Solar Water Pump with Battery: A Comprehensive DIY Guide

A solar water pump with battery system is a self-contained, off-grid solution for water pumping needs. It typically includes a photovoltaic (PV) array, a controller, and a direct current (DC) pump, with the PV array converting sunlight into electricity, which is then stored in batteries for later use. The controller manages the flow of electricity from the PV array to the pump and batteries, ensuring efficient operation and preventing overcharging or deep discharging of the batteries.

Determining Water Requirement

The first step in designing a solar water pump with battery system is to determine your water requirement. This involves calculating the amount of water needed per day for your specific application, such as livestock watering, irrigation, or domestic use. Factors to consider include the number of animals, the size of the area to be irrigated, and the daily water consumption per person or animal.

Choosing the Water Source

solar water pump with battery

Once you have determined your water requirement, the next step is to identify the water source and its characteristics. This includes the location of the water source, the depth of the well or surface water, and the water quality. These factors will influence the selection of the pump and the overall system design.

Selecting the Pump

The choice of the pump is crucial in a solar water pump with battery system. The pump must be compatible with the water source and the water requirement, as well as the voltage and power output of the PV array and batteries. Common pump types used in solar water pump systems include centrifugal, submersible, and positive displacement pumps.

Sizing the PV Array

The size of the PV array is determined by the voltage and power requirements of the pump, as well as the available solar insolation (the amount of solar radiation received by a surface) in the location. The PV array must be sized to provide enough power to run the pump and charge the batteries during the day.

Choosing the Batteries

The batteries used in a solar water pump with battery system must be deep-cycle batteries, designed to accommodate much lower continual discharges than regular car batteries. Common battery types include lead-acid, lithium-ion, and AGM (absorbed glass mat) batteries. The number of batteries needed depends on the water requirement and the size of the PV array.

Installing the System

Once the components have been selected, the solar water pump with battery system can be installed. This includes mounting the PV array, installing the pump, and connecting the batteries and controller. Proper installation is crucial for the system’s efficiency and longevity.

Testing and Adjusting the System

After the system has been installed, it is important to test and monitor its performance. This may involve adjusting the tilt angle of the PV array, fine-tuning the pump settings, or adding or removing batteries to optimize the system’s operation.

Technical Specifications and Considerations

When designing a solar water pump with battery system, there are several technical specifications and considerations to keep in mind:

Water Requirement

  • Determine the daily water requirement in gallons or liters
  • Consider the peak water demand and seasonal variations

Water Source

  • Identify the water source (well, surface water, etc.)
  • Measure the depth of the water source
  • Assess the water quality (pH, turbidity, salinity, etc.)

Pump Selection

  • Choose a DC pump with the appropriate voltage and power rating
  • Ensure the pump can meet the total dynamic head (TDH) requirement
  • Consider the pump’s flow rate and efficiency

PV Array Sizing

  • Determine the solar insolation (kWh/m²/day) for your location
  • Calculate the PV array size (watts) based on the pump’s power requirements
  • Select PV panels with the appropriate voltage and power output

Battery Selection

  • Choose deep-cycle batteries (lead-acid, lithium-ion, or AGM)
  • Determine the battery capacity (Ah) based on the water requirement and PV array size
  • Ensure the battery voltage matches the PV array and pump

System Layout and Installation

  • Plan the layout of the PV array, pump, and batteries
  • Consider the mounting and foundation requirements for the PV array
  • Ensure proper wiring and connections between components

Performance Monitoring and Adjustment

  • Monitor the system’s water output, battery charge, and PV array performance
  • Adjust the tilt angle of the PV array, pump settings, or battery configuration as needed
  • Maintain the system regularly to ensure optimal performance

By following these steps and considering the technical specifications, you can design and build a reliable and efficient solar water pump with battery system that meets your specific needs.


  1. NRCS Technical Note 1 – Solar-Powered Water Pump Systems for Stockwater Design
  2. Using Batteries with a RPS Solar Pump
  3. Design and performance analysis of water pumping using solar PV
  4. NRCS Technical Note 1 – Solar-Powered Water Pump Systems for Stockwater Design (Updated)
  5. Developing Test Methods for Solar Water Pumps