Battery Type Comparison

Type Pros Cons  

Wet or Flooded Lead Acid

Lowest cost to purchase by amp hour
Less sensitive than the other two styles in accepting higher charging voltages and less expensive / less regulated charging methods
Good deep cycle performance
Can spill corrosive battery acid
Must be installed upright
Requires regular maintenance
More quickly damaged if left discharged
NOTE: all lead acid batteries sulfate if left discharged and require maintenance charging
Not suitable for high vibration environments

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Gel Cell

Better for rough service environments
Leak proof
Can be installed on its side with small drop in performance
Less susceptible to low temperatures
When charged correctly does not vent much gas
Low self discharge rate
Higher initial cost than Liquid Cell
Electrolyte cannot be replaced
Charging tolerances are tighter; cannot be charged over 14.2V without damage
Not ideal for use with automotive or unregulated chargers
NOTE: all lead acid batteries sulfate if left discharged and require maintenance charging

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AGM

Maintenance-free
Leak proof when tipped or if case is cracked
Used for both deep cycle or starting batteries
Can be installed at any angle (except upside down)
Shock and vibration resistant
Minimal gas release when charged properly
Low self-discharge rate
Can be submerged in water without internal damage (battery terminals will corrode)
Many charge cycles when properly charged
Better performance for DC loads
Highest initial cost of all three types
More weight per Ah than wet cells
Electrolyte cannot be replaced
NOTE: all lead acid batteries sulfate if left discharged and require maintenance charging

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Updated: July 02, 2010