# 12V vs 24V: What’s The Difference In Battery Systems. 9v battery to 12v

## V vs 24V: What’s The Difference In Battery Systems?

We all use batteries in typical day-to-day life. Whether it be in our remote control, watch, car, or RV, batteries are a part of our lives. Most of the time, we don’t need to think about the voltage of a battery. However, when working with DC power systems for RV’s boats or off-grid applications, a serious decision needs to be made between 12V vs 24V.

This article will discuss 12V and 24V systems and the differences in 12V vs 24V batteries. Let’s get into it!

## What is the Voltage of a Car, RV, or Boat Electrical System?

Most cars, RVs, and boats utilize a 12-volt electrical system, although there are some exceptions. So, when are 12V vs 24V batteries used?

To understand more about batteries, we must first understand what volts or voltage is. Voltage is the amount of electrical pressure it takes to push an electrical current. Take a look at what volts are to get a better understanding of this concept.

### What Does “12V” Mean?

12V tells us that the battery supplies 12 volts under a nominal load. The same principle holds for a 24V battery bank in that it provides 24 volts.

As we discussed before, most car and RV batteries are 12V.

12V batteries are used in most vehicles because the electrical components such as the starter, lighting, and ignition systems are designed to operate on 12 volts.

We sometimes use 24V battery systems in larger trucks and busses due to the vehicle’s higher power needs and long cable runs. You can also see 24V used in larger boats and some RVs with elaborate solar systems.

Another typical application for a 24V system is on trolling motors for fishing boats.

## How is a 24V System Made?

A 24V system is where you produce 24V under nominal load. There are a couple of ways to create a 24V power system. One way is to purchase a 24V battery. The other is to use two 12V batteries in series to create a 24V system. Let’s take a look at these options in a little more detail.

### What is a 24V Battery?

One way to create a 24V system is to use a 24V battery. 24V batteries are less common than their 12V counterpart and are harder to come by. 24V batteries are also relatively expensive.

However, they do take up less space than running other batteries in series. So, if space is a concern, a single 24V battery may be a better choice for you.

↳ Click here to check out our 12V and 24V Battle Born Batteries product specs.

### How Do You Connect 12V Batteries In Series?

The most common method for building a 24V system is to run batteries in series.

Running batteries in series means they have a single electrical path equal to the sum of the system’s volts. So, if you have two 12V batteries wired in series, then 2x12V=24V.

To create a 24V system using two 12V batteries, you would wire the first battery’s “” positive terminal to the “-“negative terminal of the second battery. The remaining negative and positive connections get wired to the component you want to power just as you would if you were using a single battery. You can accomplish the same thing using four 6 volt batteries.

To make this easier to digest, let’s look at something we are all familiar with, a flashlight. Many flashlights use batteries that are running in series. Suppose you have a large flashlight that uses four “C” size batteries.

When you install the batteries, they are in a single row with negative touching positive. This is a series circuit. Each of the “C” batteries is 1.5V. We learned earlier that when batteries run in series, then the output voltage is the sum. In this case, the flashlight runs off 6 volts.

## Comparing 12V vs 24V – Benefits of Each

When looking at 12V vs. 24V systems, there are some pros and cons to each system type. Let’s take a look at some of the pros of each.

### 12V System Benefits

As we talked about earlier in the article, 12V systems are relatively common. Most vehicles use 12V systems as components used in vehicles are designed to operate on 12V. The alternators generate 12V to charge the battery.

When it comes to RVs, most appliances such as RV refrigerators and all the lighting work on 12V as well. 12V systems only require one battery and work well for low-power applications and short wire runs.

### 24V System Benefits

24V systems are beneficial because you can use smaller diameter wire and reduce amperage by two times. Using smaller diameter wire can reduce wiring costs and decrease the space needed to run wiring. This is especially important where long wire runs are required.

But wait, how can you run a smaller wire with more voltage?

You can actually run a wire 2x smaller than an equivalent 12V circuit. This is because the higher voltage requires less current to produce the same power. Since we are running less current or amps, we can use a smaller wire. This is the same reason power is transmitted on power lines at very high voltages. The wires can be much, much smaller and carry lots more power!

In addition to smaller wires, 24 volt systems operate more efficiently in motors and inverters. Often, the same solar charge controller operating on 24V vs 12V will handle twice the solar input.

## Comparing 12V Vs 24V Cons of Each

As there are pros of 12V vs 24V systems, there are also cons to each type of system. Some of the pros of one system can become a con of the other.

### Downsides of 12V

12V systems require massive wires when pulling large loads because the current (amps) are higher. As we have already learned, 24V systems reduce the current or amps two times, then a downside of a 12V system is the amperage is double that of a 24V system at the same power.

Because 12V batteries use two times the amperage at a given power draw, they are less efficient than a 24V battery due to resistive losses.

### Downsides of 24V

If you are using a 24V system in an application with 12V appliances, you will need a converter to reduce the voltage to 12V. The variety of components and devices that run on 24V are not as plentiful as what is available in 12V.

Although you can charge a 12V battery with the alternator of a vehicle, you won’t be able to do that with a 24V system if the chassis is a 12V system. Additional DC-DC converters are needed to accomplish this task.

## When To Use A 12V vs 24V System

Now that we have learned a little about 12V vs. 24V systems, we need to understand when we should use one over the other.

When building a DC (direct current) battery system, it’s crucial to understand your power requirements to run the appliances you need. The energy that is consumed by a device is measured in watts. Once you know your wattage requirement, you can determine what system is required.

If your requirements are below 3000W, you can generally get by with a 12V system.

Many recommend 24V systems when your power needs are above 3000W or generating 3000W of solar or more. When you get to this point, the benefits of a 24V system outweigh the cons because you can run smaller and increase the system’s efficiency.

If your power consumption is even higher, above 6000W, you can benefit from an even larger DC system and consider stepping up to 48V.

### 24V DC Benefits For Solar

Many DC MPPT solar charge controllers have higher voltage capabilities to handle higher panel voltages. They, however, have a hard current limit.

When using a 50 amp rated charge controller on a 12V battery bank, you can use the controller with 700 watts of solar. If you use that same charge controller on a 24V battery system, it can connect to 1400 watts of solar panels. This means that half the number of solar charge controllers is needed. They will also operate more efficiently at 24 volts.

## V vs 24V, Which Is Right For Me?

It isn’t always a clear-cut decision. There are many variables to consider when determining which one is the best choice.

Now that we understand these systems better, they are not as intimidating as we originally thought them to be. Whether you end up with a 12V or 24V system, you now understand the differences. You can assess your needs and make an educated decision.

## Powering LED Strip Lights with Battery

You won’t always have an AC power outlet like a 220V ready to power your strip lights in every situation. There might be instances when you need to use a battery instead. If you’re in a place without a power source, like inside your car or during camping, a battery can come in handy.

## Can I Light an LED with Battery?

Batteries can power our flashlights, cars, and other electronic devices. LED lights are no different. In fact, batteries are used extensively as a power source for LED strips.

Batteries are portable, and you can bring them just about anywhere. If you go to an open field, you can’t expect to find a power source. But, you can always have your batteries with you. Whenever my team and I go to a client for an LED demo presentation, we don’t ask for a power source. We bring our batteries to power our kits.

## How to Choose a Battery for Strip Lighting?

Choosing a battery for your strip lighting is easy. You’ll only need to consider these three things: voltage, capacity, and connectivity.

### 2.1 Voltage

Strip lights run on either 12V or 24V. Because batteries are compact, you’re going to have to connect them up in a series to match your LED’s voltage requirement.

For example, for a 12V LED strip, you’re going to need eight pieces of 1.5 AA batteries since 1.5V 8 = 12V. For a 24V LED strip, you can wire two 12V batteries in a series since 12V 2 = 24V.

In contrast, connecting your lights to a battery with a lower voltage may decrease performance and lower brightness. At worst, it may not light up at all.

• NOTE: When choosing your battery, ensure that its voltage level doesn’t go above your strip’s voltage need. Connecting a 12V strip to a battery that produces more than 12 volts can permanently damage it.

### 2.2 Capacity

Capacity is the amount of power that is stored in a power source like your battery. It measures in watts-hours (Wh) or milliamp-hours (mAh). Your battery’s capacity tells you how long it can provide current (mA) or power (W) before its charge is used up.

The higher your battery’s capacity value in mAh, the longer it can last. A 12V rechargeable lithium battery with a capacity of 3000 mAh can last longer than an alkaline 9V battery that produces only 500 mAh.

### 2.3 Connectivity

Another thing you need to make sure of is the compatibility of your battery and LED strip connectors. A majority of battery packs will either have open wiring or DC connectors as their output terminals. LED strips will have copper pads, open wires, or DC receptacles.

## What Battery Does LED Lighting Use?

Batteries used in LED lighting come in different shapes and sizes. Each type of battery is suitable for a specific purpose. Coin cells, alkalines, and lithium batteries of varying specs are good common examples.

Let’s go over some of the most common batteries used in LED lighting.

Many LED lights are compact enough to fit into tight spaces. Some of them are even standalone SMDs. Because there’s not enough space to work with, these LEDs make use of a tiny battery. Coin cells are perfect for applications that need little power, such as single-bulb LEDs for props and decorations. Coin cells can only supply 3 volts at 220mAh, enough to light one to a few LED bulbs for a few hours. The more bulbs you place, the shorter its lifespan gets.

AAA and AA alkaline batteries are the most available types on the market. Though the two differ in size, they both produce the same 1.5-volt output. However, since the AAA is smaller, it only has a capacity of 1000 mAh. AA batteries have a capacity of up to 2400 mAh, which means they can last much longer.

If you want to connect your strip lights to these batteries, they’re going to need a battery box. A battery box can house a number of these batteries so that you can pair them in a series. Say you’re powering a 12V strip. You’re going to need eight 1.5V batteries in a battery case since 1.5V 8 = 12V.

If you need something higher than a 1.5V, you can opt for a 9V alkaline battery. This battery comprises six smaller 1.5V AAAA batteries combined into a single package, similar to the battery box concept. Though convenient, they don’t last very long, offering only a capacity of 500 mAh.

If you want a power source as big as it gets, a 12V Lithium battery can fit the bill. It can even power an automobile’s electronic system. Because of its size, it provides the most capacity compared to the others on this list. It can have a nominal capacity of 20,000 mAh. It’s also rechargeable, which means you can use it over and over.

## How Long Do LED Strips Last on a Battery?

LED lights are incredibly power-efficient compared to incandescents. They don’t take up as much energy from source. A typical single LED bulb will have a power draw of 20 mA (milliamps). This means that it can consume 20 mAh (milliamps-hour) in one hour. If you were to use a coin cell battery with a capacity of 220 mAh to power a single LED bulb, it’d power it for 11 hours.

As mentioned earlier, the higher your battery’s capacity is, the longer the duration will be before it loses power. Using the same example above, if you use a AA battery with a capacity of 2400 mAh instead of the 220 mAh coin cell, it can power the same LED bulb for 120 hours.

To calculate how long a battery can last from a fully charged state, determine your LED light’s power draw and your battery’s mAh rating.

You can find your strip’s power draw on its product description. It is expressed either in Watts (W) or Amperes (A).

Whichever unit is used, you’ll need to convert it to milliamps (mA). If the power is specified in watts (W), divide the number by the LED strip’s voltage (12V or 24V). Multiply the result by 1000 to convert it to milliamps (mA). If the power is specified in amps (A), multiply it by 1000 to get its milliamp (mA) value. (mA = W / V x 1000)

After getting your strip’s power draw in mA, look for your battery’s milliamp-hour (mAh) rating. It should be easy to spot somewhere on its body. To finally get your battery’s expected lifespan in hours, divide the battery’s mAh rating by your strip’s power draw in mA.

For example, we use a lithium 12V battery at 2500mAH to power a 6w 12V led strip; using the formula I(current) = P(power) / E(voltage), we get a strip current of:

• mA = P(power) / E(voltage) x 1000 = 6W / 12V x 1000 = 500mA
• 2500mA / 500mA = 5

So the strip can last for 5 hours.

• NOTE: Instantaneous Power Draw Capacity — Some batteries will have a maximum instantaneous amperage limit. To avoid damaging your battery or shortening its lifespan, ensure that your LED strip does not exceed its maximum instantaneous limit.

## Ways to Extend Battery Life.

Your battery can only provide power up to an extent until it runs out of juice. Eventually, you’re going to have to recharge or replace your batteries. The good news is there are simple ways that you can prolong your batteries’ lifespan.

### Add a Switch

A switch allows you to turn a circuit’s flow of electricity on and off conveniently. Many LED-to-battery connections use switches. When not in use, turning off your LED lights can help you save a lot of electricity, preserving your battery’s life. LEDs are already energy-efficient devices, but adding a means to turn the power off can save you hours’ worth of energy.

### Add a Dimmer

The brightness of your lighting doesn’t always have to remain consistent. Sometimes, reducing brightness for particular scenarios can be ideal and can save your battery life. You can connect a dimmer between your battery pack and your LED strip to regulate its brightness. By having a way to dim the brightness of your lights, you can save power whenever you find it necessary.

### Decrease the Lighting

The higher the number of individual LEDs your battery supplies, the more power it will use up. For example, a coin cell battery can power a single LED bulb for 11 hours. However, if you add another individual bulb to the circuit, your coin cell battery’s life will significantly decrease to just over 5 hours.

To offset unneeded power consumption, you can decrease your LED count to meet your ideal battery life.

## The Science of Licking a 9V Battery

If you’re familiar with Ohm’s Law, you know that voltage is a function of current and resistance (namely, V = IR). The important thing to remember is that everything is a conductor and can be modeled as a resistor. Things like wire and metal are obvious conductors and have a low resistance. Your body is also a conductor. just a poor one.

While it is impossible to know the exact resistance between two points on your body (blood, bone, muscle tissue, and skin all have different resistances), we can generally assume that dry skin has a resistance of 100kΩ. This will change based on perspiration, hair, etc. For the sake of an example, let’s take a 9V battery and touch both terminals to our skin. What happens? Not a lot. With some Ohm’s law ~~magic~~ math, we can calculate the approximate current flowing between the terminals:

Now, take that same 9V and lick the terminals. Seriously. It’s safe (mostly). This time, assuming the 9V has some charge, you should have felt a rather unappetizing tingle course through your tongue. Why did you feel it this time? Well, saliva is much better conductor than skin. We can approximate the resistance of a wet (with saliva) human tongue at about 7kΩ. math gives us:

That’s about 1.3mA of current flowing between the battery’s terminals, which is a good deal more than the current flowing during the dry skin test (0.09mA).

## Your Body’s Response

As it turns out, your body has a pretty strong reaction to electric current. Even tiny amounts of current can be felt and be potentially dangerous.

 1. 5 mA Tingling sensation 5. 10 mA Pain 10. 20 mA Involuntary muscle contractions 20. 100 mA Paralysis, heart stoppage

Anything less than about 1mA is imperceptible. When we held the 9V to our tongue, about 1-2mA was flowing between the terminals. Because the tongue consists of a thin membrane with nerve endings near the surface, we could readily feel the current as it excited the nerves. Anything higher than 9V could be potentially dangerous to our poor tongue.

While it might be safe to handle 9V batteries with our bare hands (that 100kΩ offers a good deal of protection from that small voltage), ~1mA directly through the heart is enough to cause ventricular fibrillation (the heart stops beating in a coordinated manner and cannot pump blood to the rest of the body). This requires electrodes being punctured into the body near the heart. In this case, even something like 9V can be lethal (remember: your internals have a LOT less resistance than your skin, some estimations as low as 300 Ω).

## Safety ~~Third~~ First

Electricity is still dangerous. Here are some points to keep in mind if you work with higher voltages:

• Above about 10mA, you lose control of your muscles, which means that you will likely be unable to let go of the thing that’s shocking you.
• Work with at least one other person present and use rubber-coated equipment. safety guidelines can be found here.
• AC and DC have slightly different effects on the body, but both can be equally dangerous. To determine which is more painful, check out this video.

## Комментарии и мнения владельцев 21 Комментарии и мнения владельцев

Back when I was in university (electrical engineering), I took an electrical machinery course. Working with power transformers and big induction motors can be dangerous, so we got a few pointers from electricians. 1) When you’re working with high power gear, turn it off and lock the switch. 2) If you can’t make Rule #1 happen, put one hand in your Seriously. That way, if you do bridge a pair of high voltage contacts, the current is through one hand. It might destroy your hand, but you’ll be alive. probably. 3) If you can’t make Rule #1 happen, assume all lines are live. If you need to touch a line that could be live (i.e. any of ’em), tap it with the back of your hand. That way, if it’s live, the spasm will pull your hand away instead of locking it to the live line. And then there’s my own addendum: The question isn’t: Am I being paranoid? The question is: Am I being paranoid enough? Of course, this doesn’t cover it. Not by a long shot. But there is an underlying theme: be very, very careful, and learn everything you can. If you get a chance to learn from tradespeople who work with wiring and live circuits for a living, do it.

It is very dangerous to touch any high-voltage wire. Never use the back, or front, of your hand to test for a live wire. Instead of your body, use a multimeter (and make sure it’s rated for the type of voltages you’re working with). Rules (1), (2), and (3) are really good though.

And then there’s my own addendum: The question isn’t: “Am I being paranoid?” The question is: “Am I being paranoid enough?” Additional rule: Remind yourself of all of the above often. My father (an electrician) used to drill these into me as a kid, and got forgetful one day. now he has two fake teeth from knocking out the originals when he accidentally hit a live wire.

Tesla’s rules! Words to live by (and die by ignoring). Though I’m having trouble finding any citation of them as Tesla’s.

## What size solar panel to charge a 9v battery?

Using a solar panel to charge a 9v battery is a simple task. We are going to talk about in this article what is the size of the solar panel, how to make the circuit, how long takes charge the battery, and many other things.

When we are using solar power to charge a 9v battery the best solar panel is a 9v solar panel. Because 9 volts battery needs 9 volts current to charge the battery. If you are using a higher voltage solar panel than the battery needs the battery will be damaged probably. And if you are using a lower voltage solar panel to charge this battery the battery will not charge.

## How to charge a 9v battery using the solar panel?

To make this circuit you don’t need many items. If you are using a 9v solar panel to charge a 9v battery, additionally you need wires only. To make this circuit you can directly connect the solar panel to the battery through the wires. When you are connecting wires connect the positive terminal of the solar panel to the positive terminal of the battery and negative terminal (-) of the solar panel to the negative terminal (-) of the battery.

## How long does it take a battery to charge?

It depends on the AMPERES (amp) and VOLTAGE of the battery, and WATT (W) of the solar panel. Let’s take an example to make this easier to understand. If you are using a 9v 1-amp battery and using 9v 3W solar panel to charge the battery then it takes 3 hours to charge the battery.

How does this happen?

First, we should know how much power will be consumed to fully charge a battery. We can get the power in electricity by multiplying volts (v) from amperes (amp). So we can get the power required to fully charge a battery by simply multiplying the voltage value of the battery and amperes of the battery.

According to this simple theory to fully charge a 9v 1amp battery we need a 9 Watt-hours (9W) power supply. As we have 9 volts 3-Watt power supply it only supplies 3-Watt power per hour. So, it takes around 3 hours by the solar panel to supply the total power battery required.

## Can you charge a 9v battery with a 12v solar panel?

Yes, you can charge your 9v battery using a 12v solar panel but if you connect that panel directly to your battery it will damage your battery. Therefore, you can use a voltage controller to lower your solar panel voltage.

What is a voltage controller?

The voltage of your solar panel should be equal to the voltage of the battery you are using. If your solar panel gives a higher voltage than your battery needs, it will damage your battery instantly. So, you can use a voltage controller to lower the voltage.

The voltage controller is a device that limits the voltage of the power source. Its role is to ensure that the electrical equipment you use is properly supplied with the required voltage.

## Can you replace the voltage controller?

The function of the voltage controller is to reduce the voltage to the level required by your battery. You can simply use a bulb with the voltage you want to reduce instead of a voltage controller. Let’s make this more clear by an easy example.

Example: if you want to charge a 9v battery but you have a 12v solar panel you should reduce 3 volts to prevent overcharging. This is where the voltage controller is used. Instead of a voltage controller, you can connect a 3 volts bulb in series with the solar panel or battery.

## Can you charge a 9v battery with a 6v solar panel?

Whenever we select a solar panel that fits a battery, we have to consider the voltage of that battery. Always the voltage of the battery and the voltage of the panel should be the same. If the voltage on our panel is too high, it can be reduced to the aforesaid acre and connected to the battery. But if the voltage on your panel is less than the voltage on the battery, the battery will never charge.

## Can you use two 4.5v solar panels for a 9v battery?

Yes, you can connect the same voltage multiple solar panels together. Even if you add several panels of the same voltage to power your circuit, it does not matter if the total of those powers is the same as your battery. There have two ways to connect solar panels.

NOTE: Do not connect different voltage solar panels. It can damage your circuit.

How to connect a couple of solar panels for this circuit?

Parallel way

If you use a parallel way to connect the solar panels the voltage does not increase but the amperes are increasing. So this way is not suitable for your system.

Example for the parallel way: if you are connecting 4.5v and 4.5v panels in this way. Still, the output voltage is 4.5 volts.

If you are using a series way to connect solar panels the amperes do not increase but the volts are increasing. According to this circuit, this is a suitable way to connect solar panels.

Example for the series way: if you are connecting 4.5v and 4.5v panels in this way. The output voltage is 9 volts.

## What are the best batteries for this circuit?

But in this case, we can not use a flooded lead-acid battery. Because these batteries are not commonly manufactured for such a small voltage. Therefore we can use sealed lead-acid and lithium battery only. And also among these two batteries, the best battery for this circuit is the lithium battery. Because these batteries have large storage capacity, extended battery life, and many other special advantages. At present, these batteries are used in many devices such as mobile phones and laptops.

## | Conclusion |

When making this circuit, try using a 9v solar panel for a 9v battery. If the voltage of the panel you are using is more than 9 volts, be sure to reduce it using a voltage controller. Otherwise, it will inevitably damage your battery. And also, if you connect several panels to get these 9 volts, connect panels with the same voltage.