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Power Source: What are the Differences Between AGM and Lithium Batteries?

Believe it or not, there are two different leisure battery options for powering your appliances in your Achtung Camper Campervan or Motorhome. Battery selection is a technical, but important decision. It is one that will affect the quality of your road trip and hopefully ensure it is a smooth experience.

The two leisure batteries on offer at Achtung Camper are absorbent glass mat (AGM) or lithium battery, and below we highlight the pros and cons of both.

AGM (absorbent glass mat) Battery

AGM stands for absorbent glass mat and refers to the fine glass fibre separator between the positive and negative plates that help absorb the battery acid.

These batteries provide campervans and motorhomes with the power they require. However, they are heavy and we all know weight is crucial with a van conversion for safety reasons. Robust in design, entirely sealed and provide the amperage that allows vans to run for an extended period are all positives for AGM batteries.

The lifespan of an AGM battery is three years and approximately 800 cycles (a battery cycle is the process of draining a battery then recharging it). It is not suggested to discharge an AGM battery past 60 per cent of their total capacity as it will decrease its lifespan. Most AGM batteries offer a one to two year warranty, whereas lithium batteries come with a five year warranty.

Lithium Battery

ALLiON is our brand of lithium battery. It is an upgrade and one that we highly recommend if you choose an induction cooker and inverter. Lithium battery is faster to charge, it offers a longer life cycle which means reduced overall waste and therefore a sustainable choice, plus it is lightweight and has its own built-in battery management system. The high performing 12V deep cycle battery has a capacity of 126 amp hours.

Lithium batteries last for approximately five years and 3,000 to 4,000 cycles. It is also fine to drain a lithium battery to 90 or 95 per cent without effecting its life cycle. They are more expensive than an AGM versions, but are seen as an investment.

It’s known that ALLiON Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries are safer and more stable compared to other lithium technologies. This is because their cells provide superior thermal and chemical stability.┬áTheir wide operating temperature range also ensures ALLiON batteries deliver reliable power every time. This makes it an ideal adventuring companion for campervans and motorhomes.

If you do not want to be replacing your battery within a short period, then lithium is a better choice and plus it is more eco-friendly.

Another bonus is the ALLiON Battery App which allows you to connect to your battery via Bluetooth and view battery status information. This is pure gold for checking status of charge, capacity and run time.

The takeaway from this is lithium batteries are a more superior choice due to their lifespan, efficiency, charging time, supply more consistent power and less weight.

R&J Batteries supplies both batteries for Achtung Camper. To discuss further email bronwyn@achtungcamper.com.au.

If you are interested in learning more about power options (batteries and inverters) for Achtung Camper Campervans and Motorhomes, then refer to the following blogs:

What does a Leisure Battery do in a Campervan?
ALLiON Lithium Batteries
Step by Step Guide to Using an Inverter