Batteries, Chargers, and More

Knowledge Base : Tutorials

Tutorials

Want to learn about internal battery construction? Not sure how solar panels work, but would like to know? What about charging different battery types? What are the differences between AGM, Gel, Flooded, VRLA or Lithium batteries? Just select the icon below that best fits your curiosity, and dig on in! We think we’ve put together a pretty good library here for you to use, so what are you waiting for?

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Battery Articles

  • Battery Basics: A Layman's Guide to Batteries
    If you have done any research on how batteries work or what you should look for when selecting a battery, you are probably buried in information, some of which is conflicting. At BatteryStuff, we aim to clear that up a bit.You have most likely heard the term K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid). I am going to attempt to explain how lead acid batteries work and what they need without burying you with a bunch of needless technical data. I have found that battery data will vary somewhat from manufacturer to manufacturer, so I will do my best to boil that data down. This means I may generalize a bit, while staying true to purpose. read more
  • Battery Bank Tutorial - Series and Parallel
    What is a bank of batteries? No, it’s not some kind of financial battery establishment. A battery bank is the result of joining two or more batteries together for a single application. What does this accomplish? Well, by connecting batteries, you can increase the voltage or amperage, or both. When you need more power, instead of getting yourself a massive super tanker of a battery, you can construct a battery bank. read more
  • Scorpion Stinger Lithium Series Batteries
    A couple months ago we received a new battery line from Scorpion. These new batteries are an example of the latest and greatest in battery technology, and represent a giant leap forward in Powersports starting applications. We’ve actually been secretly testing these batteries for... read more
  • What does “20 Amp Hr rate” mean?
    Several years ago when you would go to buy a car, the little tag on the window of a coupe might have read 42 mpg. Of course everyone knew that the only way to make that car get 42 miles to the gallon was to drive at 25 miles per hour on a newly paved level track. So in 2008 when the EPA updated their standards, the ratings all dropped to much more realistic numbers that most light footed people can achieve. Battery ratings are very similar. The faster a battery is drained, the less overall amperage is available. The battery’s AH rating goes down the faster you use it. read more
  • Gel vs AGM: Not Quite the Battle of the Ages, But Nice to Know
    More often than not AGM Batteries are mistakenly identified as Gel Cell Batteries. Both batteries have similar traits; such as being non spillable, deep cycle, may be mounted in any position, low self discharge, safe for use in limited ventilation areas, and may be transported via Air or Ground safely without special handling. read more
  • Make the Bad Sulfation Go Away!
    Sulfation (sul-fay-shun), the number one cause of early battery failures, can be safely reversed, using high frequency electronic pulses. Unlike other pulse type chargers that claim this or similar sounding features, VDC's BatteryMINDers® use a range of high frequencies. This ensures both old and newly formed sulfation will be safely dissolved in the shortest possible time. Using just one fixed frequency may remove some, but not all, especially long established–hardened sulfate crystals. read more
  • How Do Batteries Die? Well, Let Me Tell You...
    Approximately 50% of premature car battery failures is caused by the loss of water for normal recharging charging due to the lack of maintenance, evaporation from high under hood heat, or overcharging. Approximately 85% of premature deep cycle and starting batteries failures that are not recharged on a regular basis is due to an accumulation of sulfation. read more
  • The Super Secret Workings of a Lead Acid Battery Explained
    A 12-volt motorcycle battery is made up of a plastic case containing six cells. Each cell is made up of a set of positive and negative plates immersed in a dilute sulfuric acid solution known as electrolyte, and each cell has a voltage of around 2.1 volts when fully charged. The six cells are connected together to produce a fully charged battery of about 12.6 volts. That's great, but how does sticking lead plates into sulfuric acid produce electricity? read more
  • Troubleshooting a Battery
    One of the facts of life is that batteries fail. Some take years, but eventually they will all bite the dust. However, there are so many factors in electrical systems that can go wrong, that often times the battery takes the blame for other component's problems. The easiest and fastest thing to check for problems is the battery. Here is a simple test that can tell you a lot about what is going on inside a battery, and whether it is good or not. This is not meant to test anything other than the battery, but it is a great place to start if you are having electrical problems. read more
  • Lithium Iron FAQ
    Shorai LFX batteries contain proprietary eXtreme-Rate Lithium Iron prismatic cells (chemistry LiFePO4). Shorai LFX batteries contain no poisonous lead, no acid, and do not create gasses during charge, as traditional Lead-Acid batteries do. Compared to lead-acid, Shorai LFX lithium are also extremely light, have much lower self-discharge, do not sulfate, and are environmentally friendly. read more
  • Lithium Battery Overview
    Lithium Based batteries are quickly becoming a reasonable replacement for the 150 year old technology of Lead-Acid batteries. In applications where weight is a consideration, Lithium batteries are among the lightest options available. In recent years Lithium has become available in several chemistries; Lithium-Ion, Lithium Iron Phosphate, Lithium Polymer and a few more exotic variations. read more
  • Shorai LFX Lithium Iron Phosphate Batteries Abuse Test
    Lithium Iron Phosphate. At first thought, it sounds like a vitamin supplement that I should be taking to calm my nerves and keep the doctor away. While it won’t calm the nerves or help the joints, Lithium Iron Phosphate is actually a battery chemistry that allows for superior energy storage in a much lighter than lead package. read more
  • What The Heck is a NiCd Battery?
    If this is not your first stop in the NiCd information trail I am sure the information that you have read, heard, or found on the internet is just about overwhelming. In this tutorial we will do our best at keeping is simple, accurate, and to the point. If you have questions that are not addressed, please let us know and we hopefully be able to help. read more
  • Proper Care and Feeding of a NiMH Battery
    What does NiMH stand for?
    The material is Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) which has many advantages over other battery construction materials.

    What is meant by battery memory?
    Older generation and batteries with other chemical make-up were subject to a memory effect. This is when a battery must be fully drained before recharge or their capacity is reduced. The New Generation of NIMH batteries do not develop a memory effect and can be recharged at anytime during usage cycle. When uncertain about battery charge level or condition, recharge it. read more
  • What Do I Do With My Old Dead Battery?
    Battery cores are important because not only is lead expensive, but it can be recycled and used again in the manufacturing of new batteries. As a matter of fact, approximately 97%* of lead content within lead acid batteries is recycled. That's not too shabby when you consider how aluminum, newspaper, and glass get recycled ~50% of the time or less. In a nutshell, battery recycling works, and it's a good idea to keep it up. read more
  • Peukert’s Law | A Nerd’s Attempt to Explain Battery Capacity
    When I first entered the arena of lead acid batteries and their neurotic tendencies, it was presented to me that the easiest way to rate and understand how long a lead-acid battery would last, would be to use the AH (Amp Hour) rating that is so often designated to them. I was told that if a battery was rated at 100AH, then that was more or less indicative that it would last either 100 hours under a 1 amp load, or 1 hour under a 100 amp load. It soon became apparent that this notion of order was false; everything previously understood had been a lie. read more
  • What is the Difference Between the Terminal Type F1 and F2?
    The SLA batteries we sell, up to 12 volts 15 Amp Hours (AH), commonly use the faston tabs as the terminal type. The F1 and the F2 are the terms we use to refer to the terminals. At first glance, they look very similar. These are flat blade type terminals which stick up at an angle from the top or side of the battery. These terminal types are designed to be attached with a push-on spade insert, either for your application or for charging. The F1 terminal is thinner, and the F2 is wider. read more

Solar Articles

  • Solar Systems the Right Way
    We have created an easy path that takes you from solar newbie to grand high poobah in a few easy steps. One of our goals is to educate our customers so that they understand not just what we recommend, but why. read more
  • OK, So What Size Panel Do I need?
    First, the notes: We hope this solar calculator will make sizing your panels and batteries a little less painful. Keep in mind that this is only a calculator, and it will directly reflect whatever you, the user, inputs into the fields. If your base calculations are off by even a little bit, the results reflected can be skewed by quite a bit, so view this as a guide, not an absolute. read more
  • Solar Info: The Down Low on Everything Up High.
    I am not sure what information most folks think they will find in a solar tutorial. Rain or shine we get a huge number of calls about solar power each day. We will attempt to answer the questions most often asked so we can save you a phone call. read more
  • Solar Panel Installation Tips
    BatteryStuff Solar Panels use high quality Poly-Crystalline solar cells. Diodes contained within the junction box insure reliable operation and no drain during low light conditions. Anodized aluminum frames add strength and durability to the modules. Includes pre-drilled mounting holes. The modules have a 20-year, 80% power output warranty. read more

Charging Articles

  • How Do I Pick a Battery Charger!
    There are certainly other factors in selecting a battery charger, and it would be difficult to cover them all, but here a few. Input voltage, generally for use foreign countries. Exposure to elements, i.e. would you benefit from a waterproof charger? Perhaps you will need a charger that doubles as a power supply for a RV or some other application. Often people will need to charge multiple batteries simultaneously, so multiple bank chargers may be needed. read more
  • Make the Bad Sulfation Go Away!
    Sulfation (sul-fay-shun), the number one cause of early battery failures, can be safely reversed, using high frequency electronic pulses. Unlike other pulse type chargers that claim this or similar sounding features, VDC's BatteryMINDers® use a range of high frequencies. This ensures both old and newly formed sulfation will be safely dissolved in the shortest possible time. Using just one fixed frequency may remove some, but not all, especially long established–hardened sulfate crystals. read more
  • Testing Your Battery for Parasitic Load
    To check if something is draining your battery while your bike is turned off you need to test for current, not volts. To do so, you may need to use a multimeter. Do not start the engine of your vehicle when testing for parasitic drain. read more

Miscellaneous Articles

  • Fuel Treatments. Why Bother?
    More and more lately there has been a lot of talk about long term fuel storage and preservation. There are many situations where fuel storage and restoration need to be considered, like when equipment is put into storage more than a couple weeks, such as RV's, motorcycles, boats, classic cars, etc. read more
  • OK, Who's Got Gas? Fuel, That Is.
    The first thing you must understand about today's fuels is that the environment is the first consideration and the engine performance comes second. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) plays a heavy hand in today's Gasoline and Diesel fuels development. read more
  • PRI-G FAQ and Dramatic Benefits
    By comparison, gasoline today is initially much cleaner than gasoline sold 10 or 20 years ago when it is first produced. However, today’s fuels are less stable today because they are produced through cracking processes versus the less efficient “straight-run” processes used years ago. As a result, today’s fuels deteriorate at much faster rates - resulting in excessive carbon build-up in your engine. Given the varying length of time it takes for fuel to be consumed after refining, it is wise to freshen fuels every tank full with PRI-G to ensure maximum combustion and performance. read more
  • Cooling Tutorial
    Years ago environmental required cleaner burning engines and thus engine operating temperatures were raised in order to reduce exhaust emissions. Today's engines run on the borderline of overheating.

    We have found that many people neglect their cooling systems until it becomes a costly problem. A properly maintained cooling system will provide excellent service for many years. There is more to maintenance than just changing the antifreeze every two years. Little things like replacing hoses and keeping the air flow clean and unobstructed are also very important. read more
  • Lubrication Tutorial
    There are a lot of options available when it comes to lubricants. We have mineral based (oil that comes from the ground), blends, a combination of mineral and synthetic, and full synthetic. We use these lubricants in engines, transmissions, gear cases, and hydraulics. read more
  • PRI-D FAQ and Dramatic Benefits
    Given the fact that literally thousands of fuel additives are offered on the market, engine manufacturers have no way of monitoring or testing the claims of so many products - making it difficult to determine specific products that are safe to use. However, PRI chemistry does not alter any fuel specifications issued by engine manufacturers - specifications by which manufacturers judge whether or not a particular fuel affects safe engine operation. PRI has been safely used in thousands of engine types. read more
  • Cost Benefit Ratio
    Because of their initial industrial intent, all of the liquid chemistry products we offer are very concentrated. We have found most ‘off the shelf’ automotive consumer products are diluted for retail sales. Can you tell which one will give you more value for you money? read more
  • Sponsoring The Funky Chicken
    This year, we are proud to be sponsoring a race that's held every year at the Big K Ranch in Elkton, Oregon. This is round #5 of the AMA Western Hare Scrambles, hosted by Emerald Trail Riders Association [ETRA]. The event will take place on June 16-17, 2012. Saturday will consist of races from the AMA National Youth Hare Scrambles, plus the B and C adult classes. The rest of the AMA National Hare Scrambles and the Pro and A classes will tear it up on Sunday. The best racers from all over the West Coast will be there, with over 300 racers expected. read more