What is the Average Lifespan of a Solar Storage Battery?
You are here because you have concerns or queries about the lifespan of solar batteries. And you would certainly want to know about the factors that can impact the life expectancy of these units.
Let’s start with the basics.
Electricians generally prefer lead acid or lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries as a part of the solar power system. The latter is the most recommended option due to faster recharge time, greater cycle life, higher depth of discharge, and smaller size.
On the other hand, lead acid batteries cost less but are more prone to damage due to weather conditions.
Solar panels last for around 20 to 30 years, while batteries need replacement after 10 to 15 years. However, the warranty is more complex than it was earlier.
Warranted life, life cycles, and energy throughput are specifications linked to the warranty period. Once the battery meets one of these three conditions, the warranty period is considered expired.
Are you feeling confused? Let’s uncomplicate the math. If the battery crosses life cycles or the throughput number before ten years (warranty period), you would still be required to replace the battery at your own expense.
Now, let’s take a detailed look at these factors.
Warrantied life is generally ten years from the date of battery installation. However, it may differ depending on the battery model and size.
For example, Tesla offers ten years of limited warranty on Tesla PowerWall. The unit has a capacity of 13.5 kWh in the beginning of its life. It reduces as per the degradation schedule. The battery remains free from defects during this period. Another famous brand, LG, offers a warranty ensuring the battery retains 60 percent of its capacity (9.8 kWh) for ten years.
As you probably have a basic idea, a charge cycle is completed when the battery is fully charged and discharged once. The unit’s lifespan reduces with each cycle.
You might wonder, how many times does a battery charge and discharge daily? The answer relies on the battery capacity and your energy needs. Yet, on average, household consumption is roughly 19KWh per day. The battery is cycled at least once daily. The math might change depending on the battery size and morning/nighttime electricity consumption.
Every battery manufacturer highlights the amount of energy (throughput) that can pass through the unit. You can refer to the technical specifications or ask a licensed installation specialist to explain the capacity of the battery piece you plan to install.
The environment and temperature around the battery can impact the overall performance. These batteries must operate within the recommended temperature range to remain warranted.
You certainly want temperature influences to remain minimum. No worries. The solar battery installation specialist from Charlie Sparks will suggest the best areas of the house for battery placement.
Your installer will also elaborate on routine maintenance practices to ensure the unit remains in optimum condition.
Signs That Indicate Trouble With The Battery
- The inverter indicates the battery is not charging
- The system fails to meet your house’s energy demand
- Elevated self-discharge
- Shorter cycle lives
- System malfunction
- A rise in battery temperature
In case you notice these signs, it is advisable to let a licensed electrician inspect the unit. If the battery is within the warranty period, the professional will check the entire system (from the panel, inverter, wires, and battery) and recommend further action.
The Australian Energy Market Commission has made it clear. You might earn little by exporting energy generated by rooftop solar panels to the grid during non-peak hours. Then why not store the extra power in a residential battery energy storage system for later use? Overall, adding a battery energy storage system is a good idea.
The number of discharges and recharges (cycles), the warrantied life, surrounding temperature, energy throughput, and your energy usage determine the overall battery life.