What causes the aging process. Power loss of a motorcycle battery?
A motorcycle battery should ideally be fully charged at all times. The performance of a motorcycle battery decreases as the sulfation of its lead plates increases. Sulfation is a crust that forms on the lead plates from the moment the battery acid is filled in. Where this crust has formed on the lead plate, there can be no more chemical reaction, the battery becomes crippled. The more and the longer a battery is left in a discharged state, the more and the faster sulfation spreads. Despite optimal maintenance one cannot stop the sulfation process of a lead battery – only slow it down.
With how much current may you charge a motorcycle battery ?
In principle, a motorcycle battery should not be charged with more than one tenth of its capacity. To cover the whole range, most chargers for motorcycle batteries have a charging current of less than 1 ampere. With larger batteries, charging simply takes a little longer. But too much charging current damages the battery. Shortens their service life.
Which chargers are suitable for GEL, SLA and lead acid motorcycle batteries? ?
Please note: GEL and SLA motorcycle batteries may be charged to a maximum of 14.4 volts. As a rule, technically simple chargers are around the Fr. 50 the best choice. A charger with an IU characteristic is exemplary. The current of less than 1 ampere decreases steadily in the last phase of charging until the final charging voltage of about 14 volts is reached. From now on, only the capacity that the battery loses through self-discharge is replaced. This is called trickle charging. Such a charger can remain permanently connected to the battery. There are several suppliers of such chargers. We carry for example the ANSMANN ALCS 2-24A. If possible, a charger should also be short-circuit and reverse polarity protected.
Unsuitable chargers for GEL and SLA motorcycle batteries
Battery conditioners and battery refreshers simulate charging and discharging processes and are also advertised for motorcycle batteries. Such chargers are often fatal, especially for GEL and SLA types. There is almost always no indication of the difference between a traction battery, which can be discharged relatively deeply, and a starter battery, which may only be discharged in the uppermost charging range. In general, any charger with the function of "discharging" unnecessary and risky for motorcycle batteries. If such a battery is discharged too deeply, it will break down.
What service need motorcycle batteries in winter ?
If you have a trickle charger, leave it permanently connected to the battery when the motorcycle is parked for long periods of time. The electricity costs for a winter are only a few centimes. The battery will thank you. If the charger does not switch off by itself when the battery is fully charged, you should recharge the battery after every 2-3 months (up to a maximum of 14.4 volts). When the motorcycle is parked for long periods and without a charger, you should at least disconnect the negative cable of the battery to prevent a leakage current.