Tuesday, December 4, 2012

TECH TIPS: Alkaline vs. Lithium Batteries

Winter was a little slow to kick in this year with warm temps throughout most of North America. But, now into the first week in December, most areas have enough snow to get even the most reluctant early season skiers into the mountains.

So, if you are just pulling your beacon out of the closet, make sure to have a look at your battery contacts. Did you leave batteries in the unit all summer? I hope not. If you did, your beacon may look like this:



Alkaline batteries can leak over time. If you have any corrosion on the battery contacts of your PULSE or ELEMENT beacon, then it needs to be inspected and tested at Mammut. Corrosion on the contacts can damage the electronics in the beacon. It is not adequate to simply brush the corrosion off the terminals and play through. It is critical that the beacon is tested, repaired, and possibly replaced.

Alkaline batteries should always be removed when the beacon is being stored during the off season. Additionally, a close inspection of the battery contacts should be done each time batteries are replaced. There should never be any visible corrosion and the contacts should always have ample spring to them.

To eliminate the possibility of alkaline corrosion, Mammut developed LITHIUM capability into the 3.2 (and newer) firmware for the PULSE Barryvox,which was released in early 2012. (If you are not sure which firmware you are running, simply look at the display during start-up--it should say 3.2 or higher.) Lithium batteries have several advantages. They last longer and they are lighter--but even more importantly, they do not leak.

However, there is a catch. Lithium batteries present their own problem--they maintain a "full" battery reading until they suddenly die. Electronic devices struggle to determine the battery's strength because of this unusual life-cycle. So, with firmware 3.2, your PULSE can run lithium batteries by using a timer. When the PULSE 3.2 firmware (or 4.0, etc) identifies lithium batteries, it will ask you if they batteries are new. Never put old lithium's in your beacon--the battery reading will not be accurate unless you begin with new batteries and continue with those batteries until the timer tells you they need to be replaced.  If you remove your lithium batteries, when you replace them it will ask if they are the SAME batteries--if you answer "yes", it will restart the timer where it left off, so it's important these batteries are not used in any other devices while they are removed from the beacon or the timer will be inaccurate.

While this timer system is not perfect--user error could create a situation where bad lithiums are not identified--it does eliminate the problem of damaged electronics due to corrosion which we see as a real issue. Some large user groups, like Canadian Mountain Holidays, have switched to lithium to eliminate any possible damage due to corrosion. So, if you opt for lithium batteries, make sure you start with new batteries and continue with those batteries until the timer runs its' course. If you opt to continue using alkaline batteries, be sure to inspect for corrosion regularly.

Note, that the Element Barryvox can not use lithium batteries.  ONLY alkaline batteries should be used in your Element Barryvox beacon.

22 comments:

  1. When this function of capability with Lithium battery (timer) will be available also in Element model ? I suppose this functionality is dedicated directly for Pulse model at this moment. Am I Right ? I hope not.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Your site is truly cool and this is an incredible rousing article. Much thanks to you to such an extent. Pro Well Tech

    ReplyDelete
  4. Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info. Bolt Posts

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks for such a nice content. Apppreciate it :)
    Cheers
    If anyone interested similar one's have a look here batterymodeon blog thanks

    ReplyDelete
  6. I as well believe hence , perfectly indited post! . 18650 battery 3350mah

    ReplyDelete
  7. Nice Blog! this blog completly about the difference between the Alkaline vs. Lithium Batteries. Thanks for sharing this important information. Keep sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Looking for battery test chamber in your area? Then we are the best for you, who suit your expectations. We have huge experience on this field. We are 100% dedicated to find you best battery test chamber.
    We are dedicated to manufacturing and sales of a wide range of battery test chamber.
    You can find here your best one.
    If you want to know more, Please check out here: BELL Test Chamber

    ReplyDelete
  9. Just as this, in light of the fact that the solar tiles utilize the sun to make electricity, just infinitive wellsprings of energy are being utilized as opposed to the world's non-sustainable assets. Zonnepanelen kopen

    ReplyDelete
  10. Only a few blogger would discuss this topic the way you do.,,’., lifepo4 battery suppliers

    ReplyDelete
  11. looking for the best battery for inverter just click the link for shop and by the way nice blog.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I liked your article and that is very useful and I have a recommendation as read this before buying an inverter as it helps you to choose which inverter is compatible with your home.

    ReplyDelete
  13. They are particularly advantageous during the winter time. windshield scraper

    ReplyDelete
  14. Very efficiently written information. It will be beneficial to anybody who utilizes it, including me. Keep up the good work. For sure i will check out more posts. This site seems to get a good amount of visitors. check on site topbestspec.com

    ReplyDelete
  15. Extend your inverter battery life and make inverter energy efficient check out my blog for complete steps for extending battery life.

    ReplyDelete
  16. It is not a highly regulated industry and therefore when it comes to the car battery tester industry, the story is entirely different. IEC 62133 standard

    ReplyDelete
  17. The flexibility of HOMMIIEE lamp pole process from small to large , from square to round allows for a customized pole design made to your exact specifications with the right materials to withstand the harshest environments. solar garden light pole supply

    ReplyDelete
  18. I think this is an informative post and it is very useful and knowledgeable. therefore, I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. battery test chamber

    ReplyDelete
  19. buzz word in today's IT world. It happens with many technologies that people start using it as a jargon without even understanding what it means, what comes in its purview and so on. We will discuss some such things in detail. data science course in hyderabad

    ReplyDelete
  20. You make so many great points here that I read your article a couple of times. Your views are in accordance with my own for the most part. This is great content for your readers. 6 volt battery

    ReplyDelete