AGM Battery Maintenance Overview
AGM battery maintenance is important for maximizing the service life of your AGM battery. Note that all of the AGM batteries offered by Canbat are maintenance-free, in the sense that they don’t require topping up. Standard flooded batteries, also known as wet cells, require regular topping up. This is not the case for AGM batteries since they are maintenance-free. Nevertheless, it is important to ensure that you are using your AGM battery properly, and avoid any misuse that may cause the battery’s life to be shortened. This is the type of AGM battery maintenance we are referring to. In this article, we will breakdown AGM battery maintenance steps into three categories: storage, sulfation and charging.
AGM Battery Storage
Proper battery storage is one of the important steps towards maintaining your AGM battery. When storing your battery, you need to be aware of a number of factors. The first one is the temperature. Storing your battery in a very hot environment will shorten its service life. AGM batteries must be stored in cool environments. Another factor to consider when storing your battery is ventilation. As part of your guide to AGM battery maintenance, is it important to store your batteries in a ventilated place, never in a sealed container. This is because AGM batteries may release some gas during the charging and discharging cycles. Overtime, the gas is accumulated and becomes a flammable hazard, which could cause a fire when it comes in contact with a spark. If you are not using your AGM batteries and you’re storing them away for later use, it is important to fully recharge them at least once every 4 to 6 months.
AGM Battery Sulfation
Again, AGM batteries are maintenance-free, meaning that they don’t require “maintenance” on a regular basis. However, misusing the batteries will cause some issues that need to be maintained. One of these issues is battery sulfation, which occurs when the sulfuric acid inside the AGM battery reacts to form a lead sulfate on the battery’s negative plates and terminals. This causes the surface area of the acid to be reduced, causing it difficult for the battery to hold a charge. In order to avoid battery sulfation, it is important to charge your AGM battery before storing away for later use. This is an important step towards smart AGM battery maintenance. If your AGM battery already went through sulfation, there are some battery chargers on the market that claim to be able to reverse the process. Although these battery chargers may improve the battery’s condition, they can only do so much. Furthermore, these battery chargers are usually expensive, so you might be better off buying a new battery instead of trying to fix your old one.
AGM Battery Charging
Charging your AGM battery correctly and using the proper AGM battery charger is a crucial step towards improving battery performance. Both overcharging your battery and undercharging it will cause harm to the battery. Overcharging an AGM battery will physically damage the internal structure of the battery, which usually causes it to inflate and release a lot of gas. Overcharging an AGM battery does not shorten its service life, but rather kill the battery altogether. On the other hand, undercharging an AGM battery, especially on a regular basis, may cause the battery to never fully recharge again. Assume you have a 12V100Ah battery. If you constantly only charge it to 80%, the battery will lose its ability to fully recharge to 100%, even if you keep the charger plugged in. This means you’ll get a shorter service life out of your battery, which is 80% of the full capacity in this case. For more information about AGM battery charging, follow our 4 tips for charging AGM batteries.