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Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

Can anyone tell me if running my Ctek charger in reconditioning mode on my house back of sealed lead acid batteries will do any harm?

I always hear it may result in water loss but without cutting open the tops of my SLA's I can't top them up. Thoughts on this or reconditioning modes in general?
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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

Best to disable.

Only run high-voltage protocols manually, as spec'd by the battery maker.
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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

Are the sealed batteries considered AGM

The only manufacturer of AGM who suggests conditioning and equalization is Lifeline. One of the principal reasons I bought them

Check with the manufacturer.


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Thanks guys. They aren't agm, just regular box store deep cycles you (in theory) can't add water too. I'll leave the recon mode off for now and do my best to take care of em. I wanted to go golf cart style 6v batteries but just didnt want to have to track water loss as my banks are hard to access.
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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

Those won't be true deep cycling but might get a few years if coddled.

When they need replacing, go for AGM, from Lifeline, Odyssey or Northstar.

You need to call them to find a local dealer, definitely don't want to pay for shipping.

Nothing good sealed is sold in big box retail or automotive channels afaik, all fraudulently labeled.
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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

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Originally Posted by Guyfromthenorth View Post
Thanks guys. They aren't agm, just regular box store deep cycles you (in theory) can't add water too. I'll leave the recon mode off for now and do my best to take care of em. I wanted to go golf cart style 6v batteries but just didnt want to have to track water loss as my banks are hard to access.
I have lifeline 6 volt AGM. 6 of them which is 660 ah. 330 usable. 4 would do it for you or even 2. The are pricy but are the only ones you can equalize which adds years to their life ax’s they don’t get suffocated like non equalized batteries do, My last set lasted 10 years so in the long run cost efficient if you take care of them.

With them I have a 100 amp Balmar alternator with AR5 seperAte external charger ( 3stage). I also have excess to chRging at a slip. AGM like to be charged back to as close to 100% as possible. May be adding a 130solar panel this year to get that 85-100% final charge.


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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

Shut the recon off. The only two maintenance free marine battery types are AGM and Gel. Both require smart chargers capable of the proper charging profiles, which are different than flooded. Many chargers have these alternate settings, but be sure yours do, before changing type. For AGMs, you’d be wise to have a temperature regulated alternator too. AGMs can take charge about as fast as you can throw at it, which is their advantage, but that can drive a small engine alt past its limits.

If you’re a day sailor, you may get away with SLA, but they are a maintenance free fiction. You can expel water, although, as you’ve realized, you can’t maintain them. Bad all around. As my father would say, they’re tractor batteries. I don’t know what he had against tractors. He’d call bad tools, tractor tools too.


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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

If the only reason you want AGM or gel batteries is that flooded batteries are located in a place that’s difficult to add water, you might look at the Flow-Rite remote watering kits. Install the new caps and hoses and run the fill hose someplace easily accessible. For a bank of four L-16 batteries, it cost about $140. A whole lot less than the difference in buying maintenance-free batteries.
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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

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Originally Posted by svinshallah View Post
If the only reason you want AGM or gel batteries is that flooded batteries are located in a place that’s difficult to add water, you might look at the Flow-Rite remote watering kits. Install the new caps and hoses and run the fill hose someplace easily accessible. For a bank of four L-16 batteries, it cost about $140. A whole lot less than the difference in buying maintenance-free batteries.
How about faster acceptance, less discharge when sitting for long periods, ease of placement, no maintainence , if taken care of can last much longer,

You are doing well on most batteries if they last 3-4 years. My AGM lasted 10.

AGM not for everyone. They can be cost effective if taken care of.


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Re: Battery charger "reconditioning" mode, water loss, and SLA batteries

My point was that "if your ONLY REASON" is difficulty in access for watering, there is another, less expensive solution than AGM or gel batteries.

As for the "high acceptance rate" claim, it’s true for the batteries, but I’ve seen few boats with charging systems that can provide enough amperage to take advantage of it. The lower self-discharge can be an advantage, but if you’re a full-time live-aboard, it doesn’t mean much. "Ease of placement" might be an advantage, but on a boat with adequate space for flooded batteries it’s a moot point.

There are certainly places and applications for AGM and gel cells. I use two of them, one mounted sideways to fit a space. But they’re not the be-all-end-all solution, nor the best solution for every application.
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