Elecsol Batteries Poor performance and service

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by Pat4Neil, Sep 21, 2011.

  1. Pat4Neil

    Pat4Neil Read Only Funster

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    I have two 125 AH Elecsol Batteries , both 3 years old which have now followed the trend of many other Elecsol Batteries and have started to fail by not holding their charge under load.

    Very disappointing but still under warranty I thought.


    Well here's the thing.

    I have just rung Elecsol and was given a load of abuse by a really obnoxious man with a Liverpool accent.

    He was probably the rudest man I have spoken to in a long time.

    He refused point blank to discuss the terms of their warranty , but did tell me that they would never accept local testing and that the batteries must be returned to them at my expense.

    I was very polite throughout and he was very rude and offensive.

    The message was clear, and was that Elecsol have no interest in after sales service and customer services
    .
    When asked why he wouldn't discuss the matter he Hung up.

    Having googled the company, which is a one man band, this attitude to customers appears to their normal approach and thier dreadful service appears on many other forums for camping , boating and motorhoming.

    I would never consider Elecsol again.

    Has anyone else had problems with Elecsol batteries and their dreadful customer service , if so did you ever get it resolved .

    I would be grateful of any advice on how to proceed .

    Neil
     
  2. davidallan

    davidallan Funster

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    Elecsol Batteries... NOT for ME !

    I totally agree with this post ....THEY were poor AND the after sales follow-up provided by the MH/Caravan dealer + Attitude etc was apalling :Sad:

    8 months LIFE out of 2 x 100ah AND nearly 2 months hassle.:Angry::Angry:

    TRADING STANDARDS introduced to the 'Scrum' and a total REFUND issued the same day.

    NOW THE HAPPY OWNER OF 2x 125ah 'BANNER' batteries PLUS "MEGAPULSE unit
    fitted
    [www.magapulse.net]

    The JURY is still out., But Hope this helps.
    David.Liz + Tilly:thumb::thumb:
     
  3. Pat4Neil

    Pat4Neil Read Only Funster

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    Thanks for that

    It's hard to know who is responsible.

    I purchased these from an Elecsol Authorised agent, do they have the responsibility to replace or repair them or the manufacturer.

    I am not up to speed with consumer law, but everything have read refers to the traders responsibilities, after all it was them who sold me the batteries with the 5 year warranty.

    Any thoughts or advice

    Neil
     
  4. jaygee

    jaygee Funster

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    did you buy them from him originally? If not and they are still under warranty then you need to take them back to the place you bought them from not the manfacturer.
    If you have to send back to him then check into how much it would cost to send via courier, sometimes not as much as you think. have them checked out locally and get a report first.
     
  5. bobandjanie

    bobandjanie Funster Life Member

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    You woke him up, just after 6am and you expect him to be civil? :Rofl1:

    On a serious note, nothing unusual in the sending back at your expense to be tested by their own people. Had years of that with lorry, vehicle, batteries. It was best then to buy them local and then be able to drive them back. Then, rely on their honesty in the 'results' sometimes it worked. If we had had a couple of years (ha, ha) out of them we would not even try. Best of luck though, Jane :thumb:
     
  6. Hybrids

    Hybrids Read Only Funster

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    Please note, I am not defending Elecsol but i do work in the battery industry and hopefully can shed some light on the common confusion of battery warranties.

    Battery warranties are against manufacturing defects and not wear and tear.
    A batteries performance will start to degrade over time as active material sheds off the plates, this is natural and not a fault.

    The speed of this depends on electrical demands and also how low you let the voltage get both in and out of use - Depth of Discharge, the deeped the more material is shed

    Better quality Leisure battery manufacturers use fibreglass matting to help hold the material on the plates for longer (not to be confused with AGM - Absorbed Glass Mat batteries), this extends the service life.

    Think of a batteries life the same way we look at a tyre.
    A tyre may have a 30,000 mile life span, if we over or under inflate it, it wears out quicker, not a manufaturing fault.
    The down side is we can inspect a tyre for wear, we can't with a battery.

    As for local testing.
    Very very few places have the correct testing equipment for cyclic batteries.
    They may try with a drop/load tester or a digital conductance meter, but neither are suitable as they are for testing Engine starter batteries
     
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  7. tofo

    tofo Funster

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    I would look at the hassle and trouble
    I might save myself for maybe a twenty percent return
    As i doubt they would replace the battries for new
    But offer you replacements at a discount for
    Fair wear and tare

    Buy local save having hassle
    With poor service staff miles away
     
  8. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    Agree 100%, Buy local and cheap wet cell liesure batteries that can be topped up. These so called maintenance free batteries are a complete waste of money.
    They should have a warning sticker on them....NOT FIT FOR USE.
    If you buy local from a proper battery dealer and you have a problem you can at least take it back. I wouldn't even buy a battery from a show with a guarantee. What use is a guarantee even if the seller honours it when they live the other end of the country from you. Who pays the courier IF you can find one to take a battery.Far better to pay an extra fiver for a battery from a dealer on your doorstep than save a fiver at a show and have to take a battery to the other end of the country to change it when you have a problem.
     
  9. Hybrids

    Hybrids Read Only Funster

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    I would suggest rigging up your own test to see just what capacity you are getting.

    I would test them as 2 separate batteries rather than together in series.

    First thing, when were they last charged & what is the standing voltage of each battery ?

    If they are discharged, charge them and then leave to stand overnight to remove any surface charge.

    The batteries are rated at 125Ah, (I expect at the 20hr rate ?)
    So each battery should be capable of supplying 6.25amp for 20Hrs


    To simulate this you need a 75W load, some Halogen headlight bulbs are higher than the usual 55W (4.58amp), so one of those or use your imagination.

    It would also be worth performing a hydrometer test, though I'm not sure if the cells are accesable on that Elecsol, hydrometers are cheap to buy, very accurate and instructions for use can be found on the internet.
     
  10. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    I am not at all certain that a 125 Ah battery would be able to deliver 6.25 amps for 20 hrs... Wouldn't that flatten/break it?

    JJ :Cool:
     
  11. Hybrids

    Hybrids Read Only Funster

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    If a battery manufacturer states a battery will supply 125Ah @ 20hr rate then yes, it should supply 6.25 for 20 hours (6.25 * 20 = 125)

    The battery will discharge/flatten but thats what a leisure/cyclic battery is designed for.

    At the end of the test, we should have an open circuit (no load) voltage of 10.3 to 10.5 volts
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2011
  12. GeraldandAnnie

    GeraldandAnnie Read Only Funster

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    Yes. It is generally accepted that you should try to not use more than 50% of the rated capacity, otherwise permanent damage could ensue.

    That's what I've read, anyway :Wink::Blush:

    Gerald
     
  13. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    Are you really sure that even deep cycle batteries can deliver their full capacity...?

    I don't believe they can...

    Sorry to be a pedant...

    JJ :Cool:


    PS. I got this from Smart Gauge Electronics... it looks as though 12 volt electrics are much, much much more complicated than most of us think...

    Peukert in brief
    The usual form of Peukert's equation is T=C/In
    Where:
    T = time in hours
    C = the Peukert capacity of the battery (ie at the 1 amp discharge rate)
    I = the discharge current
    n = Peukert's exponent.
    This equation will only work on batteries that are specified at the "Peukert Capacity" ie the 1 amp discharge rate. They very rarely are.
    Batteries are usually specified at an "hour" rate, for instance 100Ahrs at 20 hours. Or 90Ahrs at 10 hours etc.
    If your batteries are specified in such a way (and they nearly always are) then the equation must be modified to take this into account.
    The modifed equation is T=C(C/R)n-1/In or T=R(C/R)n/In
    Where:
    T = time in hours
    C = the specified capacity of the battery (at the specified hour rating)
    I = the discharge current
    n = Peukert's exponent
    R = the hour rating (ie 20 hours, or 10 hours etc)
    Alternatively, do this:
    R(C/R)n = the "Peukert Capacity".
    So in the case of a battery specified as being 100Ahrs@20 hours with a Peukert's exponent of 1.25 we get:
    20(100/20)1.25 = 149.5Ahrs. This is the "peukert capacity". ie the capacity of the battery when discharged at 1 amp.
    If you use this figure as the capacity of the battery then the usual Peukert's equation of T=C/In can be used.
    There is a slightly different Peukert calculator here that operates by adjusting the specified battery capacity to the "Peukert Capacity" then showing run times calculated using the usual T=C/In
    This spreadsheet is slightly different from the one here as the first one calculates the "Peukert capacity" then
    runs the usual equation (T=C/In) on the discharge rates whereas the second one calculates the run times directly on the specified battery capacity using our modified Peukert's equation (T=C(C/R)n-1/In). The only difference in results is the adjusted Peukert Amps. You will notice that the final run times and available capacity are identical in both spreadsheets thus showing that both versions of the equation are indeed valid.




    For serious techys check out http://www.smartgauge.co.uk
     
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  14. Hybrids

    Hybrids Read Only Funster

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    Why would the battery industry have a rating system and ignore it or make figure up ?

    If you have a battery that is rated at 125Ah it should supply 6.25amps for 20hrs.
    If you have a 110Ah battery it should supply 5.5amps for 20hrs and so on and so on.

    Just because you don't believe it, does not make it false

    Gerald & Annie

    The less we cycle a battery the longer it's life span, hence the 50% advice.
    If we fully cycled a (wet) battery each time as per the test we may only get around 150 cycles.

    With fewer and fewer people wildcamping it has opened the door to certain battery retailers selling low spec/low quality batteries that may work for many years because we do not fully cycle them.
     
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  15. callumwa

    callumwa Read Only Funster

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    Well I'll be Peukerted...... clear as mud now:Doh:
     
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  16. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    Hi Gerald/Annie...

    I use the words "don't believe" in an attempt to be polite and non controversial or "in your face" and what you say is true... just because "I don't believe it" doesn't make it false but...

    I would be interested in your back ground in the matter of 12 volt electrics... mine is one based only on what I have read and living with 12 volts as my power supply for over twenty years.

    I am trying to learn about many things and 12 volt systems and storage is one of them. You probably have much more knowledge than me and I would be glad to be put right.

    All the people and all the reading I have done so far lead me to believe me that a 120amp battery will not deliver 120amps at 12 volts until is is empty...

    Best wishes

    JJ :Cool:


    Here is some more info.... true it comes from a commercial website and so might be "biased" but it says...


    The 50% rule for deep cycle batteries

    The 50% rule - A Layman's explanation

    This is a rule that states quite simply, the most economical use of deep cycle batteries comes about when they are, on average, discharged to 50% capacity then recharged.

    It seems like one of those rules that someone "just thought up". In actual fact it has a sound scientific basis and really does work.

    An explanation is in order.

    Let's go to 2 extremes of battery bank use in the case of a 200Ahr wet cell lead acid battery bank made up of 2 X 100Ahr batteries.

    First consider the case of extremely heavy use.

    The battery is discharged at 100 amps for an hour. The terminal voltage has fallen to 8 volts. It is then recharged at 100 amps until the terminal voltage is 14.4 volts, then kept at 14.4 volts until the charge current falls to 4 amps (this is a typical 3 stage charge) at which time the charger drops to float charge at 13.3 volts. This cycle is repeated 50 times.

    At the other extreme, the same battery bank is discharged at 2 amps for 20 hours, the terminal voltage falls to 12.2 volts. The battery is then recharged at 10 amps until the terminal voltage reaches 14.4 volts, this is then maintained until the charge current falls to 4 amps at which time the charger switches to float at 13.3 volts (again, typical 3 stage charging). The cycle is repeated 50 times.

    Most battery usage falls somewhere between these 2 extremes.

    Which battery do you think will last the longest?

    It's obvious to us. It also should be obvious to anyone that the second battery will last much longer. It will have a longer life.

    But why?

    Well, every battery has a finite life. Each discharge and recharge cycle uses up some of the battery's life. The deeper the discharge, the heavier the discharge current, the heavier the charge current, the more life it uses up.

    In the first example the battery is being very heavily discharged (high discharge current) to a very deep depth of discharge. This severely shortens it's life. On the face of it, it would seem that doubling the size of the battery bank would double the life of the bank as a whole. However this is not the case. Doubling the size of the battery bank could increase the life of the battery bank as a whole by say 3 times. So double the initial outlay (twice as many batteries to buy) results in a saving of 50% (they last 3 times longer).

    In the second example, this batterybank is going to last a long time. It is being well treated, lightly discharged to a reasonable depth of discharge and charged at a sensible rate. However, reducing this battery bank by 50% (to a single 100Ahr battery) would perhaps only reduce the life of the bank as a whole by say 30% because the single battery would still be being relatively well treated. So in this case a saving could have been made by buying half as many batteries (so half the initial outlay) and getting a battery life of 70%. A saving of 30% in monetary terms.

    This explains it in plain English. It can be shown mathematically, by graphing the cost of each used amp hour against the initial monetary outlay. The result is a graph with a peak in the middle at, you guessed it, 50% depth of discharge.

    Discharging deep cycle batteries to 50% results in the most economical use of the batteries in terms of battery life and monetary outlay.
     
  17. jaygee

    jaygee Funster

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    If you bought it from an agent/shop then they are responsible for the guarantee. They may want to send it for testing but they will be responsible for arranging this. Are they near to you? if so then you should take it back to them and let them sort it out, consumer law states it's the sellers responsibility if goods fail they cannot fob you off with "return to the manufacturer".
    If faulty they are obliged to either give you brand new batteries or a refund, although the refund is at their discretion.
    They may be willing to supply a different make if they do any others.
     
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  18. Hybrids

    Hybrids Read Only Funster

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    JJ

    you have edited my post, The Gerald & Annie bit of my post was a reply to the poster Gerald & Annie, I am neither Gerald nor Annie.

    A 120Ah will not supply 120Ah, I never said it would.
    a 120Ah (at the 20hr rate) will supply 6amps for 20 hours down to 10.3 to 10.5 volts (OCV)

    At which point it requires recharging.
    (Empty in JJ speak)
     
  19. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    Sorry Hybrids... senior moment...

    I have retired from point scoring arguments...

    You are totally right and I am wrong... my mistake :Blush:

    JJ :Cool:


    but then as you used to supply/supply batteries you would know more than me...
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2011
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  20. Hybrids

    Hybrids Read Only Funster

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    JJ,
    It's not about scoring points, though I am not retired, I don't enjoy scoring points over fellow Motorhomers


    yes, so you should have never questioned me:BigGrin:
     
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