8 Tips For Extending Battery Life For Your Solar Power System

Solar panels are an investment. It is important to maintain your batteries properly. These tips will help you get the most from your batteries.

Limit the number and size of batteries

Limit the number of batteries stored in your bank. More batteries means more connections. Each connection can increase resistance and cause uneven charging. If you are able, limit your bank to 16 or less batteries.

Rotate your batteries

Rotate the batteries in your large bank of batteries regularly if you have many. The bank’s middle batteries may not get as much charge as those on the outside. This can be balanced by rotating the batteries regularly.

Large battery interconnect cables are recommended

Large battery interconnect cables reduce resistance and allow for faster charging. For 12V and 24V systems we recommend a 4/0 cable, while a 2/0 is recommended for 48V systems.

Neglecting to charge batteries can cause serious damage

You should not leave batteries uncharged for long periods of time. You should always leave your charger on to allow the batteries to charge. Batteries that are left uncharged can cause them to become damaged.

Only use distilled water

We don’t recommend adding electrolytes or battery additives to your battery. They can cause more harm than good.

Charge your battery properly

You can’t replace proper charging of your batteries. Unfortunately, there isn’t any way to prove that battery desolators improve battery life. It’s up to you to decide if battery desolators are worth it.

Allow boiling or gassing

Proper charging requires that batteries gases or boil. Regular gassing should be done for your batteries, at least once a day. The battery will start to gas at around 14.1Vdc (12V nominal system), 28.2Vdc (24V), or 56.4Vdc (48V). This will create hydrogen and water. Therefore, it is important that your battery bank has adequate ventilation in order to prevent hydrogen buildup. Think Hindenburg.

Battery Equalization

Equalization refers to a controlled overcharge for your batteries. Although it sounds terrible, overcharging can be good for your batteries. Normal cycling can cause individual cells to become unevenly charged. This can prevent some cells from charging to full charge on a regular basis. It can also cause solation buildup on the plates. Gassing can be used to remove some of the solation from the plates by allowing equalization to occur. Gassing can also be used to disperse electrolyte and prevent it from stratifying. For proper equalization instructions, consult your manual or inverter.

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