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U.S. Battery FLA Date Code

How Old Or New Are Your Deep-Cycle Batteries?

Used and refurbished battery-powered equipment are abundant and are often found at great prices. Although the vehicle may be in good working order, it’s important to determine how old the deep-cycle batteries are. In most cases, battery manufacturers stamp or etch a date code on the battery indicating the month, year, and location of manufacture.

U.S. Battery uses a stamped code on the terminals of its flooded lead-acid batteries. The top left letter stamped on the terminal correlates to the month it was manufactured (A-L refers to January to December). In this example, the letter “K” is the 11th month indicating the battery was manufactured in November. The number indicates the year 2014, and the bottom letter specifies the U.S. Battery plant where it was produced.

U.S. Battery Mfg. Co. Plant Codes

  • The letter “X” is for  Corona, California plant.
  • The letter “Y” is for  Augusta, Georgia plant.
  • The letter “Z” is the Evans, Georgia plant.

U.S. Battery Mfg. Co. AGM Date Code

On U.S. Battery AGM Batteries,  the date, month, and year on the battery case are etched into the top of the battery and are clearly visible. The date is in the format of DDMMYY or YYMMDD. In this example, September 15, 2014.

US Battery AGM Deep Cycle logo

US Battery Manufacturing Updates Its AGM Battery Line With A New And Improved Performance Deep-Cycle Design

U.S. Battery Manufacturing has launched its new and improved line of AGM Deep-Cycle batteries specifically designed to provide increased deep-cycling performance. “Our advanced line of AGM Deep-Cycle batteries have features that improve cycling performance and longevity, which makes them a better choice for customers wanting maintenance-free reliable operation,” says Zachary Cox, U.S. Battery VP Operations.

The new AGM Deep-Cycle batteries will be available after March 22, 2021, with updated features such as the use of thick positive alloy grids for exceptional corrosion resistance, high-density positive active material, and advanced glass mat separators. These components work together to maintain the battery cell structure during deep-cycling, limit acid stratification, and inhibit internal shorts.

The batteries also feature a carbon-enhanced negative active material that improves charge acceptance and cycling performance. In addition to being resistant to vibration, fully sealed, and maintenance-free, U.S. Battery’s new AGM design improves reliability, overall performance, and delivers longer cycle life.

In addition to these design upgrades, U.S. Battery’s AGM Deep-Cycle line will also have a new look, featuring a new case and graphics on redesigned labels. On top of the current 6V, 8V, and 12V models, the product line is also expanding to include new 6V and 12V options. “More of our customers are asking for high-performance deep-cycle batteries that are maintenance-free and cost-effective alternatives to lithium,” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery COO. “We’re responding with engineering that delivers the superior performance and reliability needed for modern battery-powered equipment and vehicles.”

U.S. Battery’s complete line of AGM and Flooded Lead-Acid Deep-Cycle batteries are available for a wide variety of applications such as EV Golf Car & Utility, AWP, RV, Marine, Floor Cleaning Machines, and Renewable Energy.

 

Four Wheel Campers - SLide-iN Camper

Pop-Up Camper Manufacturer Four Wheel Campers, Relies On U.S. Battery Products

With the surge of Overlanding at an all-time high, Four Wheel Campers has become the go-to brand for adventurers who travel beyond traditional camping locations. “Because many Four Wheel Campers customers venture to faraway places like Alaska, Baja, Central America, South America, and the remote southwest, they expect undeterred performance,” says Dan Welty, VP at Four Wheel Campers. “Their requirement for uninterruptable power over a longer period of time is essential. To meet this demand, we have selected U.S. Battery Manufacturing products as our sole supplier of AGM 12 and 6-volt batteries. Four Wheel Campers and our customers count on the performance and reliability U.S. Battery products provide. Having a national resource that warranties and services the occasional problem is required, and comforting insurance as well.”

The company was founded in 1972 and is the world’s leading producer of pop-up campers for trucks. The entire operation is located in Woodland, just outside of Sacramento, California, and over the years has become the go-to brand for those adventuring beyond traditional camping locations. The campers themselves fit into the bed of most full-size pickup trucks and feature a welded aluminum frame, one-piece aluminum roof, and aluminum siding. Wearable components like the collapsible pop-up material (typical 20-year life) can be replaced at the factory or dealer locations.

Four Wheel Campers can come equipped with one or two 12-volt or 6-volt U.S. Batteries. These batteries are recharged by the truck as it is Four Wheel Campers Interiordriving or by solar panels on the camper roof. “We have numerous customers living full-time with a combination of this power and occasionally plug into external (shore) power,” says Welty. “With two 6V batteries, our customers can run the refrigerator, numerous camper lights, and power smartphones for two days. With the 160 watts solar and, or truck driving, customers can be off-the-grid indefinitely.”

U.S. Battery AGM batteries are sealed and do not require watering. They feature low self-discharge rates, along with rigid-mounted and tightly packed battery cell plates to withstand shock and vibration found in motive power applications. These components work together to improve reliability, overall performance and deliver longer cycle life.

For more information on Four Wheel Camper products, visit https://fourwheelcampers.com.

Nilfisk floor cleaning machine

Replacement Batteries For Nilfisk Floor Cleaning Machines

Choosing the right deep-cycle batteries for Nilfisk Retriever and SRModel Ride-On-Top floor cleaning machines

Nilfisk is one of the leading manufacturers of battery-powered floor cleaning machines that last a long time. Many older models are still in use with maintenance crews that utilize these vehicles on a full-time basis. With proper maintenance, the deep-cycle batteries can last several years but eventually will need to be replaced. Here are some of the best replacement batteries with some options for SR and Retriever sit-on-top models.

The Nilfisk Retriever 4000B and 4600B model cleaning machines, as well as the Nilfisk SR1100B machines, require a 24-Volt battery pack that fits a Group Size 902 deep-cycle battery.  U.S. Battery manufactures a US 305XC2 deep-cycle battery that is a direct replacement that provides 310 amp-hours at a 20-hour rate. If the vehicle will be under severe working conditions requiring longer operating times between charges, U.S. Battery also has a High Capacity battery for these vehicles, a US 305HCXC2, which provides 340 amp-hours at a 20-hour rate.

There are several models of the Nilfisk SR ride-on-top floor cleaning machines that require different size batteries because of the size and shape of the unit. For Nilfisk SR1000B and SR1005B models that require a 24-volt battery pack with a group size 31 battery, U.S. Battery offers it’s US 31DSXC2 deep-cycle battery that provides 130 amp-hours at a 20-hour rate.

Nilfisk SR100ECO models utilize a group size 24 battery and operate with a 12-volt system requiring two 12-volt batteries. U.S. Battery’s US 24DCXC2 is an optimum choice for a replacement with an 85 amp-hour rating at a 20-hour rate. Larger Nilfisk SR1300B models also have a 24-volt system but can operate with longer runtimes with four 6-volt batteries in the 903 group size platform. U.S. Battery’s US L16XC2 deep-cycle batteries are a popular choice, providing 385 amp-hours at a 20-hour rate. Greater capacity can be achieved with U.S. Battery’s US L16HCXC2 high-capacity batteries that are rated at 420 amp-hours at a 20-hour rate.

The Nilfisk SR1300ECO floor cleaning machine utilizes a 24-volt system requiring two 12-volt deep-cycle batteries in a group size 27. U.S. Battery’s US 27DCXC2 makes a great replacement, providing 105 amp-hours at a 20-hour rate.

Proper Maintenance Adds Battery Life

To get the most performance from your new battery, you must develop a regular maintenance schedule that consists of:

  • Checking and replenishing the electrolyte levels. Installing a BWT or Flow-Rite single-point-watering kit can make this an easy and quick process.
  • Performing an equalization charge
  • Checking and Cleaning battery terminals and connections
  • Performing an opportunity charge when possible

For a full list of proper Deep Cycle Battery Care & Maintenance procedures, please see our page or download our Care & Maintenance brochure. U.S. Battery Deep Cycle batteries are handcrafted in the U.S.A. The batteries also feature our exclusive XC2 formulation that produces increased initial capacity, fastest cycle-up time to full-rated capacity, improved recharge-ability, and the highest total energy delivered than any battery in their class. For a complete list of Flooded Lead-Acid or AGM batteries for all types of floor cleaning machines for various make and manufacturers, U.S. Battery’s Floor Machine Battery page to see all of the models, sizes, and specifications available to fit your particular vehicle.

 

battery pack capacity infograph

Battery Pack’s Size Impacts Capacity And Run-Time

Having to buy a new set of batteries for your golf car is not something people always look forward to. A 48-volt golf car can take anywhere from four or even eight batteries, depending on the compartment space and vehicle model. This can be a big investment, so if you could get away with only buying four 12v batteries, would that be better? It might seem so upfront, but depending on how often you use your golf car and the amount of runtime you expect, fewer batteries with the same voltage may not always be the best choice.

Depending on the make and model of your golf car, it may seem less expensive to buy four 12-volt batteries connected in series to power a 48-volt system. Choosing higher voltage deep-cycle batteries, however,  often means sacrificing amp-hour capacity. Under constant use, a four-battery pack will have a shorter life cycle than a pack producing the same 48-volts but made up of more batteries. The reason is that the larger battery pack provides a substantial increase in amp-hour capacity, leading to more runtime and cycle life than a smaller battery pack.

More batteries connected in series can produce the same amount of voltage, but because there are more batteries to share the load, it lowers the discharge rate per battery. The driving range is also extended because more batteries increase the overall capacity. Think of it like adding a larger fuel tank to your car. With a larger battery bank, you can drive your golf car farther between charges. If you keep your depth of discharge (DOD) on the battery pack less than 50 percent, it will ultimately add to making the pack last much longer than a pack with fewer batteries.

For example, on a 48-volt golf car, you can typically get a longer driving range and increased battery life with six 8V batteries, and even more capacity with eight 6V batteries. There are still other variables to consider, as there are various 6V and 8V batteries with different amp-hour ratings, but when you replace the batteries with the same amp-hour rating required by the golf car manufacturer and provide proper maintenance procedures, the battery bank with more batteries will last longer. Additional information on explaining the effects of wiring batteries in series and parallel can be found here: https://www.usbattery.com/info-center/configuration/

Connected 8v Batteries

Deep-Cycle Battery Terminals And Cable Maintenance Tips

When battery-powered vehicles and equipment suffer from intermittent performance issues, one of the most common reasons for this is poor battery cable connections. Ironically, loose connections can be caused by both under-tightening and over-tightening of the battery terminal connectors, as well as corrosion that can occur over time. Deep-cycle battery terminals are made from lead, which is a soft metal that creeps over time. The result is that they must be retightened regularly to maintain proper torque levels. If too much torque is applied when attaching cables to battery terminals, however, it can cause damage to the lead terminals preventing them from making a proper connection.  Battery manufacturers recommend terminal torque specifications that vary with the different types of terminals used for deep-cycle batteries.

Deep cycle batteries can come with UTL, UT, large and small L, Offset S, and SAE tapered post terminals, among others.  For UTL and UT battery terminals with threaded studs, the recommended torque is 95 – 105 in-lb (7.9 – 8.8 ft-lb).  For bolt-thru terminals such as large and small L and Offset S, the recommended torque is 100-120 in-lb (8.3 – 10 ft-lb).  SAE terminals have a recommended terminal torque of 50-70 in-lb (4.2 to 5.8 ft-lb). For other terminal types, consult the battery manufacturer’s recommendations. When measuring terminal torque, use a torque wrench with settings or readings in the 0 – 200 in-lb (0 – 16 ft-lb) range. Larger torque wrenches can inadvertently exceed the recommended settings or readings.

It is also important to consult the battery manufacturer’s recommendations for the proper type and assembly of the terminal hardware. Most manufacturers provide stainless steel nuts and lock washers or plated bolts, nuts, and lock washers with the batteries depending on the type of terminal used. The correct method is to position a lock washer between the nut and the connector (never between the connector and the lead terminal) and apply the recommended torque to completely compress the lock washer without deforming the lead terminal.

Clean terminals will maintain the best connection, so if corrosion is observed on the battery terminals and connectors, they should be cleaned with a wire brush and a solution of baking soda and water to neutralize any electrolyte that may be on the surfaces. To reduce the formation of corrosion on the terminals, battery manufacturers recommend using a corrosion inhibitor after making proper connections. Never apply grease or other lubricants between the terminals and connectors since they can interfere with the connection.

Check the cables to determine if they are corroded and need to be replaced.  Corrosion can extend under the cable insulation but is often not visible. A good ‘tug’ on the cables can expose weak connections. If new cables or connectors were added during the life of the vehicle, make sure the wire connectors are properly crimped and soldered to the cable ends.  Studies have shown that wire cables with crimped connectors that are not soldered to the cable ends can corrode faster and create a high resistance connection between the wire cable and crimped connector. This high resistance can cause excessive heating during discharge and melt the lead terminal, causing a loss of connection and permanent damage to the battery.  If any of the cables show signs of melted insulation, corrosion under the insulation, or have bare wire showing replace the cables and connectors.

While faulty connections are often the cause of battery terminal meltdowns resulting in poor performance, using appropriately sized wires with properly crimped and soldered connectors and the proper torque settings will reduce the chances that poor connections will adversely affect battery performance.

Screenshot of U.S. Battery Battery Application Guide Mobile App

Getting The Most Out of U.S. Battery’s Mobile App

U.S. Battery introduced its mobile app earlier this year.  This powerful tool allows users to access exclusive U.S. Battery content from their Apple or Android device. Here are a few ways that the app can be useful to you.

Battery Application Guide

When it comes time to replace one or more of your deep cycle batteries, selecting the right one for your application can be confusing. Battery powered vehicles and equipment often operate under different voltages and run-times, which makes selecting the right deep-cycle battery particularly important.

U.S. Battery Manufacturing created its mobile app to help you make the correct battery selection. The included Battery Application Guide makes it easy to find and select the right battery for a variety of applications including golf carts, floor machines, aerial work platforms, and more. By selecting your machine’s manufacturer and model, you can determine the batteries best suited to ensure your machine’s optimal performance.

Access to Product Spec. Sheets

From the app, you are able to easily access the most up-to-date spec. sheets and product information for all of U.S. Battery’s Flooded Lead Acid and AGM batteries.

 User-Specific Notifications

Learn about new products you might be interested in as soon as they are announced. Users can create a login and get notifications on new products, events, articles, and videos that are customized to their particular interests.

The U.S. Battery app is free and is available for download from iTunes and Google Play.

Traveling Troy with Van

Camper Van Equipped With Solar And Battery Storage

Traveling Troy outfitted his Astro Van with a solar system and U.S. Battery AGM batteries for energy storage

Not many of us can pack up our van and head out onto the open road for extended periods, but Traveling Troy is a blogger who converted his Chevrolet Astro Van into a camper and is now enjoying the van life. “From the beginning of the build, I knew I wanted to be unplugged from the grid as much as possible,” says Troy. “I knew solar would be my main source of power, but we (my Dad and I) also installed the ability to use stored power and a battery isolator for those rainy days.”

Troy had no idea how many solar cells and batteries he would need, so he began listing all of the electronic components and how often he would use them. “To determine how many watts of solar and the battery size needed, I listed all the power consuming items I planned to use while traveling,” says Troy. “This included my laptop, cellphone, gadgets, fridge, and others.”  U.S. Battery has an Interactive Energy Chart that helps determine battery storage requirements on the U.S. Battery websites. “We took the estimated watt usage from each of these items and determined how many hours or minutes a day I would use them,” he says. “This gave us an idea of maximum daily consumption.”

camper van power center Realizing how much power he was going to need, Troy says he figured to utilize as much of the van’s rooftop for solar panels. “It was decided that we would go as big as we could go with the limited space,” says Troy.  “That ended up being 300 watts of solar panels on the roof of the van and two 6 volt batteries with 210 amp hours inside the van.”

Troy decided to use U.S. Battery AGM deep-cycle batteries because of their compact size and because he wanted something maintenance-free. “We knew space was going to be limited in the small Astro van and every inch mattered,” says Troy. “The battery compartment was no exception.  We chose U.S. Battery AGMs because we wanted a deep cycle battery that was reliable, maintenance free and spill proof.  The plan was to install the batteries in the back corner of the van and build around them.  The area above the batteries and around the batteries was valuable build space.  Two years later, and the U.S. Battery AGM batteries are still going strong.”

The solar system installed in his camper van is a custom build, but many of the pieces are readily available. “Our solar systems consist of Three Renogy 100 watt Monocrystalline solar panels run in parallel to a Renogy PMW solar controller which charges two 6-volt AGM 2000 batteries from U.S. Battery,” says Troy. “All the components are neatly packed into our ‘Power Center’ which uses what would normally be wasted space around the back passenger wheel well of the van.  Some of the components include a 200-watt inverter, 12-volt cigarette plug, shore power breaker and shore power battery charger.”

power center 2 (1)So far, the system has worked well and Troy has had enough power to live out of the van and explore the country. “I’m in the third week of a 3-month road trip and it has been really amazing being on the road full-time and living out of the van, off the grid,” says Troy. “My plan is to explore Arizona and visit the Grand Canyon for my birthday.  Then I’ll be exploring Southern Utah and the Mighty Five National Parks.  Finally, I’m hoping to meet up with my dad and step-mom in Colorado while they’re on a road trip.”

Troy chronicles his trips and the continuous build-up of his camper van on his social media pages, travelingtroy.com.

 

Battery Powered Elevating Platforms May Soon Be Replacing Ladders

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The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that there were 268,731

Ladder/Stool fall injuries, in the U.S., requiring medical treatment in 2017

Ensuring employee safety is an ongoing concern, causing many employers to look at the use of traditional ladders and scaffolding in the workplace. These growing concerns have in turn led to an increase in demand for compact vertical lifts and smaller scissor lifts. An article in the May-June 2018 issue of Access, Lift & Handlers Magazine reported that vehicle manufacturers such as JLG, Skyjack and, Snorkel are making smaller, more compact vertical mast lifts and scissor lifts in response to the industry’s call for greater safety for workers who would normally use ladders and scaffolding on jobs of 18 to 25 feet.

These low-level lifts feature smaller footprints, tighter turning radiuses, and are lighter than typical Aerial Work Platforms. They are available in manually operated or self-propelled models, allowing them to access areas that would be difficult or impossible for other lifts. The Skyjack SJ12 & SJ16, for instance, have a zero inside turn radius and only weigh 1,720lbs. and 2,130lbs, respectively. And, they only need four 6v deep cycle batteries, like the US2200 XC2, to supply the necessary 24V for operation. Due to their versatility and stability, construction crews, facility managers, and consumers are quickly adopting vertical mast lifts; as a way to reduce the risk of injury on the job.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]