Lithium vs Lead Acid Batteries

Lithium vs Lead Acid Batteries

Now is also a great time to learn how solar power is a clean and quiet alternative to conventional generators.  With options for either a permanent mounted system or a plug and play portable, go and stay where you want and never worry about power.

When we talk about solar power, we can’t forget about the other important part to the system – the batteries. After doing our research, we have embraced the new Lithium battery technology and are adding them to our website starting with the Battle Born 100 ah 12v LiFePO4 Deep Cycle Battery.  A great all around choice for RVs, boats, tiny houses, etc.

We took our camper out for a long holiday weekend outfitted with two new 100 Ah Lithium batteries. We used as much power as we could including using a 2000 Watt power inverter for the microwave and hair dryer, heater, inside lights, fridge, water pump, stereo and all our outside lights at night (photo above). Each morning we we checked the percentage of the battery capacity. The lowest we saw was 80% capacity remaining – pretty impressive. We are using a 480 Watt Zamp Solar System to recharge our batteries.

What’s the difference between Lithium batteries and the traditional deep cycle lead acid ones?

Comparing the specs in the table below between the 100Ah Battle Born battery to a 200 Ah lead acid one the Lithium battery weighs significantly less, lasts for more cycles, and is made from 100% safe, non toxic, renewable energy that can be charged and discharged over and over again (at a faster rate than any other battery). It is also safe to mount inside your living space – perfect choice for RV, boat, tiny house or cabin.

The Battle Born Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) deep cycle battery is a safe, stable lithium technology. After daily cycling for over 8 years, it will still have as much as 80% of its capacity. The battery can be deeply discharged, giving you more usable energy than a lead acid battery, and it can handle a fast charge and heavy discharge. No worries about keeping this battery on a trickle charger – fully charged it will hold a charge for up to 1 year.

 

Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4)
Battery 100 Ah 
Lead Acid 200 Ah
Usable Capacity 100 Ah 100 Ah
Weight 29 lbs 144 lbs
Warranty 3 years 1-2 years typically
Origin Made in USA ???
Lifetime Capacity 300,000 Amp Hours 30,000 Amp Hours
Upfront Cost $899 $450
Cost/Ah 0.30 cents / Amp-hour 1.50 cents/Amp-hour

In other words, if you compare this 100 Ah lithium battery with the most common configuration of two Group 27 deep cycle lead acid batteries, the Lithium 100 Ah battery shown above has 100 Ah usable capacity compared to the two lead acid batteries at 90 Ah usable capacity (2 group 27’s = 180 Ah with 50% usage is 90 Ah.)  The difference is lithium batteries can be depleted to 2% capacity at which time the battery shuts down to protect itself.  The lead acid batteries can only be depleted to approximately 50% without possible damage and reducing the lifespan.  The 100 Ah Lithium battery is the approximate equivalent of  2 1/2 deep cycle batteries.

Yes, there is a bigger up front cost for the Lithium batteries but what we are finding is that if you have the ability to upgrade, you will save in the long run with the much longer life span of these batteries vs. lead acid and maintenance free! We do suggest putting a battery cut-off switch in from the batteries to the RV and one from the solar to the batteries.  Then during the winter turn the switches off when the RV is not in use. The batteries will stay fully charged and come spring you will be ready to go.

We hope we cleared up some questions many of you have been asking about lithium battery technology. We are testing these batteries out ourselves.  If you have additional questions, give us a call. 970-882-8046


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