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Old 06-03-2019, 21:22   #1
RGN
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Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

I mean the cold temperature limitations on recharging Lithium batters of course.


I like everything about Lithium based batteries except the barely below freezing cutoff for recharging, well that and the initial price.


Since I intend on doing a lot of cruising in the colder Northern climes The charging limitations may be a problem, I am wondering if I might be wise to go with Firefly instead. The major downside of those is the weight compared to the Lithium, slower recharge current and of course eventually they will fail sooner.


I have thought about insulating the battery compartment and ducting warm cabin air into the battery area when the temps drop, Fairly simple to do but one more complication and failure point.


Does anyone here have any real world experience with this? Is it an actual problem or more in the realm of something to keep in mind and be aware of? All other thoughts suggestions and ridicule are also welcome.
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Old 06-03-2019, 21:47   #2
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RGN View Post
I mean the cold temperature limitations on recharging Lithium batters of course.


I like everything about Lithium based batteries except the barely below freezing cutoff for recharging, well that and the initial price.


Since I intend on doing a lot of cruising in the colder Northern climes The charging limitations may be a problem, I am wondering if I might be wise to go with Firefly instead. The major downside of those is the weight compared to the Lithium, slower recharge current and of course eventually they will fail sooner.


I have thought about insulating the battery compartment and ducting warm cabin air into the battery area when the temps drop, Fairly simple to do but one more complication and failure point.


Does anyone here have any real world experience with this? Is it an actual problem or more in the realm of something to keep in mind and be aware of? All other thoughts suggestions and ridicule are also welcome.
yes that would be a legitimate concern

do you actually expect that your battery compartment will be below freezing when you need to charge your battery ? Is the battery compartment not already vented?
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Old 06-03-2019, 21:58   #3
RGN
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

Well, The boat is a 1964 Rhodes/Pearson Vanguard and there is NO house battery Just a combo starter/house battery. (The boat was basically used as a Club Racer and weekend boat for 90% of it's life), So I get to choose where I put the house batteries, the answer to that depends on what I have to consider about the temperature thing. So no vent yet
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Old 06-03-2019, 22:12   #4
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

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Originally Posted by RGN View Post
Well, The boat is a 1964 Rhodes/Pearson Vanguard and there is NO house battery Just a combo starter/house battery. (The boat was basically used as a Club Racer and weekend boat for 90% of it's life), So I get to choose where I put the house batteries, the answer to that depends on what I have to consider about the temperature thing. So no vent yet
ok so I don't see there being an issue when on the boat basically anything below or even near the waterline will not get below freezing.
Just don't mount it in the lazzerette and you will be fine as far as freezing is concerned
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Old 06-03-2019, 22:41   #5
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

Where and how far north?
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Old 07-03-2019, 03:36   #6
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

I am not going to speculate how cold your location will allow the bank to get but yes charging below the mfg spec temp can turn the bank to scrap in short order.

Note we do not have access to internal temps which is what's important.

Preventing freezing a better approach than having to wait while thawing them out.

Below the waterline you really need to be in arctic conditions, most people don't tolerate such living conditions.

Technology can overcome the problem, silicon heating pads powered by DC with an embedded thermostat are not expensive, nor is foam insulation.

Winston claims their Yttrium doping gives much lower range.

Firefly is a fine product but the price premium and long wait, and yes a third the energy density. Is PSOC really an unavoidable issue in your case?
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Old 07-03-2019, 09:23   #7
RGN
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

The areas the boat is headed to would be the Canadian Maritime regions, Greenland, Iceland, Faeroe Islands, the northwestern Norwegian coast and the Baltic. Yes, this is a multi year cruise.



Insulation is a given, the silicone heating pads are a good idea, plus I could also vent some cabin heat into the battery compartment.


So I am getting the feeling from the reply's that going Lithium and making provisions to insure they do not get too cold is the preferred plan? I kind of want that to be the setup but I really do not want to ruin a few thousand dollars of batteries either.
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Old 07-03-2019, 09:33   #8
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

Trucks use 120v battery blankets or pad heaters. They don't use much energy, turn on at a predetermined temp. and don't cost too much. If you are using a shore charger you only need to turn on the battery blanket a couple of hours before charging. If you are on the water you could use a small inverter since the blankets use only about 60-80W. Check Amazon or Wolverine on line. Your milage may vary.

Battery output is greater and everybody is happy.

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Old 07-03-2019, 09:38   #9
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

The lithium battery pack on our BMW i3 was temperature controlled. Active components in the car maintained the battery pack at desired temperature.
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Old 07-03-2019, 10:28   #10
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Re: Am I over thinking this cold charging limitation?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RGN View Post
The areas the boat is headed to would be the Canadian Maritime regions, Greenland, Iceland, Faeroe Islands, the northwestern Norwegian coast and the Baltic. Yes, this is a multi year cruise.



Insulation is a given, the silicone heating pads are a good idea, plus I could also vent some cabin heat into the battery compartment.


So I am getting the feeling from the reply's that going Lithium and making provisions to insure they do not get too cold is the preferred plan? I kind of want that to be the setup but I really do not want to ruin a few thousand dollars of batteries either.
In remote areas like youíre planning I would consider going flooded. Itís not a temp issue if youíre on the boat sailing around as it will likely not get that cold on board. If you plan on leaving it for extended periods over the winter in the water, you can leave heat on, if out of the water disconnect entirely. Big issue will be availability for replacements or components should you need them. Almost every marine fuel station carries a few flooded start batteries and/or deep cycles. You will not find a lithium anywhere should one fail and could be weeks and a whole lot of shipping $$ to get a new one. The summer months in the north can be quit warm, and when the sun doesnít set until after 11 pm and rises 3 hours later it stays warm longer through the day. Winters another story.
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