Before the promotion of server rack battery, people often DIY 12V LiFePO4 Battery to form a battery pack for home backup power. Because the server rack battery can also work with solar panels, solar charging, now more and more people choose to use it instead of choosing their own DIY battery pack.
This article will compare the advantages and disadvantages of server rack batteries with DIY lithium iron phosphate battery packs. I hope it will give you enough reference.
Before the detailed comparison, let's take a brief look at the server rack battery.
What is Server Rack Battery?
Probably in the past server rack batteries were very rare because it was usually purchased in bulk by enterprises. Because the server rack battery is usually designed very compactly to make 48V100Ah or 51.2V100Ah battery in 3.5U space, and also embedded BMS, circuit breaker and other components, so it is often used as UPS in data center. Usually it needs to work with server racks, so you may need to buy the same size racks. But generally, server rack battery sellers will give you racks just like Aolithium. Nowadays many people will install the server rack battery in the corner of their home and plug it into an off-grid system for home backup power.
Advantages of server rack battery
- Small size
Server rack batteries are available in sizes ranging from 1U to 4U depending on capacity.
- Easy to use
Plug and play.
Use metal shell, lithium iron phosphate cells, safe and long life.
- Ready to expand capacity
Support up to 16 batteries in parallel.
Aolithium server rack batteries have all the benefits, taking into account the problems people may encounter when using them.
Disadvantages of server rack batteries
Inconvenient to carry
A 48V 100Ah server rack battery weighs 50kg; you have to use tools to move it.
Not easy to repair
When a battery fails, it is difficult to replace; for 48V batteries, it usually has 16 or 32 cells.
Not easy to monitor
Conventional server rack batteries usually have RS485 as the only communication interface, which can only be monitored with a computer, and no Bluetooth interface. Here we can recommend Aolithium server rack batteries, they have improved this by equipping server rack batteries with a display where you can view the voltage, SOC and overall voltage and current of each cell, etc.
So will server rack batteries be more acceptable than DIY LiFePO4 batteries? Let's compare server rack batteries and DIY LiFePO4 battery packs in detail in terms of cost/quality/convenience.
48V Server Rack Battery VS DIY 12V LiFePO4 Battery
For the server rack battery, we chose the most common model Aolithium51.2V100Ah server rack battery (48V) as a sample. The best price for it is currently $1700, which is equivalent to $354/kWh. Of course you can use the discount code to get more discounts.
If a 48V 100Ah battery pack is formed by connecting four 12V100Ah LiFePO4 batteries in series, the specific costs are as follows
The price for 4 Aolithium 12V100Ah batteries is $1700 (including shipping/duty/clearance, etc.).
As an example, 1 meter of ultra-soft 4 AWG wire in red and 1 meter in black - $18
Ring terminals are primarily used for BMS balance wire to cell terminals and battery wire to inverter/charger or power distributor.
17 ring terminals required for 48V 16 cell BMS - $3
4 ring terminals for 4 AWG wire - $3
Torque Wrench - $35
Fuse / Circuit Breaker - $20
Other (tape/wooden board/plastic box/heat shrink tubing/soldering iron, etc.) - $50
Total cost is about $2600. This is equivalent to $540/kWh.
When we choose a battery, quality is the first factor that should be considered. In order to enhance the safety of the battery, many manufacturers such as Aolithium will add BMS to the battery and use high quality cells.
A battery has a good cell that will give you full capacity. Stable output and long deep cycle life.
A high quality BMS will ensure the safe use of the battery and immediately balance the cells to keep each cell in the same condition.
If you need your own DIY lithium iron phosphate batteries, you can choose the cells and BMS you need on your own.
However, due to the current market continued shortage of lithium iron phosphate cells, you may find it difficult to buy. And as manufacturers usually buy in bulk, so this is very simple for them.
The BMS plays a vital role in the safe use of the battery pack, providing maximum protection for the cells. It provides overcharge protection, overdischarge protection, short circuit protection, temperature protection, and battery balancing.
As a DIY enthusiast, you can buy BMS on your own, so you can learn more about the performance of BMS.
When it comes to hardware protection, server rack batteries have a definite advantage. Why?
At the factory, there are a series of strict assembly standards for battery production. The batteries have sufficiently strong and correct hardware connections inside. Typically, server rack batteries have rugged, all-metal housings. And they are equipped with circuit breakers and surge protectors.
The factory is very professional and they have the expertise just and technology.
The DIY process can produce very many mistakes and lose materials. Special care is needed when soldering.
When it comes to convenience, the server rack battery is superior.
Although the server rack battery is very heavy, it is all-in-one and ready to use.
If you choose a DIY lithium iron phosphate battery pack, the process can take up to two months to make. The battery pack is still heavy and you can't remove it all at once, you have to take it apart and reassemble it.
Through our comparison, I believe you have learned a lot about the advantages of each of server rack batteries and diy. It is hard for us to conclude who is better.
But if you need immediate availability, server rack battery is more suitable for you. It is reasonably priced and the fastest way to build an energy storage system.
But if you're a DIYer, you can also make an energy storage battery pack by DIYing a lithium iron phosphate battery. This can also achieve the same effect as server rack batteries. But it's time consuming.