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Old 06-21-2010, 04:28 PM   #1
kdeerman
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Default gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

I work with a guy that said his father replaced his batteries with 6 volt gel cells for a good bit less money. He said that once they got weak, they would run down fast, instead of losing charge slowly like lead-acid batts.

How do they compare to flooded lead acid batteries when used in a golf cart as far as range, etc.? I don't know what the amp/hour ratings are, but I could probably find out. Does it hurt the gel cells to run them down completely?

Thanks
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Old 06-21-2010, 04:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

I'm surprised to hear GEL batteries are cheaper than lead acid.
True GEL cells do not charge at the same rate as a lead acid battery and if you use your regular battery charger you run the risk of cooking/killing the GEL batteries.
More modern AGM batteries are a better way to go and will charge with your charger but cost 3x what lead acid is and therefore bang for your buck is nadda.
Best run for your money in a cart is lead acid.
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Old 06-22-2010, 12:46 PM   #3
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

Thanks Doug,


I contacted the seller of the batteries and asked him whey they were cheaper, and he said they had set on a shelf and run down and had been recharged. He said they are the backup batteries for cell phone tower sites, etc. The batteries are 12 volt, but he said I would need 8 of the 12 volts, so he has to be wiring them in two banks/parallel.

They are $50.00 each, $400 for 8 of them. They are about two inches shorter than the lead/acids, and weigh a little over 50 lbs each.

Are you familiar enough with the gel cells to know if running them down will hurt them? He said he thought they were 55 amp/hr, but that they were rated different than the lead/acid batts. In parallel, would that give me 110 amp/hr?

I see that the T-105's are 185 amp/hr for 5 hrs, and 225 amp/hr for the 20 hr rating.

I have one of these batteries that I got from a friend of mine when I bought a two-man bass boat from him. I have had it for 5-6 years and he had the battery for a few years before that. It has always performed well on the trolling motor, and I have it in my cart now to run the head/tail lights.

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Old 06-22-2010, 01:16 PM   #4
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

I didn't think they were rated differently than lead acid batteries.
GEL batteries can be discharged between 300 and 500 times before replacement is required.
GEL batteries can take a much deeper discharge than lead acid, it's even advised that you don't recharge them until they're 70% discharged.
They don't suffer the same stratification and sulfation issues as lead acid.
They require special charging, if they are over charged they develop pockets in the GEL and will ruin the batteries.
If you have the room for the batteries and the ability to charge them properly, they may be a good deal. If you have any trouble with them, the sweetness of the good deal may sour quickly.
If it were me, I would use regular 6v lead acid batteries and be done with it.
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Old 06-22-2010, 01:45 PM   #5
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

OK, Thanks Doug. I am planning to go with the Delta quiq 48 volt charger, I may see if it has a setting for the gell cells before I make my final decision. The T-105's will be $854.56 for eight. Thanks again, Kenny.
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Old 06-22-2010, 01:52 PM   #6
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

You can set the Delta-Q for GEL cells.
If you are looking for a less expensive alternative to Trojan, Sam's Club has GC-2 Energizers for about $74 each which is only $592 for all 8.
My next replacement will be these. Other members here have used them as well with good success.
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Old 06-22-2010, 03:24 PM   #7
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

I think you might want to listen to Doug. It would be good to stick with what is working; this is just my opinion and not my money you are spending. Good Luck!
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Old 06-22-2010, 03:59 PM   #8
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

Do not use Gel Cells for a cart or any other deep cycle application. Gels have a different charging algorithm, and voltage is much more critical. If they are overcharged the tiniest bit the gel dries and and cracks. Once that happens they are toast, and it will happen if you use them with a standard cart charger.
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Old 06-22-2010, 05:53 PM   #9
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sunking View Post
Do not use Gel Cells for a cart or any other deep cycle application. Gels have a different charging algorithm, and voltage is much more critical. If they are overcharged the tiniest bit the gel dries and and cracks. Once that happens they are toast, and it will happen if you use them with a standard cart charger.
Did you read the entire thread?
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Old 06-22-2010, 06:10 PM   #10
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Default Re: gel batteries vs. lead/acid?

New to the site, and have a little input. I use gel batteries in back-up systems for a magnet cranes that originally came with lead acid batteries (with the manufacturers approval) and they seem to be working great, these are deep cycle batteries and have been in for about 4 years now with no charger mods. We also use AGM and have some lead acid batteries still as well, the systems consist of 16, 12volt batts. in series. Also use 3 yellow tops in my truck along with a 250 amp alt. for my system and starting they work great, about 2 years on the 1st set, 2nd set came with a better warranty. We will see how long the last. I put trojans in my cart and would not deviate from the reccomended batteries, but the gel batts are good and work well in the right application.
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