A discussion about my new battery backup system

magallonbuckinbulls

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Marine batteries are not true deep cycle. The same thing they put in campers. The problem is once they get discharged beyond on certain volts they won't charge back.
They do charge back, but it’s a different process. Learned this from a buddy who works at a batter refurbishing company
 

Etto

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These are great.

 

Russell G

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I saw a post on here a while back that walked through adding DC plugs to automotive 12V batteries to power the ETM pumps. By going from DC to DC you avoid the loss from the inverter. The ETM pumps make it really easy with the input for their battery backup.

That’s how I set up my backup and two deep cycle batteries will run my return and flow for plenty of time for me to get the notification that the tank is offline, get home, and get my generator running if I have to. I have an inverter on the setup to run the heaters if need be but it’s only when the take in getting a bit too cool.

Originally it was a solar panel power bank for our annual Coachella camping trips. It has a 1500W inverter and a solar charge controller so I can hook panels up to it to recharge the batteries. The bank could charge our phones, run our coffee machine, and even power a toaster oven so we had easy hot food without paying the outrageous prices in the festival. Now it’s getting too crowded and too expensive so the power bank got repurposed as a tank backup.

I’m out in CA and with the winds and wildfires, the power drops quite a bit and this has been a great safeguard so far.
 

WillpoleReefers

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I just presented this topic at the local club this past weekend.

I see no reason to power anything beyond critical equipment. Critical to me = a return pump and power heads. No lights, no heaters, no skimmer, and no controller stuff beyond that which you need to maintain awareness. If you want to get fancy, and you have a gas furnace, I'd power that to keep your tank warm (and your family happy).

As for your batteries, every time you discharge them below 50%, that negatively impacts future capacity. Consider LiFePO4 (LFP) batteries. They're around $200 for 100Ah, they'll sag less under load, and they'll generally have 80% of their capacity at 10 years.

Remember...only what you need. Nothing more.
I considered LiFePO4 for my setup. But feel that the 99% float charge use renders that technology unsuitable? Holding lithium batteries at max charge continuously is not a good thing for their lifespan. My thoughts are that lead acid remains the way to go. Definitely more than 12V though, pretty useless for an inverter setup. I would prefer at least 24V, possibly more. But more than 24V means you can’t so easily power many of our marine devices directly, which is needed to avoid pointless inverter then PSU loss IMO

Steve
 

telegraham

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I considered LiFePO4 for my setup. But feel that the 99% float charge use renders that technology unsuitable? Holding lithium batteries at max charge continuously is not a good thing for their lifespan. My thoughts are that lead acid remains the way to go. Definitely more than 12V though, pretty useless for an inverter setup. I would prefer at least 24V, possibly more. But more than 24V means you can’t so easily power many of our marine devices directly, which is needed to avoid pointless inverter then PSU loss IMO

Steve
LiFePO4 (LFP) do not have the 100% limitation like you'd see with Li. Charge them to 100%, have a LiFePO4 charger connected, and treat that battery like you would a lead acid. Well, except you can discharge your LFP below 50% SOC without damaging the battery and you'll generally have 80% capacity at 10 years.

12V inverter systems for home use are far from useless. Just need thicker wires when pulling higher loads. For system-critical devices, that's not a concern. My 12V MPP Solar charge controller/PSW inverter/ATS is perfectly capable of handling system-critical, and if needed, one heater. For five years, that MPP, along with the panels I put on the roof, have proven themselves.
 
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I considered LiFePO4 for my setup. But feel that the 99% float charge use renders that technology unsuitable? Holding lithium batteries at max charge continuously is not a good thing for their lifespan. My thoughts are that lead acid remains the way to go. Definitely more than 12V though, pretty useless for an inverter setup. I would prefer at least 24V, possibly more. But more than 24V means you can’t so easily power many of our marine devices directly, which is needed to avoid pointless inverter then PSU loss IMO

Steve

I mentioned earlier that the batteries and other equipment are already purchased and can't be returned.

It serves me right for not doing more homework. I'm glad I didn't set up my tanks with the same way. And I agree with your point.

I could change the wiring from parallel to series and get 24 volts. But I first have to check the other components to see if they are compatible in such a configuration.
 

Rich Klein

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Recently had a storm in CA that left us without electricity for 3 days. Battery backups would have been worthless. Thankfully I planned for this having a 9200 Champion generator connected to a manual transfer switch via a 50 amp cable. Kept my complete 180 gal tank with all equipment running along with internet, lights, TVs, fridge and freezer, and microwave. It was annoyingly noisy for the 3 days, but all was safe.
 

telegraham

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Recently had a storm in CA that left us without electricity for 3 days. Battery backups would have been worthless. Thankfully I planned for this having a 9200 Champion generator connected to a manual transfer switch via a 50 amp cable. Kept my complete 180 gal tank with all equipment running along with internet, lights, TVs, fridge and freezer, and microwave. It was annoyingly noisy for the 3 days, but all was safe.
Batteries are amazing when you're not home and the bad thing happens. I consider them interim solutions until the generator gets fired up. Awesome system, BTW.
 

Rich Klein

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Batteries are amazing when you're not home and the bad thing happens. I consider them interim solutions until the generator gets fired up. Awesome system, BTW.
I should have added that I have multiple ups’ to power the flow only until I am able to start up the generator. I also have a device that sends me a cell text immediately if we lose power or the temp is outside of parameters. My Apex will also alert me, but it takes some time for it to communicate the loss of signal.
 

WillpoleReefers

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I mentioned earlier that the batteries and other equipment are already purchased and can't be returned.

It serves me right for not doing more homework. I'm glad I didn't set up my tanks with the same way. And I agree with your point.

I could change the wiring from parallel to series and get 24 volts. But I first have to check the other components to see if they are compatible in such a configuration.
I got 24V pumps etc wherever possible. The idea being to power that kit directly from the nominal 24V battery side in time avoiding inverter losses. I do have a 12V LiFePO4 setup with a 1500 W/240 VAC inverter in my caravan using 600 Ah of storage. Delivers power fine at either nominal 12V or 240 AC. Interesting to read the comment here that it may not be so bad to float charge such a setup continuously, I have always avoided that where possible,

Steve
 

MickeyCT

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I should have added that I have multiple ups’ to power the flow only until I am able to start up the generator. I also have a device that sends me a cell text immediately if we lose power or the temp is outside of parameters. My Apex will also alert me, but it takes some time for it to communicate the loss of signal.
What device are you using to send you a cell text if you lose power? Can you include a photo, or a link? That's just what I need.
 

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