Need several industrial FLA batts. How to find best deal?

fastline

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 18, 2019
Messages
48
Needing several batteries for some commercial equipment. Many are just GC2s, but others are bci 921. I am not married to these specific batteries, and I don't really need to obtain the perfect Ah specs as new. I just need to beat the price down! This is going to get real expensive so I am trying to find reman, refurb, blem, discount, etc. ???? How do you find these places? I am in the midwest......where there are NO deals! I am willing to ship, or drive to better deals within reason.

Right now it seems like the big boxes like Sams have the best deal on GC2, but no dice on 921s. Right now I am trying to measure to see what else will fit.

Machines either need 4, GC2 for 24V, or 3, 921 for 36V.
 

sunshine_eggo

Happy Breffast!
Joined
Oct 26, 2021
Messages
3,530
Location
USA
Needing several batteries for some commercial equipment. Many are just GC2s, but others are bci 921. I am not married to these specific batteries, and I don't really need to obtain the perfect Ah specs as new. I just need to beat the price down! This is going to get real expensive so I am trying to find reman, refurb, blem, discount, etc. ???? How do you find these places? I am in the midwest......where there are NO deals! I am willing to ship, or drive to better deals within reason.

No such thing unless you're getting them from the manufacturer. All of those efforts produce dramatically substandard batteries that are a poor value, i.e., you get more bang for your buck with new.

Right now it seems like the big boxes like Sams have the best deal on GC2, but no dice on 921s. Right now I am trying to measure to see what else will fit.

Machines either need 4, GC2 for 24V, or 3, 921 for 36V.

Check out Crown's 921 offerings. Crown tends to be near the bottom of the $/kWh barrel while still producing a quality product.

The risk associated with non-new batteries is that you can really get screwed on quality. They can have perfect voltage and SG, but due to age/abuse/degradation, they yield only a tiny fraction of their capacity.
 

fastline

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 18, 2019
Messages
48
I have found some brand new AGM premium brand batteries. Because I am buying many more than I need right now, my question is about advantages of valved, AGM batts vs FLA? Other than the obvious no spill, lack of watering, etc. The OEM, Deka, does not list cycles, etc. They also do not list the DOD, only the cell voltage at certain discharges.
 

Noneyabussiness

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 28, 2020
Messages
47
have you tried forklift battery packs, here in Australia you can get a 600-700ah(thats 5 hour rate) FLA 2nd hand, with warranty for around 5 grand... CEIL Australia is a good start...
 

fastline

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 18, 2019
Messages
48
have you tried forklift battery packs, here in Australia you can get a 600-700ah(thats 5 hour rate) FLA 2nd hand, with warranty for around 5 grand... CEIL Australia is a good start...
Dont' think I'll be having any AUS batteries shipped over but out of curiosity, is that 600-700ah new, or tested at this second hand vendor? And at what voltage are you talking?

As for Sunshine, I'd love to know what reinforces that position that FLA will outlast AGM? I do know AGM is more sensitive to overcharge, so maybe that is where the issues are?
 

Noneyabussiness

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 28, 2020
Messages
47
tested 2nd hand, 48v ... new about 7000 ish +

with solar you have to " water " your batteries ( I do mine about 5 times a year) and with agm its a pita to do it, where as FLA is easy, heck with forklift cells most have a central watering system.. remember also to thats at the 5 hour rate, which solar is REALLY easy on them... so if they have a 5 year life span with a forklift it is wayyyyy more with solar...
 

littleharbor2

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
169
On the other hand, AGM, with properly set charging parameters will likely outlast poorly maintained FLA.
 

minerva

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 6, 2021
Messages
210
Just out of curiosity- a second-hand Pb acid 700Ah for $5000 is more expensive than grade A lithium cells. WHat am I missing?
 

Warpspeed

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 11, 2021
Messages
172
Where can you get a 700Ah lithium cell for $312, I would dearly love to know ?
Sixteen of those to generate 48v works out to $5K

Around here, new Lithium is about $1.80 per Ah.
One 700 Ah cell perhaps $1,260 each. Sixteen of those are going to cost over $20K

Nonya is quite right, a fully rebuilt, tested and with five year guaranteed 700Ah 48v FLA (24 cells) can be had for $5K delivered.
 
Last edited:

sunshine_eggo

Happy Breffast!
Joined
Oct 26, 2021
Messages
3,530
Location
USA
Where can you get a 700Ah lithium cell for $312, I would dearly love to know ?
Sixteen of those to generate 48v works out to $5K

Around here, new Lithium is about $1.80 per Ah.

Huh? 280Ah cells are $147. That's $0.525/Ah

One 700 Ah cell perhaps $1,260 each. Sixteen of those are going to cost over $20K

Nonya is quite right, a fully rebuilt, tested and with five year guaranteed 700Ah 48v (24 cells) can be had for $5K delivered.

Forklift for $5K: 700Ah * 48V * 50% = 16.8kWh usable
$297/kWh (usable)

32 280Ah 16S2P LFP: 28kWh (22.4kWh usable) Will run you about $4K
$178/kWh (usable)
 

Warpspeed

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 11, 2021
Messages
172
Show me a link to a brand new 700Ah lithium cell being advertised for $312 as claimed.

Here is a link to Australia's largest supplier of Winston Lithium cells, its actually $1.86 per Amp hour for any size cells.
http://www.thebackshed.com/basiclynatural/ViewItem.asp?CL1=17&CL2=53&CL3=NA&id=49

This must be common core math you are using.
700 Ah x 48 volts = 33.6 Kwh The rated capacity for fork lift batteries is the actual usable daily discharge over an 10 hour working shift with overnight full recharge. These are not toys, but work very hard in their intended application.
When used for solar at a vastly lower charge and discharge rates, the usable capacity will be much greater than 33.6Kwh and the lifetime multiples of what it would be in a fork lift.
 
Last edited:

minerva

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 6, 2021
Messages
210
A grade A 280Ah LiFePo cell can be had for $100-110 or so on ALibaba any time. A 12V (4 cell) 840 Ah (x3) is $100*4*3= $1200. You can have the cells, a BMS+shipping for a little more than $1500. This is less than 1/3 of the cost of the $5000 lead-acid. And you get all 840Ah to use. Even a server rack Lithium battery would be cheaper. Those can be had for $0.3/kW.
 

Warpspeed

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 11, 2021
Messages
172
You still have not provided a link to back up your claim.
Also I am talking Aussie dollars here not US dollars, quite a difference.
But that should not effect the "relative" cost of lead versus Lithium.
 

minerva

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 6, 2021
Messages
210
You still have not provided a link to back up your claim.
Also I am talking Aussie dollars here not US dollars, quite a difference.
But that should not effect the "relative" cost of lead versus Lithium.
Grade A Eve 280AH
Grade A from a trusted seller. Currently $110/cell. Shipping $400 for 16 cells to the USA East Coast. Likely less to Australia.
Edit: I thought the Pb battery was 12V, so you would need 2x the cost I quoted considering the 50% limit of lead. So less than $3000 with shipping, Even if the $5,000 was Australian $, you still get new grade A lithium for the same price as a second-hand lead.
 
Last edited:

sunshine_eggo

Happy Breffast!
Joined
Oct 26, 2021
Messages
3,530
Location
USA
Show me a link to a brand new 700Ah lithium cell being advertised for $312 as claimed.

I never claimed anything of the sort.

Here is a link to Australia's largest supplier of Winston Lithium cells, its actually $1.86 per Amp hour for any size cells.
http://www.thebackshed.com/basiclynatural/ViewItem.asp?CL1=17&CL2=53&CL3=NA&id=49

This must be common core math you are using.

Cute. Feel better?

This is simple arithmetic.


$147/280Ah = $0.525/kWh

They can also be ordered from China for $110

$110/280Ah = $0.39/kWh

700 Ah x 48 volts = 33.6 Kwh The rated capacity for fork lift batteries is the actual usable daily discharge over an 10 hour working shift with overnight full recharge. These are not toys, but work very hard in their intended application.

If you believe ANY FLA chemistry can take discharges below 50% and not have accelerated degradation, you're mistaken.

When used for solar at a vastly lower charge and discharge rates, the usable capacity will be much greater than 33.6Kwh and the lifetime multiples of what it would be in a fork lift.

This is actually somewhat backwards. The lower and inconsistent C rates of Solar installations encourage sulfation, which requires more frequent equalization cycles to ward off accelerated degradation.

Hopefully, by including the arithmetic here, you can follow along:

$3600/16.8kwh (usable, despite your mistaken opinion): $214/kWh

32 * $110 = $3520/22.9kWh (usable): $153/kWh
 

Warpspeed

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 11, 2021
Messages
172
O/k that is one 3.2v cell 280Ah for $100.
Parallel three of those for 3.2v 840Ah for $300.
We need sixteen of those to reach 48v so $4,800 for 48v 840Ah plus shipping about $5,200 delivered.

At the current exchange rate (x1.4) that would be about $7.28K Aussie dollars.

Fork lift battery of similar assumed capacity I have heard quotes vary from about $4.6K to 5.2K delivered.
I will be buying 48 fork lift cells (96v) of about 340Ah for a similar cost. I expect to pursue that in a very few weeks.
Everything shuts down here this time of year. Its Christmas, New Year, summer vacation time in Australia and most businesses have only just started back up this past week.

Even if I decided to buy those "Ali" Lithium cells, it would still cost almost half as much extra to reach equivalent capacity.
I currently run Lithium with an excellent BMS, and the cells have never been thrashed, but still three of my thirty cells have failed one by one over the last three years. Replacing them is just not economic.
Lead if properly maintained should be far more robust and reliable and forgiving.
 

Warpspeed

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 11, 2021
Messages
172
So you are saying no lead battery can ever provide more than half its rated power ?
That is just dumb.
Its not difficult to arrange a discharge test and measure actual capacity.
While that would not be a good thing to do regularly, even Lithiums will die if over discharged even once.
They will also die if overcharged once. They can even die from dendrite formation and go suddenly and unexpectedly dead short if you look after them.

Sure lead has its disadvantages, but the difference is slow degradation compared to sudden total failure and death for Lithium.
They will take a lot more abuse than Lithiums, and that is a fact.
Slow charge discharge rates do not cause sulphation as you claim.
Its only if you run at a very low state of charge for extended periods which can easily be avoided with charging from grid power or a generator.
Cell equalization and watering is just part of routine maintenance and not a problem either.
I have Lithiums now, and will be glad to see the end of them.
 
Top