When you want a battery that can serve you in all powerful areas from powering your cars and electronic devices to working as backup power of your UPS, the first name will be the AGM. But, all these applications are only possible after charging your AGM battery properly.
Therefore, to ensure that yours will live for years with the peak performance, you must know the proper way of how to charge AGM battery. This way, an AGM battery can run safely for many years.
What Is An AGM Battery?
AGM refers to Absorbent Glass Mat, which is actually an advanced sealed lead-acid battery. Usually, this battery type is used for higher applications and is a superior option for vehicle starters. Because of being non-spillable, you don’t need to take extra care for maintenance.
In terms of internal structure, the AGM battery is designed to resist vibration. Unlike the flooded battery, this battery comes with fiberglass mats inside separated by thin lead plates. Primarily, a higher presence of lead ensures to get more energy, and the setup of thin lead plates keeps the mats tightly in place.
For one thing, the AGM battery is also known as a type of VRLA or valve-regulated lead-acid battery because of its small valve attached to the battery. This valve helps to pass through the excess gas from the battery when charging. As a result, the battery can store enormous power for a long time.
How To Charge AGM Battery
Generally, AGM batteries are sensitive to overcharging and must be carefully examined when charging. It is therefore crucial to know the actual charge setting and voltage rate for charging an AGM battery safely. Usually, the voltage should be within 14.6 to 14.8 to convert the battery from the discharge state to full charge.
Most lead-acid battery chargers have a voltage range of 13.8V to 14.4V, which is no match for the AGM. So, in most cases, you won’t be able to use your existing battery chargers. To understand the charging process more in detail, follow the below methods.
1. Mains Charging
When using an AGM battery, the vehicle typically has a mains-powered battery charger on board. Basically, this charger works as a power management system for any kind of battery. At the time of resting your AGM battery, if the mains power is available, you can consider this method as the best option for the battery. However, always make sure that you’ve checked the precautions of the manufacturer’s instructions.
2. Secondary Charging
Sometimes, the mains powered charger may not fully support the AGM battery type, or the voltage limit is not compatible with the battery. Though the mains charger has a wide range of charging capabilities, it cannot recognize the AGM technology in that case.
In such a condition, you can use a secondary mains charger to charge your AGM battery at least one time per month. Following this method can allow the battery to remember its memory effect for increased battery life. So, use this technique only when your mains charger is a non-AGM variant.
3. Alternator Charging
The alternator charging is also known as split charging, which creates the same situation like a non-AGM mains charger. So, your AGM battery eventually becomes undercharged. To avoid such conditions, you can buy a DC charger that fits your AGM profile. After you set the charging program on the standard alternator charger, it can start the split charging by converting the settings automatically.
4. Solar Charging
Charging batteries using solar power has become very popular these days. Similarly, you can also use the solar charging method to charge your AGM battery. However, you cannot use that as the primary charging method since charging is not that fast in them. If you have a solar system in your hand, you can simply link the panel with the battery through an AGM charger connector and use it for top charging and maintenance.
Additional Tips For AGM Battery Health
Overall, only following a specific charging method is not enough to keep good battery health for your AGM battery. We also recommend following the below-mentioned tips when using any of these four methods.
1. Purchase Fully Compatible Chargers
When using a mains or secondary mains charger, you must confirm that this charger supports your AGM chargers. Besides, the standard alternator and solar chargers also should have similar functionalities so that the AGM battery doesn’t lose its normal battery life.
2. Observe The Effects Of Using Different Chargers
Different chargers affect the AGM battery differently. So, you should observe the impact when using distinct chargers. If you see that the battery is losing its capacity, it is better to change the charger immediately.
3. Maintain The Charging Temperature
Considering the standard temperature, you should keep the charge temperature within 0 degrees to 40 degrees Celsius. If the temperature does not stay within the limit, the lead acids of the battery can be damaged, causing the loss of battery life.
4. Inspect The Battery Heat
Usually, the AGM batteries get warm when charging them. However, if you cannot put your hand on the charger or the battery because of high heat, you should avoid using that charger. Despite maintaining all required specifications, when the battery gets hot on charging, simply disconnect the charger. And, connect it again after the battery is cooled down.
To summarize, you can simply use mains charging to charge your AGM battery. If the mains charger is non-AGM, you can use an AGM-compatible secondary mains charger. To add more, split charging and solar charging are suitable when you don’t have much pressure for battery power. In any condition, always observe the battery and charging process to make sure that everything is safe.