Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

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ClaudeJr
Forum Member
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:21 pm
My RE system: Outback FP1 FX3048T, 8 ea 6v Deep Cycle Rolls Surrette 428ah Bat, 10 ea 320w panels, Generac EcoGen 6k propane backup generator, 48v System, Mate3

Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by ClaudeJr »

Hello,
I need assistance with the revitalization of my 48v battery bank after months...maybe a few years of not fully recharging to 100% after a discharge. My system consist of the following components.

Outback FP1 FX3048T
8 ea 6v Deep Cycle Rolls Surrette 428ah Bat (in series)
10 ea 320w panels
Generac EcoGen 6k propane stby generator for off-grid
48v System
Mate3

Battery mfg suggest 60v Bulk & Absorb and 63v equalization. Days getting shorter, Sun not as plentiful. Decided try using EcoGen to cycle batteries thru bulk, absorb then EQ...no luck, with generator running batt voltage only reaches 52 volts. All settings seem to be correct...i played with a few settings to see if I could get the EcoGen to get batteries at least to absorb stage...nothing.

I believe equalization will bring batteries back to life. Can someone help me figure this out please.
raysun
Forum Emperor
Posts: 3326
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower Two: (2) FXR3048A, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
SimpliPhi 48-3.8 (6 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 strings of 2 in series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings of 2 in series)
Honda EU7000is gas fuel generator

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by raysun »

Has the specific gravity in every cell in the battery been tested?

The generator is connected to the AC input of the FX3048T, correct?

What are the Battery Charging settings for the inverter's charger?

What are the AC Input settings for Generator and Charger?
ClaudeJr
Forum Member
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:21 pm
My RE system: Outback FP1 FX3048T, 8 ea 6v Deep Cycle Rolls Surrette 428ah Bat, 10 ea 320w panels, Generac EcoGen 6k propane backup generator, 48v System, Mate3

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by ClaudeJr »

SG not tested in every cell however I just tested a cell in 3 different batteries of the bank and the reading is 1.1, which is strange because I used a voltmeter and tested the + & - of each 6v battery and the reading for all 8 batteries was over 6v and the voltage reading for the entire bank was over 53 volts.

Not sure where the two wire start for genset is attached to...when I run the generator the Mate3 show current running for house load and current running into batteries

Battery settings for inverter's charger: absorb voltage 60.0 time 3.0, float voltage 54.0 time 0.1, refloat voltage 52.0
AC input settings for gen and charger- gen input AC limit 60.0 amps - Support N (not sure what that switch is for)
Charger settings absorb 60.0 volts time 3.0, current limit 80.0 amps

Hope this is what you are looking for
raysun
Forum Emperor
Posts: 3326
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower Two: (2) FXR3048A, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
SimpliPhi 48-3.8 (6 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 strings of 2 in series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings of 2 in series)
Honda EU7000is gas fuel generator

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by raysun »

OK. The generator is connected to the inverter and is charging the battery.

The settings should provide for charging the battery. Note, however, the maximum charging rate for the inverter charger is roughly 35A DC (14A AC maximum.) It will take a very long time to overcome the sulfate crust on the lead plates and reverse the chemical reaction.

Voltage will not be an accurate metric of battery health or state of charge here. Only specific gravity will tell the tale. A reading of 1.1 is essentially dead.

Continue to run the charge cycle (it will take a lot of fuel) and test SG every hour. If there's no significant upward movement after several hours, the battery may not be recoverable.

If it proceeds successfully to Absorb, keep track of the charging current. It should decline to the neighborhood of 17 - 13A. It may take longer than the 3 hour time setting. If the charge current plateaus higher than in the range above and the 3 hour timer expires, stop charging and test SG. If it is above 1.2, try another full charge cycle, testing SG every hour. It should slowly rise.

If, after two full charge cycles, the SG is not near 1.27 there's not much profit in continuing the recovery effort.

If its possible to rejuvenate the battery, it may take 12 - 24 hours of Equalization AFTER the regular charge cycle (Bulk - Absorb) has completed successfully.

If, and only if, the SG on *some* cells is 1.27, and the others vary by no more than 0.03-0.04, an Equalization charge can be attempted. (Running EQ on a battery less than fully charged, will likely warp the plates from excess heat, and destroy the cells.) Check the SG on all cells hourly. When no cell's SG rises any further for one hour, EQ is complete.

Watch battery temperature. If, at any time during the charge cycles, the temperature exceeds 110°F, stop charging and allow the battery to cool.
provo
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My RE system: Sixteen Evergreen EC-120
(4 strings, total 1920W)
Eight Rolls S-550 (2 strings, total ~800Ah @ 24V)
One FM80
One VFXR3524A
Hub 10
Mate3s
FNDC and Trimetric
Honda EU3000is generator
Location: Sierra foothills

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by provo »

ClaudeJr wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 6:47 pm
SG not tested in every cell however I just tested a cell in 3 different batteries of the bank and the reading is 1.1.
A cell with an SG of 1.10 is totally dead. I recommend you take SG's of all 24 cells and post a listing of them here. If they've been sitting long at such a low DOD, I'm afraid they may not come back.

Do you have a battery monitor (probably FNDC) in your system? Are you hooked up with OpticsRE? It would be great to see a graph of pack voltage and charging Ah's over the course of several hours trying to run a bulk charge.

EDIT: Raysun gave a much more complete answer while I was diddling with my short response. What he said :grin: !!
Mike Curran
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Posts: 1893
Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 6:28 pm
My RE system: Outback - Garage roof:
- 8 (2x4) Evergreen 180's into one FM80 (2007/2020 - replaced MX60)
- 6 (2×3) ALEO S79-300's into one FM80 (2017)
[***2 grid-tied GVFX3524's classic stacked for 120/240VAC (2007-2020)]
- 2 grid-tied VFXR3524A-01's series stacked, ***replaced GVFX's (2020)
- 12 Surrette/Rolls 2V x 1766Ah (2007)
- Hub10.3, Mate3s, FNDC, RTS, OpticsRE. Tigo Energy ES maximizers on each PV module.

Westinghouse Solar - Barn roof: (2012)
- 30 (2x15) 235W panels with Enphase M215 microinverters, grid-tied

Outback Skybox - Barn roof: (2019)
- 14 Talesun 275W in series (DC array input to SB inverter/charger)
- 3 SimpliPhi 3.8 batteries, 48V, 225Ah total
- AC coupled input (manual switch during grid outage only) from 14 Talesun 275W,
Enphase M215 microinverters, normally direct grid tied

All self-designed and self-installed
Location: Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by Mike Curran »

Adding my 2 cents' worth here because no one mentioned battery water level. Perhaps it goes without saying but before and during a prolonged equalization charge it is absolutely essential to monitor water levels and add as needed. There will be a lot of off-gassing and levels will drop.
http://www.tigoenergy.com/site.php?95b2dca2-ca6c
https://enlighten.enphaseenergy.com/public/systems/Hctc107221
raysun
Forum Emperor
Posts: 3326
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower Two: (2) FXR3048A, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
SimpliPhi 48-3.8 (6 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 strings of 2 in series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings of 2 in series)
Honda EU7000is gas fuel generator

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by raysun »

Mike Curran wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 8:08 pm Adding my 2 cents' worth here because no one mentioned battery water level. Perhaps it goes without saying but before and during a prolonged equalization charge it is absolutely essential to monitor water levels and add as needed. There will be a lot of off-gassing and levels will drop.
Yes, absolutely essential to monitor water levels and they be kept above the plates. Be careful not to overfill, as all the electrolyte boiling can easily boil over if the level is too high.

Keep a box of baking soda in the battery room for spills.

Keep the room well vented to minimize the buildup of explosive hydrogen gas.
ClaudeJr
Forum Member
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:21 pm
My RE system: Outback FP1 FX3048T, 8 ea 6v Deep Cycle Rolls Surrette 428ah Bat, 10 ea 320w panels, Generac EcoGen 6k propane backup generator, 48v System, Mate3

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by ClaudeJr »

I'll start monitoring and recording SG at dawn...would it be proper to have generator running during this time too determine if bank is chargeable...you're correct Raysun, if they can be revived...at what cost.
raysun
Forum Emperor
Posts: 3326
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 5:57 am
My RE system: Flexpower Two: (2) FXR3048A, (2) FM80, MATE3s, FlexNetDC
SimpliPhi 48-3.8 (6 @ 48v)
Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
Suniva 330 watt panels (12 - 6 strings of 2 in series)
Hyundai 355 watt panels (6 - 3 strings of 2 in series)
Honda EU7000is gas fuel generator

Re: Battery Bank Revitalization Effort

Post by raysun »

Before restarting charging, take the SG readings, just so the electrolyte is not bubbling up on you and the equipment.

Not to sound contrarian, or pessimistic, but a lead acid battery that has been in mostly partial state of charge for extended periods will have built up a very thick crust of nearly impervious lead sulfate. A great deal of lead sulfate debris will fall to the bottom of the battery containers. If it collects deeply enough, it can short out adjacent lead plates. Even if it's possible to recover to some degree, the total battery capacity is likely to be substantially reduced. Give the charge another try, but if the patient doesn't respond fairly quickly, its likely time to invest in a new battery.
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