Jump to content
Antigravity Batteries

Pros and Cons of Lithium-Ion Batteries

Recommended Posts

Hey everyone,

Akhand (Aku) from Antigravity Batteries here

Recently, we saw a lot of people asking us about the pros and cons of Lithium-Ion Batteries. So, here is it! FYI this post covers pros and cons about all Lithium-Ion Batteries!

Lithium batteries have become the go-to power source for just everything in the world now and the automotive world is not far behind on adapting to change!

Automotive giants like BMW, Audi and Motorcycle manufactures like KTM and Harley Davidson are all moving towards using Lithium-ion Batteries now!

Let’s take a look at some of the pro’s and con’s of the most popular battery on the planet.

Advantages

Energy Density

Lithium batteries pack a lot of capacity in a small package, the much higher power density offered by lithium-ion batteries is a distinct advantage. Because of this you can have a higher capacity battery by not adding a lot of weight. Hey, no wonder that even our 60ah battery only weighs approx. 18 pounds!

Low Self-Discharge

Lithium batteries have less than half the self-discharge rate of traditional nickel or lead-based batteries; which means lithium batteries can sit without use for a long time, and still power up when called upon.

What does this mean for us (users)? Vehicles using lithium-ion batteries can sit without a battery charger/maintainer for months! Given there is no crazy parasitic draw on the battery when the vehicle is not in use.

High Potential Current

Lithium batteries are capable of very high current, meaning that even a 30ah battery that only weighs approx. 11 pounds can punch up to 1200 cranking amps which is almost twice more cranking amps that any conventional lead-acid battery!

Low Maintenance

One major lithium-ion battery advantage is that they do not require maintenance to ensure their performance. Lead Acid batteries require periodic discharge and charge cycle to ensure that they don’t exhibit the memory effect. As this does not affect lithium-ion cells, this process or other similar maintenance procedures are not required.

Variety of types available  

There are several types of lithium ion cells available. This advantage of lithium ion batteries can mean that the right technology can be used for the particular application needed. Some forms of lithium-ion battery provide a high current density and are ideal for consumer mobile electronic equipment. Others can provide much higher current levels and are ideal for power tools and electric vehicles.

Disadvantages

Protection required

Lithium ion cells and batteries are not as robust as some other rechargeable technologies. They require protection from being over charged and discharged too far. In addition to this, they need to have the current maintained within safe limits. Hence all Lithium batteries require Battery Management System (BMS) and should come with one regardless of what brand one goes for!

Transportation

This lithium-ion battery disadvantage has come up in the recent years. Many airlines limit the number of lithium ion batteries they take, and this means their transportation is limited to ships. For air travelers, lithium ion batteries often need to be in carry-on luggage, although with the security position, this may change from time to time.

HEY!! Antigravity Micro-Start Jump Starters are TSA approved tho!

Cost

A major lithium-ion battery disadvantage is their cost. Typically, they are around 40% to 60% more costly to manufacture than a lead-acid battery. This is a major factor when considering their use in mass-produced consumer items where any additional costs are a major issue.

Got more questions? Feel free to ask us anything about Lithium batteries!

 

  • Like 2
  • Helpful 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lithium batteries may explode into fire that cannot be extinguished and burn an expensive bike to the ground ................ would you consider that to be a negative? 🤷‍♂️

  • Like 2
  • Helpful 1
  • Haha 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They don't perform in cold weather well until warmed up.. Do you agree?

 

  • Like 5
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, CDNSXV said:

Lithium batteries may explode into fire that cannot be extinguished and burn an expensive bike to the ground ................ would you consider that to be a negative? 🤷‍♂️

I think that your statement would be considered a bit of a dramatic, and not really accurate to be honest.  Every manufacturer is using them now in their some of their bikes and surely they would be more than concerned about their bikes burning to the ground.  KTM, Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Ducat and more put them in their bikes.

Also Monster Energy Kawasaki and Star Racing Yamaha who are top teams are using our Antigravity Battery products in their exceptionally expensive Race bikes without a worry.  

So while there is a potential for any energy storage device to melt down it requires a certain set of circumstances which are rare.

  • Like 4
  • Helpful 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Antigravity Batteries said:

I think that your statement would be considered a bit of a dramatic, and not really accurate to be honest.  Every manufacturer is using them now in their some of their bikes and surely they would be more than concerned about their bikes burning to the ground.  KTM, Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Ducat and more put them in their bikes.

Also Monster Energy Kawasaki and Star Racing Yamaha who are top teams are using our Antigravity Battery products in their exceptionally expensive Race bikes without a worry.  

So while there is a potential for any energy storage device to melt down it requires a certain set of circumstances which are rare.

I still have no confidence in lithium batteries ...  Never had one , ...  only bikes I have with a battery is 1 Yamaha TTR125EL .,    1  KLX 140L ,   1  VT750 SHADOW AREO ......    Cheap enough to keep new spares in stock ...

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Ultra61 said:

They don't perform in cold weather well until warmed up.. Do you agree?

 

 Yes to a degree, but that depends on the size battery someone puts in their vehicle.  For example most the brand and even the lithium batteries that came with the KTM and other MX and Enduro models were only 2 Amp Hour Batteries inside the case.  That is way to small for colder weather batteries.  But some other companies actually give you from 3 to 5 Amp Hours in the same size battery as the stock KTM or other brands models, which is from 33% to 60% more battery inside the same size case.  So that means those batteries would not have the difficulty of starting or performing in cold weather.

Last keep in mind some lead acid batteries will NOT get the start in cold weather, but where as that Lead/Acid battery WON"T get the start in cold weather the lithium if too small WILL get the start when warmed up.  So it not just that they don't perform as well, they need to be sized correctly also.  So look at the REAL amp Hours if choose to go with a Lithium Battery.  You want about 3.5 to 5Ah in 450s to have very good cold weather starting.

  • Like 2
  • Helpful 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Antigravity Batteries said:

I think that your statement would be considered a bit of a dramatic, and not really accurate to be honest. 

I think that batteries bursting into flames that cannot be extinguished is pretty dramatic?  Are you saying that never happened?  Cause thats the only way my statement could be "inaccurate."  

Look, I get it, this is a fairly rare occurrence but it does happen and that represents a pretty big downside IMO.

Edited by CDNSXV
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, bweighmaster said:

I still have no confidence in lithium batteries ...  Never had one , ...  only bikes I have with a battery is 1 Yamaha TTR125EL .,    1  KLX 140L ,   1  VT750 SHADOW AREO ......    Cheap enough to keep new spares in stock ...

Same here.  I don't see the benefit of lithium and a lead-acid battery is just never going to turn my bike(s) into a pile of charred metal and plastic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, CDNSXV said:

Same here.  I don't see the benefit of lithium and a lead-acid battery is just never going to turn my bike(s) into a pile of charred metal and plastic.

I'm not afraid of that..  I just am used to lead acid tech.  I have relied on them all my life , understand how they work , how to maintain them , and get up to 6 yrs. Use from them ..    just replaced 2 in both of my vehicles , both over 6 yrs. Old ..    lawn tractors , and motorcycles usually last  3 - 4 years.   All my vehicles have trickle chargers or solar chargers ......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Antigravity Batteries said:

Last keep in mind some lead acid batteries will NOT get the start in cold weather, but where as that Lead/Acid battery WON"T get the start in cold weather the lithium if too small WILL get the start when warmed up.  So it not just that they don't perform as well, they need to be sized correctly also.  So look at the REAL amp Hours if choose to go with a Lithium Battery.  You want about 3.5 to 5Ah in 450s to have very good cold weather starting.

This was my question?? they need to be warm, correct?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Although either will work fine (lead acid or lithium), i personally prefer lithium.  I ride in temperatures of 5F or so, and have never had a problem starting (and this is with the bike trailered and fully cold soaked). (19 Husky TE300i with OEM lithium).  The OEM battery is a bit small in capacity, and i'll be upgrading to a larger capacity anitigravity when the time comes.....1.5 years though and the OEM battery is still going strong.

The main reasons i like lithium are lack of self discharge and weight.  When i put the bike away for a month or two, no worries of it not starting when i get it back out.  We dirt bikers spend quite a bit of money to get light bikes, and some even spend additional money to reduce weight further, such as titanium foot pegs, axles, bolts, etc.  Its easy to put hundreds if not thousands of dollars of titanium bits in to save a ounces here and there that may add up to a few pounds when you can switch to a lithium battery for about $125 and save 2 or 3 pounds of weight, typically up high where its noticed the most.  I also think due to the higher current capability for their size, starts are faster.

If you do decide to go the lithium route, get a name brand with protection circuitry, and do some learning on lithiums and how they work.  Protection circuitry should handle most common issues, but the chemistry and how they like to be treated is inherently different than lead acid.  Not really better or worse, just different.  

Just my thoughts.

  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Ultra61 said:

This was my question?? they need to be warm, correct?

No they do not need to be warmed.... but if you have TOO SMALL of a battery in your bike... say the stock lithium rated at 2Ah9 Like the KTM, Honda, Yamaha or Kawi Lithium Batttery), or one of the cheaper brand of Lithium ... then yes it can struggle in he 30 degree weather.  Be we are talking about Antigravity Batteries in general and if buy the correct size then you will not have this issue. 

But note the earlier lithium Batteries and also the Manufacturers lithiums are very small on they Amp Hour Capacity at 2Ah... and in very cold weather they may need to be warmed.  It is important to get a battery with more than 3 Ah if your riding in the freezing weather.  Most stock batteries won't have that.  So you can't assume all Lithium Battteries have the same size cell pack inside, they don't , the outside size on a lithium battery does not indicate how powerful it will be or how many Amp Hours it has.  You have to read the specs on that particular battery you buy actually.   The cheaper ones are cheaper because they don't have as much amp hours...meaning they have a smaller battery pack inside.  That is what makes them stuggle in the cold, that smaller battery. They manufacturers are putting in the bare minimum and they want the smallest pack because it also looses weight for the bike and costs the least amount. 

  • Like 1
  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Antigravity Batteries said:

No they do not need to be warmed.... but if you have TOO SMALL of a battery in your bike... say the stock lithium rated at 2Ah9 Like the KTM, Honda, Yamaha or Kawi Lithium Batttery), or one of the cheaper brand of Lithium ... then yes it can struggle in he 30 degree weather.  Be we are talking about Antigravity Batteries in general and if buy the correct size then you will not have this issue. 

But note the earlier lithium Batteries and also the Manufacturers lithiums are very small on they Amp Hour Capacity at 2Ah... and in very cold weather they may need to be warmed.  It is important to get a battery with more than 3 Ah if your riding in the freezing weather.  Most stock batteries won't have that.  So you can't assume all Lithium Battteries have the same size cell pack inside, they don't , the outside size on a lithium battery does not indicate how powerful it will be or how many Amp Hours it has.  You have to read the specs on that particular battery you buy actually.   The cheaper ones are cheaper because they don't have as much amp hours...meaning they have a smaller battery pack inside.  That is what makes them stuggle in the cold, that smaller battery. They manufacturers are putting in the bare minimum and they want the smallest pack because it also looses weight for the bike and costs the least amount. 

Awesome Thank you for the info.. I am in the tool biz and have sold thousands of dollars of the Anti Gravity car starters when you first hit the market w these. You know as well as I how they were being abused in those earlier days, I was buying them from Mike your Distribution neighbor.. and of course now all power tools have gone to lithium and it has changed the cordless market indeed. Very good info thank you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, CDNSXV said:

I think that batteries bursting into flames that cannot be extinguished is pretty dramatic?  Are you saying that never happened?  Cause thats the only way my statement could be "inaccurate."  

Look, I get it, this is a fairly rare occurrence but it does happen and that represents a pretty big downside IMO.

Well your statement just blankets the entire Lithium Battery market. and assumes it just happens out of the blue, so you statement is  "inaccurate" because it does not explain the reason why this would ever happen, or how hard it is to even get to happen, or the different types of Lithium and the Lifepo4 which we use is the safest form of Lithium.  So it likes saying a plane crashes so its dangerous when in fact its safer than driving.  So that is why I say your statement is in accurate.   

 It does not happen in modern batteries, and  cannot really happen if they have the protections which Antigravity Batteries do have.  And yes I have seen lithium meltdowns its very rare and I have NEVER seen a bike being burned to the ground its usually just a melted battery, since raw flame is not present in most any circumstance using Lifepo4 lithium as we do.  Its usually just smokes and does not go into raw flame but the battery can melt.  So it is not a raw flame burning as you may think it is, but the smoking is dramatic.   But again this is behind us in the modern era and with the protected batteries and with the Consumer education on using the battery and finally to even get a lithium motorcycle battery to do this is exceptionally hard you have to abuse it.  Keep in mind these are NOT Hooverboard or Phones batteries, they are a completely different  Lithium chemistry. 

But our objective is not to say everyone should buy one but to rather educate and answer questions.  We will have the naysayers always.. but the fact is it is going lithium and will be lithium in most all bikes as we move forward, again we are just answering questions and getting in the debates.

Last you are dismissing all the positive for those who want that from a battery.  The built-in Jump Starting is Amazing and has saved many people butts when riding.

 

  • Like 3
  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, bweighmaster said:

I still have no confidence in lithium batteries ...  Never had one , ...  only bikes I have with a battery is 1 Yamaha TTR125EL .,    1  KLX 140L ,   1  VT750 SHADOW AREO ......    Cheap enough to keep new spares in stock ...

Understand you perspective... but have you read your own comment?   If you have never had one then you may not know if you will actually like it even more than Lead/Acid.

Believe it or not my wife said to me about 15 years ago.... "why are you buying an iPhone....  I will never get one why do I need a phone like that?".   She dismissed it because it was new, different and didn't understand the benefits.  No I'm not comparing an iPhone to a Lithium Battery.  I'm just saying you might not understand how much benefit you can get with one.  

Has any of your bikes ever needed to be jump started?  Our battery won't ever have to do that since it has built-in Jump Starting.  To many people that is game changing to other not so much.  Its all good, but we just want you KNOWING that you have another option when the time comes and your ready for it.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just replaced the battery in my WR450 with a lithium. After the purchase I realized two things:

#1 I have no idea how or where to store it in the winter. should it be in the bike (unheated attached garage) or in an area completely outside the house (fire hazard)?

#2 I don't have a charger for it. Should it be on a maintainer? Will it be ok in storage for 4 months without a charge?

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was a little skeptical about lithium at first.  One came in my new KTM EXC.  As this was the first bike I’ve had with a key, I left the key on a few times, running the battery down.  I was able to revive the battery the first two times, but the third time did it in.  I was ready to go with a lead acid until I came upon Anti Gravity with the restart feature.  I bought one, and am impressed with it.  Not only does it start my bike faster, the restart feature has saved me when I once again left the key on.  When the lead acid battery on my daughter’s Beta took a dump, it was replaced with an Anti Gravity with restart.  A month ago, I went out to the garage to start her bike, and there was nothing when I hit the start button.  It seems she left her gps turned on from the last ride.  I popped off the seat, hit the button on the battery, and we were back in business.  I’m sold on these batteries, not to mention Anti Gravity’s excellent customer service.  I am in no way connected with Anti Gravity, just a very satisfied customer.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been using Lithium batteries in dirt bikes since they were 1st available and have never had any problems with them. I would never go back to a Lead/Acid unit now. Winter performance is not really an issue in the UK as we rarely get the temperature lows that you see in the USA. They are lazy below 10°C or so and need a bit of a kick up the arse at the start of the day.

The biggest issue around lithium units imho is that the chemistry differences inside the lithium market are not properly understood and seemingly that includes manufacturers! There is only one lithium battery type suitable for use on bikes and this is Lithium Iron Phosphate or LiFePo4. However, the vast majority of lithium batteries are described and marked as Lithium ION even if they are indeed LiFePo4 like the excellent Antigravity units. Lithium Ion is a different and much more toxic technology and is prone to catching fire if charged or discharged incorrectly.

Lithium Ion needs to be avoided, LiFePo4 is the only one to go for and can be trusted 100%. I have a simple charger unit but simply don't need to use it as the batteries will hold charge for in excess of a year. Only today I got one of mine out after 14 months on a shelf in the garage and it registered 13.6V as it did when I put it away.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The stock lithium batteries can work in the cold it just takes special technique to let the battery self warm. At about 10 degrees F the technique i use is to push the starter for about 5 seconds and let the battery sit for 20 seconds, then crank the starter over for about 10 seconds and let it sit for 30 seconds. 95 percent of the time the battery will be able to start the bike after this point as the battery will be adequately warm.

of course you can also just get a higher capacity/discharge battery like the ones being advertised there and not have to worry about it.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...