Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system

jberg85jberg85 Registered Users Posts: 10
I am trying to get some personal feedback from people that have used either of these batteries with good or bad success. From what I can tell the Surrette/Rolls S-550 seam to look better on specs with more capacity. Below are the specs for capacity on both.

Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system

Surrette/Rolls S-550 = 428 amp hours at 20
Trojan L16RE-B = 370 amp hours at at 20

I seam to be able to get 16 of either of these for about $4900.00 delivered to my door.

Which would give me the below amp hours based on 16 with either system.
Surrette/Rolls S-550 = 856
Trojan L16RE-B = 740

This shows 116 more amp hours for the Surrette/Rolls S-550 over the Trojan for about the same price.

Can I get some input from people that have these?

Comments

  • VicVic Solar Expert Posts: 3,088 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system

    Hi jberg..,

    Welcome to the Forum.

    The Surrette S550 has been in production for a year or so, so there may not be that many here that have run them. I do have a bank of s-530s (the S-550 replaced the 530) that have been in service for 9.5 years, and have held up well, but they are nearing the end of their service life.

    AH Capacity is not the only thing to look for in a battery, and it is good that you are asking for the experiences of others using these two candidate batteries.

    The Surrette weighs about 5 lbs more than does the Trojan, FWIW.

    The actual Capacity of the S550 is really 5% less than specified, as each of the C ratings in their table assumes the electrolyte is 1.280, which it is not. These batteries have a target SG of 1.265, which means that the nominal Capacity of the 550 is about 405 Ah.

    For daily cyclic use in a Renewable Energy charged system, lower SG electrolyte is better, IMO. The Trojans are now running 1.277-ish SG electrolyte. This means that the Absorption voltage will need to be a bit higher than if these batteries also had the 1.265 SG of the Surrettes, in general.

    I have had very good luck with the three Surrette banks in use here, and a neighbor also runs Surrettes, and has had very good luck with them -- about 9.5 years on all of them (knock on wood).

    FWIW, Good Luck, Vic
    Off Grid - Two systems -- 4 SW+ 5548 Inverters, Surrette 4KS25 1280 AH [email protected], 11.1 KW STC PV, 4X MidNite Classic 150 w/ WBjrs, Beta KID on S-530s, MX-60s, MN Bkrs/Boxes.  25 KVA Polyphase Kubota diesel,  Honda Eu6500isa,  Eu3000is-es, Eu2000,  Eu1000 gensets.  Thanks Wind-Sun for this great Forum.
  • jberg85jberg85 Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system

    Vic, thank you very much for your comments on the Surrette's.

    How much longer to you think you will get out of your S-530's? What has been your usage like? Hard or very cautious for the last 9 years taking care of them? Any balance problems at all?
  • VicVic Solar Expert Posts: 3,088 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system

    Hi Jberg..,

    These batteries have been fairly well tended, but last year, was very distracted building a shop, so they were a bit neglected then. They take a bit longer to EQ, now, and the self-discharge rate on the S-530 is a bit higher than when new. But they still truck along.

    L-16 batteries may well be considered as a 5 - 6 year battery, if they are looked after well. Running more than one string of any battery requires more careful monitoring of string balance, and perhaps rotating batteries from one string to others to try to maintain balance.

    Over a long period of time, balance does diverge on any Lead Acid battery. Because you are planning on running two parallel strings, you will want to get a Clamp on DC Ammeter (or use shunts, etc) to monitor the string current balance. And of course, use your Hydrometer to measure the SGs and the SG balance monthly or so.

    More later ... opinions vary to a large degree on what is the best battery ... some of this is just luck, and much of battery performance over the long term, depends on how well they are tended, and how well the maintainer responds to changes made, based on monitoring of the bank, and so on.

    FWIW, Vic
    Off Grid - Two systems -- 4 SW+ 5548 Inverters, Surrette 4KS25 1280 AH [email protected], 11.1 KW STC PV, 4X MidNite Classic 150 w/ WBjrs, Beta KID on S-530s, MX-60s, MN Bkrs/Boxes.  25 KVA Polyphase Kubota diesel,  Honda Eu6500isa,  Eu3000is-es, Eu2000,  Eu1000 gensets.  Thanks Wind-Sun for this great Forum.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,784 admin
    Re: Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system

    Whatever I recommend--Get something different (my luck or lack of same).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system

    If there is a Crown battery dealer nearby check out their selection. They have an 'RE' 395 Amp hour 6 Volt 6CRP525 and a 'standard' deep cycle 430 Amp hour 6 Volt CR-430. At least as good quality as Trojan or Surrette (better in my opinion) and usually less money.
  • marsofoldmarsofold Solar Expert Posts: 45 ✭✭
    Re: Comparing Surrette/Rolls S-550 vs Trojan L16RE-B batteries for 48V off grid system
    If there is a Crown battery dealer nearby check out their selection. They have an 'RE' 395 Amp hour 6 Volt 6CRP525 and a 'standard' deep cycle 430 Amp hour 6 Volt CR-430. At least as good quality as Trojan or Surrette (better in my opinion) and usually less money.

    The short warranty (only 4 years) gives me pause to consider these...
  • WaterWheelWaterWheel Registered Users Posts: 340 ✭✭✭

    My local solar installer pushed Rolls batteries for years with good results until he had 2 customers with Rolls warranty claims.

    It was so much trouble to file a claim with Rolls he switched to recommending the Crown batteries about 3 years ago with zero problems on many installs since.       At his suggestion I went with Crown 395 amp/hr 6v L-16s but I've only had them a few months.        happy with them so far.

    $2380 for 8 of them

    Conext XW6848 with PDP, SCP, 80/600 controller, 60/150 controller and Conext battery monitor

    21 SW280 panels on Schletter ground mount

    48v Rolls 6CS 27P

  • MangasMangas Solar Expert Posts: 547 ✭✭✭✭
    I just replaced my 64  Trojan L 16 RE-B 6V batteries with Trojan's latest L 16 RE-B product (T2 and Smart Carbon Technology) which they claim extends performance over the older version.

    Got 5 1/2 years out of the old set whic h saw 24/7 use over msny years.




    Ranch Off Grid System & Custom Home: 2 x pair stacked Schneider XW 5548+ Plus inverters (4), 2 x Schneider MPPT 80-600 Charge Controllers, 2 Xanbus AGS Generator Start and Air Extraction System Controllers, 64 Trojan L16 REB 6v 375 AH Flooded Cel Batteries w/Water Miser Caps, 44 x 185 Sharp Solar Panels, Cummins Onan RS20 KW Propane Water Cooled Genset, ICF Custom House Construction, all appliances, Central A/C, 2 x High Efficiency Variable Speed three ton Central A/C 220v compressors, 2 x Propane furnaces, 2 x Variable Speed Air Handlers, 2 x HD WiFi HVAC Zoned System Controllers
  • VicVic Solar Expert Posts: 3,088 ✭✭✭✭

    Have been running three separate banks of Surrette batteries.  Two independent banks are 48 V 4KS25s,  and one other bank is Surrette S-530s.   All are still going strong,  each in their 11th year ...   knock,  knock.

    Have been very happy with Surrette support  over the years.   Surrette would be my first choice for the next bank of batteries,  when needed ...   FWIW,    Vic

    Off Grid - Two systems -- 4 SW+ 5548 Inverters, Surrette 4KS25 1280 AH [email protected], 11.1 KW STC PV, 4X MidNite Classic 150 w/ WBjrs, Beta KID on S-530s, MX-60s, MN Bkrs/Boxes.  25 KVA Polyphase Kubota diesel,  Honda Eu6500isa,  Eu3000is-es, Eu2000,  Eu1000 gensets.  Thanks Wind-Sun for this great Forum.
  • croach94croach94 Registered Users Posts: 1
    How much of battery life depends on the charge controller/inverter we use? I see this is an older thread but I look forward to feedback as I’m planning to go off grid and I hope to get closer to 15 years on batteries 
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,784 admin
    Welcome to the forum Croach94,

    I suggest that you start your own thread (discussion) and we start a system design from there.

    Battery life depends on the battery itself (most lead acid batteries are going to last 3-7 years, You can get forklift/traction batteries that will last 15-20 years). Also, temperature is a big deal--For every 10C/18F over 25C/75F, the battery life will be cut by 1/2 (93F battery will age 2x faster and have 1/2 the life). Cycle depth is also a big deal... As an example, a battery cycled by 25% depth of discharge (75% state of charge) will have ~2x more cycle life than a battery cycled to 50% depth of discharge--But you are buying 2x more batteries for ~2x more life--Nothing is "free" in engineering.

    And many people "murder" there first bank or two... Mostly by under charging/over discharging and other things (like not using distilled water to refill lead acid batteries, etc.).

    There are other batteries that can be very nice... LiFePO4 (lithium iron phosphate) are popular for off grid and RV battery banks. They expensive, typically require a battery monitor system (BMS), and require that you operate within their specifications (high/low voltage can kill them, too much current, etc.). Bit thing is Li Ion typically cannot operate much below 40F but are very good for relatively hot locations. Lead acid work well in cold, but don't do great if hot.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • 706jim706jim Solar Expert Posts: 430 ✭✭✭✭
    croach94 said:
    How much of battery life depends on the charge controller/inverter we use? I see this is an older thread but I look forward to feedback as I’m planning to go off grid and I hope to get closer to 15 years on batteries 
    The oldest style of charge controller just turned the power off when bulk voltage was reached. And then cycled on and off. You would likely get the shortest life with one of these but they are not common any more. I know when I switched from this style of on/off controller to a Trace PWM style, water usage was greatly reduced. I'd guess the best charge controller would  be the more modern MPPT style such as Outback and other companies make. I am one of few users that got the sort of battery life you are looking for. My original set of 12 Dunlop GC's last for 19 seasons, but keep in mind my season is only six months of the year and the batteries are pretty much freezing cold for the off season. I can't help comparing Surrette to Trojans but my 370 A-hr L16's have been good so far. Probably your usage and DOD mean more than the charge controller when considering longevity.
    Island cottage solar system with 2400 watts of panels, 1kw facing southeast 1kw facing southwest 400watt ancient Arco's facing south.Trace DR1524 MSW inverter, Outback Flexmax 80 MPPT charge controller 8 Trojan L16's. Insignia 11.5 cubic foot electric fridge. My 28th year.
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