How to Prolong Lead-acid Batteries
Nowadays, we can find a lot of devices, machines, and means using lead-acid batteries. This type is not so expensive to purchase but how to optimize the durability and capacity of it is very important. As you may know, the sealed battery is created with a low over-voltage potential to protect you from water depletion. That is reason why the SLA and VRLA systems hardly get fully charged and their sulfation is developed for over time. We can list some important ideas to maintain the lead acid batteries as below:
- At first, it is necessary to find an ideal charge voltage limit for the sealed lead acid system. It is critical because each voltage level is a compromise. If the voltage limit is high, it will give us a good battery performance but reduce the service time because the grid corrosion on the positive plate. More importantly, the corrosion is permanent and impossible to be reversed.
- When the SLA battery has lost capacity for sulfation, resulting in that regaining the performance is more difficult and time consuming. Therefore, the metabolism of the SLA battery is also slow and not be hurried.
- During the use time, a subtle indication of whether an SLA battery recovered is reflected in the behavior of your discharge voltage or not. Then, remember that a full charged SLA battery starting its discharge with a high voltage and tapers off might be reactivated more successfully than one when the voltage drops rapidly. However, this process is gradual.
- In order to have good results in regaining lost capacity, you should apply a charge on top of a charge. This will be complete through a fully charging SLA battery, afterwards removing it for 24 to 48 hours of rest period and recharging. This process is repeated for several times until the capacity of the battery is checked with a full discharge. Some overcharge is agreeable with the SLA but too long an overcharge must be harmful for the battery for corrosion and loss of electrolyte.
- You also can reverse the effect of sulfation of the plastic SLA with an over – voltage charge of up to 2.5V/cell for some hours. During this time, you have to keep the battery in cool condition and under careful observation. Any extreme caution is not necessary to raise the cell pressure to venting cell that is caused by the membrane on some SLA to rupture permanently. They do not only deplete the electrolyte but also be highly flammable.
- Meanwhile the VRLA uses a cell self-regulating venting system that is equipped with capacity to open or close cells based on cell pressure. Thus, changes in atmospheric pressure will strongly affect cell venting. 20-hour discharge is the rate that proper ventilation of SLA batteries commonly reach. Even though it is a slow rate a capacity of 100 percent is very difficult to achieve. And 80 – 90 percent is a typical rate of capacity. SLA batteries are usually overrated, which all of manufacturers must be aware of.
- In general, simple guidelines for you to maintain your sealed lead city batteries are always keep them charged and the storage level not below 2.1V/cell. At the same time, avoid repeating deep discharges while keep charging more often. You can use a larger battery to ease the strain in case the deep discharge is difficult to be repeated. And choose the correct charge and float voltage as well to prevent sulfation and grid corrosion.