Off-Grid Charger for Battery Bank?

timsim00timsim00 Registered Users Posts: 15 ✭✭
Hello.

Having moved into winter it is quite apparent that I do not have enough panels producing current for my batteries.  Until I assess and make system modifications, I would like to purchase a batter charger to charge/top off my batteries after peak sun has diminished for the day.  I have 3 questions pertaining to this and I hope someone can help me out.

My Battery Bank:
Four 6 volt Duracell FLA batteries, tied in series (12 volt) and parallel to give me 460AH, 50% @ 230AH.  

Questions:
1.  Are there any recommendations for a battery charger for my battery bank?  I have a 3KW generator to power the charger.

2. Do I connect my battery charger across the parallel POS and NEG terminals and charge them as a bank of batteries?

3.  Can I have the battery charger connected to the battery bank at the same time as my charge controller?

Thanks for any help on this!  "Winter is coming!"  Nope, already here! grrrrr

Comments

  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    I have a Xantrex True-charge... Very good charger, you won't go wrong with one of them..
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • timsim00timsim00 Registered Users Posts: 15 ✭✭
    @westbranch  Thank you for the suggestion.

    I can charge my bank at one time as a whole?

    I have a Xantrex True-charge... Very good charger, you won't go wrong with one of them..


  • cupcakecupcake Solar Expert Posts: 254 ✭✭✭
    in the future try to size your system for winter-sun/winter daylight hours, and winter loads... this way you'll be golden year-round...

    :)

    ~1.5Kw PV in parallel
    Morningstar MPPT-60 controllers (2) in parallel
    3 Trojan tr-1275's in parallel 450ah total
    Samlex 2,000 watt 12-volt inverter hardwired


  • timsim00timsim00 Registered Users Posts: 15 ✭✭
    Ahhh...completely know that...um...now. ha.  This is a 'this winter' solution.  Thanks though!

    cupcake said:
    in the future try to size your system for winter-sun/winter daylight hours, and winter loads... this way you'll be golden year-round...

    :)


  • Marc KurthMarc Kurth Solar Expert Posts: 1,009 ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2016 #6
    timsim00 said:
    @westbranch  Thank you for the suggestion.

    I can charge my bank at one time as a whole?

    I have a Xantrex True-charge... Very good charger, you won't go wrong with one of them..


    Yes - charge the battery bank as a single unit unless you are troubleshooting something.
    I also have a Truecharge 2 that I like very much, but they are expensive.
    I always have more questions than answers. That's the nature of life.
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    Marc's comment is correct, they can all be charged as one.  But if you do not have them set up as a 'bank of batteries ' yet you can do them in pairs (in series so they are a 12 V battery) until you get the system set up for a winter workout... Check with your vendor and see if they recommend a 'commissioning charge'...  This is a full charge followed by one or more EQ's...

    have fun..
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • mcgivormcgivor Solar Expert Posts: 3,854 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    timsim00 said:
    Hello.

    Having moved into winter it is quite apparent that I do not have enough panels producing current for my batteries.  Until I assess and make system modifications, I would like to purchase a batter charger to charge/top off my batteries after peak sun has diminished for the day.  I have 3 questions pertaining to this and I hope someone can help me out.

    My Battery Bank:
    Four 6 volt Duracell FLA batteries, tied in series (12 volt) and parallel to give me 460AH, 50% @ 230AH.  

    Questions:
    1.  Are there any recommendations for a battery charger for my battery bank?  I have a 3KW generator to power the charger.

    2. Do I connect my battery charger across the parallel POS and NEG terminals and charge them as a bank of batteries?

    3.  Can I have the battery charger connected to the battery bank at the same time as my charge controller?

    Thanks for any help on this!  "Winter is coming!"  Nope, already here! grrrrr
    Question 3: In most cases yes but first chest with the manufacturer's recommendations.
    1500W, 6× Schutten 250W Poly panels , Schneider MPPT 60 150 CC, Schneider SW 2524 inverter, 400Ah LFP 24V nominal battery with Battery Bodyguard BMS 
    Second system 1890W  3 × 300W No name brand poly, 3×330 Sunsolar Poly panels, Morningstar TS 60 PWM controller, no name 2000W inverter 400Ah LFP 24V nominal battery with Daly BMS, used for water pumping and day time air conditioning.  
    5Kw Yanmar clone single cylinder air cooled diesel generator for rare emergency charging and welding.
  • EstragonEstragon Registered Users Posts: 4,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I use a pair of Iota 12v 45amp (relatively) inexpensive chargers on my 12v bank from our hosts. I use the IQ controller, but I usually just bulk charge with the generator. Even in winter there is usually enough solar to finish absorb.
    Off-grid.  
    Main daytime system ~4kw panels into 2xMNClassic150 370ah 48v bank 2xOutback 3548 inverter 120v + 240v autotransformer
    Night system ~1kw panels into 1xMNClassic150 700ah 12v bank morningstar 300w inverter
  • EstragonEstragon Registered Users Posts: 4,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    null
    Sizing for winter would be pretty much impossible for me in Canada. I don't think I've seen more than an hour of bright sun for weeks.
    Off-grid.  
    Main daytime system ~4kw panels into 2xMNClassic150 370ah 48v bank 2xOutback 3548 inverter 120v + 240v autotransformer
    Night system ~1kw panels into 1xMNClassic150 700ah 12v bank morningstar 300w inverter
  • wellbuiltwellbuilt Solar Expert Posts: 763 ✭✭✭✭
    I have 2 of the same battery's at 12 volt 
     I've just been running a 30 amp car charger for 11/2 hrs to bulk charge . When the sun comes out the solar panels and charger give me a full charge.
     We went for 5 days of snow with no sun .
     I use a 1400 watt champion Genarator and the charger draws 700 watts 10 hrs on a gallon of gas 
    Out back  flex power one  with out back 3648 inverter fm80 charge controler  flex net  mate 16 gc215 battery’s 4425 Watts solar .
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