Is it better to have more solar panels or more batteries? – RPS Solar Pumps (2024)

We get this question a lot- is it better to buy more solar panels or more batteries. Our first answer is to always consider a storage tank before batteries. Storage tanks accomplish the end goal of storing a water source above ground, waiting for use. Especially for livestock or irrigation projects, where that water could easily gravity feed into its final destination 24/7, day or night. We think a storage tank always wins out in terms of dollars spent and very little maintenance costs compared to batteries.

More solar panels? You can always expand a solar array by adding more panels. More panels means greater square footage of solar cells exposed to the sun, resulting in higher efficiency and longer runs times into the earlier morning and later evening when very little sun is available. If you’re needing just an hour or two of longer run time, try adding another line of panels. For example, and RPS 400 with four 100W solar panels in 48v would add four more 100W panels in parallel. Now if you already have batteries attached to the system, adding more solar panels will recharge the batteries faster.

More batteries? Maybe you’re running out of power at night, your batteries are drained but there are still more chores that require water around the ranch. In this case, add more batteries and consider adding a few more panels as well. You might be using quite a lot of power during the day and the batteries are unable to charge back up quickly enough for nighttime activities. Adding more batteries adds power storage to your system. Now, adding batteries to a solar water pump won’t automatically bestow 24 hours of consistent pumping time. Usually in a bank of four, 55Ah 12v batteries there’s about 4-6 hours of pumping time stored. Most people use some power in the morning, leave for the day and then return at night. Their power usage is shifted and split around throughout the day.

Is it better to have more solar panels or more batteries? – RPS Solar Pumps (2024)


Is it better to have more solar panels or more batteries? – RPS Solar Pumps? ›

If you are adding batteries in order to pump more water than is possible in a solar day, you will need to increase the number of solar panels in your system. Add solar panels in parallel to maintain the same voltage to the controller.

Is it better to have more solar panels or bigger batteries? ›

Adding batteries might be more beneficial if you frequently experience power outages or require a continuous power supply. Expanding your solar panel capacity could be a wiser choice if your energy demands are already met. Budget: Consider your budget and evaluate the costs associated with each option.

How many solar panels do I need to run a well pump? ›

The number of solar panels needed to run a well pump depends on the HP of that well pump. RPS systems range from only needing 2 solar panels (100W each) for a 1/2 HP pump to around 20 solar panels for a 5 HP. The RPS 200 is the 2 panel system, the pump itself is a DC pump using a permenant magnet motor.

Is it better to have more or less solar panels? ›

For instance, a household using 900 kWh per month with an average of five peak sunlight hours per day would need a larger solar setup than a home that only consumes 400 kWh monthly. The more energy your household consumes, the more solar power you'll need to generate, which means the installation of more solar panels.

How many batteries to run a well pump? ›

Your pump requires at least 1120 Wh to run and about 1800W surge power to start, so 1120/60 = 18 2/3 batteries so 19 would be a safe amount for best care of batteries for maximum battery life. So, if I were designing the battery bank I would use at least 20 - 30 batteries in parallel.

Can you have too many solar panels for batteries? ›

The more solar panels you have, the most electricity you can generate, meaning more batteries will be needed to store said generated current.

Is it better to oversize solar system? ›

An oversized solar panel array will typically produce enough electricity to reduce or eliminate the need for additional energy from the grid during those peak hours.

How many solar panels are required for a 3 hp motor pump? ›

A 3-hp motor will require around 3.7 kW of solar electricity, which 15 × 300-watt solar panels can supply.

Can I run a pump directly from a solar panel? ›

The pump will run, but only under completely ideal conditions. When the pump attempts multiple times to turn on under low light conditions, in early morning or later afternoon , that behavior ends up quickly burning the motor. This is because the pump requires quote a bit of current (measured in amps) upon start up.

How many solar panels does it take to run a 1 HP water pump? ›

The number of solar panels needed for a 1 HP motor depends on the phase type, solar panel watts and age of pump! A brand new RPS 1 HP, three phase pump utilizes twelve 100W panels, a total of 1200W. You could potentially use larger solar panels like 300W, meaning fewer overall panels but about the same square footage.

Will more solar panels charge my batteries faster? ›

Now if you already have batteries attached to the system, adding more solar panels will recharge the batteries faster.

Can you have too much solar? ›

“If there is too much energy coming back up the system in the middle of the day it can cause either frequency, voltage disturbances in the system which will lead to transformers and other equipment tripping off to protect themselves from being damaged and that will cause localised blackouts.”

How many solar panels to run a 2000 sq ft house? ›

So, a 2,000 square foot home would be allowed a solar array of 4,000 watts. Depending on the type of panel that you choose, a system of this size would be anywhere from 12-18 solar panels. Keep in mind, this formula to estimate consumption varies depending on who provides your electricity.

What size solar panel to run well pump? ›

Since our 1/2 HP example pump's maximum wattage was 6,240, I would pick the 3500-watt Model because it handles up to 7000 watts. The other items you need are at least 200 watts of solar panels, a solar charger, batteries and a switch. The switch is for changing from the Grid to Solar Power.

What size pump is best for a well? ›

Do I Have a Shallow or Deep Well?
  • If less than 25', use a shallow well jet pump.
  • If 25' – 110', use a deep well jet pump.
  • If 25' – 400', use a 4” submersible pump.

Can a well pump be too powerful? ›

In some cases, the well pump can be too powerful or strong for the well and consequently pulls sand in from the surrounding aquifer.

Is it worth adding more solar panels? ›

Adding more panels will save you more money, but if the amount you have to spend is worth what you get in added savings is ultimately up to you. Additional solar panels can pay themselves back in around 10 to 11 years but ultimately depend on your area's electricity rates and solar panel production.

What size battery is best for solar system? ›

Solar Panel System Specifications
Solar PV Capacity (kW)Average Output (kWh/day)Recommended Battery Size (kWh)
4Roughly 88-9
5Roughly 12-159.5-10
8Roughly 16-2016
2 more rows
Mar 5, 2024

Is it better to have battery storage with solar panels? ›

It can provide many benefits, including reduced electric bills, backup power during outages, and increased solar energy production during peak demand periods. Solar batteries are available in various sizes and types to meet your needs. Are they worthwhile over the long term? Absolutely.

Can a solar battery be too big? ›

Can a solar battery be too big? Getting a battery that's too big for you to properly charge can lead to chronic undercharging and poor performance, much like how partially charging a smartphone battery can damage it in the long run. It can also mean that your solar panel system is unable to provide enough charge.

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