Always read all of the pages and
subjects before starting a solar system installation - If you
are unqualified or in any doubt about your own ability then consult
a qualified solar system installer.
Care Solar Power - Free energy from
Batteries generally have a 30% band of good operation so keeping
them managed by charging one way or another is vital. There
are the three main ways of charging your battery/batteries:-
Charger plugged into the household electricity supply
Over charging or under charging will lead to problems so managing
your battery charging is very important. Most battery charging
devices will need upwards from 5 hours to fully charge even
the smallest lead acid battery.There are fast charge units available
but by using a good battery management regulator you will be
giving your battery the best treatment. The battery is the heart
of most independent solar systems so just wiring up to a solar
panel or generator is not enough and will eventually lead to
Points to remember:
A battery rated at 100Ah arguably will have the capacity to
run a 1A appliance for 100 hours. This is not always the case
as temperature and the rate that a battery is discharged can
affect its capacity that can be drawn from it.
Manufacturers say that a leisure battery's longevity is considerably
reduced if you don't start recharging it when it drops to 50%
or less of it's total capacity. Therefore the supply period
is shorter than expected. The battery condition i.e. voltage
should be monitored continuously while in use. There are of
course battery management products to do just that.
Always remove the negative terminal wire first
Install a voltmeter (switchable) so you know what the state
of charge is. Again there are of course battery management products
to do just that.
There are circuits and ready made units for indicating when
your battery is getting near to the bottom of it's workable
band of supply see the Leisure
Batteries mounted externally perform less well than a similar
battery installed in a warm environment.
Second batteries should be wired positive to positive and negative
Ventilation around a lead acid battery is critical.
The fuse on the live terminal should be in a sealed
holder near the battery.
Some Common Sense With Lead
Acid Batteries is
a good idea, here is a short You Tube video showing just that!
Gel Batteries Compared With Lead Acid Batteries
Independent specialists maintain that from an electrical standpoint
lead acid batteries are preferable. Gel batteries are great
in situations where acid spill is a problem such as quad bikes,
jet skis, aeroplanes and small boats.
Picture above - A simple
and cheap voltmeter (£5 - £10) available in many
specialist high street electrical shops. Ideal for a quick voltage
check to your leisure storage batteries.
Warming - it's why we are making changes to our way of life!
David Bellamy has a very interesting article on global warming
where he gives another point of view, Read
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