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Old 17-04-2020, 11:53   #1
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Lithium Battery: Box Needed?

Quick Question: Are full enclosure battery boxes required for LiFePo4 batteries (Battle Born 100A)? I am placing them in an aft lazarette so out of the engine room. I realize they need to be well secured, but do they need a full enclosure with a top as old FLA batteries are? Best would be to put them on a shelf. What about AGMs?

Thanks in advance

Peter
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Old 17-04-2020, 12:57   #2
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Re: Lithium Battery: Box Needed?

I can't put my hands on my copy of the ABYC standards at the moment, so I can't give you the "legal." I've certainly seen plenty of boats, including commercial, with batteries out of boxes.

Think it through. Black plastic battery boxes don't restrain batteries; you need to do that with straps or fiberglas/wood compartments. If straps, you need to make sure that spilled acid won't corrode them. Box lids preveent dropped wrenches from becoming fireworks displays. Shifting batteries are a common fire source, and the temperature generated is plenty to ignite fiberglas resin, which burns like oiled paper.

So will your design prevent all this? I used open boxes, with bicarbonate of soda in the bottom of each to neutralize any loose acid (flooded batteries) and a screw-in-place restraining board over the top to keep the bank in place. It's topped with a plywood cabin sole, so being bounced won't cause a fire. Not having lids made it easier to join a bank of six batteries. Come up with a design that will hold those suckers firmly in place and insulated during a knock down, and move on the the next problem.

Good luck with it.
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