How to choose a right sailboat battery?
We all have serious need for electricity onboard and a good working battery is one of the most important crew members. It’s not encouraging, yet it’s a fact: batteries degrade over time. At some point, you shall be looking forward to buying a new one.
The most important factor that you must consider is the purpose of the battery. Do you require a battery only for starting the boat or also for running the various power-hungry electronics onboard?
Or perhaps both. According to the demand of usage, basically there are three types of sailboat batteries:
deep cycle battery,
dual purpose battery.
Other basic considerations before purchasing a new battery are:
battery capacity (Ah rating),
battery group, i. e. battery’s physical size (make sure the battery perfectly fits in the battery box),
weight (choose the battery with average weight to be able to move it in and out),
output (sailboat cranking amp rating, reserve capacity rating, cold cranking amp rating),
technology (flooded, gel, AGM, lithium-ion; gel and AGM are maintenance-free sealed batteries),
Check your owner’s manual for the recommended battery types and ratings. Substituting the recommended battery type for the other is generally not a good idea. Always choose along with the rating equal to or greater than the recommended value.
Cranking or starting sailboat battery
These types of batteries offer high bursts of power for short periods of time to kick over your engine and power your boat. The cranking battery sends power to the engine when the ignition switch is activated. Starting batteries are intended to put out a large amount of current for a short period of time. A cranking battery has more number of lead plates that are thinner and with more surface area to provide the necessary power.
Power or deep cycle sailboat battery
If you are looking to power onboard electronics and accessories the deep cycle battery is what you’ll need. A deep cycle battery puts out a smaller amount of energy for a long period of time. It can handle long discharge cycles while the engine is off. A deep cycle battery consists of fewer lead plates that are thicker to provide continuous power output over long periods of time.
Dual purpose or hybrid sailboat battery
It’s a hybrid battery that has been designed in a way it can be used as both cranking and deep cycle. Dual purpose batteries are sort of a blend of properties of the two. Like many 2-in-1 options, they do not always allow your boat to perform at the same level as two batteries would. When purchasing a new battery, don’t forget to recycle your old one. Lead acid batteries can be safely completely recycled when done properly in the right facilities.
More and more boaters are making the switch to lithium sailboat batteries and for many good reasons! Let’s take a look at the benefits of lithium sailboat batteries and answer some frequently asked questions.
Why Boaters Are Choosing Lithium Sailboat Batteries
Lithium-ion sailboat batteries are more efficient, weigh less, and can last up to 10 times longer than lead-acid batteries. Combining all of these features makes lithium batteries an excellent choice for boating applications.
Size & Weight Reduction
All boats have a weight limit, and it’s no secret that reducing the weight you carry on your boat is important. On average, lithium batteries are about half the weight of lead-acid batteries with the same capacity.
Increased Number of Charge-Discharge Cycles
Deep-cycle lead-acid sailboat batteries generally last between 500-1,000 charge-discharge cycles. Alternatively, the lifecycle of a lithium sailboat battery is usually between 3,000-5,000 cycles.
Additionally, the lifespan of a lead-acid battery is dependent on how well you maintain the battery. Lithium-ion batteries require almost no maintenance at all to optimize their performance and lifespan.
Increased Power Storage
Draining a lead-acid battery below 50% of its capacity causes damage and shortens the battery’s life. Conversely, most lithium battery manufacturers rate their batteries to allow 80% depth of discharge. The batteries we manufacture can be 100% discharged without causing damage.
The increased power storage is one of the best benefits of lithium batteries. Since you usually get almost double the capacity, you may only need half the batteries. Half the number of batteries, when each battery weighs half of what a lead-acid battery weighs, results in almost a four-times reduction in weight!
The upfront cost of purchasing a lithium sailboat battery is significantly higher than buying a lead-acid battery. However, lithium batteries often last at least five times as long as their lead-acid counterparts.
Their longer lifespan combined with their increased efficiency makes lithium-ion sailboat batteries cheaper in the long term. Plus, remember that you may only need half as many lithium batteries as you had lead-acid batteries.
The Best sailboat Battery For Your Use
Your particular application will determine which type of sailboat battery is best for you. However, a lithium-ion sailboat battery will be your best option for any application where deep cycling is required. The only time a lithium-ion sailboat battery won’t outperform a lead-acid sailboat in efficiency, reliability, overall cost, and weight is when you need a starting battery.
So, whether you’re heading out on the water for a fun day of cruising around the lake, trolling for a trophy fish, or living on your houseboat, choosing the best battery for your use is critical. Unfortunately, there isn’t one battery to rule them all. Understanding your application and the benefits of the different options allows you to choose the best sailboat battery for you.
Keheng 12V200Ah is the Best Battery for Your sailboat
Dual purpose battery - turns over your engine faster and powers a large number of onboard electronics
Pure lead - 99.9% pure lead electrochemistry increases temperature & corrosion resistance, while reducing component aging
More power - contains almost 40% more plate surface area, providing additional power
Faster recharge rate - recharges 5x faster than traditional batteries
Vibration resistance & extreme temperature tolerance - 28x more vibration resistant than a standard battery
Longer life - 30% longer life per charge; lasts 3x longer than a standard battery
Sealed design - guaranteed spill-proof in nearly any mounting position
10 year-month free replacement warranty
Sailboat Battery Maintenance
Now that you've determined which battery is right for you, here are a few tips to help you maintain it.
1. Get your current battery tested
2. Consider a battery box - an unsecured battery in a moving boat can cause potential damage to both the battery and your boat. Use a battery box to minimize the impact of vibration and keep your battery secure. Plus, they're often required by law.
3. Keep connection points clean and electrolyte levels up - if you notice corrosion on your battery terminals, scrub it away using a mixture of baking soda and water. If you have a flooded battery, be sure to monitor the electrolyte levels before operating or charging.
4. Look into waterproof chargers - Waterproof chargers allow you to take them out on your boat, so that you’ll never be stranded in the water with a dead battery. You’ll also want to be sure to select a charger with a high enough amperage for your battery.