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Lead batteries at the end of their life. I need some help please.


Jakes
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My off-grid system is made up of 3750W of PV panels, a MicroCare 100A charge controller, a 5kW MicroCare inverter and 12 165Ah Narada lead carbon batteries.

After 6 years, the batteries are nearing their end.

I'd like to replace them a lithium battery. A FreedomWon 10/8 seems to be a good choice.

My research about the road forward has brought some confusing information.

MicroCare says the charge controller and inverter need to be sent in for upgrades - they'll be out of service for 2 weeks (MC wants them for 5 days). That is not practical, as running a generator for 2 weeks will be prohibitive in more than one way. MicroCare also said that the charge controller as it is now will charge a FreedonWon battery, and the generator will charge the battery through the inverter, but I should only charge the battery to 80% capacity. (This is without the upgrades).

FreedomWon referred me one of their agents - a very knowledgable guy. He also sees the only way forward is to upgrade the MicroCare equipment and add some accessories.

Has somebody been down this road? What is the best solution.?

Thanks a million.

J.

 

 

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I was in the Same boat hence still using the Gel lead acid batteries, 

Might be worthwhile to send it in, mine is a 15kw monster that weighs nearly 150kgs,

yours would be cheaper to courier, the two weeks wait is a better long term investment.

another option is to sell that unit and get the newer inverters (microcare is archaic in nature, I went with it for its robustness...they still have 20 year old units doing duty)

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I saw the lead acid lithium replacements, the only other thing to think of besides the comms issue is the inverter’s charge settings to accommodate the lithium’s. The old software in microcare was tuned for LA batteries, float charge is preset at 55.2v (13.8 per battery)

 

 

Edited by Vince MacMahon
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Hi V & S

Thanks a million for your inputs, and thanks for the kind offer.

The MicoCare components can be set to the values that are needed.

It seems that there are batteries able to do what I need.

I'll report on the outcome.

 

Edited by Jakes
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Thanks for a comprehensive answer on Microcare. I find their products robust yet archaic in nature (still uses that 1980’s 3 lines calculator screen), wherelse the latest offerings offer much better Ux and Ui. 

I have also picked up that there are quite a few fan boys on here….

(i) Expensive side: Victron
(ii)Midpoint: Sunsynk

(iii) Low side: Growatt

Batteries, I picked up Poly…and Hubble. I guess the former is for mainstream reasons and the latter for forum sales purpose? Hardly ever see a mention of other names (Freedom, Bluenova, etc.)

Reading up on the Experts, I picked up that there are a whole lot of clones!

 

Edited by Vince MacMahon
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1 hour ago, Vince MacMahon said:

Hi Jake

what did you decide on? 
 

Hi Vince

 

I've decided on 2 Shoto 48V 100Ah batteries.

The supplier said they are good replacements for lead batteries and work well without communications.

I trust that to be true.

He seems to have good experience with the specific situation.

They'll hopefully arrive within the next day or 3.

I'll set the MC's to talk nicely to them.

 

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That's interesting.

I sometimes think about a situation where I can use them as a standby bank. We've had wonderful weather lately, and they work like normal (I did quite a bit of welding tonight and last night).

I'd like to get more pv and then another mppt for one of the sets, but I don't know if it's feasible.

(You know about the other system I must get up and running soon, asking for some investment).

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