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Discussion Starter #1
How long are people getting out of their batteries when trickle charged on a regular basis? I have the stock battery on my XC and is coming up on 5 years old. Is it playing it safe to replace it just based on length of time or how do you know when it is not holding enough charge?
Also, anyone here using lithium?
Batteries

Thanks from a battery newbie as I haven't changed it yet
 

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My vic is a '13 and i had a flat battery in '14 .... Anyway i bought a local battery that fitted the same size and it has been OK .... I did attach a battery light indicator so i can see if the battery is still in good shape when riding or parked ...

I put it on a tender most of the time ...
 
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Batteries are mysterious black box's. Some will go a year and some will give up the ghost after as much as 10 years..
My personal limit is 4 years. For a hundred dollars or less' For peace of mind i change them...
 

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Lithium:

Let me state at the outset that I'm no engineer, so I only have my own (non-lithium) experience, and what I read. And from that, I don't think lithium batteries are ready for prime-time ... in most general-purpose motorcycle applications.

In this month's Motorcycle Consumer News, which I received in the mail a few days ago, there's a reader question about bike charging and lithium batteries. The response by MCN's tech guru confirms my belief that I'm staying away from lithium for quite a while.

A pic would be way too difficult to read here, so I've scanned in that almost full-page Q&A, and put it up as a PDF page on my web site, here:

http://www.billanddot.com/Motorcycle-Consumer-News-March-2016-Lithium-Batteries.pdf

Chargers and Longevity:

I used to use a couple of Battery Tender Jr smart chargers, for bikes and riding lawnmowers. When one gave up the ghost after about a decade, I bought an Xtreme model about three years ago:

XC100-P Xtreme Charge 12V Battery Maintenance Charger Desulfator

(BTW, PulseTech, the maker of that, is currently giving away a battery tester if you sign up for its mailing list. See Battery Chargers and Battery Desulfators by Pulsetech Products .)

I plug my XCT into a smart charger every day -- not just over the winter -- that the bike's at home, i.e., when I'm not traveling out of town. See pics attached here.

I've been doing this on bikes for many years, and usually their batteries last longer than I own the bike. I did have to buy a new battery for a Valkyrie Interstate, but I had that bike for seven years.

So, maybe with five years on a battery it might be time for a new one. Or maybe not. If you use a voltmeter to measure the bike-off voltage periodically, and notice that it's decreasing, that might serve as a poor-man's load test, and give you an indication of a problem. Or you could also note if it's taking longer than before for a smart charger to get to its happy place, once you hook up the bike to it. Most smart chargers change from a blink to a steady light -- or vice versa -- once they change from charge mode to float mode, and you could pay attention to that time interval.

I suppose you could also take the battery out, and have it load tested, if you know some place that does this, and that you trust to do it right.
 

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I somehow got 8 years out of the stock panasonic battery in my Toyota Tundra, in Texas no less. I will be happy to get half that in my Vic'!
 

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8 years out of the stock battery. The only time it sits on a tender is over the winter and that 5 months. During summer I just ride it sometime for 5 miles and some times for 300 miles in a day.
Is lithium battery worth the extra money only time would tell.

Like the man said its a crap shoot how long a battery will last.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the responses...I also had battery tender jrs for a few years, and after one bit the dust I went with the c-tech battery charger. I also plug it in whenever the bike is in the garage. I might consider changing it in the next few years, but I also believe the battery chargers are extending the life.

CTEK Battery Chargers - The World's Smarter Battery Charger
 

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Below freezing weather for long periods of time kills a battery, and also extreme heat runs it out of water. I have all most 4 years on my stock battery.
 

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yeah I found that both of the stock batteries I had were complete ****.

The original was drained when my VR went bad. They replaced both the VR and the battery under warranty. I sort of assumed that they would just charge it back up, but they said "We would rather just replace it" without really elaborating. Fine.

I figured out why (it got replaced) when I installed front and back USB ports a few months later. I wrongfully assumed that if nothing is plugged into them- there's no draw. My Dad- who is quite talented with this type of stuff- agreed.

Whoooooooooboy I could not have been more wrong.

So obviously I killed the battery like.. overnight. Hooked it up to the charger. It charged to the "full" indication on the unit- but it wouldn't hold it at all.

I totally understand a battery committing hara-kiri after several discharges- but not 1. They should be able to recover from 1.

Got a Duracell Gel from Batteries plus- this thing is rock solid thus far. Mine sat about a month before I bothered hooking it up. Green light in less than 5 minutes.
 

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I have the four bank charger in my garage and my Grandfather has the six bank charger, Both are Deltran Battery tender brand, I honestly can not tell you the last time we have had to buy a battery for anything, Car/truck/mowers/generators/bikes, just put a set of hard leads on the terminal posts and rotate them around from week to week.

Worked out really good since my gramps is handicapped and cant be tearing into something to change out a battery.
 
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