Solar is fast emerging as an alternate source of power. In the US, an increasing number of households are choosing solar over traditional forms of energy.
One of the potential drawbacks of a solar energy system is that it can produce electricity only when the sun is shining. This is why many solar installation companies in Napa advise households to add solar batteries to their power storage systems.
What are Solar Batteries
A solar battery stores energy from a solar system so that it can be used later. There are many benefits of incorporating storage solutions into your energy system. With solar batteries, you will make the most of the power produced by your solar system, while reducing your carbon footprint.
An energy storage system can supply you with backup power in the event of a power outage. Solar batteries can help you reduce your dependence on the grid and even enable you to go off-grid, which means you will buy less electricity from your power company.
Lithium-ion solar batteries use less material than traditional batteries, minimizing the environmental impact. Solar batteries have a longer cycle life when compared to traditional batteries, meaning they can support a higher number of charge/discharge cycles before their capacity falls below 80%. They are low-maintenance and last longer, leading to greater savings.
Before investing in solar batteries, perform a cost-benefit analysis to determine if you need a storage system.
The Different Types of Solar Batteries
Lead-acid batteries have been around for quite some time. A lead-acid battery consists of a negative electrode made of spongy lead and a positive electrode made of lead oxide. Both electrodes are immersed in a solution of sulfuric acid and water while a chemically permeable membrane separates them.
Lead-acid batteries are less efficient than many other types of batteries as they have a low energy density and need regular maintenance. Despite these drawbacks, lead-acid batteries are one of the most popular battery types due to their low cost.
You should not discharge a lead-acid battery to more than 50% of its capacity as doing so can cut short its useful life.
Lithium-ion batteries are much lighter than lead-acid batteries and they also have a higher energy density. You can discharge a lithium-ion battery to up to 95 percent before recharging it. Lithium-ion batteries can store a whopping 150 watt-hours of electricity per kg of battery. The only drawback of lithium-ion batteries is their high cost.
A nickel-cadmium battery comprises nickel and cadmium electrodes drenched in a potassium hydroxide solution. These batteries can store more electricity than their lead-acid counterparts and also have a longer life. A major drawback of nickel-cadmium batteries is that nickel is a highly toxic corrosive chemical.