Different Batteries Hold Different Benefits But All Need Charging, Says CTEK

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There are a variety of lead-acid batteries entering the average workshop, Wet Cell, Calcium and AGM to name a few, each needing to be maintained in a slightly different manner but all benefitting from a charge from a Smart Battery Charger. CTEK, the Battery Charging specialist and innovator of award winning battery chargers, looks at the specific technological differences and maintenance requirements of each.

There are a variety of lead-acid batteries entering the average workshop, Wet Cell, Calcium and AGM to name a few, each needing to be maintained in a slightly different manner but all benefitting from a charge from a Smart Battery Charger. CTEK, the Battery Charging specialist and innovator of award winning battery chargers, looks at the specific technological differences and maintenance requirements of each.

The same chemical principles are being used to create energy from lead-acid batteries today as 100 years ago. However, as vehicle technology has become increasingly complex, energy requirements have increased but, the average battery life has actually become shorter – in fact, the lifespan of the average battery can vary from 6 months to 48 months

Consequently, the lead-acid battery has had to develop to cope with the extra dependence and strain being placed on it and as a result, there are now many different types of lead-acid battery available to choose from – depending on usage and power requirements.

Wet cell, Calcium and Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) are all various versions of the lead-acid battery that have different advantages, disadvantages and of course maintenance requirements.

The wet cell, or flooded battery dominates a large proportion of the car battery market. Despite the first wet cells being fragile glass containers with lead rods hanging from an open top, developments in manufacturing, and of course safety, techniques have seen the wet cell progress in to an affordable, reliable and, if recharged and maintained correctly with, typically, a 12V Battery Charger, long lasting vehicle battery.

Calcium batteries also take up a large proportion of the battery market and have the same generic make-up of wet cell batteries except both the positive and negative plates are replaced by calcium alloy. By doing this, the fluid loss is about 80% lower than that of a normal wet cell battery and the self discharge rate is also considerably lower which, in turn, provides huge advantages to those storing the units.

Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) or ‘dry’ batteries are the latest step in the evolution of lead-acid batteries. Instead of using water or a gel, an AGM uses a fibreglass separator to hold the electrolyte in place. The physical bond between the separator fibres, the lead plates and the container make AGMs spill-proof and reduces their self discharge rate to 1-3% per month, which considering a wet cell can discharge at a rate of 1% a day, is of particular use to retailers and workshops storing the batteries.

All of these batteries possess different technologies that suit the differing needs of the vehicle and indeed, the workshops storing them. However, they all have one thing in common in that they need to be carefully maintained to ensure once in use, they provide the energy needed. None of them are free from self discharge and all will therefore require a charge at one point or another.

For more information, please visit http://www.ctek.com

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Pete Goold
Punch Communications
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