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General Battery Questions:
The most simple way, but also can be quite difficult, way is to look at the batteries in your scooter.
If you’re unable to identify your make and model or you do not have the manual, then looking at what is in the Scooter or Chair is the best way.
You can also use the Find My Battery form https://www.matrixbatterycanada.com/battery-compatibility/
Always store your scooter & wheelchair batteries FULLY CHARGED.
- Check all batteries once a month and recharge as needed.
- Sealed batteries can hold a charge for up to 6 months.
- When storing a chair or scooter for more than 1 month, charge the batteries and then disconnect them.
- Avoid hot and cold extremes when storing.
On average around you can expect 3 years, but it results vary greatly depending on various circumstances. For example, heavy usage of power chairs or scooters (traveling more than 6 to 8 kilometers daily), then the batteries may only last as little as 1 year. It really comes down to the amount of usage / distance traveled. The more you travel the more the batteries need recharging and there are only so many recharges. Also, driving conditions can be a big factor. If you have a lot of hills in your neighborhood and are going up and down them often, that will reduce the life of these batteries. If you are just using the chair or scooter around the house and not going far, then they should last 3 to 5 years if properly charged. To get the fullest life from these batteries always recharge after usage and always charge the batteries twice a month if you have not been using it.
Store batteries fully charged. Check them once a month and recharge as needed. Sealed batteries can hold their charge from 6 to 12 months. Remember, if storing your scooter or power wheelchair for longer than a couple of weeks, it’s best to charge the batteries and then disconnect them. Do not leave them permanently plugged in
A gel battery is a sealed, non-spillable maintenance free, valve regulated battery. Gel Batteries have a gelling agent added to the electrolyte to reduce movement inside the battery. Gel batteries also use one way valves in place of open vents, this helps the normal internal gasses to recombine back into water in the battery, reducing gassing. Gel Cell batteries are non-spillable even if they are broken and rugged. Gel batteries are generally used in deep cycle applications and provide high deep discharge and recovery capabilities.
Gel Battery Advantages:
- Totally maintenance free
- Air transportable
- No corrosion
- Spill proof/leak proof
- Installs upright or on its side
- Superior deep cycle life
- Very low to no gassing (unless overcharged)
- Compatible with sensitive electronic equipment
- Superior shelf life
- Rugged and vibration resistant
- Very safe at sea with no chlorine gas in bulge (due to sulfuric acid and salt water mixing)
- Will not freeze to -20°F
- Lowest cost per month (cost / months of life)
- Lowest cost per cycle (cost/ life cycles)
Gel Battery Disadvantages:
- Higher initial cost
- Heavier weight than Lithium battery
- Water can not be replaced if continually overcharged
- Automatic temperature sensing, voltage- regulated chargers must be used
- Charge voltage must be limited to extend life
Both types of batteries are sealed, valve regulated batteries allowing them to be used in any position. The difference lies in the way the electrolyte is immobilized. In case of AGM (absorbed glass mat), the newer of the two technologies, the electrolyte is absorbed by the glass fiber separator who acts like a sponge. In a gel-type battery the liquid electrolyte turns into a gel right after the battery is filled. Gel batteries use a different type of separators which are not absorbent. Because of the design, gel cell batteries don’t offer the same power capacity as do the same physical size AGM battery. For example, an AGM battery that is 12V 100AH, whereas, for example, a gel cell battery in the same size case would only be rated at 84AH.However, the Gel Cell excels in slow discharge rates and slightly higher operating temperatures. The internal design is otherwise similar.
An AGM battery is a sealed, non-spillable maintenance free, valve regulated battery. An AGM battery utilizes a fine fiber glass material separator between the lead plates within the battery. The AGM design is also highly resistant to vibration deterioration. AGM batteries, are also called starved electrolyte they operate with no maintenance and can be installed in various ways (except upside down) without spill and provide outstanding power per dollar invested. AGM batteries are commonly interchanged with traditional flooded lead acid batteries as the charge/discharge profile of these batteries are similar. AGM batteries have low internal resistance and a very low self-discharge rate (from 1% to 3% per month). So they can sit unused for much longer periods without charging. This technology is used by Optima and Odyssey Extreme batteries for rugged applications.
The advantages of AGM batteries are no maintenance, sealed against fumes, hydrogen, leakage, or non-spilling even if they are broken, and can survive most freezes.
Deep Cycle Battery
A deep-cycle battery is a lead-acid battery designed to be regularly deeply discharged using most of its capacity. In contrast, starter batteries (e.g. most automotive batteries) are designed to deliver short, high-current bursts for cranking the engine, thus frequently discharging only a small part of their capacity. While a deep-cycle battery can be used as a starting battery, the lower “cranking current” imply that an oversized battery may be required.A deep-cycle battery is designed to discharge between 45% and 75% of its capacity, depending on the manufacturer and the construction of the battery. Although these batteries can be cycled down to 20% charge, the best lifespan vs cost method is to keep the average cycle at about 45% discharge.There is a direct correlation between the depth of discharge of the battery, and the number of charge and discharge cycles it can perform.
Starting, Lighting, Ignition (SLI) – These batteries deliver a large burst of power for a short time as needed for normal engine starting. The battery is then recharged by the alternator. Unlike a deep-cycle battery, starting batteries are not designed to withstand multiple discharge/recharge cycles, and draining it can significantly shorten its life.
Deep-Cycle – These batteries are designed to provide a steady amount of current over a long period of time. Deep-cycle batteries can be repeatedly discharged and recharged without causing damage or shortening their life. They are well-suited to power numerous electronics and plug-in accessories, or other applications that place high demands on them.
Some deep-cycle batteries can be used for engine starting as well (these are sometimes referred to as dual-purpose), but be sure to check the CCA rating to ensure the battery has sufficient starting power.
Lead Acid Batteries do not have a memory, in fact completely discharging lead acid batteries will lead to a dramatic shortening of the lifespan of the battery.
These are actually different types of batteries. The common marine battery is often rated to marine cranking amps. It is designed to offer a quick shot of amperes in a very short time span. These batteries can provide thousands of starts but can usually only withstand 50 or so cycles. A deep cycle battery is designed with the capability of being discharged and charged hundreds of times. Many of these batteries may be totally discharged or drained before they are ever recharged.