DIY Maintenance for Off-Grid Living
Maintenance requirements vary by battery technology and may include cleaning battery terminals, checking and adjusting fluid levels, checking cell voltage, and equalizing batteries. Your battery manufacturer will share their recommendations.
And with a few simple steps, you can avoid costly battery failures and technician visits -- and make maintenance easy, simple, and fun.
Step one: Do what you can to reduce maintenance in the first place
Buy the right type of batteries for your application – Better engineered, precision-built batteries will be more reliable and last longer because they use higher-quality components and more advanced manufacturing processes. For more on this, see Crown’ Battery’s “How To Choose The Right Battery For Your Solar Project.”
Consider low-maintenance batteries, such as AGM. They don’t require watering and will significantly reduce maintenance requirements.
Proper battery sizing reduces maintenance and improves longevity. (See Solar Builder’s “Top five battery installation issues for solar installers”)
Step 2: If you haven’t already, put batteries in an enclosed structure to reduce or eliminate exposure to temperature extremes
This can reduce watering requirements, and it will improve reliability, lifecycle, and performance.
Step 3: Make maintenance simple and automatic
Get a few simple, quality tools like a hydrometer, voltmeter, and personal protective equipment. They’ll make it easy, safe, and fast to measure and maintain batteries.
Ask your manufacturer for maintenance schedule charts – guidelines on when and what maintenance to perform.
Put it in your calendar, so you don’t have to think about it. We all have enough other things floating around in our heads. But if it’s on paper or in your phone, you are freed from the burden of having to remember – and it’ll always get done.
Step 4: Follow this simple-to-use safety and maintenance guide
Our engineers have condensed decades of vital safety and maintenance strategies into a simple guide - “Safety First.” It’s free – our gift to you for reading.