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Charging LiFeP04 batteries below freezing

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by KD6ZXG, Oct 19, 2021.

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  1. KC7JNJ

    KC7JNJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    The repeater sites I have been are not all that uncomfortable inside in the dead of winter except for the bees that have found a way in. :D
     
  2. KG4RRH

    KG4RRH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Many of the BMS systems inside a fair amount of the larger Li batteries will shut the battery down if an attempt is made to charge them below a preset limit; that's done to protect the battery. What you really need is a heater to keep them warm so that you can charge them.
     
  3. KC6ETE

    KC6ETE Ham Member QRZ Page

    That could work, but not much accuracy in the settings. The inkbird allows me to set on and off temps etc to one degree.
    And it's inexpensive.
     
  4. WL7PM

    WL7PM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Remote radio site is a very good application for sealed LEAD-Acid batteries.
    Remote radio mountain top site is a worst case scenario for Lithium Iron Phosphate chemistry.
     
  5. KC6ETE

    KC6ETE Ham Member QRZ Page

    Please expand on this. I'd like to see your reasoning.
     
  6. WL7PM

    WL7PM Ham Member QRZ Page

    SLA batteries used in float service are normally expected to give 10 years of trouble free service, with zero maintenance.
    In stationary applications, there is zero weight penalty for Lead Acid chemistry.
    Cold weather of ANY extreme is a non issue with sealed lead acid batteries, whereas Lithium batteries are nearly inert bricks at Zero Fahrenheit.
    Lithium Iron Phospate does have advantages in portable, mobile service, but stationary use in cold climates is NOT a best use case.
     
    KV6O and K8XG like this.
  7. KB4JB

    KB4JB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    My other hobby is Radio Control (RC)aircraft where LiPo batteries are heavily used. And, it sounds as if your club "may" be new to using LiPo batteries. If so, the link below will take you to the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) website and a number of articles on the care and feeding of LiPo batteries. If you are already familiar with them, then you are aware that they can be quite dangerous if not handled (used, charging, discharging, storage, etc.) properly.

    Please understand that I am not being critical of you or your club. It's just that I know of several instances where a user, or user's home, shop, etc) have caught fire due to improper charging, or the use of the wrong charger. There are other battery chemistries that might be a better choice for your application.
     
  8. KC6ETE

    KC6ETE Ham Member QRZ Page

    Lithium Polymer (LiPo) is not the same as Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePo4)
     
    K8XG likes this.
  9. K8XG

    K8XG XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    LiFePo4 are the safest of them, no fires, no leaking, low weight, etc. But they are sensitive to cold; which is why post #16 lists the reasons why for a mountain top repeater use are best with Lead Sealed batteries.
     
  10. K8XG

    K8XG XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    *** Unless they must be carried up the summit by hiking, not driving a truck I could see as the only reason
     

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