best choice always.
For most systems, a battery will cycle daily, meaning it will drain and charge regularly. With each cycle, the battery’s ability to hold the identical charge lessens slightly. So 1 component to consider is the warranty on the battery that guarantees a specific number of cycles of useful life. But keep in mind that when you use the maintenance and reconditioning methods we teach you at the EZ Battery Reconditioning program, you can extend the life of your batteries.
Length of Discharge
Depth of discharge is how much you can drain the battery before needing to recharge the battery without damaging its life. Particular solar batteries can be depleted further than others, allowing for more use between charging. Basically, a battery with a 90% depth of discharge per cycle will provide more battery power per charge compared to a battery with less.
Capacity and Power
Measured in kilowatt hours (kWh), capacity is the amount of energy a battery can store over time. The more capacity a battery has, the more power it can save. Power is how much energy a battery can provide at a certain moment. A battery with a high capacity and higher power can run a large system for several hours; a battery with low capacity and higher power can run a large system but only for a brief time.
Efficiency is the amount of energy used compared to the amount of energy it took to store said energy. Batteries require power to charge and efficacy compares the energy taken to charge a battery with the amount of energy which the charged battery generates. The higher the efficiency, the more cost-effective the battery.
This may not be a part most would consider, but it’s something to pay attention to. Like other technology, there are both trusted brands and start-up brands. A trusted brand comes with known defects and benefits; a startup brand can perhaps have better technology, but can also have yet unknown technological difficulties. Based upon your system needs, you may decide to go with a well-reviewed firm or one that is brand new to the market.