Most of you have heard about VRLA batteries. Right? If not, that is what we are here for. So, what is a VRLA battery?

A valve regulated lead acid (VRLA) battery is a type of lead-acid rechargeable battery. It includes Gel type and AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) type. The Gel and Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) types of VRLA can be mounted in any orientation, and do not require constant maintenance and that is why they are known as maintenance free batteries.

WHAT IS A GEL AND AGM BATTERY?

A Gel Battery is a VRLA battery with a gelified electrolyte; the sulfuric acid is mixed with fumed silica, which makes the resulting mass gel-like and immobile. Unlike a flooded wet-cell lead-acid battery, these batteries do not need to be kept upright.

An AGM battery is an electrolyte held in the glass mats, as opposed to freely flooding the plates. Very thin glass fibers are woven into a mat to increase surface area enough to hold sufficient electrolyte on the cells for their lifetime. 

CHARACTERISTICS OF AGM AND GEL TYPE BATTERIES.

  1. Sealed using special pressure valves and should never be opened.
  2. Completely maintenance-free.
  3. Uses a recombination reaction to prevent the escape of hydrogen and oxygen gases normally lost in flooded lead acid batteries.
  4. Non-spill able, and therefore can be operated in virtually any position (except upside down).
  5. They are both referred to as “acid-starved” and the electrolyte does not flow like a normal liquid.

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN GEL AND AGM BATTERIES.

  1. The gel electrolyte has the consistency and appearance of petroleum jelly while the electrolyte in AGM batteries is trapped in the sponge-like matted glass fiber separator material.
  2. Due to the physical properties of the gelled electrolyte, gel battery has a higher internal resistance thus AGM batteries have excellent performance for high current/power discharge and GEL excels in high/lower temperature stability and lower current/power discharge applications.
  3. AGM batteries have a higher specific energy density than GEL batteries, but GEL batteries have a better service life.

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN VRLA BATTERIES AND TRADITIONAL WET/FLOODED BATTERIES.

  1. Wet batteries do not have special pressurized sealing vents, as they do not work on the recombination principle (gases escaped inside the battery during charging).
  2. It contains liquid electrolyte that can spill/flow and cause corrosion if tipped or punctured and therefore are not air transportable without special containers.
  3. It can only be installed upright and acid protection must be maintained at the same time.
  4. Since the wet batteries will lose gases when charging, they need constant maintenance.

PowerPoint Systems stocks various brands of batteries like Ritar and Voltplus batteries. Thank you for reading through, contact us for all your energy storage needs the details are in the contacts page.