Batteries

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dstclair
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Batteries

Postby dstclair » Mon Jun 11, 2018 11:18 am

This is a parallel thread to my post on Great Support.

My relatively high dollar Odyssey battery died recently after 4 years which, to me, is a pretty typical lifespan. The battery did its job. The PC310 runs about $170.

My original low-end Varta battery died after 4 1/2 years and did its job as well. I believe it costs around $75.

As per the other thread, I now have a Duracell Ultra Power Sports battery that has a 2 year warranty and it ran $90. It is a 'new' design and supposedly has 'superior vibration resistance' and 'lower internal resistance for higher discharge rates for faster starts'. We'll see if that helps its life but in the end, this just needs to last the warranty period to be the same price/year as the Odyssey. And I can get it about anywhere if it dies while I'm away from home.

I'm aware that the Odyssey is a considered a great battery but given it's job is to start the plane and batteries at half the price do it just as well, I just don't see the advantage. YMMV.
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ShawnM
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Re: Batteries

Postby ShawnM » Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:14 pm

Ironically Dave I just replaced my Duracell Ultra (not the power sport version) battery with an Odyssey PC680 battery. Don't be alarmed but I didn't even get 10 months of the Duracell that I had. I keep a Battery Tender on it while sitting in the hangar. The one I bought had a one year warranty.

I decided to give the Odyssey PC680 a try as it is the same price as the Duracell Ultra Power Sport version you bought and a direct replacement for the PC680 size. Both are $129 so the price doesn't come into play.

So far the Odyssey has been amazing for starting power, WOW, what a difference from my old battery. As you say, time will tell. :mrgreen:

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dstclair
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Re: Batteries

Postby dstclair » Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:48 pm

We'll need to compare notes in a year! :D

At least the warranty is full replacement for me -- which means if the battery fails in 23.9 months, I get a new one for free. Of course, if it only lasts a year the reliability angle would not be worth the risk. Hopefully, the Sports Power version is more suited to our type of use.
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ShawnM
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Re: Batteries

Postby ShawnM » Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:49 pm

For sure we’ll compare in a year. The warranty on my PC 680 is also free replacement for the first two years (like your’s was) at any Odyssey dealer which is also nice. There are several in my local area. The Duracell I had was also free replacement for 1 year but I have no use for the replacement now. Craigslist here it comes. :mrgreen:

I wanted to try the Odyssey as I heard a lot of good things about them. :mrgreen:

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Re: Batteries

Postby drseti » Mon Jun 11, 2018 7:20 pm

Both of my SportStars came from the factory with a Czech battery not readily availabe in the US. Since the Odyssey PC680 is the same form factor at higher cranking current, I requested and received an LoA from the manufacturer for both planes (they're SLSA, not experimentals). I generally get about 4 years out of them, and am quite satisfied. They are heavier, however (the inevitable result of a higher amp hr rating), so I had to modify my wt/bal accordingly.

Bear in mind that the Odyssey is an AGM battery, so requires a different charger than those used for lead acid.
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ShawnM
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Re: Batteries

Postby ShawnM » Mon Jun 11, 2018 8:24 pm

I'm looking forward to getting some years out of the Odyssey. It also was an exact size replacement for the Duracell and the battery before that. Had I been smart I would have just bought the Odyssey first and saved time and money. And yes, the Odyssey is almost 4 pounds heavier than my last battery. I also have and use a Deltran Battery Tender Plus on my batteries. These chargers work well with AGM batteries according to Deltran.

Hopefully I'll have a good report a year from now........and a year from then and maybe another. :mrgreen:

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Re: Batteries

Postby FastEddieB » Mon Jun 11, 2018 8:42 pm

drseti wrote:
Bear in mind that the Odyssey is an AGM battery, so requires a different charger than those used for lead acid.


There's no doubt the right charger optimizes charging.

But in real life, I've used all sorts of chargers to charge lead acid flooded cell, AGM and even lithium-iron batteries to good effect.

My reasoning is that consider how an aircraft battery of any description normally gets charged - that is, in the airplane from a generator or alternator through a pretty dumb voltage regulator that seems not to care what kind of battery its dumping its voltage into. So, the different types can't be all that finicky, can they?

That said, buying the right charger is probably not a bad idea. The wrong style left unattended for a long time may charge in an off-optimum manner, and could even possible damage the battery.

Two more points:

1) I've had great service from Odyssey batteries, in both motorcycles and the Sky Arrow.

2) Best practice is to always remove batteries from an airplane before charging. I know many or possibly most don't, but planes have been extensively damaged by exploding/burning/leaking batteries from rogue chargers or shorts or whatever. I've had two batteries explode, and its not pretty. And both were flooded cell being charged with an appropriate charger. This was one such:

Image

I had two 12v batteries being charged in series with a 24v charger. I've been told that may have contributed, but still not clear why.
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Re: Batteries

Postby ShawnM » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:00 am

The Battery Tender Plus I use has several built in safety features and is one of the better chargers on the market in my opinion. Of course bad things can always happen but I have confidence in the Battery Tender.

I’m certain that most everyone charges their battery while in the plane. My charger came with a pig tail with a inline fuse that I permanently attached to the battery and I routed the connector to the bottom of the firewall so I can access it from under the nose. I can simply reach under and plug it in after I put her back in the hangar.

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Re: Batteries

Postby dstclair » Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:25 am

Shawn -- you might want to verify that the Battery Tender Plus is approved by Odyssey for the PC680. I have a BTP as well and when I switched to the PC310, I was warned that not all chargers were compatible. I contacted Odyssey and they specifically replied that the BTP was not supported and could damage their batteries. I had to buy one of their chargers. That was 4.5 years ago so things may of changed.

Here is a link to supported chargers: http://www.odysseybattery.com/documents ... argers.pdf
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ShawnM
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Re: Batteries

Postby ShawnM » Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:38 am

Thanks Dave, I know there is a lot of "chatter" on the web about what chargers to use on the Odyssey battery but I'll verify my BTP can do the job.

It all stems from the voltage of the charger while in "float" mode. The Odyssey batteries have a higher float voltage than other AGM batteries therefore require a charger with a high float voltage so as not to pull the battery down when it goes into float mode. The PC680 in my plane has a float charge voltage of 13.5 to 13.8 volts. This voltage is printed on top of their batteries. I cannot find the float voltage spec for the BTP on Deltrans webpage.

On my next trip to the airport I'll put the charger on the battery and wait for it to go into float mode, shouldn't take long with a fully charged battery, and then measure the float voltage from the charger and see if it's enough of not.

I'll reach out to both manufacturers in the meantime for their opinions. I just put the new battery in less than three weeks ago and have not used the charger yet although the pigtail is wired in like it was on the Duracell. All the literature and website for the BTP say it'll work on AGM batteries. But I'll verify.

Thank you for the heads up. :mrgreen:

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Re: Batteries

Postby 3Dreaming » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:16 am

I know someone with a fairly ne Corvette, and I high quality battery tender killed the battery in it in less than a year. It was something about a slight current draw from the security system was tricking the charger to overcharge the battery.

With all of the modern avionics some of these airplanes have there might be a keep alive wire connected to the electrical system that is doing the same thing.

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Re: Batteries

Postby ShawnM » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:27 am

Thanks for that update as well.

As for the "keep alive" circuit, Dynon even had a SB many years ago for their legacy glass (D-100 and D-120 and a few others) to disconnect this. It wasn't for battery drain reasons but they would certainly could have a parasitic drain on any battery. Once my master is off I have no other drain as I tested for even the slightest current draw with everything off.

I'll research everything before I commit to use or not use the BTP on my Odyssey battery. It's a 3 week old battery so it's wicked strong right now and doesn't require a charger at the moment.

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dstclair
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Re: Batteries

Postby dstclair » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:38 am

I'll research everything before I commit to use or not use the BTP on my Odyssey battery. It's a 3 week old battery so it's wicked strong right now and doesn't require a charger at the moment.

Clearly my Odyssey PC310 was dying a slow death over the last year. My plane started fine, I thought, and when I put it on the Odyssey charger after each flight, the charger would immediately jump to 'Green'. Occasionally, I would hit the 'charge' button and it would go through the levels in less than a minute. It did this up until last Saturday when it died.

When I started on my new battery, the prop rotated much faster and the plane started immediately. I guess you get used to a slow decline and your 'normal' changes without noticing.

The PC310 has 310 cranking amps for 5 seconds, then has 100 CCA. I wonder if when an Odyssey goes bad the 5 second of 'super' power is the first to go?
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ShawnM
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Re: Batteries

Postby ShawnM » Tue Jun 12, 2018 12:33 pm

dstclair wrote:When I started on my new battery, the prop rotated much faster and the plane started immediately. I guess you get used to a slow decline and your 'normal' changes without noticing.


I also noticed this immediately with my new PC680. I've changed my battery now 3 times in 5 years (all lesser expensive batteries) and never did one of them start the plane like the Odyssey. It was amazing to see the speed at which it turned over and it started in less than what seemed like a second. Some serious CCA's going on in that battery.

If I can get 4 years from the Odyssey it'll be well worth the $129 spent on it. :mrgreen:

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Re: Batteries

Postby ScottyB » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:35 pm

I went to batteries+got a wheelchair battery 21amp 70$ it starts my 582 faster than the battery I got from leaf for twice the price
Didn't use bat tender over the winter and this spring it was still full charge


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