Few questions about charging battery bank

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by jasincole, Jan 12, 2011.

  1. jasincole

    jasincole WindyNation Engineer

    Well first off I am new to this forum and would like to say Hi and also a big thank you for this great resource of information.

    Over the past few days I have read tons of reading material on wind turbines and my knowledge is growing, but some information I still am in need of clarification.

    I been pondering the thought of using a WN 750 to charge a 24V battery bank. But this is where information seems to be thin or maybe I just haven't been able to find the right resource yet.

    What I would like to know is how fast can one charge a battery bank of any type of battery. The three types that seem reasonable to me are the typical auto pb-acid, deep cycle, and gel. Now I don't know a whole bunch about batteries, so if anyone can explain to me the difference or point me to a good an reliable resource it would be appreciated. Is it possible to charge any of these types of batteries at the max output of the 750 in 35 mph wind at 40+A of current? What dangers am I looking at if I was to charge these faster then they should normally be( I only ask this because I read somewhere that pb-acid needed to be slowly charged over a three step process. How true is this information, can I trust it)? If you can't charge these at the high amperes then what benefit would the 750 actually do over say the 500?

    I guess my biggest and single most important question is will I be wasting any power that is generated while my batteries are charging? Sorry if this sounds dumb... But I am just the type of person that needs to understand all aspects of the process that I intend to waste my time on. :)
  2. dlmcbm

    dlmcbm WindyNation Engineer

    Hi there and welcome to the forum. I will try and point out a few things I know.
    first there are the obvious questions. 1. what are you planning on doing with the battery bank? 2. I would take it that you are going to use a 24v battery bank? 3. How many batteries are you going to use?

    I dont know all the fine details on different batteries but you should use deep cycle batteries for a bank that is going to be charged and discharged a lot. These batteries are made for this. The best ones that I hear of are ones made for forklifts. A battery in a car mainly serves two purposes. 1st is to start the engine and 2nd is to just be a voltage stabilizer for the alternator. thats why in older cars you can start them and unhook the battery and everything works fine( newer cars you risk voltage spiking the computer if you do that). They are not made to be discharged and recharged.

    How fast can you charge the batteries??? thats were "how many batteries?" comes into play. If you have 1 12v battery then 40 amps is OK for a little while but not all day. if you take 2 12v batteries to make 24v now you could go longer because you can brake it down to each battery only gets 20 amps not 40. So now if you want to get a real battery bank you will have 4-6 12v wired to 24v now you are to less then 10 amps per battery. Thats a good charge rate. I just worked on an electric golf cart that used 6v batteries wired to 36v and the charger for it was 35amps. Just remember that you will want to use a charge controller with a dump load to keep from overcharging the batteries.

    The dangers of over charging.....BOOM!!!! If you over charge a battery it will boil the acid and emit explosive gasses. even on a good system keep batteries in a well ventilated area.

    To sum it up I would use a good deep cycle battery bank of at least 4 12v batteries. As far as the 500 or the 750.....depends on what you are doing and your wind speeds in your area. If you are going to use the batteries a lot and/or in a low wind area i would go with the 750 because it will charge faster and better in low winds as well as high winds. If you have good wind all the time and are not going to use the batteries that much then you could get away with the 500. personally I would go with the 750. after you get it all up and running you may want to do more with it then you will have the power there and not second guess your choice of the 500. I started out wanting to charge a few batteries to use once in a while now its hooked up to a grid tie inverter.

    Hope this helps you.
  3. TomT

    TomT WindyNation Engineer

    Right now I am using the series diode circuit and since I got my new Grid Tie it is working OK so far. 2 Days and counting. It takes a few seconds for the grid tie to lock on but at under 12-15 mph it seems to be hunting and allows a few amps to go to the battery. I have been checking voltages at the grid tie and they have not gotten over 2 volts over battery voltage. So basically right now it trickle charges the battery keeping it charged but the rest goes into the grid. And if the grid goes down the current just starts all going to the battery and the charge controller takes over from there. But still should go with 24v just for higher output.
    [attachment=0:2z7rakhk]GridTie3 003.jpg[/attachment:2z7rakhk]
    Depends on what you need battery bank for. Backup or powering off grid site. I also have a 750W inverter to use if power goes out. Some even put all into the grid and use chargers to keep the batteries up for backup.

    Attached Files:

  4. jasincole

    jasincole WindyNation Engineer

    The family recently bought a piece of property right at the peak of the mountain over looking a valley where a man made lake sits. Our first thought was that we would just get it tied to the grid and all would be ok, but we soon discovered that the price tag was something we where not comfortable with. Since we are not living there and only use the property for our recreational purposes we started to think outside the box on how we could get some electricity without braking the bank. Our first thought was solar, but after some research I found out that solar power in this area would be a waste of time.

    It wasn't till the fall time of the year while we where erecting a steel pole barn that we discovered how much the wind was a real pain in the ass. That soon led us to seek out wind power as our source of electrical power. I think it would work out just fine in the situation we have. Right now we are using generators to power the things we need when we need them. I figure with a battery bank charged by a wind turbine I could easily cut my generator usage in half, more then likely down to 25%, and likely down close to zero at certain times of the year when the wind never ceases to stop howling.

    The property I am talking about is on the westerly edge of the Appalachian plateau sitting right on the PA-NY border. I have done some research online about the avg wind speed in this area. The avg's for the summer are 9 MPH and in the winter months an avg of 13 MPH. Now I know for a fact that we easily get higher wind speeds on the hill as sometimes I leave my place in the valley where it's rather nice to only go on the hill and find out how cold and windy it is.

    Our whole goal here is in time offset the price of getting a grid tie by saving on cost now. If the wind turbine works out well for me then I would likely spend the money to get on the grid just so I had a redundant electrical system.

    Hope this helps you understand my plans. If anyone sees any concerns please speak up now. After all, most of you are my experience...
  5. jasincole

    jasincole WindyNation Engineer

    I had plans on using 24V system since I seen the graph on the windynation listing on ebay showed greater output while using a 24V system(even though I don't fully understand it, I got a general idea). Right now we just use a 12V inverter and a car for some things and the generators when we need more power.

    I still have not decided on my final plan, I don't really have a good idea on how to convert my 24V down to 12V for inverter usage yet(as others have stated, a 24V inverter cost more and I would like to see that things work before I dump tons of money into a plan I am not 100% sure of). Which means more then likely until I get a solid plan I might just have a 12V battery bank. I could easily buy as many batteries as I needed to make it safe as well as build my furling tail to brake at lower wind speeds. A lot of ideas in the air, nothing concrete as of yet. I am sure the more I read these forums and do more research I will certainly come up with a solution that will fulfill my needs.
  6. bluejay

    bluejay WindyNation Engineer

    Welcome here,, first off :D ..now you just want full batteries when you get there to visit, a 12 v system would be fine as if you had enough batteries you would have plenty of stored power for your visit..Yes as you up the voltages the more efficient things get, Less line loss and resistance.Voltage is the push power while amps is the amount of electrons in the given voltage. If you are wanting to live there than it will be multiple turbines with a large 24vbank(assuming a WN pma,lower volts and high amps :D ) and a gas generator back up..
  7. dlmcbm

    dlmcbm WindyNation Engineer

    the 24 volts get higher watts because of the amps. 12v 100w is about 8 amps, 24v 100w is about 4 amps. its easy to get voltage out of a generator and harder to get the amps. so the higher the voltage the lower the amps for the same wattage.
    here is what I would do,
    1st- get the windy 750 if you are going to be there a lot or for long periods. the 500 if its just a once in a while thing.
    2nd get a charge controller with the dump load. this is a must have since you wont be there. you dont want to come back to blown up batteries or a burnt up generator
    3rd get batteries for a 12v system. I would check with local warehouses to see if they have any for electric forklifts or ask were they get them. older batteries from these or golf carts could still be very usefull. they change them because them may not last a whole shift on 1charge. cores are a whole lot cheaper if not free.
    Check craigslist and run an ad. some people are glad to have someone take them. If you need a tower the Rohn 25g tv antenna towers are great. alot of people dont use them on there house and would let you have them for taking them down. mine is over 60 feet and works great. I am also along the Appalachian mts. to in Md. at the Pa. line.
  8. jasincole

    jasincole WindyNation Engineer

    TomT, what exactly is the purpose of the batteries in your system? Do you have another inverter that you are using when power goes out that you can draw from to run essential equipment off the batteries? Also, how does that GTI work? Is it connected directly to the breaker box? I guess it would help if I read the hook-up manual for a wind GTI. I suppose I will be looking at the Sun-g model dedicated directly for wind turbines.

    What I am really interested in here is whether I can buy my windy 750 now and hook it up to a battery bank and then in the future when time and money permit make the switch to a GTI so I can reap the rewards without dishing out anymore cash then I need to.
  9. TomT

    TomT WindyNation Engineer

    The current now trickles to my batteries when the GTI is hunting for a lock on to grid. Or all is going to the batteries if the grid goes down. No relay needed. I use the batteries for a voltage lock on the GTI so the voltage does not go to high. I also have a 750w Inverter for refrigerator and other things as well as some 12v fluorescent trouble lights for lighting. The GTI is plugged into my bedroom outlet after going thru the kill-a-watt meter so I can keep track of GTI output. I cut a cord and made a double male and double female cord so power goes the same way thru the kill-a-watt meter as if you were using it as a watt meter. It will work both ways but mine had slightly different readings depending which way current is flowing. My last one was a Ryobi one. It stopped working when using it for grid tie monitoring.
  10. Theo

    Theo WindyNation Engineer

    Hello everyone, my name is Theo and I am brand new to this! One simple question I would like to ask please. Can I use a 24v wind turbine to charge a 12v battery bank - 4 x 100ah agm deep cycle batteries wired in parallel? I have a charge controler and a diversion dump load, the charge controler can work with 12, 24 or 48 volts.It will also accept solar panels as well as the wind turbine. The reason that I dont want to make the baterries in to 24v bank is that I just purchased a 12v 2000w pure sine wave inverter. I suppose I could purchase a 12v turbine, but I have found a 24v going really cheap!
  11. bluejay

    bluejay WindyNation Engineer

    Theo,The turbine you found has a 12v to 24v switch? I will let someone else chim in but it would be hard to believe it wouldnt lock the turbine to the load(12v) it would charge them and never go over 16 ish volts until they were full. :?:
  12. windyguru

    windyguru WindyNation Expert

    You can use a 24 volt turbine to charge a 12 volt battery bank. You will get less Watts out of the turbine but it will work just fine.

    A 24 volt wind turbine for "really cheep" sounds like a disaster. I am going to take a wild guess that the wind turbine has a modified Delco car alternator mounted to it. Am I correct? If I am, you need to do your homework and really understand what you are purchasing. If you don't do your homework, you are going to be incredibly disappointed.
  13. Theo

    Theo WindyNation Engineer

    Thank you Both for your good Advise! I think your guess may by correct, the pma is build in a delco body? The turbine is rated at 1500w. I take it then that delko is no good? Thank you for this, I will look in to it again.
  14. windyguru

    windyguru WindyNation Expert

    Yes, the infamous 1500 Watt Delco wind turbine.

    I will let others chime in on the merits of a Delco wind turbine producing 1500 Watts in realistic wind speeds. Any takers :D
  15. Minnesota

    Minnesota WindyNation Engineer

    Well, on eBay you can get a 1500w PMA with 2-foot PVC blades and a plexiglass hub that generates 12V at "just" 500 RPM and hits 1500w at 2000 RPM. - all for $169. :D

    According to basic wind math, 4 foot diameter rotor with no turbine connected (a pinwheel) needs at least 16mph to hit 500RPM and will hit 2000RPM at 64MPH.

    Connect the pinwheel to the PMA, and the PMA to an actual load like a battery, and it won't hit 50 watts until a constant 20 MPH and won't hit 1500w until 100 MPH.

    I'd expect it to fly apart before it ever saw 35 MPH.

    But hey, a lot of fun for $169! :lol:
  16. Theo

    Theo WindyNation Engineer

  17. bluejay

    bluejay WindyNation Engineer

    And the truth shall set you free :D ..from the delcos :lol:
  18. Theo

    Theo WindyNation Engineer

    Judging from your comments, I take it that you guys have tried and tested Delcos and this suplier's (Missouri Wid & Solar) Products?
  19. dlmcbm

    dlmcbm WindyNation Engineer

    I have one from them. Its the wind scorpion (500W). I switched to windynation blades and it helped it a lot but still have never seen over 140 watts out of it and that was in some really good gust of wind. Go with a windynation PMA. they have the video proof of what theres can do. I have not seen another company out there yet that shows the real world numbers yet.
  20. Theo

    Theo WindyNation Engineer

    Hello All! Could I connect different AH capacity but same voltage, same type (12 volt, AGM deep cycle)) Batteries in series? Say a 95ah with a 105ah. Thanks guys!

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