It is no secret: Humans require a lot of energy to fuel our daily lives. In fact, the 21st century has seen a sharp rise in energy usage across the board, with a 2019 report discovering that the world consumes an average of 58 kWh of energy per person each day. Of course, this number is likely to rise as our population expands, which is why new energy alternatives like LiFePO4 batteries are so exciting to learn about.
Still, if you are new to the world of electronics, this name might mean nothing to you. After all, aren’t all batteries made the same? And, as long as they allow you to keep using your devices, what’s the difference?
Well, there’s actually quite a large gap between a LiFePO4 battery and a conventional alternative you’ll see on store shelves. Don’t worry; we’re here to make things simple. So, stick around to find out why you should begin storing solar energy with this innovative, efficient energy source!
First Thing’s First: What Is a LiFePO4 Battery?
Though lithium-ion batteries have already circulated the consumer market for a little more than 25 years, it wasn’t until the introduction of the lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4) battery that people started considering it as a major alternative.
In general, lithium-ion technology is primarily used to power those electronics you and others use daily, such as smart phones, laptops, and tablets. However, it also hasn’t had the cleanest track record, with some reports surfacing over the years of these batteries spontaneously catching fire. As a result, it is difficult to find large battery banks that use lithium technology because of its unpredictable reputation.
Still, manufacturers kept pushing forward for a new, improved version of this energy option — one that would be safer, more effective, and future-proof. It wasn’t long before they created the first LiFePO4 battery, which takes advantage of lithium iron phosphate’s reduced energy density, expanded power applications, and — most importantly — reduced risk of random combustion.
Obviously, the fact that this invention isn’t likely to set a device on fire while it’s in your pocket is a huge plus, but there is much more to LiFePO4 batteries than that. Keep reading to discover all the advantages they offer!
1. LiFePO4 Batteries Have Some of the Longest Lifespans on the Market
Tired of always having to replace your conventional batteries due to their short lifecycles? Aside from being a huge waste of time, this can also end up burning a hole in your wallet as you continuously purchase replacements. After all, without a steady power source to keep them charged, you can kiss your favorite electronics goodbye!
Well, this reality can be easily prevented by opting for a LiFePO4 battery instead of your traditional lead acid battery. So, what grants LiFePO4 such a notable advantage over lithium-ion alternatives when it comes to lifespan? You can thank features like:
- Charge Capacity: Unlike some energy sources, LiFePO4 batteries don’t require a full charge in order to put them to use. As such, you can parallel-connect multiple batteries without worrying about damaging those with a lower charge level than the rest.
- Discharge Speed: If you need to discharge your battery, you can do so without fear of damaging energy cells thanks to LiFePO4’s quick discharge speeds.
- Self-discharge Rate: Whether you’re keeping an emergency supply of batteries or simply don’t use your electronics that much, you can rest easy knowing your LiFePO4 batteries won’t be useless after sitting in your garage for a week. Because of their incredibly slow self-discharge rate, they can remain unused for months on end without experiencing damage or a reduced juice level.
During real-life use, you can expect a LiFePO4 battery to survive at least 2,000 cycles (charge/discharge), with a 1C rate of discharge and a DoD rate of 80 percent — all with the remaining capacity staying above 80 percent. Keep in mind that the quality of the cells you use, along with the depth of their discharge, will play a factor in how well these figures apply to your personal experience.
Still, even just their expected values greatly outperform those of lead-acid batteries. By picking up one of those from store shelves, you will only be purchasing around 500 to 1,000 cycles — and that’s solely if you’re choosing their premium options.
2. They Have an Incredibly Low Environmental Impact
Though many of us rely on batteries to enjoy electronic devices, these products do have a dark side to them: primarily, when it comes to their environmental impact. As much as we love using modern vehicles, cell phones, toys, and other goods, it’s crucial to understand how something as simple as a battery can wreak havoc upon the earth.
Because of the toxic content found within most battery types, including cadmium, mercury, nickel, and cadmium, they can pose a profound problem when dumped into landfills. As they corrode, these chemicals leak into the ground and dig deep into the soil, where they can create the perfect environment for a volatile landfill fire — which releases all those toxins into the air we breathe. Furthermore, battery residue can also find its way into local water sources and, eventually, the ocean.
Don’t worry; battery recycling is a convenient solution to this problem. Your local community should have a hazardous waste program that can dispose of them safely or a resource like Call2Recycle who can accept your rechargeable batteries. Of course, it would be nice to have a battery in production that wasn’t toxic in the first place, so that these worries could be mitigated a bit.
Well, that dream product is already a reality thanks to the LiFePO4 battery!
Because they are made using non-contaminating, non-toxic materials and free of rare earth metals, you can feel secure knowing you aren’t placing the environment at any additional risk when storing solar power. Compare that to the highly toxic chemicals found within nickel oxide and lead-acid lithium batteries, and the choice couldn’t be clearer.
Not only that, but the fact that LiFePO4 batteries last significantly longer than their alternatives make them the most sustainable option. Rather than cluttering landfills with multiple replacements throughout the year, you’ll be able to use your LiFePO4 battery for thousands of cycles before needing a new one.
3. LiFePO4 Batteries Are Some of the Safest Batteries Out There
We’ve touched on the improved safety of LiFePO4 technology, but this feature is so remarkable it still deserves its own section.
While other batteries can cause anxiety due to poor reputations and increased risks of flammability, LiFePO4 batteries are the exact opposite. Since their inherently stable chemical combination makes them incombustible and non-flammable, you won’t need to worry about the negative impacts of thermal runaway. Additionally, they will naturally remain cool and are resistant to higher temperatures, which also contributes to their reduced risk of decomposition.
In conjunction with this, LiFePO4 batteries are safe enough that you can store them however you wish. Unlike other batteries that must be kept upright or within a vented compartment, they can be organized however you see fit. Oh, and did we mention they weight up to 60% less than lead-acid alternatives?
So, if you fear your batteries randomly catching fire, you should opt for a LiFePO4 battery. No matter what you plan to use it for, you can rest easy knowing its safety standard is at the top of its class.
4. They Are Built to Last
Sure, having a massive charge lifecycle is a benefit, but it isn’t exactly helpful if the battery easily loses capacity when not placed in a special environment or isn’t regularly maintained. Well, this is just another area where LiFePO4 batteries shine brighter than the competition.
Thanks to their Battery Management System’s (BMS) automatic balancing process, all the cells in your battery bank will receive an equal charge. This means less time spent individually maintaining each battery and more time enjoying your electronic devices.
That’s not all! A standard LiFePO4 battery is also incredibly weather resistant, allowing you to store it in nearly any environment. Though low temperatures tend to improve their efficiency, their overall energy output will remain optimal regardless of the surrounding climate.
So, whether you need a steady supply of juice during your travels or simply want a low-maintenance energy supply, LiFePO4 batteries are the obvious choice. Check our online shop and find a battery that fits your needs.
As you can see, LiFePO4 batteries successfully outperform lead acid batteries in nearly every aspect, including:
- Safety: LiFePO4 technology is designed to be non-combustible and non-flammable.
- Lifespan: From their expansive lifespans (at least 2,000 charge/discharge cycles) to comprehensive weather resistance, these batteries are crafted to last you a long time.
- Sustainability: Produced using non-toxic chemicals and absent of any rare earth metals, you can take advantage of LiFePO4’s benefits without causing serious environmental damage.
So, are you ready to make the switch to LiFePO4 technology and store solar energy more efficiently than ever? Purchase your supply today to experience all the advantages this innovation has to offer!