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Basic Battery Terminology

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Basic Battery Terminology

We noticed that quite often, people have difficulties when choosing the battery that would best fit their applications which is due to a large number of letter abbreviations and technical terminology related to the them. Therefore, we decided to write a short article that would make it easier for our customers to make the correct decision. Of course, if there are any other questions left after reading it, you can always reach us for further assistance.

1. “V” for Volts:

A volt is a unit that measures the electric force between the difference in the potential of the positive and negative terminals of the battery. Electric potential means that there is a difference between the charge of the two points, that are the two terminals of a battery. One is positively charged, and the other is negatively charged. A negative charge means that there is an excess of negatively charged particles, or electrons in the terminal, while a positively charged terminal has a lack of those electrons. By physically separating those two terminals we prevent the electrons from going around from the negatively charged terminal to the positively charged one. Once the two terminals are connected, via the cycle, electrons are free to go along the way of the cycle, moving from the positive electrode to the negative one. This movement of electric particles is called an electric current, which is measured in amperes, or amps. Amperes are another important abbreviation when it comes to batteries


2. What stands behind the “Amps”: An Ampere or an Amp is a unit of measurement for an electrical current. One amp is the amount of current produced by the electric power of one volt passing through the resistance of one ohm. An Amp Hour, on the other hand, is a unit that measures the electrical storage capacity of a battery. The current that is multiplied by time in hours equals ampere-hours. The one-amp hour is equal to a current of one ampere flowing for one hour. Also, a 1amp hour is equal to 1,000 mAh.

3. CCA or Cold Cranking Amps: The Cold Cranking Amps entity is a rating used in the battery business and it is being used to disclaim the ability of the battery to start an application. Generally speaking, it is easier to start an engine in a warm environment than in a cold one. The rating refers to the number of amps and a 12-volt battery can deliver at 0°F for 30 seconds while maintaining a voltage of at least 7.2 volts. The higher the CCA rating, the greater the starting power of the battery.

4. Battery Terminals: Battery terminals are what connects the battery electrically with the application. Basically, the terminals are always – the anode, which is the “-” and the cathode that is the “+”. The “+” terminal is where the positive current comes from and it returns to the “-” terminal. With regards to SLA batteries, there are different types of terminals such as F1, F2, and NB. Motorcycles, on the other hand, may have D, K or HD. It is always a good idea to check the terminal of your device, before ordering a battery as it would not work with a different terminal battery.

5. Battery Terminal Adapters: Good news is that if you ordered the wrong battery, there might be a solution to this situation. The so-called terminal adapters are able to convert the different types of battery terminals so that they can fit into your application. There are terminals which convert F1 into F2, F2 into F1 terminal and NB to F2 terminal. For more information, you can check here.

6. Battery Cartridges: A replacement battery cartridge (RBC) is a set of several batteries related with a special connector between them. They might be also fitted in a special tray or drawer, depending on the type of application. Usually, a cartridge would have a different part number than the batteries that are located inside. For example, a cartridge with a part number RBC5 consists of two 12 volts 7.5 Amps batteries. On you can check out the variety of cartridges that we supply and if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch

7. BCI Group Size: The Battery group size (BCI) is an industry term used to indicate the physical dimensions of a battery that includes height, width, length as well as the polarity. We have prepared a separate article with further details about BCI group size just in case you have further inquiries.


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