Solar batteries and solar energy storage systems provide an easy way to store your solar energy for use later. In the event of a power failure, your battery will continue to provide previously stored power to your home, ensuring that your lights and other important appliances are still running.
With many different batteries available, it’s important to explore the common solar battery mistakes made when choosing the best batteries for your solar system.
Avoiding Common Solar Battery Mistakes
Here are the 13 most common solar battery mistakes to be aware of when purchasing a solar system.
Choosing the Wrong Battery Capacity
Australia’s unique climate and energy demands can influence the type of solar batteries you might want to go for. In an average-sized Australian household, a 10-12kWh battery capacity is enough to cover your daily needs and power homes during the night and on cloudy days.
That said, it’s crucial to think about your specific energy needs to find the perfect solar battery match for your place. Here are some common slip-ups people make when picking out batteries.
Inadequate Battery Capacity
If you’re new to solar panels, you might end up choosing the wrong battery, which can affect how much energy you can store for later. If your battery capacity is too small, you’ll risk running out of power during the night and will cause you to rely on the power grid, increasing your energy expenses.
It is best practice to match the battery size to the solar panel output to make the most of your solar energy systems. Ensuring you have the right battery capacity is important to help you use less electricity from the grid and maximise self-consumption.
Overestimating Your Power Needs
It’s also a common mistake to overestimate your energy needs. An excess of stored energy can be handy in some cases, but it can raise the upfront cost of your solar power system. A larger battery capacity than what you actually need will be expensive and make it less environmentally friendly.
There may be consequences when you fail to consider your power usage when choosing a battery size. One of the most obvious issues is underutilisation or overutilisation of the battery.
If the battery is too small, you will draw power from the grid frequently and miss the opportunity to save money. But, if the battery is excessively large, it can result in unnecessary expenses since larger batteries are more expensive.
It’s also important to consider your future energy needs. Your energy demands can change over time due to lifestyle changes, technological advancements, or business expansions. Anticipating your energy requirements will help you choose the correct battery size for your solar system.
Getting The Cheapest Option
Your budget often dictates your solar battery choices. It is tempting to settle for a lower price, but when it comes to solar batteries, you might not be glad you did.
Here are some reasons why getting the cheapest option isn’t always the best.
- Compromising Quality – A cheap product often means sacrificing the product quality. These items wear quickly and will require frequent replacement, costing you more in the future.
- Safety Concerns – Low-priced items often don’t adhere to safety standards. These products don’t typically undergo safety regulations, which can put you and your family at risk.
- Environmental Impact – Cheap products can be harmful to the environment. These items are usually manufactured with non-sustainable materials, contributing to more pollution.
- Fraud – While bargain prices may look like a good deal, they usually mean that the product has poor performance, won’t last as long, or comes with a limited warranty.
Proper and correct installation is important so you can maximise the use of your solar battery. Improper solar installation is one of the reasons for solar battery failure. Here are the common mistakes in installation to help you prevent them.
Every component of your solar power system must be carefully connected to maximise its efficiency. One misconnection can lead to hazards and malfunctions that can damage your solar battery. Our experts at Sungain Solar can help you install your solar batteries correctly. Contact us today for more information.
Ignoring Environmental Factors
Solar batteries can be exposed to different environmental factors, such as temperature, weather conditions, humidity, and physical damage. Ignoring these can damage your batteries which will cause poor and inefficient performance.
You can avoid these mistakes by looking for a reliable solar system installer. These experts can deliver high-quality installations, maximise your solar batteries and ensure you can use them at full capacity for a long time.
Favouring Well-Known Brands
Well-known brands are not always the best choice for your solar needs. Mainstream brands have fewer customisation options. It may be difficult for you to find a solution that matches your energy requirements and budget.
Also, these brands often come with an expensive price tag. You might end up paying more for the brand name rather than the battery’s performance. Know your energy usage patterns and consider different options to get the most out of your solar investment.
Ignoring the Essential Features
Power outages can happen because of bad weather, grid maintenance, or unexpected problems. So blackout safety is an important part of solar batteries. During power interruptions, your solar battery can continue providing you with energy.
You may also want to consider modular batteries. You can customise them to meet your specific power needs. You can start small and add more modules as your energy requirements grow. Modular batteries can make the transition to solar energy more cost-effective.
Neglecting Regular Maintenance
Ignoring maintenance affects performance and shortens the lifespan of solar batteries. Dust and debris can accumulate over time and can cause damage when they are not removed. It can clog and damage your battery system, leading to overheating and other problems.
Many battery owners also forget to update their systems. Ensure your batteries are always up-to-date to keep your unit performing well.
We recommend cleaning and inspecting your battery system every six months. You can do them quarterly if you use them frequently. It is also best to have a professional inspect your battery. Never self-repair, especially if you do not know anything about battery repairs. Let the professionals handle them to avoid further damage.
Forgetting Solar Battery Warranties
Many people make the mistake of not reading and understanding the terms of a warranty. It’s important to know that not all warranties are the same. Coverage times and conditions can be different for different brands and models.
It’s also common to forget to register their warranties within the time limit after installation, which makes them void. As a buyer, you should be aware that some warranties make performance promises that are subject to factors you can’t change, such as the location, warranty coverage and installation requirements.
You may not know that you are charging wrong, and these mistakes can harm your solar battery. Here are some charging concerns you should know about.
Battery Charging Cycles
One charging cycle involves charging from low battery state to full charge. Battery manufacturers indicate how many charging cycles their unit can handle before its capacity decreases. Understanding the battery cycle can help you maximise its life.
Overcharging vs Undercharging
Over and undercharging can negatively affect your battery’s health. Overcharging happens when you leave your batteries plugged after fully charged, leading to overheating that causes damage.
Undercharging occurs when your battery is not sufficiently charged, which causes decreased capacity. These extremes can affect your battery’s ability to hold charge and its performance.
Monitoring and Optimising The Charging Process
It’s common practice to just plug your batteries in and leave them until it’s fully charged. However, monitoring the charging process is key to maintaining your solar batteries. Here are some tips to help you.
- Avoid keeping your battery in extremes such as 0% and 100% charge for long periods. Manufacturers recommend to keep the battery range between 20% to 80%.
- Schedule your battery charging when solar capacity is at its peak. This will allow you to rely less on the power grid to charge and maximise your solar system.
- Utilise the smart charging features of your battery. It will adapt to your energy consumption patterns and optimise the charging process according to your needs.
Temperature can affect the health and performance of solar batteries. Although some batteries are designed to withstand extreme temperatures, knowing how temperature affects them is still important.
For example, extreme and excessive heat leads to faster chemical reactions that cause batteries to degrade faster. In contrast, extreme cold temperatures can reduce your battery capacity and output. In some battery types, extreme cold can freeze the electrolytes and make the battery unusable.
Here are some ways you can protect your battery from extreme temperatures.
- Location – Install your batteries in an area shielded from direct heat. Avoid locations with poor ventilation to save your battery from temperature spikes.
- Insulation – If you’re living in colder regions, proper insulation will prevent temperature drops that can lessen your battery performance.
- Cooling and Heating Systems – Installing these systems will help optimise your battery temperature. Consider the region where you live to get the appropriate system for your battery.
At Sungain Solar, our solar professionals can assess your home and help install your solar battery taking into account these considerations.
Not Compatible Components
Incompatibility between battery components can cause malfunctions and even damage. As a solar battery owner, knowing the compatible components with your solar battery system is essential to prolong its life and maintain performance.
One essential component of solar battery systems is the inverter. This component converts direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC) you use for your homes. The wrong inverter can cause electrical imbalances that lead to energy loss.
Your solar batteries should also be compatible with your solar panel. Incompatible panels will mean missed opportunities to store energy and reduce the performance of your solar batteries.
Skipping Professional Insight and Assistance
Many owners will attempt to fix problems with their batteries to save money, but this could lead to more trouble. Seeking professional help is always best with solar battery concerns. Professionals are trained to handle the technical aspects and address them.
Below are some benefits of professional help when choosing your batteries.
- Solar experts have in-depth knowledge of solar batteries and technology, which can help you avoid common mistakes and maximise your batteries.
- Professionals have training in safety regulations. They can ensure that your solar batteries comply with the safety standards.
- Most solar equipment requires professional installation to keep the warranties valid. Hiring professionals will ensure the warranty on your battery will not be voided.
Find The Perfect Solar Battery For Your Solar System
A solar battery is an investment that when treated well, can last you a lifetime. The initial cost can be expensive. However, avoiding expensive repairs or a full battery replacement can help save you thousands ensuring your solar investment continues to provide a positive return. Avoiding the 13 mosts common solar battery mistakes will ensue your batteries keep the power going for their expected lifetime and beyond.
If you need help with finding the perfect solar battery the team at SunGain Solar is here to help. We offer personalised solar packages to any need. Browse our battery packages or contact us below for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Want to learn more about the batteries available in the Australian marketplace? Check out our side by side Solar Battery Comparison table for the most comprehensive solar battery resources available online.