1. What does VRLA mean? What are the advantages of VRLA batteries?
VRLA is the abbreviation for valve-regulated lead acid battery. The advantages of VRLA batteries are maintenance free, gas recombination, low self-discharge, long life, high rate discharge characteristics, and multiple applications. The Oxygen and Hydrogen generated during normal operation are recombined inside the battery, which produces water and removes the need for water addition.
2. Does over discharging damage batteries?
Any battery will be damaged by continual under- or overcharging. Capacity is reduced and life is shortened. Overcharging is especially harmful to any VRLA battery because of the sealed design. Overcharging dries out the electrolyte by driving the oxygen and hydrogen out of the battery through the valve. Performance and life are reduced.
3. Do batteries self-discharge when not in use?
All batteries, regardless of their chemistry, self-discharge. The rate of self-discharge depends both on the type of battery and the storage temperature the batteries are exposed to. However, for a good estimate, Sail batteries self-discharge approximately 3% per month.
4. What is battery cycle life?
One cycle of a battery is a discharge from full charge to full discharge and a return to full charge again. The total number of cycles a battery can perform before failure is called its Cycle Life. Cycle life (number of cycles) is dependent on the depth of discharge in each cycle. The deeper the discharge is, the shorter the cycle life (smaller number of cycles), providing the same discharge current. The cycle life of the battery is also related to such factors as the type of battery, charge method, ambient temperature, and rest period between charge and discharge.
5. What determines the life of a VRLA battery?
The lifespan of VRLA batteries is determined by many factors, including temperature, charging voltage, depth and rate of discharge, and the number of charges and discharges (called cycles).
6. What is the difference between float and cycle applications?
A float application requires the battery to be on constant charge with an occasional discharge. Cycle applications charge and discharge the battery on a regular basis. As for the different charging voltages, see specification tables.
7. Can Sail design a prototype for my application?
Yes. Sail’s Technological Department is willing to design prototypes for your application in quantities.
8. I only need a few batteries for my project and I have no idea of the specific type I need. Can Sail give me a hand?
Contact us and let us know your specific needs, then we can give you some advice. Even if you do not need a large quantity, we may have some stored batteries available for you.
9. How to connect a battery in Series?
The positive terminal of the first battery is connected to the negative terminal of the second battery; the positive terminal of the second is connected to the negative of the third, etc. The voltage of the assembled battery is the sum of the battery voltages of the individual batteries. So the batteries are connected: + to - to + to - to + to -, etc. The capacity of the battery is unchanged.
10. How to connect a battery in Parallel?
The positive terminal of the first battery is connected to the positive terminal of the second battery; the positive terminal of the second is connected to the positive of the third, etc. And the negative terminal of the first battery is connected to the negative terminal of the second battery; the negative terminal of the second is connected to the negative of the third, etc. So the batteries are connected: + to + to + and - to - to -. In this configuration, the capacity is the sum of the capacities of the individual batteries and voltage is unchanged. For example, if you take 5 6V 10AH batteries and connect the batteries in series, you would end up with a battery array that is 30 Volts and 10AH. If you connect the batteries in parallel, you would end up with a battery array that is 6 Volts and 50AH. By the way, this is how ordinary auto batteries are made. 6 2volt cells are put in series to give 12v battery and the 6 cells are just enclosed in one case. Many Ni-cad batteries are done the same way.
11. Are lead acid batteries recyclable, how to deal with old batteries?
Lead acid batteries are absolutely recyclable. Lead is the most recycled metal in the world today. The plastic containers and covers of old batteries are neutralized, and used in the manufacture of new battery cases. The electrolyte can be processed for recycled waste water uses. In some cases, the electrolyte is cleaned and reprocessed and sold as battery grade electrolyte. In other instances, the sulfate content is removed as Ammonia Sulfate and used in fertilizers. The separators are often used as a fuel source for the recycling process.
Spent VRLA batteries should always be stored indoors on a surface which will prevent the discharge of contaminants into the environment. They also should be stored away from sewer or storm drain. Remember, both lead and sulfuric acid are considered hazardous substances which, if not properly handled, can cause significant harm to the environment.