Victron charge controller settings for lead-acid and lithium batteries

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Victron MPPT charge controllers are among the best solar controllers for charging lithium and lead-acid batteries. In fact, they can be set manually to charge any battery chemistry. While many charge controller settings are straightforward, some require specific expertise to maximize performance.

By the time you finish reading this guide, this post should equip you with the knowledge to take the best out of your solar power system. Proper charging parameters ensure the longevity of your valuable battery bank. Additionally, our guide delves into practical accessories that can enhance your system’s overall performance. This and more info you can find while browsing through the guide.


Helpful resource:
If you require assistance choosing the most suitable option, we encourage you to explore our recent post on the Best 2024 MPPT Charge Controller.

The above-listed Victron models are only compatible with 12 and 24V battery banks. Make sure to verify the charge controller operation voltage before purchasing a controller.

This manual will guide you through programming of Victron MPPT charging settings for both lithium-ion and lead-acid batteries. Furthermore, we include charging settings for non-Victron controllers as well. The example below reflects a 12V battery bank scenario, for the 24 and 48V systems, simply multiply the 12V values by 2 and 4, respectively.


Step 1

Download VictronConnect App from App Store or Google Play Store, and create an account


Victron MPPT download app

Step 2

In the “Device List” look for the charge controller. It should say “SmartSolar”, click on the device image.


Victron MPPT settings

Step 3

The Bluetooth pop-up window should appear and you will need to type in the pin code. The default pin is 000000 (six zeros with no spaces in between)


Victron MPPT device list

Step 4

If the firmware update is available, click on the Update button below. Do not touch your phone while update is in progress.


Victron MPPT firmware update

Step 5

After seeing the main screen, click on the gear symbol on top right corner following by the battery menu


MPPT setup

Step 6

After opening the battery setting page, select the appropriate battery voltage (12,24 or 48V).


Voltage configuration

Step 7

Go to the battery preset menu and select the appropriate type or chemistry


battery preset

Victron MPPT charging settings are easy to follow. However, for those who are looking to setup the charging settings manually, the table below is a great source of truth. Also, you can use these settings while programming other charge controllers.


SettingLithium-ion battery
12V/24V/48V
Lead-acid AGM, GEL
12V/24V/48V
Lead-acid flooded
12V/24V/48V
Bulk/Absorption Voltage14.4/28.8/57.6V14.7/29.4/58.8V14.8/29.6/59.2V
Bulk/Absorption Time30 min per 100Ah of LiFePO4 battery0.42 x Capacity / Charging Current
(e.g. 0.42 * 300Ah / 30A = 4.2 hours
0.42 x Capacity / Charging Current
(e.g. 0.42 * 400Ah / 50A = 3.4 hours
Float Voltage13.5/27/54V13.6/27.2/54.6V13.5/27/54V
Equalization voltage
Equalization Time
MPPT Settings14.7/29.4/58.8V15.8/31.6/63.2V
2.5 hours
Temperature CompensationMPPT Settings-4mV/°C/cell-4mV/°C/cell
Low Temperature cut-off3° degrees CelsiusMPPT SettingsMPPT Settings

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Overall, adjusting up the battery voltage is the initial step in setting up the system. It’s important to properly maintain the batteries to increase their lifespan and keep them functioning well.



Lithium-ion/LiFePO4

Lithium-ion batteries such as well-known Renogy 12V Lithium have a relatively low self-discharge rate, meaning they lose charge at a slower rate when not in use. However, it is still important to store them in a cool, dry place and avoid overcharging or discharging them too much. In general, avoid discharging a lithium-ion battery below 20% of its capacity to prolong its lifespan and maintain optimal performance. A battery monitor such as BMV-712 Smart Battery Monitor can help extend battery lifespan by providing real-time information and programmable alarms to prevent overcharging, deep discharging, or exposure to extreme temperatures. Additionally, it can also track battery usage and performance over time to identify issues and allow to take corrective actions.



Check Victron Battery Monitor

Lead-acid

Lead-acid batteries, which are also commonly used in backup power systems, have a higher self-discharge rate. They should be stored in a cool, dry place and kept at a full charge if they will not be used for an extended period of time. It is also important to check the water level in the battery and add distilled water as needed. A battery hydrometer is a tool used to measure the health and charge level of a lead-acid battery. It works by measuring the concentration of sulfuric acid in the battery’s electrolyte, which can help diagnose issues such as overcharging, undercharging, or cell damage that may shorten the battery’s lifespan. Therefore, by using a battery hydrometer to check the health of your lead-acid battery, you can ensure that it is working at its best and potentially extend its lifespan.



Check battery hydrometer

The Swiss-made “HydroVolt” from Compaselect – a reliable and efficient battery perfect for any off-grid system. What sets this one apart is its built-in temperature compensation, ensuring it can perform optimally in any environment. One crucial factor to consider regarding batteries is the specific gravity. This is the ratio of the density of a substance to the density of a reference substance, typically water. In the case of batteries, it is a measure of the electrolyte’s state of charge. The full specific gravity values of 1.265 for the HydroVolt ensure that you have a battery capable of delivering consistent and reliable performance.



By applying a controlled overcharge, you can ensure that all cells are brought up to the same state of charge. However, over time, the cells of a battery bank can tend to drift apart, causing some cells to become overcharged and others to become undercharged. That’s when you need to equalize the battery bank. Setting up the charge controller to auto-equalize once in 3 months is essential to ensure that your battery bank is always in top condition. This will help maintain your batteries’ health and ensure that they last for as long as possible.

Lastly, unless your batteries are within a relatively stable temperature environment throughout the year, using a temperature sensor is important. Install the sensor on one of the batteries. It will measure the temperature and send this data to a charge controller. Considering the temperature compensation factor, the charge controller will adjust the charging current based on this temperature data. The two temperature sensors listed below can facilitate this process. By doing so, you can ensure that your batteries receive optimal charging regardless of external temperature variations.





Check Smart Battery Sens
Handy hint:
Keep you expensive lead-acid batteries Safe and Clean! Once you’ve given your battery terminals a good cleaning, make sure to apply some battery protecting coating or battery terminal cover kit. Apply a nice, thick layer to keep corrosion away in the future.


May the solar power be with you!


Hey, have you checked out the latest Sunnywell posts yet? By the way, if you haven’t already, make sure you don’t miss out on some of their other amazing content too!

Author

  • Vlad Vakulenko

    Hey, I'm Vlad, a Renewable Energy expert with 7+ years in solar battery storage and EV charging. At SunnyWell Energy, I'm sharing top industry knowledge and practical expertise. My goal is to help both DIY enthusiasts and professionals make the most of this valuable information.

    https://www.upwork.com/freelancers/~0140631fe2d6f34633 lexustor@gmail.com Vlad

21 thoughts on “Victron charge controller settings for lead-acid and lithium batteries”

  1. I have just tried putting in details of the batteries I have used on my vehicle and cannot find a closer answer , if the batteries are standard vehicle lead acid , 12 volt ( connected together to give 24 volt ) what setting do I chose on the victron inverter ? It doesn’t have an option for Lead acid ? What should I select please

    1. Hi Richard, please specify the method you use to configure the battery type on the inverter: through the VictronConnect app using Bluetooth, a USB-connected computer with a VE.Direct to USB interface or a Rotary Switch. Choose the GEL/AGM option in the “battery preset” unless you prefer to use a custom charging setting. Please provide the “Ah” size of your battery bank and inverter for us to create tailored settings.

    1. Hi there, using the preset Gel Victron deep discharge(2) would be preferable since its charging settings closely align with the recommended profile for average AGM batteries. The AGM spiral option, on the other hand, has a higher charging voltage that poses a risk of damaging the battery in the long run. Regards, SunnyWell Energy tech

  2. I have a 120AHr Lithium battery in my Ute canopy. The BMS keeps defaulting back to 100% SOC even when the voltage is low. Mostly this happens when we have locked or unlocked the vehicle. What settings can I use to stop this happening?

    1. Hello Suzanne, thanks for reaching out. Are you using Victron battery monitor such as BMV-712? In that case, you need to check your “Charged Voltage” and “Tail Current” settings: they should be 14.1v and 4% accordingly. Cheers,

  3. Hi, I have a 295w solar panel going to a victron 100/30 mppt solar charger and 2x 130ah 12v calcium lead acid batterys, what preset option do I use on the victron app? I’ve set it on gel2 will that be OK? Thanks?

    1. Hello Craig,

      Thanks for reaching out. The Gel2 pre-configured voltages look fine except for the float voltage, which is slightly higher than recommended. It should be set at 13.1V instead of a preset 13.8v. Keeping the calcium lead acid batteries at levels can over-charge them. We recommend using the user-defined settings with the following voltages: Absorption voltage = 14.2V; Float voltage = 13.1; Equalize voltage = 16.1V. You can also manually start battery equalization every 2-3 months in summer and more frequently in winter.

      Regards,
      SunnyWell Energy Tech

  4. Hi
    I’m using 2 x 175w solar panels = 350w in total
    With a victron 100/30 smart solar mppt controller what would the best settings be to charge two 120AH Lead acid (flooded )batteries wired in parallel ?
    Many thanks

    1. Hi Luke, assuming the batteries are making a 12V system, it is recommended to use the following settings:
      Bulk/Absorption Voltage: 14.8V;
      Bulk/Absorption Time: 2 hours;
      Float Voltage: 13.5V;
      Equalization voltage:15.8V
      Equalization Time:2.5 hours.

      1. I’m trying to figure out how you came up with Bulk/Absorption time of 2 hours. It seems that it would be .42×240/30=3.36 hours. I have two 100Ahr batteries (flooded lead acid). Would I use 2 hours as well?

          1. Thanks so much for your prompt response. I have an additional question if I may. I have a sailboat with 3 deep cycle flooded lead acid batteries. 1 is used for the starter and 2 are used in the house battery bank. The solar panels charge whatever is selected via the batter switch. In position 1, it charges 1-100Ah starter battery, in position 2 it charges 2-100Ahr batteries, in position 3 “both” it charges 3-100Ahr batteries. The question is what should the bulk/absorption time be set to? If it is set for 300Ah, would that cause damage or be dangerous in the other cases? What are the effects here? Is there one setting that is good for all scenarios? What are the potential consequences? Are there any other parameters that should be changed or considered? Thanks so much!

          2. Hi Clay,

            Apologies for the delay in response; we’ve been quite busy lately. Your question is a very good one, and the answer to it will hopefully help you understand some details of solar charging. To summarize, you should set the timer for bulk/absorption as if you are charging three batteries together. It’s important to note that the charge controller regulates its charging algorithm based on voltage and not the time set. So, if you have one battery charging and it reaches its absorb voltage faster than the time set, it will jump to the next stage of the charging step, which is float.

            Hope this helps!

  5. I need help.i have a 2 230 amp battery yuasa dlc 230 slead lead batteries wired together to make a 24v battry bank connect to a 100/30 mppt victron solar controller.what are the bulk absorption and equalization settings and for how many time the equalization must be done.never done equalization in 2 years.thanks for help.

    1. Hi Frank,

      Bulk/Absorption Voltage: 29.4V;
      Bulk/Absorption Time: 3.2h;
      Equalization voltage: 29.4V;
      Sealed lead-acid batteries don’t need the same equalize cycle as flooded lead-acid batteries. Unlike flooded batteries, overcharging sealed batteries isn’t recommended because the fumes are trapped. It’s sufficient to fully charge sealed lead-acid batteries occasionally, like once a month.

  6. Hi
    I have a 170w solar panel and a110amp platinum plus battery with the victron 75/15 controller do I just leave it set on the default for battery preset

    1. Hi Richard, could you see if the default settings are the same as or very similar to the ones we gave for Lead-acid AGM and GEL battery types? If they’re alike, you can keep the default settings.

  7. Kevin john Starr

    Hi wonder if you could help please, have two 175 watt panels Victron mppt 100/30 and and wondering what settings for VARTA battery 180AH (c20) 153AH(c5) thanks have looked on line , someone said agm spiral, but like to check, thanks kev

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