Jump to content

Reviving dead lead acid batteries

Recommended Posts

a virtually cost no object


state of the art


yuasa lithium battery


built for aerospace 


in 2013




why did it happen?


The investigation was unable to pinpoint the root cause of the battery cell short-circuit. Neither could Japanese investigators






a bit too soon to expect


a developing technology that has a history of overheating issues


​(ie thermal runaway fire-bomb)


to produce safe, reliable, affordable boat batteries

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Do you have any specific ones or suppliers in mind? I am in the market for boat batteries right this moment.


New thread or PM. Saves this one getting confusing.


Nah, sorry Knotty, apart from watching broader prices from some manufacturers i haven't got into the detail - to earlier days for me. 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you are in a position of having the capital for the higher upfront costs of Lithium, you might find that life is easier and that choice is a cost effective one over time.


Much of this depends on the knowledge of the operator and how they treat a battery system.

There is an old saying that batteries don’t die, they are killed.

Good management practices are your insurance against early failure, regardless of the technology used.


Lithium-ion vs AGM? The choice is yours. Personally I think the time is right to consider Lithium in the marine industry as a cost effective, reliable, high performance solution.



Last week (it was only out of curiosity you understand) I went for a test drive in a Lithium-ion powered Tesla Model S – and as we know, no self-respecting electric vehicle manufacturer would still use lead acid based battery technologies today. Time for the marine industry to catch up?




tesla battery fires - lucky they could get out and walk away...









Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Li-ion is still a very expensive setup. Not only does the battery cost you your arm and leg, the other arm and leg is taken by the cost of the special Charger. This results in your name being shortened to Bob when you go swimming and seeing as i don't look like a Bob, I'll have to stick to FLA for awhile at least.
The issue of LiPo batteries doing an impression of Nov 5 is mostly due to poor manufacturing. Hence why many of the  Chinese made "Hover Boards" became a fireworks spectacular for Christmas. The well made batteries tend not to have the same issue. As Elon Musk says, they have a failure rate of 1:10,000, where as petrol engine fires are at a rate of 1:1300 :wtf:
Interestingly, Tesla claims that their battery was damaged by debris from the road in both the fires. Yet they made changes to their Charge/Discharge software.
FLA (Flooded Lead Acid) can still be the best most effective solution to Deep cycle(unless weight saving is a major factor) AGM and Gel are not as good, due to not being able to accept as fast a hard charge and discharge that an FLA can handle. Providing you have the ability of producing enough charge current that is.
LiPo needs to come down in cost dramatically yet and in fact, i don't see why it is as expensive as it seems to be.
Yet another new Lithium technology is in development right now. LiO2 or also called Lithium Air technology. It is just another advancement that will allow faster charge and discharge ability.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am a firm believer in AGMs. They are a set and forget solution. 

FLAs are a pain...and to be blunt are the reason why AGMs were invented.

If you are running your system to the point of critical discharge then you need more input and more storage. 

Over a ten year cycle AGMs are quite cheap. Especially when you consider that with a proper set up the only maintenance is to check the hold downs and check that the terminals are clean !!

No frigging around with decriminalised water and glass n rubber thingys..

I run 4 @ 105 amphrs and 2 @ 33 amphrs...for house. (the 33 amp are in case I need remote power, being light enough to easily carry)....Did I mention that you cant spill them and that they will work in any position...even upside down ??

The 7th is up in the bow as a make mr anchor winch happy battery.

The engine crank is a FLA...and I am now on my third....all the others are original.


I have installed and advised many people on the AGM route and so far over many years have not had a single complaint or a boat that wishes to return to FLAs...


Good "lotsa copper" wiring and a quality multy stage charger (with an AGM setting) that has temperature sensing....and dont flog the system by expecting constant deep discharging and over zealous recharging speeds.


You should expect hands off for ten years (or more). :thumbup:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

You are 100% spot on with the AGM's and you an add Gel as a close second to that as well. But they have the one exception to FLA.. The charge and discharge rates. That may not be an issue to everyone and of course the notable down side to FLA is the liquid as you said. But not all pv use need to worry about installing batteries on their sides.
For me, it is about getting charge back into the Bank as fast as I can, because that means less Diesel and engine hrs. Many consider the sum of battery cost, life and maintenance, but few ever consider the cost of engine hrs (either main or Genset) with the huge cost of recon or replacement. Not to mention the running of an engine in a quiet little bay with others around you.
I look at a much larger picture of overall operating cost, just because I am a little nerdier in that way.
I have the special caps on my batteries to save water and I add water maybe once every 2 or 3 yrs. So no great hardship there.

Interestingly, I have been helping a friend with a large Home installation he has just had, by interpreting all the information he has spat out in relation to the software. I am really impressed by these state of art charging/inverting/grid tie units. All German and the software tells you everything including stuff you don't really need to know. It has been extremely telling. Anyway, the part I was shocked about was the battery system. At first I was baffled by the very poor charge/discharge rate is the set up. But then I discovered that this was because of the Warranty of the batteries. I did not realize that when you read the fine print, to get a 5yr or 10yr warranty that was advertised in the larger print, you had to operate the batteries at no greater than 20% of their charge/discharge figures. And if a battery failed, to claim the Warranty, you had to be able to supply that software info so they could see that the battery was indeed always at kept within the stated parameter. And even then, the battery was "payed out n" in relation to it's age. So the older, the less it was worth. When you calculate that into a Solar energy system, it actually became uneconomical. At least here in NZ. If you have electricity at the gate, it's cheaper in the long run to just stay connected.
The Tesla Power wall may perhaps change that, but it's too early to call yet, as we don't have a firm price on what they will cost here yet. It looks like one company is going to import them, being Contact Energy and that could make it expensive. 

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

While that is true BP. don't forget to add in the price of the electricity to plug in the hybrid.... most seem to conveniently forget about that. 

Our fuel use is about $300 per month, for two cars, about 2000 KM's average travel distance combined - about 6 2/3 cents per K (fuel only). One car averages about 4.7 - 5 ltrs per 100K, the other 7.5-8. Modern petrol engines are amazingly economical!


That being said, electric cars are coming, and not too far away, IMO.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...