Solar batteries are vital devices for storing excess energy harvested from the sun during day. Despite the charging process being straightforward, you will need controllers to ensure the battery charges properly without damaging the solar battery. One of these devices is a solar battery maintainer.
A solar battery maintainer ensures the solar battery charges at a constant rate. This prevents the solar battery to overcharge or discharge. We will discuss more on the benefits of a solar battery maintainer in this article.
Will a solar battery maintainer charge a battery?
A solar battery maintainer is a device that controls the charging of a solar battery. It ensures the battery charges at a constant rate without overcharging and also maintains the charge in the battery in case the battery is stored. But can a solar battery maintainer by itself charge a solar battery?
A solar battery maintainer can enhances the charging of a battery by converting solar energy into electricity energy. The energy is then sent to the solar battery at a constant rate.
- If the battery has some charge in it, the solar battery tender will send charge at a slow rate until the battery is fully charged.
- When the solar battery is flat, the maintainer increases the rate at which it sends power to the battery.
You can also connect a solar battery maintainer to a stored battery. The maintainer will hold some amount of charge in the solar battery to prevent the solar battery from completely discharging.
Can a solar battery maintainer overcharge a battery?
Solar battery maintainer uses a technology that detects when the solar battery is fully charged or nearly full. Once the maintainer detects the level of the charge, it automatically shuts off any more charge from reaching the solar battery. Therefore, your solar battery cannot overcharge when a solar battery maintainer is present.
Are solar battery maintainers waterproof?
Most solar battery maintainer manufacturers indicate that their devices are waterproof. However, ensure you protect your maintainer from excess moisture.
If water seeps inside the solar maintainer, it might destroy some delicate components responsible for charging. The water droplets might also block the maintainer from harvesting sunlight energy.
What is a solar trickle charger?
A solar trickle is a device that helps the solar panel in charging a solar battery. The trickle charger detects even the slightest sunlight energy and stars to charge the battery. This device however cannot detect when the solar battery is fully charged. If left plugged in for a long time, it might overcharge a battery.
Can you leave a solar trickle charger on all the time?
A solar battery trickle sends low amount of energy to the battery. If there is scarcity of sun, the trickle charger will detect some sunlight and start harvesting the solar energy. Since the power reaching the battery is very little, it cannot overcharge a solar battery.
There is a downside to leaving the trickle charger connected to the solar battery. In case of hot sun, the trickle will continue sending power to the battery. It will not detect if the solar battery is fully charged. This might lead to the battery overcharging. To prevent the battery from overcharging, connect a solar battery maintainer to the solar battery.
Will a solar trickle charger charge a dead battery?
A solar battery trickle will collect even the slightest of solar energy to charge a solar battery. It can be useful in charging even a dead battery, so long as the battery is in serviceable condition. If a solar battery is completely drained but not entirely dead, the solar trickle will charge that battery. It will however take longer to charge a drained battery.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can a solar trickle charger overcharge a solar battery?
A solar trickle charger does not detect when the solar battery is fully charge. So long as the trickle charger is connected to the battery, there is flow of charge. Thus the solar battery might overcharge.
Is a solar trickle charger the same as a solar battery maintainer?
A solar battery maintainer improves the performance of the solar battery by shutting off flow of charge when the battery is fully charged. A solar trickle charger on the other hand is efficient in charging a solar battery. It continues sending more charge to the battery even when the solar battery is fully charged.
Installing solar battery controllers to your solar PV system will help keep your battery in a good condition despite the weather condition.
A solar battery maintainer will charge a solar battery and shutoff any charge from reaching the battery when the solar battery is fully charged. On the other hand, a solar trickle charger will maintain the solar battery charger by sending a constant flow of charge throughout. This devices should always work together for efficiency.
Eng. Matthew Joseph Nandirio is the Founder of walkingsolar.
After graduating from the University of Houston in 2002, matt started working as an electrical and electronic engineer for several multi-national solar energy companies.
He has a wide range of experiences including solar system requirement analysis, planning, maintaining, debugging and even solar device development through research.
He now shares his 20 years of expertise through his articles on the walkingsolar website.
Further, he is also the author of two books on Solar Technology, “Solar Power for Villages” and “DIY Solar System for Dummies”.