batteries – a brief encounter

batteries - a brief encounter

a guide to leisure batteries

size matters

When it comes to choosing leisure batteries for your narrowboat, you need to check the existing batteries for size and amperage rating. If you're living on the boat you will be reliant on the batteries, so it's very important to choose the right ones to power your everyday accessories. The physical size is crucial when choosing a battery. The bigger the battery, the bigger the ampere hour rating.

choose the right type of leisure battery

Narrowboats tend to use unsealed batteries as most designs have the batteries located near the engine bay. Excessive heat will cause evaporation and therefore unsealed batteries, even though most units are maintenance free, can be replenished with fluid to prolong their life. However, most leisure batteries are sealed units these days but are perfectly fine to use.

The most common leisure / deepcycle batteries used are listed below and they range from 110ah - 230ah.

There are 3 different grades of Leisure Batteries, Wet Flooded Lead Acid (the most common and cheapest), AGM Leisure Batteries and GEL Batteries. The pro's & Con's are described below. The physical size is crucial when choosing a battery. The bigger the battery, the more ampere hours (capacity).

standard wet flooded lead acid leisure batteries

Pros: These are the most common and popular type of leisure battery, sealed or unsealed. They are reasonably priced and can be used on most applications.

Cons: You should really only drain these batteries down to 40% of their capacity, so for example, if you had a 110ah battery, you're only using 60% of its capacity. They also drain quickly and take longer to recharge.

agm leisure batteries

Pros: AGM batteries have come down a lot in price over the last few years. They are becoming more & more popular for use on Camper Vans & Motorhomes which is understandable as AGM batteries are sealed, non spill-able and emit minimal gases.
They drain at a slower rate, so will last longer between recharges.
You can also use 80% of its capacity and they will charge almost 3 times faster than a standard flooded type battery.
AGM batteries have high cranking ability, so can power Caravan Movers and Outboard Motors. AGM batteries can also perform more cycles.

Cons: There aren't really any cons regarding these battery types. They used to be expensive and were limited in size variations. Now, there are many different sizes to choose from.

gel deep cyclic batteries

Pros: Gel Leisure Batteries are pure deep cyclic. These can be drained almost completely flat and still recover.

Suitable for deep discharge applications such as catering equipment, security cameras etc.

Cons: Sadly Gel batteries are very expensive, we only supply the best product brand of Gel which is Sonnenschein. The leisure Gel range we supply are not really suitable for starting applications but you can buy Gel batteries products with starting use.

Starter Batteries

We also supply engine starter batteries. Again starter batteries do vary in size and amplitude.

A deep-cycle battery is a lead-acid battery designed to be regularly deeply discharged using most of its capacity. In contrast, starter batteries (e.g. most automotive batteries) are designed to deliver short, high-current bursts for cranking the engine, thus frequently discharging only a small part of their capacity.

At Advanced Batteries, we sell all the top leisure brands like Numax, Lucas, Varta, ABS Leisure and Trojan. You can choose from sealed and non sealed units and we can supply a range of flooded lead acid, absorbed glass mat (AGM) and even Gel type batteries. We are always ready with battery advice, so do get in touch.

Call: 0800 195 9897 Visit our Website: Advanced Battery Supplies