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#1

Image of EPEVER MPPT Solar Charge...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.8010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 140 reviews
Performance

10

Created with Raphaël 2.1.210.0010
Battery and power efficiency

10

Created with Raphaël 2.1.210.0010
Build and controls

9.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.8010
Value for money

9.9

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.9010

Pros

  • Features extended input voltage
  • Charge controller handles more solar panels wiring in series
  • MPPT controller ensures tracking efficiency of 99.5% that is better than other listed products

Cons

  • Normal build quality
RANK

#2

Image of Outback Flexmax 80 FM80...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.6010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 134 reviews
Performance

9.9

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.9010
Battery and power efficiency

9.7

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.7010
Build and controls

9.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.4010
Value for money

9.6

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.6010

Pros

  • Programmable to charge battery voltages
  • Backlit 80 character-display shows the current operational status
  • Ensures continuous and maximum power point tracking

Cons

  • Shorter gauge cables
RANK

#3

Image of EPEVER 40A MPPT Solar...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.4010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 75 reviews
Performance

9.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.8010
Battery and power efficiency

9.6

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.6010
Build and controls

9.7

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.7010
Value for money

9.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.4010

Pros

  • Protect the battery from being over-charged by the solar modules
  • Advanced MPPT technology with high tracking efficiency
  • Blacklight LCD screen for displaying system information

Cons

  • Typical build quality

Feature wise top Solar controller

Solar Controllers : Battery and Power Efficiency

Battery and Power...

EPEVER MPPT Solar Charge Controller 40A 150V PV Solar Panel Controller Negative Ground W/ MT50 Remote Meter + Temperature Sensor PC Monitoring Cable[Tracer4215BN]winner-product-image-alt
Solar Controllers : Build and Controls

Build and Controls

Victron SmartSolar MPPT 75/15 Solar Charge Controller 75V 15A with Bluetoothwinner-product-image-alt
RANK

#4

Image of Victron SmartSolar MPPT...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.2010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 77 reviews
Performance

9.6

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.6010
Battery and power efficiency

9.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.4010
Build and controls

9.6

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.6010
Value for money

9.5

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.5010

Pros

  • Outstanding conversion efficiency
  • Automatic battery voltage recognition
  • Ultra-fast maximum power point tracking

Cons

  • Connectivity issues
RANK

#5

Image of WindyNation P30L LCD 30A...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.1010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 174 reviews
Performance

9.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.3010
Battery and power efficiency

8.5

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.5010
Build and controls

8.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.8010
Value for money

7.9

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.9010

Pros

  • Solar charge controller prevents overcharging
  • Short circuit and reverse polarity protected
  • LCD digital display provides system information

Cons

  • Unexceptional quality
RANK

#6

Image of ALLPOWERS 20A Solar Charger...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.9010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 571 reviews
Performance

8.1

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.1010
Battery and power efficiency

7.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.8010
Build and controls

7.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.8010
Value for money

8.7

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.7010

Pros

  • Adjustable power rate with dual USB ports
  • Equipped with industrial-grade STM 8 microprocessor
  • Over-current and short-circuit protection

Cons

  • Inaccurate voltage readings
RANK

#7

Image of 20Amp 12V/24V DC Input MPPT...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.8010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 46 reviews
Performance

9.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.4010
Battery and power efficiency

9.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.3010
Build and controls

9.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.3010
Value for money

9.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.4010

Pros

  • Advanced multi-peak tracking technology
  • Built-in maximum power point tracking algorithm
  • Optimum MPPT tracking efficiency of up to 99.9%

Cons

  • Poor battery efficiency
RANK

#8

Image of GHB 20A 12V 24V Solar...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.7010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 202 reviews
Performance

8.1

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.1010
Battery and power efficiency

7.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.8010
Build and controls

8.5

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.5010
Value for money

8.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.8010

Pros

  • Comes with built-in energy-saving backlight LCD
  • Reverse polarity protection charge controllers for solar panels
  • Overload and short circuit protection

Cons

  • Minimum power output with low voltage
RANK

#9

Image of ZEALLIFE Solar Panels...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.6010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 112 reviews
Performance

8.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.3010
Battery and power efficiency

7.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.3010
Build and controls

8.9

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.9010
Value for money

9.0

Created with Raphaël 2.1.29.0010

Pros

  • Power efficient 12V rechargeable batteries
  • Provides short-circuit and reverse-connection protection
  • Easy to monitor LED indicator lights

Cons

  • Connectivity issues
RANK

#10

Image of Renogy Wanderer 10 Amp...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.3010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 1371 reviews
Performance

7.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.4010
Battery and power efficiency

7.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.4010
Build and controls

7.2

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.2010
Value for money

7.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.3010

Pros

  • Optimized for a 12V/24V system
  • Temperature compensation increases battery life
  • Backlit LCD screen displays system operation

Cons

  • Middling wire-insulation quality
RANK

#11

Image of HQST 30 Amp 12V/24V PWM...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.1010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 253 reviews
Performance

7.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.3010
Battery and power efficiency

7.0

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.0010
Build and controls

7.3

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.3010
Value for money

7.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.8010

Pros

  • Multi-functional solar charge controller with dual USB ports
  • 12V/24V system voltages are automatically recognized
  • over-discharge and overload protection

Cons

  • Requires high maintenance
RANK

#12

Image of Renogy Rover 40 Amp 12V/24V...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.0010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 141 reviews
Performance

7.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.4010
Battery and power efficiency

6.9

Created with Raphaël 2.1.26.9010
Build and controls

7.1

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.1010
Value for money

7.5

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.5010

Pros

  • Innovative MPPT technology with high tracking efficiency
  • Compatible with various Deep Cycle battery options
  • Die-cast aluminium design for heat dissipation

Cons

  • Inaccurate voltage readings
RANK

#13

Image of EEEKit 20A Solar Charger...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.8010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 24 reviews
Performance

7.0

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.0010
Battery and power efficiency

7.2

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.2010
Build and controls

8.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.4010
Value for money

8.7

Created with Raphaël 2.1.28.7010

Pros

  • Effectively ensures the system stability
  • Optimized SOC control has overcharge protection
  • Unexpected power failure can be stored

Cons

  • Ordinary battery efficiency
RANK

#14

Image of 20A Solar Charge Controller...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.7010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 1374 reviews
Performance

6.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.26.8010
Battery and power efficiency

6.6

Created with Raphaël 2.1.26.6010
Build and controls

6.6

Created with Raphaël 2.1.26.6010
Value for money

6.9

Created with Raphaël 2.1.26.9010

Pros

  • Features 20A solar charge controller
  • Over-current and short-circuit protection
  • Dual reverse current protection and low heat production

Cons

  • Does not include back-lit feature
RANK

#15

Image of 5A Waterproof Solar Charge...: Bestviewsreviews
Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.4010
Overall BVR Rating
Based on 86 reviews
Performance

7.1

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.1010
Battery and power efficiency

7.8

Created with Raphaël 2.1.27.8010
Build and controls

6.4

Created with Raphaël 2.1.26.4010
Value for money

6.9

Created with Raphaël 2.1.26.9010

Pros

  • Mini Size solar controller waterproof makes it ideal for small power system
  • Easy to install and operate
  • Prevents the battery from over charging

Cons

  • Flimsy build quality

Solar Controllers Buying guide

Natural resources like solar energy have been increasingly in demand since the last few decades with more and more companies investing in such energies. If studies are to be believed, then natural reserves like solar energy will become a mainstream source of our energy soon. This is where solar controllers come into play. Solar Controllers or solar charger controllers allows easy conversion of electricity from a Solar Photovoltaic panel or array to a DC battery system efficiently and effectively. In simpler words, a solar controller acts as a sub-conductor that allows electricity flow from a solar panel to a battery. Such controllers intend to avoid inversion of electricity flow from DC to AC in case there is no electricity supply from panel to the batteries and focuses on keeping the battery in optimal condition without making it over or undercharged.

Features of Solar Controllers

Minimal Voltage Disconnect Feature

This feature of a solar controller is helpful in cases of low electricity or voltage failure. In such cases, a solar controller automatically disconnects the battery from the panel restricting the load on the battery. This allows the battery to have a longer life.

Flexible Set Points

A controller is designed in a way that it can adjust itself according to the capacity of the battery up to a designated maximum limit. The feature of a solar controller to adapt according to the setting of a battery is quite helpful while accommodating high voltage setup systems.

Display Controls

Many solar controllers nowadays come with displays to indicate the status of voltage, current, night dim technology and other crucial information which is essential during power cuts for a longer duration of time. Some even come with load control technology that allows you to monitor the amount of voltage load that is being passed through from a panel to a battery.

Logging of Data

This is another feature of a solar controller that allows you to record the data of voltages, current flow, etc. So that you can keep a track of the amount of energy that is being used up or is being transferred. This data logging can be customized as per your requirements and can be set from daily minimum to daily maximum to even logging an average of all.

Remote Control

Many of the solar controllers nowadays come with the option of remote monitoring through an internet connection and local server. This is very convenient for people who are not available throughout to monitor the functions of a controller. This also allows you to create emergency phone calls or text messages in case of a fault without physically being present there.

Real-time Clock Facility

This is quite a convenient feature and works in synchronization with the data logging time to keep a check on the load control by giving out records based on a real-time clock.

Facility to Charge a Second Battery

This facility is used on a more commercial level like in the marines where a solar controller can not only charge the house battery but also the source or starter battery. This comes handy during two kinds of situations; first when the primary battery is malfunctioning, and the second while cutting off overloading from the primary battery.

Now that we know the basics, let’s take a look at the types of solar controllers available in the market.

Types of Solar Controllers

PWM Controller

This is perhaps, one of the most advanced controllers in the market. This controller is created using the convenience of the users in mind and is in the form of an on/off switch principle. The biggest advantage of such controllers is that they can stop or change the current flow as per the needs and conditions of the battery.

The Series Controller

The series solar regulator works on a similar principle as the shunt regulator. The only difference being, rather than diverting the current to a 'shunt', it stopes the current flow completely to prohibit the battery from overloading.

MPPT Charge Controller

This again is one of the most preferred forms of the controller and maintains the same levels of current like that of a solar array. An MPPT controller takes the current from the array and converts it into more suitable voltage levels to charge the battery. Such controllers ensure a good life for your solar batteries.

The Shunt Controller

Such solar controllers have a simple ‘On’ and ‘Off’ mechanism that allows the current to flow from a solar array to the battery until the level of voltage disconnect level. Once the battery reaches that level the flow stops diverting the current flow to an auxiliary unit.

Factors to Consider before Buying Solar Controllers

Current Capacity

This indicates choosing a solar controller that can handle the maximum output of a solar array to direct it towards the battery. If you choose one which is not compatible you will end up with some major damages to both battery and the solar array.

Voltage Capacity

Go for a solar controller that is compatible with the voltage capacity of the set-up. The available configuration standards are 12 volts, 24 volts and 48 volts. Therefore, the voltage capacity of the battery should be equivalent to the voltage of the controller.

Store Temperature

Before investing in a solar controller understand the atmosphere where the setting is being created. An environment’s atmosphere affects the efficiency of a solar controller to a large extent. A PWM is best suited for a warmer environment as they can function at the level of the voltage of the battery. Whereas, an MPPT suits best during cold environments as it can function above the voltage set for the battery.

Budget

Even though the technology has advanced by leaps and bounds as far as such equipment are concerned, in the end, everything comes down to your budget. With an array of products available in the market, choosing the one that suits your pocket as well as the need shouldn't be very hard.

Warranty

A solar controller requires you to have a good financial reserve for its purchase, installation as well as maintenance. Therefore, before putting your money on any controller, understand the warranty period of the product. Any controller comes with an average warranty between 3-5 years.

Conclusion

With exhaustible resources on the brink of disappearing, mankind is turning towards nature to seek alternate forms of survival and energy requirements. Solar energy solutions have taken the world by storm with its inexhaustible nature and the power to fulfil one of our basic requirements- ‘the electricity’. At such, it only makes sense to invest in good parts of such a system, which comes with a complete guarantee to provide us with maximum efficiency. Take a look at some of our recommended products in the featured section above for more information. 

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