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Almost everyone has used SLA batteries, perhaps without even noticing it. Though the battery type doesn’t receive a lot of attention, it should. It is by far the most effective battery for its cost, and it is used for a wide variety of industries.
1. They’ve Been Around a Long Time
In 1859, a French physician invented the first type of rechargeable lead acid battery for commercial use. The ancient ancestor of the batteries we use today originally lit train cars. Since then, they’ve been continuously improved over the last century and a half.
2. Stopping the Leaks
Up until the 1970s lead acid batteries could leak when held in a variety of physical positions. The SLA battery was brought into the market in the 70s to minimize battery maintenance and prevent leakage. With modern SLA batteries, maintenance is limited to proper storage and charging, and the batteries do not leak when jostled into an abnormal position.
3. A Touch of Alloy
SLA batteries actually use lead alloy. Pure lead could not support itself. The metal is too soft.
4. Bring on the Chill
SLA batteries are superior to their expensive cousins, lithium and nickel based batteries, when it comes to handing sub zero conditions.
5. Make Sure You Charge It Right
If you charge your SLA right, it will thank you for it by lasting longer. The type of battery performs better when it isn’t over or under charged. Once your battery is charged, your battery should be switched to “float” voltage. Never leave your battery in storage for more than six months without charging it. For instructions on optimal charging conditions, you should consult your battery’s manual. For the Power-Sonic 640F1 battery, you can find charging and storage information right here.
6. Store the Battery in an Optimal location
If batteries are stored and charged properly, they live longer, saving you money. Batteries should be stored in a cool and dry area. They should also be kept at an optimal temperature. You can typically find such information included with the battery, but a general rule of thumb for SLA batteries is that they should be stored in temperatures between 65 to 70 degrees.
7. Don’t Overcharge
We did cover this one a bit, but it is very important. Overcharging a battery can cause swelling, a symptom that signals your battery is aging quickly from abuse. In some extreme cases, a battery can be destroyed within a couple of hours when overcharged.
8. What Happens if You Drop Your Battery
Accidents happen, but rest easy. The benefit of SLAs is that they are made to be durable, and they have features that prevent leaking. For example, the PS-640F1, the battery being offered to you as a blowout, has valve regulated, spill proof construction that protects it from leaking.
However, if your battery is damaged due to impact, you should take the necessary precautions. Using protective gear, like rubber gloves and safety glasses will prevent injury. Sodium bicarbonate can be used to neutralize spillage or battery parts. Place the broken battery in a heavy plastic bag and keep in a non-metal container until it is recycled.