Plugged in blog

Why 48-Volt Battery Systems Outshine 12-Volt Systems

Introduction

The heart of every mobile business lies in its power source, and we commend those visionary operators who are transitioning away from traditional generators and exploring the battery route. With the right system, you can cook up success; with the wrong one, you might just find yourself in a pickle. In this post, we're going to show why 48-volt (48V) battery systems are the preferred choice for food truck owners and other mobile business owners.

While some might assume that a 12-volt (12V) battery is the smarter, cost-effective choice, we're here to dispel that misconception. In the dynamic world of on-the-go business, where every decision matters, opting for a 12V system may leave your operation ill-equipped for the demands of the industry. 

It's important to note that even in the broader automotive sector, where cost considerations are significant, manufacturers are increasingly transitioning from 12V to 48V systems, reinforcing the numerous advantages of the 48V setup for various applications, which we will discuss below.

First, here’s a quick chart contrasting some of the primary differences:

Understanding the Basics

To fully appreciate the differences between 48V and 12V systems, it's essential to have a basic understanding of some key electrical terms: volts, amps, and watts. 

Volts measure the electrical potential difference, while amps measure current, or the flow of electricity. Watts are the product of volts and amps and represent the power a system delivers. 

Now, let's apply this to our systems: A 48V system, with a higher voltage than a 12V system, can deliver more power (watts) for the same current (amps). This is because power (watts) is the product of voltage (volts) and current (amps), so higher voltage at the same current yields more power. This translates to a 48V system being able to power more demanding appliances efficiently, which is particularly beneficial in a food truck where space and power sources are limited. For example:

48v x 10 amps = 480 watts

12v x 10 amps = 120 watts

To better understand this, let's use a water flow analogy. Imagine volts as the water pressure in a hose, amps as the flow rate of the water, and watts as the total power of the water being sprayed. 

In this metaphor, a 48V system is like having a hose with higher water pressure (volts) compared to a 12V system. If both hoses release water at the same flow rate (amps), the hose with higher pressure (48V system) can shoot water further or with more force. This is akin to the 48V system providing more electrical power (watts) for the same current, thus efficiently powering more demanding appliances like espresso machines, ice cream machines, or panini presses.

Efficiency and Performance

In the bustling world of food trucks, efficiency isn't just a preference; it's a necessity. Compared to 12V, a 48V battery system is the clear winner, guaranteeing that critical components like your grill, refrigerator, and lighting operate smoothly and consistently. Picture the peak of lunch hour, a time when your food truck becomes a hive of activity. In such scenarios, a 12V system might find itself gasping for power, struggling to keep up with the demand, and potentially draining rapidly. This could lead to slowed operations or, worse, a temporary shutdown.

Enter the 48V system, a model of consistency. It's designed to provide steady and robust energy output, ensuring that every appliance in your food truck from the sizzling fryers to the lively music system operates without a hitch. This system doesn't just dribble out power; it supplies a steady stream, ensuring that no matter how heavy the load, your service remains uninterrupted.

Safety Considerations

Safety considerations are paramount when evaluating battery systems, and the difference between a 48V battery and a 12V battery is significant. Notably, 48V batteries are much safer than their 12V counterparts. This safety advantage stems from the reduced current draw of 48V systems. 

Lower current requirements not only minimize the risk of overheating but also alleviate strain on all electrical components within the system. In contrast, high-power requirements in 12V systems necessitate much larger wires to handle the higher current, which can increase the risk of electrical hazards. The enhanced safety of 48V batteries is not only a technical advantage but also contributes to a secure working environment for both equipment and personnel, making them a wise choice, particularly in demanding applications like food trucks, where safety is paramount alongside reliable power supply.

Battery Storage

Battery storage is a critical consideration when it comes to energy solutions, and the choice of a 48V battery system stands out for its space efficiency. 48V batteries, thanks to their higher energy density, offer the advantage of requiring less physical space while delivering substantial power. This efficiency in space utilization is particularly valuable in applications where real estate is limited, such as in food trucks or compact electrical installations. With 48V batteries, you can maximize power storage within a smaller footprint, making them a practical and efficient choice for those looking to optimize space while ensuring a reliable and robust energy supply.

Cost-Effectiveness and Financial Impact


Cost-effectiveness and financial impact are paramount considerations when comparing 48V and 12V electrical systems. One of the key factors contributing to the cost-efficiency of 48V systems is their reduced wiring requirements, thanks to their higher voltage. This advantage translates into significant savings on both wiring material and installation labor. With fewer wires needed, not only are material costs lower, but the installation process is also streamlined, resulting in reduced labor expenses. This overall reduction in upfront and operational costs makes 48V systems an economically wise choice.

Conversely, 12V systems require more extensive wiring due to their higher current demands, increasing both material costs and the complexity of installation. The additional wiring adds to labor expenses and may necessitate larger and more expensive electrical equipment to accommodate the higher current. These factors contribute to higher upfront and operational costs for 12V systems. In practical terms, the cost-effectiveness of 48V systems becomes evident as they minimize both wiring and equipment expenditures, making them a financially prudent choice for various applications. For instance, in the fast-paced world of food trucks, where prudent financial decisions can significantly impact long-term profitability, 48V systems prove to be a smart investment.

Scalability with 48V Systems

Scalability is a critical factor that sets 48V battery systems apart from their 12V counterparts. With their higher power capacity, 48V systems are inherently better equipped to accommodate business growth and the integration of additional appliances. This scalability ensures that as your mobile business expands or your power requirements increase your 48V system can readily adapt to meet these evolving needs without the need for extensive upgrades or replacements. In contrast, 12V systems offer limited scalability for growing power demands, often necessitating costly system upgrades when additional appliances are introduced. This flexibility and expandability of 48V systems make them a forward-thinking choice for food truck owners seeking not only reliable power but also room for future growth and enhanced operational efficiency.

Conclusion 

In conclusion, the journey through the benefits of 48V battery systems versus their 12V counterparts illuminates a clear path for food truck owners and mobile business operators seeking efficiency, safety, and scalability. As we've explored, the 48V system stands out not just for its superior power output and efficiency, but also for its notable contributions to safety, space optimization, cost-effectiveness, and the ability to grow with your business needs. Transitioning to a 48V battery system is not merely an upgrade; it's a strategic move towards ensuring the longevity and success of your mobile venture in an ever-demanding market.

Reassess your power system and consider the shift to a 48V setup. For expert guidance or to make the switch, contact our team today. Elevate your mobile business with a powerful, efficient solution.

Latest Posts

Food Truck Webinar – Why Electric Systems Are Better for Your Food Business and Your Customers

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Spotlight: Todd Timmons

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Recognized as a World Changing Idea by Fast Company

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Spotlight: Tanya Rosenzweig

+ READ MORE

Overcoming Common Challenges with Food Truck Generators

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Spotlight: Erica Pacold

+ READ MORE

Why Joule Case: Energy Storage Wherever & Whenever You Need It

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Earth Day Challenge

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Spotlight: Nancy Guzman

+ READ MORE

Why Your Food Truck Customers Deserve an Electric System

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Spotlight: Dylan Mansanarez

+ READ MORE

Navigating the Power Puzzle: Solutions for EV Charging Infrastructure Hurdles

+ READ MORE

Paying for Your Joule Case Food Truck Battery System

+ READ MORE

Shaping Tomorrow's Energy Grid: Distributed Energy Resources in 2024 and Beyond

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Spotlight: John Ritchie

+ READ MORE

Why 48-Volt Battery Systems Outshine 12-Volt Systems

+ READ MORE

2023 Joule Case Year in Review

+ READ MORE

Powering a Greener Future: Joule Case on TechCrunch Podcast

+ READ MORE

Fueling Impact and Sustainability: Intuit and Joule Case Join Forces on Food Truck Program

+ READ MORE

A New Era for Entertainment

+ READ MORE

Virtual Power Plants: A Revolutionary Shift in Energy Management

+ READ MORE

Celebrating a Milestone: 100 Food Truck Entrepreneurs Leading the Charge

+ READ MORE

The Rise of Distributed Energy Resources: Disrupting the Traditional Power Paradigm

+ READ MORE

The Power of Flexibility in Modern Energy Solutions

+ READ MORE

Grooming on the Go: The Benefits of Battery Power

+ READ MORE

Eco-Friendly Ice Cream Trucks: The Green Revolution with Joule Case

+ READ MORE

Designing the Future: Essential Power Considerations for Food Truck Builders

+ READ MORE

The Legacy of John Goodenough: A Reflection on the Impact of the Lithium-ion Battery

+ READ MORE

Protecting Hospitals and Municipalities with Olympus Power

+ READ MORE

Resilience in Reach: How the Olympus Power Platform Supports Emergency Response from Disaster to Recovery

+ READ MORE

Recognizing Juneteenth with 6 Outstanding Black-Owned Food Trucks

+ READ MORE

Culinary Colors of Pride: Food Trucks Fueling the Celebration of Diversity

+ READ MORE

Overcoming Infrastructure Barriers: Scaling EV Charging at Auto Dealerships

+ READ MORE

Maximizing Profits with a Battery-Powered Food Truck: A Comprehensive Guide

+ READ MORE

Your Guide to Food Truck Regulations in 2023

+ READ MORE

Why Generators Suck

+ READ MORE

Tips for saving energy in your food truck

+ READ MORE

The Future of Food Trucks: Going all-electric and off-grid with Joule Case

+ READ MORE

The Main Circuit: The Neon Glow of Opportunity

+ READ MORE

What the California Generator Ban Means For Your Mobile Business

+ READ MORE

The Main Circuit: Dance Partners

+ READ MORE

Decentralized Power Generation and Storage: Key to the Green Revolution

+ READ MORE

The Future of Energy: Facing the "New Normal"

+ READ MORE

The Main Circuit: A Texas Two Step

+ READ MORE

Latest Stackable Battery Stations: Economical and Eco-Friendly

+ READ MORE

Quantifying the Missed Opportunity of Solar Without Storage

+ READ MORE

Six Battery Advances: Rethinking Their Reliability for Portable Power

+ READ MORE

The Electric Vehicle Revolution is Approaching, but the Grid is Unprepared

+ READ MORE

One size fits most

+ READ MORE

Municipalities' Investment in Sustainability: Unmatched Opportunity

+ READ MORE

Powering Treefort Music Fest

+ READ MORE

Making Music Festivals More Sustainable in the Age of Climate Change

+ READ MORE

Planned Power Outages in California to Continue through 2020

+ READ MORE

JUST ANNOUNCED: Joule Case Presenting at The Battery Show

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Debuts Sigma, a Clean Portable Energy Solution

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Powers Largest Food Truck Rally in Idaho

+ READ MORE

Insane Impact Revolutionizes LED Industry with Emission-Free Solutions

+ READ MORE

Joule Case for Food Trucks - FAQ

+ READ MORE

Joule Case Wins 2022 CleanTech Deal of The Year

+ READ MORE

Joule Case's $1M Crowdfunding Complete, Ups to $5M for Market Expansion

+ READ MORE

Join our Investor Webinar

+ READ MORE

Joule Case, Battery Start-up, Powers Young Entrepreneurs

+ READ MORE

Positive Energy Policy Trends Boost Companies Like Joule Case

+ READ MORE

Fresh Features for the New Year!

+ READ MORE

Boosting Your Business with the Solar Investment Tax Credit

+ READ MORE

How the Inflation Reduction Act's Energy Storage Tax Credit Can Boost Your Business

+ READ MORE

Energy Storage Solutions to Reframe the Future of EV Charging

+ READ MORE

Hear the music, not the generator blues.

+ READ MORE

Dronedek Announces Partnership with Joule Case

+ READ MORE

Cut the cord already.

+ READ MORE

Energy and Carbon Impact of Various Outdoor Events

+ READ MORE

Customer Spotlight: Slow River Coffee

+ READ MORE

Case or not to Case?

+ READ MORE

5 Hidden Costs of Food Truck Generators

+ READ MORE

Affordable, Efficient Solutions for U.S. Power Grid Blind Spots

+ READ MORE

Boost Your Event with an Immersive, Battery-Powered LED Screen

+ READ MORE

2022 Joule Case Year in Review

+ READ MORE

Announcing our Wefunder Campaign

+ READ MORE

Benefits of the Battery Recycling Chain

+ READ MORE

1 Billion Pounds of CO₂ Eliminated

+ READ MORE

A Journey to Beta - How did we get here?

+ READ MORE

A Patented Way to Electrify Gas Stations?

+ READ MORE

And we're back!

+ READ MORE

Knowledge is power ⚡️

We want to share the latest innovations and news with you.
Designed for anywhere. Powered for people

See why our battery systems are the solution for you