What is Battery Sulphation?

What is Battery Sulphation?

What is Battery Sulphation? In this blog, the team of battery experts at Valen cover the details of Battery Sulphation, a major killer of Lead Acid Batteries, and how to prevent it from occurring.

What is Battery Sulphation?

During a battery’s use, tiny sulphate crystals form within the battery; these are normal and are not harmful. However, during a prolonged low state of charge periods, the amorphous lead sulphate converts to a stable crystalline and deposits on the negative plates. 

During these periods, it can lead to the development of large crystals that reduce that battery’s active material, which is responsible for its performance. This battery sulphation reduces the battery’s life and will cause premature failure. 

Battery Testing

The most accurate and efficient way to determine the life left within the battery is to do a full cyclic discharge test. However, once a battery has become sulphated, soft shorts within the battery will increase the battery’s self-discharge rate. 

A high self-discharge rate and ripple voltage from a charger will cause heating within the battery, which will cause thermal runaway unless attended to. 

Once thermal runaway has started, the battery can get extremely hot, the battery case can bulge, and there is a risk of acid leaking from the battery.

Preventing Battery Sulphation

So how do we help prevent Battery Sulphation? Valen recommends recharging the battery immediately after every discharge and periodically checking the battery’s impedance using a Battery Impedance Tester to prevent Sulphation.  

Permanent Battery Sulphation

Once permanent battery sulphation has developed on the battery plates, there is no true form of restoration from the battery being in a low state of charge.

More Information

If you have any questions on sulphation or require more information on general battery technology, then please don’t hesitate to reach out to the team at Valen today!

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