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criteria to choose the best solar battery for a solar electric energy system

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“Did you know poor solar battery can cause one to hate solar electrical power system? If you don’t agree with this fact, try using it and give us a feedback”

You can enjoy solar electrical power system integration in your smart home or home if the good and reliable battery is used for the installation. There are certain criteria to follow when choosing a solar battery, below, are the most important information to use when deciding on which energy storage options to choose.

 

How to compare solar battery (storage) options

During installation, as you consider your solar battery (storage) options, you will come across many complicated product specifications. The most essential ones to use during your evaluation are:

  1. The battery’s capacity & power ratings  
  2.  Depth of discharge (DoD),
  3. round-trip efficiency
  4. Warranty and
  5. Manufacturer.

 READ ALSO: BASIC COMPONENTS OF A RESIDENTIAL SOLAR ELECTRIC SYSTEM

1. Capacity & power

The capacity of a solar battery is the total amount of electricity that the battery can store; it is measure in kilowatt-hours (kWh). So how can you determine this, Let say for example you buy 12 volts (push) and 200-amp hours (storage capacity) solar battery? You can know the amount of electrical power this battery will store by calculating the watt-hours. To do this, the volts (V) of the battery are multiplied by the amp hours (AH) and divide by 1000 which is [P = V*I/1000].

Most home solar batteries designed and manufactured in such a way that it can be “stack”, which means the batteries can be combined in either series or parallel to get extra capacity.

While capacity gives information to how big a battery storage ability is, it does not provide information on how much electricity it can send out at a given moment.

To get the full image of everything, the battery’s power rating is to be considered as well. In solar batteries context, the power rating is the amount of electricity that the battery can deliver at one time. It is measure in kilowatts (kW).

Therefore a battery that has high capacity and a low power rating would deliver a low amount of electricity, which can be enough to run a few crucial appliances for a long time. Whereas, a battery that has low capacity and a high power-rating could supply the entire home with electricity, but only for a few hours.

READ ALSO: Get to know how Electricity Work in Your Home?

2. Depth of discharge (DoD)

DEPTH OF DISCHARGE OF A SOLAR BATTERY
IMAGE DESCRIBING THE DEPTH OF DISCHARGE OF A SOLAR BATTERY

 Most solar batteries are designed to retain some charge at all times due to their chemical composition. If 100 percent of a battery’s charge is completely used, its useful life will be shortened significantly.

Therefore, the Depth of Discharge (DoD) of a battery simply means the amount of the battery’s capacity that has been used relative to the overall capacity of the battery. Most manufacturers always specify the maximum DoD for the optimal performance of a solar battery.

For example, if a 10kWh battery has a DoD of 90 percent, you shouldn’t use more than 9kWh of the battery before recharging it. Thus, when a battery has a higher DoD, it means you will be able to utilize more of your battery’s capacity before recharging it.

 

3. Round-trip efficiency

SOLAR BATTERY ROUNDTRIP EFFICIENCY

A battery’s round-trip efficiency means the amount of energy that can be utilized as a percentage of the amount of energy that it took to store the charges. For example, if a battery is supplying with 10kWh of electricity and one can only obtain 6kWh of useful electricity back, thus the battery has 80 percent round-trip efficiency (6 kWh / 10 kWh = 90%). Therefore, the higher a round-trip efficiency of a solar battery the more economical value you will get from it and vice versa.

4. Battery life & warranty

The need for electricity power at home to power devices that must be on always causes the use of electrical energy stored in the solar battery at all times. With DC to AC inverter electrical energy stored in the solar battery can be used by all appliances at home, and because of this daily cycle, the battery is charged and drain.

Therefore, the battery’s ability to retain power will gradually decrease the more the battery is used. In this way, solar batteries can be compared with the battery inside a cell phone. The cell phone is charged each time and use up and will be charged again when the store power reduces, and as the phone gets older one will start to notice that the battery is not able to hold as much of the power as it did when it was new.

Similarly, a battery might have a warranty for 5,000 cycles or 10 years at 70 percent of its original storage capacity. It implies that at the end of the warranty, the battery will have lost not more than 30 percent of its original ability to store energy. 

Therefore, solar batteries are normally given a warranty that guarantees a certain number of cycles and/or years of useful life. This is because battery performance naturally depreciates over time; so most manufacturers will also guarantee that the battery can keep a certain amount of its capacity over the course of the warranty.

READ ALSO: How does solar panel work?

5. Manufacturer

 Different types of companies are designing and manufacturing solar battery products, from automotive companies to tech startups. While it is possible that any major automotive company entering the energy storage market likely has a long history of product manufacturing, they may not provide the most revolutionary technology.

By contrast, a tech startup might have a brand-new high-performing technology to offer but may have less record of accomplishment to prove the battery’s long-term functionality.

Whether you select and purchase a battery manufactured by a cutting-edge startup or a manufacturer with a long history depends on your choice and need. Evaluating the warranties link with each product can give you additional guidance as you make your decision.

Therefore, the simple answer to the question “how long can my solar battery last?” is that it depends on the brand or make of the solar battery you buy and how much capacity it will lose over time and how fast that can happen. However, this will be cover in detail in a subsequent article, so check later for the update or subscribe for notification on update.

CHECK ALSO: Pros and Cons of Solar Energy

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