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  1. #1
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    SLA Vs. Li-Ion: Same Charger?

    Well the charger that came with my e-bike kit doesn't work right any more. I set it to charge a battery pack and left it overnight. In the morning there was a strange smell, and my three SLA batteries had all basically melted together. So the charger apparently doesn't know when to switch off now.

    So I'm shopping for a new charger. My only question is: is there a difference between chargers for SLA and Li-Ion? Can I safely buy any 36 volt charger designed for bikes/scooters? I see some have the XLR connector, which is what I'm going to get so I don't have to change any wires. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    I'm not sure 100% what SLA (lead acid?) is but I wouldent use some that is not recomened for you battery type, as lithium battery are incredibly sensitive.

    If it is lead acid then no way do you want be charging it with a charging protocol for the other Chemisty battery and vice versa, lion is way more powerful than lead acid do I'd ditch the lead acid if that's what your using.

    The advantages of lion / lipo are more runtime, less weight, , no battery fade, the list goes on.

    But to answer your question I don't know if you can buy mulitpal tech bike chargers but in RC you can buy a charger that will charge Lead acid, both main types of lithium polymer, nicd and NiMH.

    Also just keeping the wattage the same won't do it, you need to be charging at the right amps, to few and the charge is slow to any and you shorten battery life or risk damage to the battery.

    And if I were you I'd get a smoke sector and put it next to your charging station / genraly keep and eye on it. As if its melted together that's a serious and catastrophic failure, and the fact that you slept through that is IMO scary, imagine if it had started a fire. You sound lucky that it dident start a fire.

    Tbh you might want to do some research into battery as it sounds like your not to awe are of what your doing no offense.

    And lack of knoladge can be a bad thing were high power high campitcy battery's are concerned and even more so with li tech battery's, I mean its not like our charging AAs here.

  3. #3
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    Well I've had the system for a long time and I built the bike myself, so it's not a question of not knowing what I'm doing. The charger obviously failed.

  4. #4
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    Not denying charger failed, not your fault at all, I was more on about many reading up on battery information ect.

    ERM but in short answer to your question, unless it sates it can do the chemistry battery you have then no it wont.

    But if your battery's melted won't you need new battery anyways so buy battery's and a matching charger at the same time? Ideal go lipo if you weren't already.

  5. #5
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    I agree with Anthony, get a matching charger when you replace the battery, and go lipo if you can afford it.

  6. #6
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    I had two battery packs. So I still have one SLA (Sealed Lead Acid, if you don't know) battery pack, which still works fine. I simply need to know if there are different chargers for different battery technologies. That's all.

  7. #7
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    Haha OK then yes there are, talk to a bike shop I'm sure they can recommend something.

  8. #8
    Senior Member rscamp's Avatar
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    These two chemistries use a similar charge termination algorithm (CC-CV) but regardless of the batteries you use the charger must absolutely, positively have the correct termination voltage. This is not the nominal voltage of the battery (i.e. 36V) but a very specific voltage that does not undercharge or overcharge the battery.
    Rob

  9. #9
    Senior Member chas58's Avatar
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    Like in his case, a 2 amp charger with output of 42 volts (or 41 volts if you want a 90% charge to increase battery life). Least that is what my Li Ion Charger is.

    Depending on battery, you can double the current and probably be safe.

    I'm not really sure what the difference would be between my car battery charger (SLA) and my bike battery charger (li-ion) other than the voltage is obviously different (12v vs 36v battery, both 2 amps). You certainly don't want to overcharge the battery though, as you found out.
    Last edited by chas58; 06-21-13 at 08:04 AM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member chas58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimi77 View Post
    I agree with Anthony, get a matching charger when you replace the battery, and go lipo if you can afford it.
    The guy just had a battery melt down, and you are advising lipo? Can you imagine what would have happened if that was a lipo meltdown?

    Here is a hint:
    http://www.youtube.com/embed/M6xVZzZES-A

    Lipo isn't something you want to use on a daily basis, it takes too much babysitting. Lithium Ion or LiFePo is better for daily use.

  11. #11
    Senior Member rscamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chas58 View Post
    The guy just had a battery melt down, and you are advising lipo? Can you imagine what would have happened if that was a lipo meltdown?

    Here is a hint:
    http://www.youtube.com/embed/M6xVZzZES-A

    Lipo isn't something you want to use on a daily basis, it takes too much babysitting. Lithium Ion or LiFePo is better for daily use.

    Hmmm. Now there's a blanket statement that completely opposes my personal LiPo usage pattern. I don't think the issue is frequency of use but rather care and maintenance. But this is another topic...
    Rob

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by chas58 View Post
    Like in his case, a 2 amp charger with output of 42 volts (or 41 volts if you want a 90% charge to increase battery life). Least that is what my Li Ion Charger is.

    Depending on battery, you can double the current and probably be safe.

    I'm not really sure what the difference would be between my car battery charger (SLA) and my bike battery charger (li-ion) other than the voltage is obviously different (12v vs 36v battery, both 2 amps). You certainly don't want to overcharge the battery though, as you found out.
    The chargers I'm seeing are either 24 or 36 volts. My current charger has an XLR plug and I'm seeing ones for sale with the same plug, so that would be ideal. Apparently the current charger is 36 volts, but the labels are in Chinese - yes, amazing I know. I got the kit from Amped Bikes.

    Anyway, I'm not buying new battery tech. I don't even know if it would work with my system. SLAs are heavy but they're cheap, and I'm not interested in redesigning my bike.

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