The Ultimate Guide to the Deep-Cycle Battery
The deep-cycle battery is an excellent and reliable energy source for all types of devices, even powering off-grid homes that require high-capacity battery banks to supply their energy needs. The high-level efficiency and longer life span of deep-cycle batteries allowed them to become the top choice on the market for many devices and equipment requiring a steady energy source, especially when the grid is not reliable.
Deep-cycle batteries are reliable, have a steady voltage, and in some cases provide a maximum depth of discharge of 80–100 percent of their capacity, even though it is recommended to discharge them up to 50 percent to extend their lifespan. With a high capacity, these batteries are more reliable and require less maintenance than others, being the latest technology in the industry for applications that require backup or stable energy sources.
In this article, we will explain to you everything about these batteries, including what a deep-cycle battery is, how they work, what different types are available, how to charge a deep-cycle battery, and their applications. If you want one of these heavy-duty batteries, we recommend you to check our buying guide. It will help you choose among the top ten best deep-cycle batteries that are perfectly suitable to your power needs.
- Where Deep-Cycle Batteries Are Used
- Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Deep-Cycle Batteries
- What’s New in Deep-Cycle Batteries?
- Types of Deep-Cycle Batteries
- Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Type of Deep-Cycle Battery
- Top 10 Best Deep-Cycle Batteries
- Best Deep-Cycle Batteries – Full Reviews
- 1. Optima OPT8016-103 Marine Deep-Cycle Battery
- 2. Battle Born LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 3. VMaxTanks V35-857 Marine Deep-Cycle Battery
- 4. Weize 12V 100AH Pure Gel Deep-Cycle Rechargeable Battery
- 5. Renogy 12V 200Ah Deep-Cycle Gel Battery
- 6. Chins LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 7. Ampere Time LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 8. XS Power D3400 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 9. Lossigy LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 10. Universal Power Group 12V 100Ah Solar Wind AGM SLA Deep-Cycle VRLA Battery
- Deep-Cycle Battery – Buyer’s Guide
- 1. Size and Weight
- 2. What Battery Size Do You Need (Capacity)?
- 3. Flooded, AGM, Gel, or Lithium?
- 4. Depth of Discharge (DoD)
- 5. Discharge/Charge Cycles
- 6. Operating Voltage
- 7. Operating Amperage and C-Rate
- 8. Charging Time and Charging Parameters
- 9. Lifespan and Durability
- 10. Warranty
- 11. Type of Charger Required
- 12. Resistance to Vibration and Shocks
- 13. Brand
- 14. Working Temperatures
- 15. Installed Terminals
- How to Get the Best Performance From Deep-Cycle Batteries
- FAQ Section
- 1. What Is the Best Deep-Cycle Battery Brand?
- 2. How Long Does the Charge for a 100Ah Deep-Cycle Battery Last?
- 3. When Do I Need to Recharge My Battery?
- 4. What Is Better: A 12- or a 6-Volt Deep-Cycle Battery?
- 5. How Long Do Deep-Cycle Batteries Last?
- 6. What Is the Charging Time for Deep-Cycle Batteries?
- 7. Is It Possible to Wire Together Different Battery Types and Sizes in the Same System?
- 8. Can I Use a Deep-Cycle Battery in My Car?
- 9. What Happens If I Overcharge My Battery?
- 10. How Do I Tell If a Deep-Cycle Battery Is Bad?
- 11. How Do You Charge a Deep-Cycle Battery Properly?
- Best Selling Deep-Cycle Batteries
Where Deep-Cycle Batteries Are Used
There is a wide range of applications for deep-cycle batteries. They can be used to power up a variety of vehicles used as energy storage systems. There are also many other applications for deep-cycle batteries. Thus, here are the most popular ones.
Land and Marine Vehicles
Some land vehicles like RVs, fork trucks, golf carts, and many others are powered by deep-cycle batteries. Deep-cycle batteries (mainly lithium-based models) are the main energy storage systems for the best brands of electric vehicles (EVs).
These batteries also have a wide variety of marine applications, powering all types of boats. For this application, the battery has slight design variations to adapt to its marine uses and is called a deep-cycle marine battery.
Caregiver Mobility and Personal Transportation
Deep-cycle batteries provide the best energy source for personal mobility vehicles like the Segway and even medical aid mobility vehicles like motorized wheelchairs.
Energy Storage Systems
Homes that partially or fully supply their power with renewable generation systems require deep-cycle batteries for storing their excess generated energy for later usage.
These batteries are also used as backup power systems for industries, retail shops, and even in electrical substations for protection systems.
Deep-cycle batteries have other popular applications, like powering emergency light systems, uninterruptible power supply (UPS) devices, traffic signals, audio devices, and many others.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Deep-Cycle Batteries
Since deep-cycle batteries are reusable storage devices with high battery capacity, there are lots of advantages and only a few disadvantages to them. We will now dive further into each one of them.
Here are several advantages of using deep-cycle batteries.
These batteries are designed to have a higher life span, producing less waste in the long term. They also have several parts that can be fully recycled when manufacturing new batteries.
High Efficiency Level
Deep-cycle batteries have a high-end design that increases their roundtrip efficiency, allowing them to store big amounts of power and supplying them back with few losses.
These batteries can be steadily discharged at a regular rate up to a maximum depth of discharge. This is why they are more reliable for high-demand applications requiring steady energy sources for longer periods.
Require Less Maintenance
Some deep-cycle batteries are designed with smart electronic control systems and require little to no maintenance. They should still be properly taken care of to minimize damage to the battery and extend preventive maintenance schedules.
Can Be Deeply Discharged
One of the main advantages is the depth of discharge capacity. This provides you a prolonged period of energy discharge at a steady rate with a full charge, meaning more time to power up your devices.
The deep-cycle battery is made to last and can be repeatedly charged and discharged without inconvenience. This is why you must choose the best deep-cycle marine battery for marine applications and the equivalent case for land vehicles or other applications.
Deep-cycle batteries can be charged at a relatively fast rate. In the case of the lithium-ion deep-cycle battery with the latest in charging technology, you can charge it in just a fraction of the time you charge regular batteries.
Here are several advantages you should be weary of when using deep-cycle batteries.
While some deep-cycle batteries are relatively cheap but outdated in technology, the best and most up-to-date options might have a higher price.
Deep-cycle batteries are more delicate and require proper care within specific parameters. They have to be properly charged, stored, and discharged. In some cases, you might even need a special deep-cycle battery charger.
What’s New in Deep-Cycle Batteries?
Whether you are here for the whole ride or just checking different battery technologies, you might want to know what is new in store for deep-cycle batteries. Well, there is an easy answer for that: Lithium.
Some devices and appliances can be very energy-demanding and require much more power in less time than others to properly function. This is why you need a large-enough ready-to-go energy source that will easily power them whenever you want to use them. For these types of purposes, the battery industry designed the lithium-ion deep-cycle battery.
If you are wondering what a deep-cycle battery of lithium is, that is an easy answer. The lithium-ion deep-cycle battery is a high-end battery that uses lithium salts as its electrolyte instead of sulfuric acid or other substances. With a different chemical core comes a whole new battery with higher C-rates, higher amp hours, higher energy density, and much less maintenance or precaution requirement.
Since the lithium-ion deep-cycle battery has higher C-rates than lead-acid batteries, it is widely being used for energy storage systems for backup or off-grid applications. This battery can hold a higher charge and be discharged at a faster rate in case you have a consumption peak in your home. This is also why EVs are using high-end lithium-ion deep-cycle batteries as their main energy source.
Types of Deep-Cycle Batteries
On the most basic level, there are two types of deep-cycle batteries varying in their technology: lead-acid batteries and lithium-ion batteries. Lead-acid batteries are also divided into flooded lead-acid batteries and sealed lead-acid batteries. In turn, sealed lead-acid batteries are divided among absorbent glass mat (AGM) batteries and gel batteries.
Ok, we get it, those divisions can be a little tricky. To make it easier to understand, we will show you those categories in a simple schematic as follows.
- Lead-acid battery:
- Flooded lead-acid battery
- Sealed lead-acid battery
- Absorbent glass mat (AGM) battery
- Gel battery
- Lithium battery
Before explaining each category, you must remember that each battery is different depending on the technology used to manufacture it. This refers to the electrolyte, the materials for anode and cathode, and the other important components used to manufacture the battery. With this out of the way, let us dive into the different types of deep-cycle batteries.
Flooded Lead-Acid Battery
The flooded lead-acid battery is one of the most widely used batteries, dominating the industry for solar battery banks. This battery is manufactured with a chemical core composed of lead plates fully submerged in an electrolyte of sulfuric acid. The substance, in turn, is topped with distilled water within an unsealed case. This technology is used to elaborate both starter batteries and deep-cycle batteries.
One of the main disadvantages of the flooded lead-acid battery is that it must be installed in a highly ventilated area. This is because when the battery charges, it releases hydrogen gas, which is an explosive substance. Since the distilled water within the battery is regularly evaporated, it requires regular maintenance by filling it with distilled water to prevent it from sulfating.
Even though this type of battery is outdated due to the emergence of new technology, flooded lead-acid batteries are still used for battery banks in low-income countries.
This type of battery also has a good overall performance despite high/low temperatures and has one of the highest discharge rates among lead-acid batteries.
AGM Deep-Cycle Battery
The absorbed glass mat (AGM) battery, better known as the AGM deep-cycle battery, is one of the most popular types of sealed lead-acid batteries. In its core, the AGM deep-cycle battery is very similar to the flooded lead-acid battery, with the main difference of including specially designed fiberglass mats that contain the electrolyte solution and suspending it between battery plates.
Due to the use of fiberglass mats and more advanced technology, the electrolyte in the AGM battery is in a dry state, making it one of the main differences from the flooded lead-acid battery. When the battery is working, the electrolyte transfers from the fiberglass mats to the battery plates and back as the battery is charged or discharged.
The AGM deep-cycle battery can easily provide instant high-load currents when the system demands it. Due to its fiberglass design, the battery can be charged at a faster rate using the right AGM deep-cycle battery charger. This battery is an option better suited for mid-range usage, having capacities ranging from 30Ah up to 200Ah.
Since the AGM battery was specially designed for the aircraft industry, it has much better resistance to vibrations and shocks. This battery also has an entirely maintenance-free design. On the downside, the AGM deep-cycle batteries are more expensive than the flooded model.
The gel battery is the second type of sealed lead-acid battery. Since it is manufactured using lead plates and sulfuric acid, the chemical chore is similar to the AGM deep-cycle battery. The main difference is that instead of using glass to contain the electrolyte, the sulfuric acid electrolyte is infused with silica and forms a gelled electrolyte contained in each gel cell within the sealed case.
Thanks to its gel cell design, the gel battery has a very small size in comparison with other lead-acid batteries and provides more heavy-duty performance. The gelled electrolyte makes the battery not prone to sulfating and is therefore maintenance-free. Because of the sealed case, the gel battery is also entirely leak-free, spill-free, shock-resistant, and vibration-resistant.
While it has many advantages, this battery also has a slight disadvantage. The silica gel holding the electrolyte is fragile in terms of temperature and situations of high amperage consumption, so it can be easily burned, therefore damaging the battery even if it is new. The gel battery is also quite expensive in comparison with other lead-acid batteries.
If the gel battery is properly charged and discharged, it can last longer than the AGM battery, which is why people use a smart deep-cycle battery charger. This battery must also be installed in devices with a low amperage consumption, being perfect for wheelchairs and other personal transport vehicles.
Lithium Deep-Cycle Battery
Now that we covered all the lead-acid batteries, we need to learn what a deep-cycle battery is, designed with lithium technology.
This is a battery that uses a cathode made out of lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4), lithium cobalt dioxide (LiCoO,2) or lithium manganese oxide (LiMn2O4), an anode of graphite carbon, and some variation of lithium salts for its electrolyte. This substance is mainly responsible to provide energy storage and transmission of electrons when charging or discharging the battery.
Within the lithium deep-cycle batteries, there are some variations. Lithium-ion batteries use LiCoO2 or LiMn2O4 as the cathode and have a higher energy density, which is why they are used for cellphones and other small device applications. However, they have a high risk of thermal runaway in large systems. Lithium-iron batteries use LiFePO4 as the cathode and another lithium salt variation for the electrolyte. These are much safer options, provide a longer life span, and are even cheaper than lithium-ion.
The lithium deep-cycle battery is the latest in battery technology and the best one to date. It has the highest energy density in comparison with other technologies and requires close to no maintenance.
When comparing lithium deep-cycle batteries with other technology, there are many advantages of the lithium deep-cycle battery, while their disadvantage is the price. Luckily, for end users, with improvements in the manufacturing processes for lithium batteries, prices have been steadily falling over the last few years and might reduce even further over the next few years.
Thanks to the high energy density of lithium batteries, the technology can be used both for small- and large-scale purposes. Nowadays, portable devices mainly use lithium-ion batteries, providing them with a high capacity in very small batteries. This is also the same battery technology used for the best brands of EVs requiring high-capacity heavy-duty batteries to provide quality experiences.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Type of Deep-Cycle Battery
|Type of deep-cycle battery||Advantages||Disadvantages|
|Flooded lead-acid battery||Cheaper – low costs per watt-hoursLow internal impedance – has a high C-rateHigher voltage limitGreat availability – worldwide suppliers||Requires regular maintenance – topping with distilled waterReleases hydrogen gas when rapidly chargedCan only be installed in ventilated areasProne to sulfatingSeveral restrictions for transportationNot environmentally friendlyHeavy packagingHigh self-discharge rate – 5 percent monthlyLower energy densityLow life span – 300–500 cycles|
|AGM battery||No or little maintenance is requiredCan be charged at a faster rateFaster response – delivers high-load currents on demandBest suited for a wider range of temperaturesLow self-discharge rateSafer – thick separator prevents spillingResistant – withholds vibrations and shocksBetter in cold climates than lithium-ion and other lead-acid batteriesSmall self-discharge rate when stored – 1–3 percent monthlyHigher C-rates than gel batteriesHigh charge/discharge efficiency – up to 80 percent||Low overvoltage potentialOvercharge will damage itMore expensive than flooded but cheaper than gel and lithium-ion|
|Gel battery||Can last longer than AGM batteriesGelled electrolyte prevents it from spillingResistant to vibrations and shocksEntirely sealed – does not release explosive gassesNo or little maintenance is requiredLow self-discharge rate – 1–3 percent monthlyGreat charge/discharge cycle – up to 70 percent (recommended 50 percent)Better at high temperatures than othersStable performance||More expensive than other lead-acid batteriesLow C-rate – cannot be fast-charged or dischargedOvercharging or fast charging will damage itRequires an especially designed charger|
|Lithium-ion and Lithium-iron battery||Higher energy density than lead-acid batteriesHigher C-rate than lead-acid batteriesEntirely maintenance-freeNo memory effectLighter and less bulkyWorks up to 2000–5000 charge cyclesGreat price expectations for the future – prices are steadily decreasing over the yearsExcellent depth of discharge – up to 80–100 percent of its capacity||Most expensive battery to dateLower performance at low temperatures|
Top 10 Best Deep-Cycle Batteries
|Deep-cycle batteries||Battery type||Capacity||Warranty||Check price on Amazon|
|Optima OPT8016-103 Marine Deep-Cycle Battery||AGM||55Ah||3 years long||Buy on Amazon|
|Battle Born LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery||Lithium-iron||100Ah||10 years long||Buy on Amazon|
|VMaxTanks V35-857 Marine Deep-Cycle Battery||AGM||35Ah||1 year long||Buy on Amazon|
|Weize 12V 100AH Pure Gel Deep-Cycle Rechargeable Battery||Gel||100Ah||1 year long||Buy on Amazon|
|Renogy 12V 200Ah Deep-Cycle Gel Battery||Gel||200Ah||3 years long||Buy on Amazon|
|Chins LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery||Lithium-iron||200Ah||10 years long||Buy on Amazon|
|Ampere Time LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery||Lithium-iron||300Ah||10 years long||Buy on Amazon|
|XS Power D3400 Deep-Cycle Battery||AGM||65Ah||3 years long||Buy on Amazon|
|Lossigy LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery||Lithium-iron||200Ah||10 years long||Buy on Amazon|
|Universal Power Group 12V 100Ah Solar Wind AGM SLA Deep-Cycle VRLA Battery||AGM||100Ah||1 years long||Buy on Amazon|
Best Deep-Cycle Batteries – Full Reviews
If you are looking to get the most suitable battery for your solar panels, personal vehicles, boats, or other applications, you came to the right place. We compiled a list with the top ten best deep-cycle batteries, so you can pick the best one for you among the top choices in the market.
1. Optima OPT8016-103 Marine Deep-Cycle Battery
- 12-Volt, 750 Cold Cranking Amps, Size: 10 inches x 6 7/8 inches x 7 13/16 inches tall, Weight: 43.5 pounds, Dual SAE & 5/16 inches Stainless Steel Stud Posts. 55 Ah C20 capacity
- Optimal starting power even in bad weather
- Mountable in virtually any position. Works well as a boat battery or RV battery
Designed by one of the best-quality battery brands, the Optima OPT8016-103 12v deep-cycle battery might be the best deep-cycle marine battery. This is a dual-purpose battery, so it can be used as a starter battery for several types of vessels/vehicles and also as a deep-cycle battery.
This high-performance AGM deep-cycle battery can be installed in boats, several types of marine vessels, and even RVs or golf carts. The battery provides extended running periods with three times more recharges than other marine batteries and up to five times more cycles than traditional ones.
At its chemical core, the battery is manufactured with several individual spiral-wound cells. Each battery cell has two pure lead plates that are coated with lead oxide, with each plate working as the positive and negative terminals of the cell. Aside from a quality inner core, the battery is stored in a polypropylene hard case that seals it and protects it from any external shock or vibration.
As a starter battery, it works with a current of 750 Cold Cranking Amps (CCA) or 870 Cranking Amps (CA). CCA is the current at -18ºC for 30 seconds and CA at 0ºC. As a deep-cycle battery, it has a working capacity of 55Ah at a 20-hour discharge rate. This 12V deep-cycle battery with AGM lead-acid technology includes a reserve charge of 120 minutes at 25 Amps, which can be handy in emergencies.
- Fifteen times more resistant to vibrations than common batteries
- It can be installed at virtually any position
- Entirely spill-proof, being much safer to use and transport
- It is 100% maintenance-free
- Holds three times more charge than other marine batteries
- It has a medium capacity of 55Ah, not suitable for high-demand systems
2. Battle Born LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- BUILT-IN BMS: BMS stands for "Battery Management System" - the brain of our deep cycle lithium batteries. Our BMS protects your battery from most common causes of battery failure, such as temperature...
- LITHIUM-ION TECHNOLOGY: Unlike Lead Acid batteries, Battle Born's deep cycle lithium-ion batteries have unlimited mounting capability, exceptional longevity, and are more cost effective. When...
- GREEN ENERGY BATTERIES: Made from 100% safe, nontoxic, renewable energy, Battle Born Batteries last for more cycles and can be charged and discharged repeatedly (and charge faster than any other...
The Battle Born Lithium-Iron (LiFePO4) 100Ah deep-cycle battery tops among the best options in the market for quality lithium batteries. The brand especially designs batteries for off-the-grid systems, RVs, vans, and even marine applications, so you know it can be trusted for these types of applications.
Even though this battery should not be submerged in water, it is manufactured with a sealed quality case that makes it water-resistant and therefore an excellent deep-cycle marine battery. You can install this battery for recreational purposes in any boat to power up all types of high-consumption devices.
This is a 12-volt deep-cycle battery with a 100Ah capacity. The battery has a max operating amperage of 100Ah at C1 (up to 100A at a deep-cycle discharge rate of 1 hour), a max surge current of 200A for up to 30 seconds, or higher loads for 0.5 seconds.
To protect the battery, Battle Born included a built-in BMS that keeps the battery safe and working flawlessly for more years. This limits the working amperage to the specified limits and protects against high/low voltages, short circuits, high/low temperatures, and automatic cell balancing.
Thanks to the BMS technology in the battery, you can safely charge and discharge this lithium-iron deep-cycle battery to a lifespan of up to 3000–5000 cycles. The battery can safely be discharged down to 100 percent as stated by the manufacturer or 90 percent if you want to be in the safe zone. After the threshold of 5000 cycles, the 100ah deep-cycle battery will hold up 70–80 percent of its capacity.
- Ten-year warranty
- Extremely lightweight
- Manufactured with 100% renewable energy
- Built-in BMS system protecting the battery
- Works in temperatures of -20ºC–57.2ºC
- Can be charged in just 2 hours at 100 amps
- BMS protection can malfunction if the battery is discharged down to 10V
3. VMaxTanks V35-857 Marine Deep-Cycle Battery
- Dimensions: L=7.7 inch W=5 inch H=6.1 inch
- Heavy Duty Grids: VMAX heavy duty lead tin alloys provide an extra margin of performance and service life in either float or cyclic applications, even after repeated over discharges.
- Maintenance Free Operation: There is no need to check specific gravity of the electrolyte or add water to VMAX tanks during float service life. In fact, there is no provision for this type of...
The VMAX V35-857 AGM 12V deep-cycle battery is one of the best options if you are looking to power a low-consumption device with a low-price battery requiring no maintenance. The battery is manufactured by VMAX, a quality battery company that designs batteries for marine applications, medical devices, personal transportation, and even solar backup systems.
Even if this is a deep-cycle battery, the manufacturer designed it to be used as a dual-purpose battery for some types of vehicles like RVs, boats, and vehicles with 14–15V alternators. For these usages, the V35-857 battery provides high amperage bursts of 300 CCA for land vehicles and 390 marine cranking Amps (MCA) for boats.
When used as an AGM deep-cycle battery, the V35-857 provides a nominal voltage of up to 12V. The battery has an operating amperage rate of 35Ah at C20 or what is the same as a steady current of 1.25 Amp for a discharge period of 20 hours. This is why the battery is recommended for small vehicles and devices with low consumption.
This 12v deep-cycle battery has a recommended 60 percent depth of discharge. It is also quite safe since it uses AGM technology which is entirely leakproof and spill-proof. The case also makes it resistant to shocks and vibrations.
- It is durable and resistant
- Requires zero maintenance
- Perfectly suitable for boats, golf carts, and other vehicles
- It is perfectly safe since it will not spill or leak
- High CCA and MCA currents
- It only has a 1-year warranty
- Low capacity
- You can only use 60 percent of its capacity
4. Weize 12V 100AH Pure Gel Deep-Cycle Rechargeable Battery
- 12V 100AH is Gel Electrolyte Technology Deep Cycle Sealed Battery; Voltage: 12 Volt; Amperage: 100 AH; Chemistry: GEL; Battery Dimensions: 13 in x 6.73 in x 8.19in ; Package Weight: 63.7 Lbs; The...
- AGM and GEL batteries are both VRLA (Valve Regulated Lead-Acid) batteries. GEL batteries a safer option than traditional lead-acid. Gel batteries adapt better to extreme temperatures and are less...
- Long Life- Heavy duty lead-calcium grids ensure mild corrosion and enable a long designed service life of 15 years’ standby use under optimal float charge conditions and below optimal operating...
The Weize LFP12100 is one of the best 12-volt deep-cycle batteries within a budget. It has a good capacity considering the price and has a quality design that makes it much more durable.
With a high capacity of 100Ah, this gel battery is perfect for RVs, personal vehicles, and other mid-consumption applications. Since it has an operating amperage of 100Ah at C10 (10 Amps at a steady rate for 10 hours) and a 50 percent maximum DoD, it works better at powering mid-consumption devices for longer periods.
While it only has a 1-year-long warranty, the battery is designed to last up to 15 years with proper usage. This is why the manufacturer recommends using a special deep-cycle battery charger that provides a cyclic charging voltage of 14.10–14.40V at a steady 20A current.
Since the battery is designed with quality gel technology, it is entirely safe to use, and its design ensures no spilling nor leaking of hazardous substances. The casing also makes it resistant to shocks and vibrations, perfect for personal or recreational vehicles.
- High capacity of 100Ah
- It has a zero-leaks and zero-spills design
- Requires no maintenance
- When properly used, it can last up to 15 years
- Very affordable when compared to other gel batteries considering its capacity
- Low self-discharge rate at 25ºC of 5 percent in 3 months
- Performs poorly on freezing conditions
- Only has a 1-year long warranty
- Requires a special charger to prolong its life span
5. Renogy 12V 200Ah Deep-Cycle Gel Battery
- 【Maintenance Free & No Leakage】This battery is comprised of gel instead of liquid, so there is no maintenance required to keep the battery working properly. Manufactured with an advanced valve...
- 【Extended Service Lifetime】Corrosion-resistant grids enable a design life of up to 12 years in standby applications and more than 750 charge/discharge cycles at 50% DOD in cyclic applications
- 【Longer Shelf Life】Made of high purity materials, Renogy Deep Cycle Hybrid GEL Batteries reduce the monthly self-discharge rate below 3% at 77℉ (25℃), which is 5 times lower than their Flooded...
The Renogy 200Ah gel deep-cycle battery is among the best gel batteries, considering its high capacity and excellent price. Alongside a good price, the battery is made by a quality manufacturer that sells all types of quality products for solar generation systems and different types of renewable energy generation and storage systems.
The battery operates at a nominal voltage of 12V and provides a max current of 200Ah at C10 (20 Amps at a steady rate for up to 20 hours). Thanks to its quality ABS case and gel technology, this deep-cycle battery is entirely safe to use, as it is completely leak-free and spill-free. It is also quite resistant to shocks and vibrations.
Due to its heavy-duty working capacity and high specs, the battery can be coupled in systems with mid-to-high levels of consumption. You can use this battery for marine applications, UPSs, wheelchairs, renewable energy storage systems, and much more.
According to the manufacturer, this battery has a long life span of 1100 cycles at a 50 percent maximum DoD. While it is recommended to only discharge it down to 50% to a voltage of 12.1V, the battery can withhold depletions down to 30–10 percent, in which case it will have a measured voltage of 11.8–11.5V.
To ensure a longer life span for the battery and a proper charge rate with the right parameters, we recommend you couple this gel battery with a special charger. The charger should be set at a voltage of 14.2V to properly charge this gel battery.
- High capacity of 200Ah
- Max steady working current of 20 Amps
- Shock-resistant and vibration-resistant
- Long life span of up to 1100 cycles
- Silver-plated terminals installed, ensuring better conduction
- Can properly function in temperatures as low as -25ºC
- Requires a special charger with voltage of 14.2V
- You can only take advantage of 100Ah per discharge cycle
6. Chins LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 【Deep Cycle Battery】: CHINS LiFePO4 battery provides 2000+ cycles compared to 300~500 cycles in lead acid battery. The service life of LiFePO4 batteries is 8 to 10 times than the standard...
- 【Lithium Iron Technology】: CHINS deep cycle lithium-ion battery has higher energy density, more stable performance and greater power. LiFepo4 battery will not burn when overcharged,...
- 【Built-In BMS & Convenience & Maintenance Free】: CHINS LiFePO4 battery has built-in BMS (Battery Management System) to protect it from overcharge, over-discharge, over-current, and short circuit...
The Chins LiFePO4 Lithium-Iron deep-cycle battery is one of the best options for these types of batteries considering it has a very low price and a quality design. While Chins is still a small brand of Chinese origin, they have an after-sell service center settled in California, USA.
This option has everything you need from a quality lithium-iron deep-cycle battery. It has an operating voltage of 12.8V and provides a current of 200Ah at C1, meaning it can be fully discharged in 1 hour at 200 Amps. If you require a high peak current, this battery provides you a max of 400 Amps for a short period of up to 5 seconds, ideal for turning on large-consumption devices.
The best thing about this battery is that it is entirely safe to use. Thanks to the built-in BMS system in the battery, it can fully provide the whole 200A at a steady rate without overheating or damaging the battery.
This battery has a lifespan of 2000–5000 cycles at a DoD of 80 percent, but it can withstand discharges of up to 100 percent, meaning you fully use the battery capacity of 200Ah.
This is a deep-cycle battery perfectly suited for all types of applications. You can install it at energy storage systems (up to 800Ah) for off-the-grid homes, RVs, lightning systems, trolling motors, houseboats, boats, and much more.
- High capacity of 200Ah
- You can use up to 100 percent of its capacity
- Provides high currents on demand (200A at a steady rate or 400A in 5 seconds)
- Long life span
- Has a low price considering the battery type and specs
- Quality casing
- Sometimes, the BMS does not cut out power at low voltages
7. Ampere Time LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 【Reliable Automotive Grade Lithium Battery】LiTime 12V300Ah LiFePO4 battery has exceptional quality since they are manufactured by Automotive Grade LiFePO4 Cells with higher energy density, more...
- 【More Usable Capacity & Top-Flight Performance】A full charge on the LiTime 12V300Ah LiFePO4 battery can run common appliances for consecutive days, like running an 80W refrigerator nonstop for...
- 【Perfect for Off-Grid & Outdoors Application】LiTime 12V300Ah LiFePO4 Battery can be connected in parallels and series for larger capacity (Max 1200Ah ) and higher voltage (24V, 36V, 48V), which...
Quality experience requires quality products, and the Ampere Time LiFePO4 lithium-iron deep-cycle battery has the highest capacity in our top ten best deep-cycle batteries list. Built with quality components and by an experienced manufacturer in the battery industry, this is one of the best options available.
This lithium battery has an optimal performance. It works at a measured voltage of 12.8V and provides a capacity of 300Ah at C 0.67 (200A at a steady discharge/charge rate). The battery also provides peak currents of 400A for as long as 5 seconds.
The battery has a longer lifespan than others with up to 4000–8000 cycles and a 10-year-long warranty, meaning you will be paying for a quality, durable, and long-lasting product. With a 300Ah capacity and a DoD of 95 percent, you can take advantage of most of its capacity – up to 285Ah for each cycle.
Ampere Time includes a built-in BMS that protects the internal mechanism of the battery from overcharges, overdischarges, overcurrents, and short circuits. The battery is set in an ABS quality case resistant to shocks and vibrations, with a handle that makes it easy to carry and an IP65 protection rating. To provide better conductivity, the manufacturers installed quality M8 terminals.
- Quality casing with great water protection
- It has a lifespan of 8000 cycles at a 95 percent DOD
- High capacity of 300Ah
- High steady current load of 200 Amp per hour
- Excellent price considering specs
- Poor customer service
8. XS Power D3400 Deep-Cycle Battery
- 12 Volt Battery With Ca: 1000, Ah: 65
- Absorbed Glass Mat (Electrolyte Is Suspended In Fiberglass)
- Spill Proof, Sealed, Valve Regulated And Vibration Resistant
The D3400 AGM deep-cycle battery is a quality dual-purpose option from the XS Power battery brand. This option is durable, has quality components, and has heavy-duty performance.
Because it is a dual-purpose battery, it can be used to power up certain vehicles and can be used as a deep-cycle battery. When used to power up vehicles, it provides 1000 Cranking Amps (CA) with a reserved capacity of 135 min, enough to get you out of trouble. As a deep-cycle battery, it has a medium-low overall capacity of 65 Ah and a recommended DoD of 50 percent.
This AGM battery has a nominal voltage of 12V but goes up to 14.4 when fully charged and provides an amperage of 65Ah at C20 (3.25 Amps for 20 hours). The low amperage is the reason why this battery is best suitable for small vehicles, small boats, and other devices with low Amp consumption.
This battery is sealed within a quality and durable case that provides resistance against vibrations and shocks, perfect for all types of vehicles. Due to the AGM technology, this valve-regulated lead-acid battery does not leak nor spill at all, which is why it requires no maintenance.
- Quality design and durable case
- The battery does not leak nor spill the electrolyte
- Perfect for small boats, golf carts, and small vehicles
- 3-year-long warranty
- Moderately high price considering AGM technology and capacity
9. Lossigy LiFePO4 Deep-Cycle Battery
- High Quality Cells: LOSSIGY lithium iron phosphate batteries are manufactured of A-grade cells with higher energy density, more stable performance&greater power. Highest-level safety based on UL...
- 10-Year Lifespan: LOSSIGY Lifepo4 battery provides at least 4000 charge discharge cycles. The built-in BMS effectively protects the electric core from damage caused by high temperature, low...
- Easy Connectivity: LOSSIGY deep cycle lithium battery can be connected in series or in parallel with the same type batteries. Up to 4 connected in series to form a 48V system, and multiple can be...
When looking for heavy-duty performance and high power, you need to opt for quality batteries. The Lossigy LiFePO4 12V battery is an excellent option among the lithium-iron batteries of a medium price range.
This Lossigy lithium-iron battery has a capacity of 200Ah. Since it has a DoD of 100 percent, you can take full advantage of its capacity, but we recommend you to go as low as 95 percent to be on the safe side. The battery has a life span of 2000–5000 discharge/charge cycles, but if you take proper care of it, you can get some extra cycles.
While this lithium battery has a nominal voltage of 12V, fully charged, it can provide up to 12.8V. The battery has a capacity of 200Ah at C2, supplying you with up to 100 Amps for mid-to-high consumption devices. You can even have a high amperage discharge of 140A for a short period of 5 seconds.
To provide safety and ensure its life span, the battery has a built-in BMS system. The BMS tops the operating amperage at 100 Amps and has both high- and low-temperature cutouts.
This battery can be used for all types of applications, including RVs, golf carts, medical mobility devices, personal vehicles, energy storage systems, and much more. When used as a battery bank, it can be installed in parallel with a maximum of four other batteries with similar specs.
- It has a 5000-cycle life span
- Works at freezing temperatures of -15ºC
- High capacity of 200Ah
- Working amperage of 100 Amps
- Low self-discharge rate of 2% monthly
- BMS does not provide optimal protection when short-circuited
10. Universal Power Group 12V 100Ah Solar Wind AGM SLA Deep-Cycle VRLA Battery
- UB121000 SLA is a 12V 100AH Group 30H Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) Maintenance Free Rechargeable Battery, UL Listed
- The spill-proof SLA/AGM battery features high discharge rate, wide operating temperatures, long life and deep discharge recovery.
- Rechargeable battery that can be mounted in any position, resists shock and vibration. Long lasting high performance in high and low temperatures.
The UB121000 is a quality AGM deep-cycle battery designed with a medium capacity and manufactured by the Universal Power Group, an excellent battery brand. Considering its capacity and specs, the battery has a very low price.
This AGM deep-cycle battery has a medium-to-high capacity of 100Ah, which is quite good for lead-acid batteries. It has an operating voltage of 12V and a current of 100Ah at C20 (5 Amps at a steady rate for up to 10 hours). Considering the amperage curve of the battery, you can extract up to 17A for 2.5 hours, 9.3A for 10 hours, or 60A for 30 minutes to reach the recommended 50 percent DoD.
Since this is an AGM deep-cycle battery, you could discharge it up to 70 percent, but this could reduce its capacity. To properly use this battery, we recommend you follow the 50 percent DoD recommended by the manufacturer.
Because this lead-acid battery uses the AGM technology, it is a much safer option because it does not spill or leak electrolytes. Aside from this, Universal Power Group designed the battery with a sealed quality case that is acid-proof.
This is an amazing battery to install at renewable energy storage systems. Aside from battery banks, it can be used for golf carts or other recreational vehicles, medical mobility devices, and several other applications.
- It has a case that makes it shock-resistant and vibration-resistant
- High capacity of 100Ah
- Requires no maintenance
- Can be installed in virtually any position
- Quality casing resistant to acid
- Only has 12 months of warranty
Deep-Cycle Battery – Buyer’s Guide
To ensure functionality and enjoy a higher life span for your deep-cycle battery, you must choose the right battery for the application. To help you choose, here are some factors to consider when choosing the perfect battery for you.
1. Size and Weight
Size and weight can be very important things to consider. Depending on the application, you might need a smaller or larger battery.
For instance, scooters, mobility devices, and similar applications require smaller and lighter batteries. If you are installing a home energy backup system, you might only need to consider the size of the battery.
2. What Battery Size Do You Need (Capacity)?
The capacity of your battery is measured in Amp-hours (Ah) at a certain operating voltage or simply in Watt-hours (Wh). When choosing a deep-cycle battery, consider the consumption desired for backup (usually in Wh) to properly select the battery and size the corresponding battery bank.
3. Flooded, AGM, Gel, or Lithium?
Depending on the application, capacity required, and available budget, you might want to pick a certain battery type. Flooded lead-acid batteries are cheap and suitable for ventilated areas, AGM and gel batteries are excellent choices for RV or marine vehicle applications and battery banks, while lithium with its high energy density is perfect for all applications but at a higher price.
4. Depth of Discharge (DoD)
The depth of discharge means the percentage of the battery that can be safely discharged. Usually, lead-acid batteries can be discharged down to 50 percent and in some cases up to 80 percent, meaning that you only use 50–80 percent of the battery capacity. Lithium batteries tend to have a depth of discharge of 90–100 percent, depending on the components and battery design.
5. Discharge/Charge Cycles
The cycle of a battery means how many times it can be safely discharged and charged back again within the DoD parameters. When the manufacturer states two cycles, the first one is the cycle at which the battery remains in optimal capacity, and the last one is usually the average life span of the battery.
6. Operating Voltage
The operating voltage of the battery means the voltage difference between the two terminals of the battery. You might choose a 12- or 6-volt deep-cycle battery, depending on what you need. If you need a higher voltage for your system (inverter or other), you can just get two or more batteries and connect them in series. Meanwhile, if you need more capacity, you can connect batteries in parallel.
7. Operating Amperage and C-Rate
The operating amperage is the supplied current by the battery to the device, and the C-rate is the current rate at which the battery can supply its capacity in a certain period. You should always consider both aspects when choosing a deep-cycle battery. For instance, a 200Ah at C10 can supply its power in 10 hours, meaning that the max current supplied is 200Ah/10 hours = 10 Amps.
8. Charging Time and Charging Parameters
Depending on the type and internal chemistry of the battery, you might charge the battery at a certain rate. This means that the battery supports higher or lower voltages/currents when charging.
Charging time and parameters are important aspects to consider when looking to take proper care of the battery and extend its life span. They will also let you know how long it will take to charge the battery.
9. Lifespan and Durability
When looking for the best battery, always consider how long it will last. The battery should be manufactured with a quality casing, durable components, and as many discharge/charge cycles as possible. When considering these specs, you will know if it is made to last and if it will work flawlessly for longer periods.
Always consider the warranty. Even if you choose an extremely high-quality battery, you must have a long warranty ensuring liability for the product. This way, you know you are backed by the manufacturer for more years in case anything happens with your battery.
11. Type of Charger Required
While most batteries can be easily plugged with standard chargers, some like the gel battery require special chargers with specific parameters. This is important to consider if you want to extend the lifespan of your battery.
12. Resistance to Vibration and Shocks
While some batteries can be installed at battery banks, others can be used for cars, boats, scooters, and more. It is important to choose a deep-cycle battery resistant to vibrations and shocks if it will be installed in a vehicle that might be constantly exposed to movements or even occasional impacts.
While some people may underestimate this, it is actually quite vital to choose a battery from a quality brand. The brand might define the type of quality components used in the battery, warranty, coverage policies, functionality, and more. Considering this when choosing your battery will ensure you a quality product.
Aside from the brand being important due to the components and overall quality of the battery, this will ensure adaptability for certain applications. Some brands focus on vehicle batteries, while others are perfect for renewable generation systems like solar systems. This is why you must choose the right brand when acquiring your battery.
14. Working Temperatures
Some types of batteries work better at certain temperatures. If you live in a place that reaches very low or high temperatures, you might want to factor in the working temperature of the battery when choosing it. Some batteries cut off power supply to protect themselves like the lithium batteries with quality BMS systems, but others might stop working entirely at certain low or high temperatures.
15. Installed Terminals
You should always consider the size of terminals installed at a deep-cycle battery and the materials they are made of. The battery should have the type of terminals that better suit the application you need it for. If this is not the case, you might need adapters that might reduce the overall conduction of the battery.
How to Get the Best Performance From Deep-Cycle Batteries
Choosing the best deep-cycle battery for the right job is not enough. You must also take proper care of it. If you want to obtain the best performance for your deep-cycle battery, here are some recommendations that will ensure its life span and performance.
1. Only Discharge Batteries to Its Recommended DoD (Monitor Battery Levels)
Each battery has a recommended DoD. If you take it beyond that point, you might decrease its capacity or damage it entirely. To ensure you discharge it to its recommended percentage, monitor battery levels, and stop the discharge at the right point. You could even install a control system that does it for you.
2. Use the Right Charger
Each deep-cycle battery has an ideal voltage and current levels to ensure a proper charge. Read the indications from the manufacturer, and acquire a charger that will set the right parameters for your battery.
3. Keep Batteries Charged
When storing batteries for extended periods, it is better to do it when fully charged. This way, you ensure they are not discharged beyond their maximum DoD. You may also want to check the charge levels regularly if you are not using them. Every 1–3 months is more than enough.
4. Let It Rest
After constant periods of charge and discharge, let your battery cool down for a little. Regular usage can keep batteries at high temperatures and even end up generating grid corrosion. If you let it rest, the battery will be fresh and ready for another regular period of usage.
5. Install Them Properly
Proper installation is always important. First of all, never short-circuit a battery. If you are installing a battery bank, most manufacturers recommend you only wire batteries with the same chemistry and model purchased at the same time. This will ensure all the batteries have the same specs and even the same cycles.
1. What Is the Best Deep-Cycle Battery Brand?
Answer: Luckily, for deep-cycle battery users, there is more than just one brand with excellent quality products considering operational voltage, amperage, capacity, and life span of the battery. Some of the best brands in the market are Battle Born, Optima, Renogy, and VMAX.
2. How Long Does the Charge for a 100Ah Deep-Cycle Battery Last?
Answer: The charge might vary depending on battery type, C-rate, and DoD. For instance, a 100Ah lithium-ion battery with a C10 rate (100Ah at a 10-hour discharge) and a 90 percent maximum DoD can last you in theory up to 10 hours at 10 Amps per hour, but since it has a 90 percent DoD, it should last around 9 hours before recharging it.
3. When Do I Need to Recharge My Battery?
Answer: You should consider recharging your deep-cycle battery depending on DoD and battery level. Lead-acid batteries should usually be sized for 50 percent DoD, and lithium-ion batteries can be discharged down by 80–95 percent. At that percentage level, the battery should be recharged to ensure better performance in the long run. Regularly, the manufacturer provides this spec with the battery to ensure proper usage.
4. What Is Better: A 12- or a 6-Volt Deep-Cycle Battery?
Answer: The battery voltage you should acquire depends on the system or device you are trying to power. If you need a 12- or 6-volt deep-cycle battery, you could either get the right voltage or set lower batteries in series that could amount to the right voltage. To ensure better performance, we recommend you try to get the right battery voltage from the start.
5. How Long Do Deep-Cycle Batteries Last?
Answer: Give them proper care when charging and discharging them. AGM and gel deep-cycle batteries can last up to 6–8 years, while lithium-ion batteries can regularly go as long as 10–12 years and in some cases up to 15 years, depending on the manufacturer.
6. What Is the Charging Time for Deep-Cycle Batteries?
Answer: Charging time for deep-cycle batteries depends on certain battery parameters like the capacity, DoD, and max charging current. Usually, lithium batteries charge in 2–3 hours, gel batteries in 5–10 hours, AGM batteries in 6–7 hours, and flooded lead-acid batteries may take up to 8–14 hours.
7. Is It Possible to Wire Together Different Battery Types and Sizes in the Same System?
Answer: Different battery types should never be connected. The best option is always to acquire the same battery to install either in series or parallel. When coupling batteries together, it is recommended to purchase them at the same time to ensure they have the same overall performance.
8. Can I Use a Deep-Cycle Battery in My Car?
Answer: We strongly recommend you not to use deep-cycle batteries as starter batteries. Cars require batteries providing high bursts of energy. This can easily damage your battery. However, some deep-cycle batteries are designed as dual-purpose batteries, and they can power up RVs and even some types of boats.
9. What Happens If I Overcharge My Battery?
Answer: Most batteries can be overcharged, but usually, this practice reduces the overall capacity of the battery. The best you can do to extend the life span of your battery is to follow the recommended DoD at the charging parameters set by the manufacturer.
10. How Do I Tell If a Deep-Cycle Battery Is Bad?
Answer: You should learn how to tell if a deep-cycle battery is bad, especially if it is installed at a battery bank. Bad batteries have lower voltage than others at the same capacity, or they are discharged at a much faster rate in normal climates. If your battery presents these issues, you should get it checked.
11. How Do You Charge a Deep-Cycle Battery Properly?
Answer: Knowing how to charge a deep-cycle battery properly will ensure a better overall performance. This is as simple as checking the optimal charging parameters recommended by the manufacturer and acquiring a charger that ensures them.
Deep-cycle batteries are without a doubt one of the best options for quality energy storage systems and much better than common options. Whether it is for marine applications, RVs, golf carts, lighting systems, or something else, deep-cycle batteries are the best ones to power up your devices.
Now that you know everything about deep-cycle batteries, if you want to get one of these, the only thing left to consider is what type of voltage, capacity, and current you need to power up your system. If you are on a budget, gel and AGM batteries are reliable and safe technologies when properly maintained. In case you need a higher performance in less space, we strongly recommend you get a lithium battery.
Lithium-ion deep-cycle batteries are lighter, safer, more efficient, have a higher energy density, and even have built-in BMS systems that protect them from practically anything that might damage their core. This is why these types of batteries have much better performance and are safer to use in solar generation systems and with other types of devices that have higher power consumption.
If you choose gel or AGM batteries, never cheap out on the charger, and remember how to charge a deep-cycle battery the proper way to ensure a longer life span. Whatever type of battery you end up getting, always follow our tips for better battery performance. In the long run, this will give you peace of mind and a loyal battery with a more lasting capacity.
One thought on “The Ultimate Guide to the Deep-Cycle Battery”
How interesting that you talk about the two different types of deep-cycle batteries. I am starting a new business this year where I will need deep cycle batteries for aircraft. I will find a reputable AGM deep cycle battery service nearby.