Media Workers and TV Researchers - Please seek permission before posting on this site or approaching individuals found here by phone or email - write to the Editor - mail to

Home Forums General Discussion Nickel Iron vs. Lead Acid — Off-Grid Battery Showdown Re: Nickel Iron vs. Lead Acid — Off-Grid Battery Showdown


I had a friend who helped with my system who had good 25 year old L-16s! I have been off grid for 12.5 years and have changed my batteries once, mainly because I had given the responsibility of refilling the batteries and checking them to my son, who lied and only did one out of 24 cells! The fluid level got too low. They were 350 Ah each and I replaced them with 410 Ah ones in 2005. I also added Infinitum battery desulfators. I found that keeping them up above 75% charge by using my generator a little more often, vastly increases lead acid battery life. That is how his batteries lasted so long, he had 50 of them and charged them with generators often. I added a 12VDC system of 4 L-16Ss when I did my addition/garage. Now that my son has moved out, that system was not used enough. I now run my house heater and sometimes this computer with a cord from the addition. That system also has two Infinitum desulfators. My Earthship has 4 golf cart 220 Ah batteries. I wouldn’t mind changing one of these systems over to nickel-iron, if the price is right and they would fit. I see they come in 1.2 volt units which would need a lot of connections for 12 or 24 volts. Dimensions and maintenance requirements would be nice to know, along with cost and shipping.

I remember from Real Goods that the sodium batteries were in 2VDC sections, expensive, large, and lasted 25+ years.

My 4WD Mariner Hybrid has a substantial nickel metal hydride battery (about 10″ x 40″ x 50″ under the back floor) and the usual 12VDC battery. We use NiMH rechargeables for household batteries for flashlights and other devices.

When I turned in my L-16s, they were recycled. You needed the old batteries to get a good deal on the new ones. Infinitum advertises that their battery desulfators increase battery life up to three times.