When it comes to solar battery banks, there are several choices depending on your energy load and budget!
12 volt and 6 volt are most common but 2 volt solar batteries are becoming more popular since Trojan Battery offered an affordable L16-2VRE.
One choice is battery chemistry types: flooded lead acid or “wet cells”, sealed Absorbed Glass Mat and sealed gel cells, each coming with their own set of requirements. Another option is battery voltage, for example, 6 volt golf cart batteries with the wet cell design are popular because of their high amp hours vs cost. 6 volt golf cart batteries with thick battery plates are designed for hours of high volume discharge with a fast recharge. Having thicker battery plates allow for a deep cycle characteristic compared to car batteries with thinner battery plates that have a high volume discharge that lasts only seconds but requiring a longer period to recharge.
Your battery bank is sized by the loads you wish to run times the number of days you would like your batteries to last if there was zero sunlight = days of autonomy.
6 volt batteries in general have more amp hours than 12 volt and 2 volt will have the most amp hours and the most life cycles!
When buying a deep-cycle battery, there are several factors that should be taken into account to determine the total cost of ownership over the life of the battery.
- Price: A battery with a low price is always attractive, but if this is obtained at the expense of quality and battery life, the cost over time will be high because of the need for frequent battery replacements. That’s why it’s important to consider issues other than price when making the decision.
- Capacity: A battery’s capacity is very important since it is the measurement of the amount of energy stored in the battery.
- Voltage: The battery bank voltage must be considered to ensure it matches the system requirements. The battery bank voltage is often determined by the inverter specifications if installing a DC to AC system, or by the voltage of the loads in a DC system.
- Brand: Choosing a battery from a reputable company is important. Because many companies sell deep-cycle batteries, choosing a company that focuses on deep-cycle technology with a proven history of manufacturing deep-cycle batteries means you will benefit from the company’s expertise.