- What is a gel battery
- How to charge the gel battery?
- How to choose a gel battery
- How to operate and maintain a gel battery?
- Pros and cons of gel batteries
The power source is an important element in the electrical circuit of a car. Each battery has an expiration date, after a short time it loses its properties, ceases to provide the on-board network with a stable voltage, in extreme cases - it destroys individual parts and components of the power supply network.
What is a gel battery
A gel battery is a lead-acid power source, where the electrolyte is in a gel, adsorbed state between the plates. The so-called Gel-technology ensures maximum battery tightness, as well as non-serviceability of the power source, the principle of which is not much different from ordinary batteries.
Conventional lead acid batteries use a mixture of sulfuric acid and distilled water. A gel-battery is characterized in that it contains a gel solution, which is obtained through the use of a silicone thickener, which forms a gel.
Gel Battery Design
The battery device employs several high-strength cylindrical plastic blocks that are interconnected to form a single power source. Helium Battery Details:
- electrode, positive and negative;
- a set of porous separator plates that are made of lead dioxide;
- an electrolyte (sulfuric acid solution);
- the body;
- terminals “+” and “-” zinc or lead;
- mastic filling the empty space inside the battery, giving rigidity to the case.
How does he work?
During engine operation, a chemical reaction occurs between the electrolyte and the plates in the battery, the result of which should be the formation of an electric current. When a helium battery does not work for a long time, a long sulfation process occurs, which deprives 20% of the charge in a year, but its service life is about 10 years. The principle of operation is no different from a standard battery.
Gel Battery Specifications
When choosing such a battery for your car, you need to know its characteristics, namely:
- capacity measured in ampere / hour. This indicator gives an understanding of how long the battery can give amperage energy;
- maximum current - indicates the permissible current threshold in Volts when charging;
- inrush current - indicates the maximum discharge current at the start of the internal combustion engine, which will, within the specified initialization (550A / h, 600, 750, etc.) provide a stable current for 30 seconds;
- operating voltage (at the terminals) - 12 Volts;
- battery weight - varies from 8 to 55 kilograms.
Gel Battery Marking
An extremely important parameter when choosing batteries is the year of its release. Years of release are marked in different ways, depending on the manufacturer of the power source, a description of all battery parameters is made on a special sticker, for example:
- VARTA - on such a battery, the year of manufacture is marked in the production code, the fourth digit is the year of manufacture, the fifth and sixth are the month;
- OPTIMA - a number of digits is stamped on the sticker, where the first digit indicates the year of manufacture, and the next is the day, that is, it can be “9” (2009) year and 286 month;
- DELTA - stamping is stamped on the case, which starts counting from 2011, this year of issue will be designated by the letter “A”, and so on, the second letter is the month, also starts from “A”, and the third and fourth digits are the day.
The average life of a gel battery can be around 10 years. The parameter can be changed in one direction or another, depending on the correct operation, as well as the region where the car is operated.
The main enemy that reduces the shelf life of batteries is operating in critical temperature conditions. Due to the temperature difference, the electrochemical activity of the batteries fluctuates - with increasing there is a chance of corrosion of the plates, and with a drop - a significant reduction in service life, as well as excessive charging.
How to charge the gel battery?
Such batteries are extremely vulnerable to incorrect current and voltage values, so you should pay attention to this when charging. Namely, that a conventional charger for classic batteries is not suitable here.
Proper charging Gel-battery means the use of amperage, which is 10% of the total battery capacity. For example, with a capacity of 80 Ah, the permissible charge current is 8 Amps. In extreme cases, when a fast charge is needed, no more than 30% is allowed. For understanding, on each battery there are manufacturer's recommendations on how to charge the battery.
The voltage value is also an important indicator, which should not exceed 14,5 volts. High current will provoke a decrease in the density of the gel, which will lead to a deterioration in its properties.
Please note that the helium battery implies the possibility of recharging with energy conservation, in simple words: when charging 70% of the charge, it can be recharged, the minimum threshold is determined by the manufacturer, and indicates the sticker.
What kind of charging is needed for gel batteries?
Unlike gel, lead-acid batteries can be charged from any charger. The charger should have the following characteristics:
- the possibility of stopping the supply of current as soon as the battery is charged, eliminating battery overheating;
- stable voltage;
- temperature compensation - a parameter that can be adjusted under conditions of ambient temperature and season;
- current adjustment.
The above parameters correspond to a pulse charger, which has a number of necessary functions for high-quality charging of a gel battery.
How to choose a gel battery
The choice of gel-acb is made according to a single principle for all types of batteries. All parameters, including inrush current, voltage, and so on, must match the recommendations of the vehicle manufacturer, otherwise there is a risk of undercharging or vice versa, which equally destroys the battery.
Which battery is better, gel or acid?
Regarding a gel battery, a lead battery has several advantages:
- Cheap cost
- wide range, the ability to choose the cheapest or most expensive, branded option;
- wide range of characteristics;
- the possibility of restoration and repair;
- simple operating rules;
- reliability, resistance to overcharges.
Relatively lead, gel-batteries have a long service life of at least 1.5 times, better resistance to deep discharge and less loss during downtime.
Which battery is better, gel or AGM?
The AGM battery does not have a liquid or even a gel electrolyte; instead, an acid solution is used that impregnates the glass cloth between the plates. Due to their compactness, such batteries can be high-capacity. The low internal resistance allows the battery to be charged quickly, however, it also discharges quickly due to the possibility of delivering high current. One of the main differences, AGM is able to withstand 200 full discharges. The only thing that a really Absorbed Glass Mat is better than is during the winter start, so it is worth paying attention to cars from the northern cold regions. Otherwise, GEL outperforms agm batteries.
How to operate and maintain a gel battery?
Tips for proper operation are simple:
- monitor the stable operation of the generator, as well as electrical systems that are directly interconnected with the battery, namely, timely diagnose the on-board network;
- operation and storage at temperatures from minus 35 to plus 50 should not exceed 6 months;
- do not bring to a deep discharge;
- ensure the cleanliness of the case during operation;
- timely and correctly charge the battery.
Pros and cons of gel batteries
- long service life;
- a large number of charge and discharge cycles (up to 400);
- long-term storage without significant loss of capacity;
- body strength.
- constant monitoring of voltage and amperage is necessary, circuit must not be allowed;
- sensitivity of the electrolyte to frost;
- high price.