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A Quick Overview of Lithium-ion Vs Lead Acid battery


Lithium RV battery vs lead acid is a significant topic in the RV solar world. Lead acid batteries are the pick of many people; however, lithium iron phosphate and lithium-ion are turning out to be the trend, these days. Which of these is better? With the differences in chemistry in both these battery types, come differences in cost and performance as well. While both lead acid and lithium batteries can be efficient storage solutions, here is how these two options stack up upon comparing in major categories. In the majority of the cases, lithium batteries are better than lead-acid ones due to their efficiency and reliability factors. But, in small off-grid storage system cases which are not regularly used, less pricey lead-acid options are preferable.


The one group in which the lead acid batteries outperform lithium-ion option is their cost. You can buy a lead acid battery setup from for less than $100 or $1000 compared to a lithium-ion battery system from of the same size which might cost you around $5000-$15000. The cost range can go lower or higher depending on your choice of the system size. While the lead acid battery set up is typically lower in acquiring and installation costs in comparison to the lithium-ion setup, the lifetime worth of the latter balances the scale. There are some other features of both battery types to consider. 


The capacity of a battery is a measurement of how much energy the battery can store. Whilst capacity numbers differ between the battery manufacturers and battery models, the lithium-ion battery has been proven to possess a considerably higher energy concentration than that of its opponent, lead acid batteries. This denotes that more energy can be stocked in a lithium-ion battery set up utilizing the same space. Sine you can accumulate more energy, you can also discharge more, thereby powering more appliances for a much longer time.

Depth of discharge

The depth of discharge of a battery is the battery percentage that can be exhausted of, safely, without harming the battery. Though it is common to utilize 85% or even more of the total capacity of a lithium-ion battery in a cycle, the lead acid batteries should never be discharged over 50%, since doing so will impact the battery’s lifetime. The higher discharge depth possible with the lithium-ion battery means that they possess a higher effective capacity compared to the lead acid batteries.


Similar to solar panel competence, the efficiency of the battery is a significant metric to take into account when comparing two options. Most of the lithium-ion batteries are around 95% efficient, denoting that 95% or more of the stored energy can be utilized. On the other hand, lead acid batters observe efficiencies close to 80-85%. Superior efficiency batteries tend to charge faster, and likewise, to the discharge depth, enhanced efficiency signifies a superior effective battery capacity.


The batteries are comparable to solar panels in the way they break down over time and turn into a less effective one as they grow old. Discharging your battery to power your house or appliances and recharging it using the grid or the solar energy adds up to one cycle. The number will differ from analysis to the other, however, lithium-ion batteries last for numerous times the cycle numbers as lead acid ones, in general, thus leading them to have a higher effective lifespan.

Lithium RV battery vs lead acid- which one should you choose?

If you require a battery backup setup and wondering which option you should pick from “Lithium RV battery vs lead acid”, both the options can be effective. But, it is typically the best decision to go with a lithium-ion battery since it has more advantages over the lead acid battery. In spite of having high upfront costs, they are more valuable compared to lead-acid batteries. One particular case where the latter might be the right choice is if you possess an off-grid solar set up that is not utilized regularly. For instance, having a lead acid battery as your backup power source in an RV or a boat that you only use in a month is a less pricey choice compared to lithium-ion batteries. Owing to the low usage rate, you will be able to avert numerous lead acid technology drawbacks, like for instance, their short lifespan.

Creation date: Mar 16, 2020 9:41am     Last modified date: Mar 16, 2020 9:42am   Last visit date: Jul 11, 2024 11:52am