HUP Solar Batteries

I am new to the forum, so please excuse my lack of knowledge in navigating around and obtaining information.
I am off grid – have a Xantrex XW 6048 system – 5200 Watts of solar panels and 16 Deka Solar Batteries (L16’s – 740AH). I also have a 6 KW auto start generator connected to the Xantrex system.

My batteries are at the end of their life and need to be replaced.

I am thinking of going with HUP Solar Batteries from solar one.
So my question are regarding Hup Solar One batteries (SO-6-85-17) from:

http://www.firemountainsolar.com/manufacturer/solar-one/hup-solar-one-deep-cycle-solar-batteries/

Any experience with Fire Mountain Solar and/or HUP Solar Batteries?
Does four SO-6-85-17 batteries seem too much for my system?
Can I go higher to say SO-6-85-21 or 25 batteries?
I really want the best batteries for my system that will last the longest.
Any advice or information is appreciated – thank you.

Comments

  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    I read up on the HUP long ago, I think they aren't any more expensive now than back then! I can't recall what is different from them and standard forklift/traction batteries. Though I think they have a bit more electrolyte having more space at the bottom for sulfates to collect, and perhaps slightly different alloy. I understand lift/traction batteries have long life in these applications and hope to get 15 years out of mine(just 3+ now). I Northern Arizona Wind and Sun, states they often or typical to see 20 years out of Crown forklift batteries, so I think the longevity is there. Might check into the maintenance and care of them. I have to water mine a bit more often and they require monthly equalizing, though perhaps if the alloy is different they might not need this as often.

    If you have any interest in price vs utility, I think standard forklift batteries can be had for about 1/2 the price. They just make more of them currently. Note they would have a single case, so the 2-3,000 pounds might be a concern.
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Magnum MS4024, Prosine 1800(now backup) and Exeltech 1100(former backup...lol), 660 ah 24v Forklift battery(now 10 years old). Off grid for 20 years (if I include 8 months on a bicycle).
    - Assorted other systems, pieces and to many panels in the closet to not do more projects.
  • creekycreeky Banned Posts: 31
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    Hup Solar One SO-6-85-17 845 742 lbs. $2,695.00 x 4 = 10780
    for 8 kw of usable power (at 20% dod)

    Or you can buy 18 kw of storage at 24v with a lithium iron phosphate battery for 6700 dollars.
    And get 9 to 12 kw of usable power.

    And enjoy much reduced maintenance. With a battery pack that weighs 500 lbs not 3000 lbs. Just imagine never having to water ... not worrying about whether your batteries are fully charged, equalized, etc.

    Why not save money and get a better battery?

    LFP will last longer and will be the best battery for your system. I'm not sure what 48v batteries they have, but you could contact Balqon and find out. Good luck.
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    Hi Creeky, would you please at least research the batteries you are picking on!

    Much of what you have said is wrong, HUP's claim an even longer life than standard forklift batteries, are usable to 20% SOC, have more than double Balqon's warranty,even by what Balqon told me personally, you see I did do the research...

    This is from HUP's web site;

    Attachment not found.

    BTW - Their warranty is 7 years full and 10 years prorated vs 5 years prorated
    80% usable capacity so your comparing 32 kwh to 9-12 kwh by your description, I'd say more like 15 kwh on the lithium.
    hup.JPG 46.8K
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Magnum MS4024, Prosine 1800(now backup) and Exeltech 1100(former backup...lol), 660 ah 24v Forklift battery(now 10 years old). Off grid for 20 years (if I include 8 months on a bicycle).
    - Assorted other systems, pieces and to many panels in the closet to not do more projects.
  • karrakkarrak Solar Expert Posts: 326 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    From HUPs user manual and warranty they give a lifespan of 2,100 cycles at 80%DOD. If you cycle the battery every day at 80% you would get around 6 years of use. If we use the approximation that halving the discharge depth will double the number of cycles we can get 12 years of use at 40%DOD or 18 years at around 25%DOD. This agrees pretty much with all the documentation I have read on this subject. From what I have read the people who get the very long lifespan out of these sort of batteries are those who will turn the generator on when the batteries get below 70%SOC.

    SImon
    Off-Grid with LFP (LiFePO4) battery, battery Installed April 2013
    32x90Ah Winston cells 2p16s (48V), MPP Solar PIP5048MS 5kW Inverter/80A MPPT controller/60A charger, 1900W of Solar Panels
    modified BMS based on TI bq769x0 cell monitors.
    Homemade overall system monitoring and power management  https://github.com/simat/BatteryMonitor
     

  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    ...or perhaps it's people who use 10-30% daily and use the reserve when they need it for those 3 -4 cloudy days in a row, which will happen a few times per year.

    Like to see links to where you're reading...
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Magnum MS4024, Prosine 1800(now backup) and Exeltech 1100(former backup...lol), 660 ah 24v Forklift battery(now 10 years old). Off grid for 20 years (if I include 8 months on a bicycle).
    - Assorted other systems, pieces and to many panels in the closet to not do more projects.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries
    karrak wrote: »
    If we use the approximation that halving the discharge depth will double the number of cycles we can get 12 years of use at 40%DOD or 18 years at around 25%DOD.
    SImon

    This is inaccurate as it wrongly assumes a linear relation between cycle depth and cycle life. Such is not the case with any battery.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,005 admin
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    I am not sure about cycle life vs depth of discharge... Somebody posted a graph (that I cannot find--Darn it) that posted depth of discharge vs AH total battery output life.

    And, as I recall, the graph was fairly flat (within measurement/sample error) of being pretty flat from 80% to 20% depth of discharge.

    So, if the chart and my memory are correct, the concept that a battery that is cycled 20% depth of discharge with last 2x longer cycles vs one that is discharged 40% depth of discharge--Appears to be correct enough for our needs. And a 20% DOD bank would be 2x larger AH capacity vs a 40% DOD bank (with same daily loads).

    In the end, the $/kAH of power delivered is about the same from 20% to 80% DOD.

    However... At less than 20% DOD, the batteries probably sulfate/equalization/float damage (for deep cycle batteries). And, especially for older batteries, taking them down to 20% SOC (past 50% SOC all the time), is probably harder on them than the chart indicated (my guess, simply battery aging appears to reduce a battery's capacity to recover very deep cycling).

    Anyway... Designing for a a 25% discharge per day, with 50% SOC limit of typical cycling seems to be a sweet spot for batteries and solar power.

    While you can do daily cycling to 50% SOC--My observations is that the math for a typical off grid power system does not work out. The ability of a smaller (lead acid deep cycle) battery bank to absorb charging current and supply load current is frequently higher current levels than the batteries should be operated at (batteries get hot during charging and voltage sag significantly during discharging). Also, 50% discharge seems to take more hours of sun in a day than many people (particularly during late fall through early spring) can actually obtain if you stay with a C/8 or ~13% rate of maximum charge.

    And, a smaller battery bank (phycical size/weight) is where LiFePO4 batteries really appear to shine. Because of their ability to sustain high charge/discharge current rates and no need for a 2-6 hour absorb cycle, if the LiFePO4 batteries live up to their cycle/aging specification (and people don't "murder" the bank with over/under charging/discharging)--The Lithium batteries appear to be a contender (an expensive contender if you make a mistake).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    So Bill, when are you buying your LiFePo back-up set? :D

    The SOC - cycle life curve is not flat on any battery I've ever seen working in the real world.

    There are a few forum members using HUP batteries as I recall. More popular (and available?) in Europe I think. Let's hear from them.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,005 admin
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    I am too cheap for that. :p

    For my next project (if I ever go more "preper") would be some sort of well in the back yard. I keep looking up for how to hand drill a well.

    Probably a 4x 6 volt @ 220 AH golf cart battery system after that.

    But I do not believe that long term (weeks/months) outages are going to happen in a major metro area (earthquakes and solar flares--definitely an exception).

    And if the worst happens--Past a week or two--I would worry that living a major metro area without power/natural gas/sewer/etc. is going to be problematic at best. What happened after hurricane Sandy--It was not pleasant.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    I keep looking up for how to hand drill a well.

    Bill, I think the operative word should be dig as in hand dig......:blush:
     
    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
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,005 admin
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    Probably... I was thinking of the manual "drill" that you put extension tubes on... But probably not a good idea.

    Our water table is only down a few feet (and on the surface during rainy season). Next door neighbor has a ~100 foot well (with old linkages cut off and dropped down well decades ago :cry:)--Used to be a nursery here before housing 80+ years ago.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • woodartwoodart Registered Users Posts: 2
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    I appreciate everyone’s comments.
    So I am looking to get the best deal – which means “bang for my buck”.
    HUP Batteries seem to have:
    1. The longest warranty (ten years)
    2. The most deep cycle discharge (+2100)
    3. The longest life span (18-24 years)
    4. Price performance per KWH
    So why are they not utilize more?
    A lot of people do not even know they exist
    NAWS – does not sell them – and I just talked with a good guy in tech support and he knew very little about them.
    Northern Arizona Wind & Sun is a major player in solar in the US and worldwide.
    I do not get it?
    I am just a consumer – not in “the Business” – but if I was in the business I would want to know about the BEST products available – how about you?
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    I don't know about you but I think my best by date is less than 25 years hence:confused:.. but I would be evaluating for the lowest cost per KwH vetted by the amount I have to spend at the beginning.

    I feel that there are newer better battery chemistries ( most in the Li family) that offer a better fit to the vagaries of PV off grid power supply. I am anxious about the LiFePo4 and some of its different varieties coming.
     
    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
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    Batteries are usually not easily shipped from one place to another. As such much of what gets used depends on what is locally available. So there you have another market factor.

    LiFePo don't have the weight or hazard shipping limitations, but do have considerable capital expense cost. That stops some people dead right there. If you can't afford the initial outlay, nothing else matters.

    When it comes to RE, batteries are still playing catch-up in application. Most of what has been used for years have been adaptation from other applications, with greater and lesser degrees of success. Only recently has there been enough market potential for manufacturers to try and tailor a product to RE use, and when they do it is a new product (we hope) and therefor more expensive. Right back to outlay again.

    Considering how easy it is to murder batteries of any type, sticking with the low-dollar investment on a first set is still the best strategy for most people.
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries
    woodart wrote: »
    HUP Batteries seem to have:
    1. The longest warranty (ten years)
    2. The most deep cycle discharge (+2100)
    3. The longest life span (18-24 years)
    4. Price performance per KWH

    For several reasons, a lot of that is advertising, Price point is not realist in comparison, I do think they give somewhat realistic life spans of the other batteries, though I think suggesting Trojan 105 RE's will last 11 years is optimistic.

    If you compare prices with forklift batteries, even Crowns with NAWS price, 2 crown 875 amp hour 24 volt batteries will run $8,780 vs 4 HUP 845 amp hour at $10780, since this is the smallest battery they sell I'll give it the 18 year life span vs Crown's 15-17 year estimate(NAWS has seen 20+ year expectations). I don't know that the Crow price includes drop shipping, but I suspect you can find them at that price drop shipped, NAWS doesn't stock them. If you look at other sites for lift batteries you'll find them even cheaper at least in other brands.

    If you have a spot to place them and don't have to move them inside, you could find a 48 volt version with 930 amp hours for $5276 shipped here. Someone must have said something about there old date, since it now has a daily update on it. These batteries have a 5 year full + 2 year prorated I believe. You might ask these people about batteries designed for Off Grid storage. I understand they sell some, but never received a price list.

    I think there are some advantages to the HUP battery over standard forklift batteries, I can't recall what they are, Perhaps more electrolyte and space below the plates for sulfates to gather. I haven't looked into the for a few years, It doesn't look like their prices have gone up, and appear a bit more competitive now than when I first looked at them.

    I think some of it has to do with having all your eggs in one basket, I'm pretty comfortable with off grid living, but the investment for me was worth the risk, Mine was $2525 delivered and was comparable to 2 strings of L16s in price (I think I could fine off brand for $250 picked up in St Louis Trojans around $300 with core fee) 800 vs 740Ah so about the same price per ah, with expected life of 15 years vs 5-8 years for L-16s. So if they last past 8 years I'm money ahead.
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Magnum MS4024, Prosine 1800(now backup) and Exeltech 1100(former backup...lol), 660 ah 24v Forklift battery(now 10 years old). Off grid for 20 years (if I include 8 months on a bicycle).
    - Assorted other systems, pieces and to many panels in the closet to not do more projects.
  • VicVic Solar Expert Posts: 3,112 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    woodart,

    As BB Bill mentioned, for off-grid use, expecting to regularly taking a Flooded battery to 20% SOC (80%DOD) is impractical, due to the lack of enough hours in a typical day to recharge the battery to an adequately high SOC.

    Looked at the HUP batteries when choosing the banks still in use here ... in order to use all of the apparent extra Capacity, between 50% and 20% SOC, HUP required a minimum 10% of C recharge rate into the battery (after any other loads on the system). Impractical in any real world.

    As Photowhit mentioned, the HUPs have always reminded me of Forklift batteries, perhaps in more easily handled packaging.

    Wonder what are batteries you are thinking of replacing. How long have they been in service? Did you have them installed, or did you inherit them? As any battery ages, it becomes a bit more difficult to keep them really happy, as you probably know ...

    Have you looked at Surrette batteries? My opinions. 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.
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries
    Vic wrote: »
    Looked at the HUP batteries when choosing the banks still in use here ... in order to use all of the apparent extra Capacity, between 50% and 20% SOC, HUP required a minimum 10% of C recharge rate into the battery (after any other loads on the system). Impractical in any real world.

    Vic, I don't understand this statement. In any Off grid system that is going to be used, you will want to be able to provide 10-15% charge rate, often day time loads are minimal as people are away, or you can load shift to be sure you can provide a reasonable charge rate.

    I've just had 3 cloudy days after only 1 sunny day, during which I did some catch up since we were reported to have a partly cloudy day following. Needless to say the partly cloudy became heavy overcast and after 3+ of the same starting without a full battery, I ran pretty low. I ran minimal loads today(sunny cool) and was charging at 80-90amps for 2 hours and reach absorption and actually popped into float just the sun hit the trees. Though I last measure 40+ amps going into the battery, I don't think I really topped it off, I'll check SG tomorrow and likely equalize on Turkey day (tomorrow is overcast with 50% chance of rain/snow.)
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Magnum MS4024, Prosine 1800(now backup) and Exeltech 1100(former backup...lol), 660 ah 24v Forklift battery(now 10 years old). Off grid for 20 years (if I include 8 months on a bicycle).
    - Assorted other systems, pieces and to many panels in the closet to not do more projects.
  • VicVic Solar Expert Posts: 3,112 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    Hi Photowhit,

    Sorry did not take enough time to flesh-out that post, cutting corners here ...

    In the past, for the manufacturer/Distributor to honor the warranty on their batteries, they REQUIRED a minimum of 10% of 20-hour Capacity for recharging the batteries, exclusive of loads ... yes a bit difficult to enforce.

    Particularly, at the time, this was generally a large commitment for PV charged off-grid systems. But it was required, and a very, very good idea for a battery that could reasonably expected to be discharged below the then-typical 50% DOD maximum guidelines for Flooded batteries ... one simply cannot let a Flooded battery sit below 50% SOC for very many hours without a fairly complete recharge.

    Even today, with much lower cost PVs, having enough PV power available to essentially fully recharge a fairly large battery bank from 25% SOC (let's say), to 85 - 90% SOC, in one solar day can be a bit of a push and investment.

    Batteries like forklift, and the HUPs, appear to have fewer, and thicker plates than more conventional FLAs often used in Off Grid systems. This helps them endure deeper cycling, and perhaps higher charge rates. But no it is a bad idea to let them spend very much time below 50 or 60% SOC. And a fairly large battery that is discharged to 20 or so percent SOC will take quite a long time to become mostly fully recharged, especially considering the L O N G Absorption stage that comes with this this (these) types of batteries.

    As a side note, one of the Surrette banks here are in their tenth year. They spent more than nine years being recharged by a 3150 Watt STC array, and did just fine. This is about 3.9% of true 20 Hr C. In June, did add 2.1 KW STC, however. But this is still about 6.5% of C.

    When the above bank is cycled to 60 or 50% SOC, do use a genset to get into the Vabs range, and would want either considerable more PV power available if there were no genset available (realize that you are generator-free at your location). I do believe that high-rate charging, on occasion, is good for Flooded batteries, so the genset is good to have for that reason, as well as to run some larger equipment.

    Believe that whoever HUP is now, has moderated their demand for recharge capability, to include the sum of recharge sources that can be used simultaneously ... at least as of a few years ago. Have not looked at their warranty recently.

    Believe that this has been stated in this Thread, already ... Flooded batteries with relatively few plates appear to have poorer voltage "regulation" than those with more plates for a given capacity. Batteries that are fairly deeply-discharged have relatively high impedance, which means that the voltage sags more under a given load. These two factors combined, can make a battery of this type a fairly poor solution vs a battery with the same capacity with more plates, all other things being equal.

    My opinions. FWIW YMMV, and so on ... 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.
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HUP Solar Batteries

    I would not consider a system with out at least a 5% real charging rate, I suspect the Rolls, were in a minimal use or had alternate charging sources. I lived with a tiny 220 watt array charging a 215 ah battery bank for several years, so I understand that it can be done on a minimal array, but in a larger system, I would actually suggest over paneling. I think I read in the warranty info something to the effect of a system capable of delivering a 10-20% rate of charge. I really don't have the time to search what they suggest for a charge rate.

    Your post does bring up one of the original poster's questions which we have not addressed, that is the size of battery bank that his current array can sustain. They have a 5200 watt array which should be able to produce 5200 / 48v = 108 x .75 = 81 amps so max would be about an 810 amp hour system at 48 volts, and I would like to see it at least a bit more panels for a safety margin/less generator time. I have a 4000 watt array for my 800 ah 24 volt system for comparison.

    in a < $1 a watt solar panel world I'd suggest another 2000 watts of panels for the size banks we have been talking about... I suspect those could be added with what charge controllers they already have in place.
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Magnum MS4024, Prosine 1800(now backup) and Exeltech 1100(former backup...lol), 660 ah 24v Forklift battery(now 10 years old). Off grid for 20 years (if I include 8 months on a bicycle).
    - Assorted other systems, pieces and to many panels in the closet to not do more projects.
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