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 report will answer these questions and give you specific things to check on before purchasing your new battery (to ensure you get the most bang for the buck)!
When picking a battery (or batteries) to your solar panel system, there are 3 categories of batteries which work best. We’ll do this in two parts:
Part 1) Quickly compare the three chief kinds of solar batteries (lead acid, saltwater, and lithium). And,
Part 2) Compare the elements of batteries, such as: depth of discharge, capacity and power, efficiency, battery life, and maker.
By the end of this article you will know exactly how to pick the best battery to your solar panel system!
So let’s begin…
Part 1) The Three Best Types Of Batteries For Solar Panel Systems: The best type of battery for your solar panel system will be dependent on what you’re looking for. There are three battery types that work exceptionally well; however, each battery type has pros and cons. So the first decision to make is the sort of battery that will fit your system.
Lead Acid Batteries
Lead acid batteries are the most commonly used rechargeable battery in the world. They’re also one of the longest-used and most dependable batteries in existence. When compared with the other batteries we’ll discuss in this report; they’re the cheapest option but you trade cost for some battery life and depth of discharge. But for homeowners needing lots of storage for a lower price, or whether you are simply making the transfer to a solar panel system, lead acid batteries might be an excellent 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. Contrary to lead acid batteries, saltwater batteries are basically brand new to the industry and stay both somewhat untested and harder to come across. Of the 3 types of batteries, saltwater has the greatest depth of discharge, which means 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 kinds 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 choices, the lithium battery may be 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. As soon as you’ve picked the best battery type for your solar panel or off-grid system (that meets your system’s needs), there are components to explore to find the perfect battery for your system.
Price is probably one of the more obvious components. But the old saying,”you get what you pay for” holds true when buying batteries also. Sometimes though, certain batteries could be overkill for your system so the most expensive battery might not be the ideal choice always.
For most systems, a battery will cycle every day, meaning it will charge and drain regularly. With every cycle, the battery’s ability to maintain the identical charge lessens slightly. So 1 component to consider is the guarantee on the battery which guarantees a certain number of cycles of useful life. But bear in mind that if you use the maintenance and reconditioning methods we teach you in the EZ Battery Reconditioning program, you can extend the life of your batteries.
Depth of Discharge
Depth of discharge is how much you can drain the battery down before needing to recharge the battery without harming its life. Certain solar batteries can be depleted farther than others, allowing for more use between charging. Essentially, a battery with a 90% depth of discharge per cycle provides more battery power per charge compared to a battery with less.
Ability and Power
The more capacity a battery has, the more power it can store. Power is how much energy a battery can provide at a certain moment. A battery with both a high capacity and higher power can run a massive system for many hours; a battery with low capacity and higher power can operate a large system but only for a short time.
Efficiency is the amount of energy used compared to the amount of energy it took to save said energy. Batteries require power to charge and efficacy compares the energy taken to charge a battery together with the amount of energy that the charged battery generates. The higher the efficiency, the more cost-effective the battery.
This may not be a component most would consider, but it is something to pay attention to. As with other technology, there are both reputable brands and startup brands. A trusted brand includes known flaws and benefits; a startup brand can perhaps have better technology, but can also have yet unknown technological issues. Depending upon your system demands, you might decide to go for a well-reviewed firm or one that is brand new to the market.