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How To Pick Out The Best Battery For a Solar Panel System, Battery Bank, or Off-Grid System

Have you ever wondered how to pick out the best battery(s) to your solar panel system (or off-grid energy system)? Or have you wondered what makes one deep cycle battery greater than another?  If so, this report will answer these questions and provide you specific things to check on before buying your new battery (to ensure you get the most bang for your 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 main kinds of solar batteries (lead acid, saltwater, and lithium).   And,

Part 2)   Assess the components of batteries, such as: depth of discharge, capacity and power, efficiency, battery life, and maker.

By the conclusion of the article you will know just how to pick the best battery to your solar panel system!

So let’s begin…

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

They’re also among the longest-used and most reliable batteries in existence.  When compared with the other batteries we’ll discuss in this report; they’re 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 lower cost, or whether you are just making the move to a solar panel system, lead acid batteries might be an excellent option.  They’re the type of battery we use in the majority of the battery banks within our solar panel systems.

Saltwater batteries are more expensive than lead acid batteries, but also have a better lifespan.  Unlike lead acid batteries, saltwater batteries are basically brand new to the industry and remain both somewhat untested and harder to come across.  Of the 3 kinds of batteries, saltwater has the best depth of discharge, so you’ll get the most output per fee before needing to recharge.

Lithium Batteries

Lithium batteries are the most expensive and the longest lasting of the three types of solar batteries.  Comparing all three choices, the lithium battery may be the highest rated, but also the most expensive.  A good example of a lithium 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 elements to research to find the perfect battery for your system.  

Cost

Price is probably one of the more obvious elements.  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.

Battery Life and Warranty

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 same charge lessens slightly.  So 1 component to consider is the guarantee on the battery that guarantees a certain number of cycles of useful life.  But bear in mind that when you use the maintenance and reconditioning methods we teach you at the EZ Battery Reconditioning application, you can extend the life of your batteries.

Depth of Discharge

Length of release is how much you can drain the battery before needing to recharge the battery without harming its life.  Particular solar batteries may be depleted further than others, allowing for more use between charging.  Basically, 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 given moment.  A battery with both a high capacity and higher power can run a large system for several hours; a battery with low capacity and high power can run a large system but just for a brief time.

Efficiency

Efficiency is the amount of energy used compared to the quantity of energy it took to save energy.  Batteries require power to control and efficiency compares the energy taken to charge a battery together with the amount of energy which the charged battery generates. 

Manufacturer

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 start-up brands.  A trusted brand comes with known flaws and advantages; a startup brand can perhaps have better technology, but can also have unknown technological issues.  Based upon your system demands, you may decide to go for a well-reviewed company or one that is brand new to the market.