When you look at an AGM solar batteries, then you're in search of a battery that doesn't require any maintenance. It's a self-serving storage unit for the solar power collected through panels and it's undoubtedly one of the stronger classes among lead acid deep cycle batteries. In this article, we'll look at why this battery is such a popular choice, what it consists of and the price range you can expect to pay.
The Science Behind an AGM Solar Batteries
AGM is an abbreviation for "absorbent glass mat", and as the name suggests, the fibreglass mat is the section that absorbs the electrolyte. The plates of the battery will either be flat, much like those of a wet cell lead-acid battery, or they can be wound in a tight spiral. The three things you have to know about AGM batteries is that they are capable of handling higher temperatures, they have a lower self-discharge when they idle and the cells have a lower resistance compared to conventional cells. They've been around since the 1980's and the US military still uses them quite a lot.
There's a valve system present in an AGM solar batteries which are activated when they charge at high voltages. With this valve activation system, the overall capacity of the battery is decreased, because some of the active materials escape. The reason for this type of release is that excess hydrogen can safely pass through the valves while the battery is charging, thanks to the gas diffusers built into the vents. Unlike normal lead acid batteries, AGM models don't have to be in an upright position, because there is no acid that can leak. Nor do the plates need to sit in the electrolyte.
Why AGM Solar Batteries Are Popular
Here are some of the reasons why AGM batteries are among the favourite in its class.
- It's completely sealed and there is no risk of acid leaks
- No maintenance is required, seeing as the battery creates its own water
- They don't have to be mounted in an upright position
- Thanks to the lower internal resistance they charge quicker and with lower voltage
- They provide a deeper discharge without causing any damage to the battery
- The self-discharge rate is about 3% a month and it can idle for long periods before being used
How Much Do AGM Solar Batteries Cost?
It goes without saying that several factors are going to influence the price. For example, the size and the manufacturer. But to give you a general idea of what you can expect to pay here is a generalized estimation.
- 26 Ah, 12 V: R800 - R900
- 45 Ah, 12 V: R1300 - R1400
- 100 Ah, 12V: R2300
- 150 Ah, 12V: R4000
- 200 Ah, 12V: R5000
- 250 AH, 12V: R6400