Part 1 of a 2 part series –
Automotive batteries have changed quite a bit in the last few years. Their construction is vastly different from even just a decade ago. The technology involved in the modern battery is so much more advanced, and auto manufacturers are using these new products in their new autos that are coming off the assembly line. The typical automotive lead acid battery has leaped ahead to become a more reliable commodity, able to compete with other, more advanced battery types.
The most common automotive battery type is the lead acid battery. This type of battery has lead plates submerged in a wet electrolyte acid solution. They are a very reliable method to power a car’s electrical system. They are great for starting and cranking. They tend not to be as good for other applications, like deep cycle applications, where you would be drawing down (discharge) the battery to very low charge, and then recharging. This tends to prematurely deplete the typical automotive lead acid battery.
There are deep cycle lead acid batteries, but they are not as good for starting purposes, which is the most important function for a car battery. The lead acid batteries also have issues with the water to evaporate if it is a vented battery. Vibration and shock could also cause a lead plate to become dislodged and will cause premature battery failure. Modern vehicles place high demand on an automobile’s battery. All of the modern appliances that a car has draw down a battery much faster than in the past. This means batteries will discharge much faster even when the automobile is turned off.