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219RE: [force_ev] Pb-acid Battery Charging

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  • Tom Hudson
    Apr 2, 2001
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      > I am replacing a dozen, 12v, 125 amp-hour lead-acid batteries after some
      > 500+ charging cycles, but less than two years after purchasing them. I
      > would appreciate any wisdom / experience with optimal recharging.

      How many miles did you get, Matt? I'm guessing around 13,000, given the
      usage you mention. The pack in our '97 Force just went south after 12,500
      miles, so it sounds like you're probably right on track. I'm upgrading our
      car to NiCD batteries (see the web page covering the upgrade at
      http://asterius.com/solectria/ho/nicad.htm).

      > With this set of batteries, I drove 15 miles to work (using around 15-18
      > amp-hours), recharged, and 9 hours later drove 15 miles home, and
      > recharged.
      > I read that Pb-acid batteries should be kept charged, and not left in a
      > discharged state, to prevent sulfating (or whatever the chemical
      > degradation
      > process is called). This worked well, but would I be better off charging
      > only once a day (in the evening, only 9-10 hours after initial discharge,
      > vs. in the morning at work - on the company's meter - 14-15 hours after
      > initial discharge), and cutting the number of charging cycles in half, and
      > not worrying about the batteries sitting partially discharged for several
      > hours each day? This would also push the depth-of-discharge twice as far,
      > which I read also cuts down on the number of recharging cycles.

      As I understand it, the way you're using them is exactly how you should --
      recharge after every use, don't leave them discharged. Leaving them
      partially discharged 9 hours a day will age them. I suspect David Roden
      will have some better insight into this than me, though.

      -Tom

      Thomas Hudson
      http://asterius.com/solectria/ho -- Our Electric Vehicles
      http://asterius.com/solectria/ho/pvs.htm -- Solar Power
      http://asterius.com/solectria -- Solectria Owners Website
      http://asterius.com/pwgarden -- Port Washington Garden Club
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