Australia is home to numerous beaches, lakes, and rivers so it's no surprise that boating is one of the most popular outdoor activities in the country. Of course, these make boat batteries in demand as well, particularly lithium marine batteries. What's the deal about these power packs, anyway? For starters, marine batteries are the only recommended battery type to use for boats because unlike road vehicles, they require a different battery setup to be able to function smoothly across bodies of water.
Marine batteries can either be lead-acid or lithium. The main advantage of lithium marine batteries here is mainly performance and safety, especially if they are lithium iron phosphate batteries or LiFePO4 batteries. Unlike conventional lead-acid-based battery packs, LiFePO4 batteries eliminate the risk of explosions and are made with a non-toxic composition for additional safety during use.
Best of all, going for lithium marine batteries such as a LiFePO4 gives you top-notch quality with its built-in BMS. You get stable battery power all throughout your adventure plus, it helps extend your battery pack's overall lifespan as well with its automatic protection features.
There are lots of battery shops that sell boat batteries. One famous example is the Century marine batteries or if you prefer online shopping, you can also have a look at our marine batteries for sale here at Outbax!
Why Do Boaters Prefer Lithium Marine Batteries?
Despite being more expensive than lead-acid batteries like AGM, more and more boaters are switching to lithium marine batteries for a number of reasons. First, these batteries are significantly lighter which is ideal because boats have specific weight limits. For instance, a 100Ah lithium battery would weigh under 50 pounds, unlike conventional ones that weigh around 60 to 80 pounds. If your battery happens to be on the narrower side, you can also try slimline lithium batteries to save space for your other boat essentials.
Another good option if you're choosing lithium marine batteries is to go for a lithium deep cycle battery. Deep cycle marine batteries are always recommended especially lithium-based ones because of their 80% useable capacity compared to their lead-acid counterparts with only 50% DoD. This means that you can enjoy a longer runtime without needing to recharge your battery.
The number of cycles is also a win here. A single lithium marine battery can last for up to 3,000 to 5,000 cycles—more than half the life cycle of traditional batteries. All these together with stable performance and increased user safety make lithium marine batteries worth investing in despite their higher upfront cost, especially if you're planning to use them for the long term.
One lithium marine battery may cost twice or thrice as much as other battery types but if you look at the quality and years of service you’ll be getting, it’s definitely worth the money. Of course, as with all outdoor gear, you still need to back this up with proper care and usage to ensure that you get to enjoy it for more boating adventures.
Is Switching to Lithium Marine Batteries Easy?
Replacing your old battery with a lithium boat battery may require a bit of installation and electrical work, but nothing too complex. A lot of these are drop-in replacements too, so there would be no problem fitting it where your lead-acid battery used to sit.
The entire setup would largely depend on your preferences and power requirements too. In some cases, you might need an inverter for larger 240V appliances and if you're using a deep cycle battery, it's best to top it off using a trickle charger. Those who are willing to invest for additional convenience can purchase a battery monitor for easy tracking of your battery's run time and capacity as well.
Overall, the majority of procedures can be done by someone with enough experience in handling batteries. However, if you're relatively new to working with electrical setups, it's best to call a professional to ensure safety and proper installation.
Can Lithium Marine Batteries Start a Boat?
The simple answer: No. Boating ideally should be powered by a dual battery setup. This means that your starting battery or lithium trolling motor battery should function separately from your service battery. A cranking/starting battery is meant to kickstart your boat's engine only. It provides short, concentrated bursts of power that is not suitable for long periods of use, unlike a lithium deep cycle marine battery which is suitable for extended run times.
Basically, your lithium marine batteries should serve as the service or auxiliary battery that powers all appliances or gadgets you have on board. In a similar way, these power packs are not designed for big power discharges so they are not the correct batteries to start any boat.
If the type of boat and overall system that you have allows it, you also have the option to choose a dual-purpose marine battery instead. These batteries perform both the function of starting your engine and running your electronics, perfect if you're trying to save space or lessen the overall weight on your boat.
More from Outbax
Stoked for your next boating adventure? Make sure to equip your boat with the best lithium marine batteries! Here at Outbax, we have an entire collection of lithium deep cycle batteries to choose from. You can either get a standard 12V marine battery or opt for a higher voltage output like a 24V battery.
Our LiFePO4-based batteries are also available in different capacities to accommodate boats of all sizes. All of our lithium marine batteries boast premium quality and are fitted with a battery management system to ensure long-lasting, stable performance. Still not convinced? Have a look at the lithium battery reviews on our website from hundreds of happy customers for a glimpse of how good our batteries are!Even better, Outbax specialises in excellent yet affordable camping gear so all our batteries retail for budget-friendly price tags. Some of them even go as low as under a thousand dollars! If you're looking for an extra power source or alternative, you can check out our marine generators for sale too or pair your battery with solar panels.