bbl batteries

A guide on which battery technology is most suitable for your Camper Van Conversion

A guide on which battery technology is most suitable for your Camper Van Conversion

Standard Lead Acid, AGM or Lithium? Some Pros and Cons…

When it comes to choosing which battery to use in your van conversion there is a choice of different battery technologies to consider. Below is a quick guide covering the three most popular choices that are widely available today.

Economical choice: Flooded / Standard lead acid.

This is by far the most original of the options available today. Still a solid all round performer, they are still by a long way the most affordable option, from a purchasing point of view, generally costing less than the equivalent AGM and Lithium options. The ongoing maintenance is generally more involved with the open vent, unsealed batteries (less so with sealed options) and they must be managed carefully due to ventilation and the electrolyte inside (these batteries gas).

Less Maintenance: AGM (Advanced Glass Mat) Deep Cycle.

An AGM battery will typically cycle 400 – 500 times and will be ‘happier’ regularly reaching a lower depth of discharge (50%) than the standard lead acid equivalent. AGM batteries are all fully sealed and therefore less maintenance is required than open vent lead acid batteries. Any electrolyte that is turned to vapour during use is collected using a specialist system in the lid of the battery and returned to the electrolyte reservoir ensuring minimal electrolyte depletion. The upfront cost is less than Lithium however the Lithium option will be able to cycle many more times to a much lower depth of discharge. AGM batteries are widely available and a good starting point for most amateur installers.

Premium choice: Lithium LiFePO4.

These batteries are the ultimate choice for van conversions as they are much lighter, have a dramatically increased reserve capacity and therefore cycle life. And in the case of the BBL Batteries Lifos brand, include an internal communication / reporting system that will talk directly to your smart device via a Bluetooth App. This ensures the user has all the key data, such as state of charge, output / input etc. to hand all the time when out on the open road. This is especially useful when solar kits form part of the power system, harvesting and feeding energy into the battery. The only minor downside is the higher upfront cost, however when the increased cycle life is taken into account over the long term there is a considerable cost saving. When Lifos is discharged to 50% it will produce in the region of 5000 cycles. The equivalent AGM battery when discharged to 50% will produce in the region of 400 – 500 cycles, less than ten times the amount. Lifos is happy to reach much a much lower depth of discharge than 50% if required and is the only battery out of all three options to do so.

BBL Batteries stock and supply premium quality batteries covering all three technologies. We source our batteries globally from all the leading battery manufacturers ensuring quality, availability, range and of course value. BBL Batteries were instrumental in the theory, design and bringing to market of their Lifos range. Having been a key player in the battery market for nearly 50 years, BBL can also offer the very best advice based on a wealth of experience collected by our battery experts.


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Paul Harris 17 August, 2020 Reply

Just had battery check and a new Battery fitted, What a great guy sorted my Car out, When I got there he was just on a break, It was a bit busy but he said to give him a few minutes and he would sort it out, Boy was he good, Battery checked, Old battery out /new one in, Recoded, Paid for all within 15 /20 mins. 
Saved over £125 from my Hyundai garage quote & two more years warranty and done there and then.
All done with a smile ..
What more can you ask for?


Steve Priday 22 July, 2020 Reply

Exceptional customer service from a very knowledgeable staff member. We were directed to the trading estate to find a Europarts by Green Flag as our previous battery had given up the ghost whilst on holiday. In searching for their unit we came across BBL and instantly ‘felt’ and that we would be looked after better. Not only was the customer service first class but the battery was significantly less than a lesser quality battery at Europarts. We will definately advise friends and family that holiday in the South West to use your company for their battery needs. Thank you..


Paul Newman 22 July, 2020 Reply

Always used this depot in all my service engineering days. Used twice in the last 6 months and brilliant service each time. Excellent product range and knowledgeable people.


Stuart Chester 29 May, 2020 Reply

Superb quick service as usual. I highly recommend the guys at this Exeter branch for great information, service and help. Nice to go to a place for help where they don’t try to sell you something you don’t need.
Many thanks


Kevin Smith 24 May, 2020 Reply

Always excellent service from Wayne and Andy even during these difficult times.


Suzanne frost 27 April, 2020 Reply

As a keyworker my car was important at this time. Unfortunately my battery died on me. Rang up BBL batteries Monday morning, paid over the phone, instructions given as to where it would be left for social distancing purposes. Partner collected the battery half hour later.  Brilliant service. Would use again


Michael Elwell 26 April, 2020 Reply

Very good service from start to finish.  Staff pleasant and helpful.

I was surprised to find that the battery I purchased was manufactured by


As an aside, I was employed by Lucas batteries and took an early retirement

in late 1996 just as Lucas and Yuasa joined forces.



David 07 March, 2020 Reply

Very knowledgeable and helpful staff,,
Great range to suit all budgets,  Always buy my batteries and accessories here,  Served by Matt on latest visit.


Tina 07 January, 2020 Reply

Amazing help and service from the Swindon Branch this morning after my car wouldn’t start and taking a recommendation to bring it to BBL. Matt and the team were really friendly, helpful and efficient from my initial phone call to fitting, which was done immediately!  I am very thankful and will certainly be recommending this place to everyone. Thanks again highly recommended!


Gerald Lawrence 21 December, 2019 Reply

DONT GO ANYWHERE ELSE.BBLbatteries recommended by Breakdown chap saying batteries cheaper than anywhere else so went along.
yup batteries cheaper than elsewhere by £20 including fitting!!!!

Great service from the staff including walking out with a mug torch and a smile!!

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