Freezing batteries

Bikerbob

Pedelecer
May 10, 2007
215
0
Isle of Man
Now that the cold weather is creeping up on us I thought this might be worth a mention.

I kept the first Ni-Mh battery of my Giant Suede on the bike in the garden shed except when charging. In winter the temperature would have been below zero at times. That battery was down to 50% of its original range after 15 months and by 18 months it was pretty well finished. I brought the second, identical, battery into the house whenever it was not in use. That battery is now two years old and the range has reduced by less than 10% from when it was new. The only other difference was that I conditioned it when new as advised by flecc.

I know there may be other factors involved, such as pure luck with the battery cells, but on the face of it seems that avoiding extremes of cold might help battery life.
 

Northern Irelander

Pedelecer
Jun 4, 2009
180
0
I didn't think thay got frost on the Isle of Man lol

good point, we all know how lethargic LA batteries can be when starting the car on a cold morning ;)
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,478
23,296
It's only if the cell content actually freezes, which is unlikely, that the NiMh battery will normally suffer, so i think there could be another factor at work here.

The original battery for the Giant Suede was notoriously bad, Giant having specified very cheap cells commensurate with their low price aim for that model. With many warranty claims and complaints about premature failures for both the battery and the poor charger as well, they probably learnt a lesson and specified much better cells for the replacements.
.
 

Bikerbob

Pedelecer
May 10, 2007
215
0
Isle of Man
When I spoke to Giant UK about the long delay in getting my second battery I asked them if the new one would be an improved version. They said that it would be exactly the same as the first. They were close to discontinuing the Suede by then anyway. I think we will have to credit you, flecc, with the conditioning and, now I remember, full discharges every two months instead of the three months recommended by Giant.

We do get some frost, Northern Irelander, just not as much as elsewhere. We can still grow palm trees in sheltered spots though!
 
Last edited: