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Old 03-02-2021, 02:49 PM   #1
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Battle Born Battery Issues

I posted last year about building a solar system for my RV which I just finished up last month. I put 900 watts of Renogy panels on the roof and have 400 Ah of Battle Born batteries. I have a 150/85 Victron Solar Controller and Victron 712 Battery monitor. I also already had two Battle Borns purchased in 2019 and 2020 which worked well over the past 18 months. I purchased and installed the last two Battle Born batteries in early February 2021 (total of four). After installing the two new BB batteries and being very happy with the way the system was running for a couple of days, we had a cloudy day, so we went to bed with 200 Ah left which should have been enough to get us through the night. Around 5 am, I woke up to my BMS chirping that the voltage had gotten low (11.5v). I checked my BMS and we had used only 312 Ah overnight. Nowhere near the 400 Ah we should be getting before the voltage gets that low. After lots of testing and connecting/disconnecting various batteries the following day, I found one of the BB batteries not charging or discharging properly (it would charge very quickly and only discharge 15 amps). I called BB and explained what was going on. They agreed to take the battery back and fix it. After a week of confusion about sending me return labels, I finally was able to ship the battery back to them. Almost two weeks went by and I heard nothing so I called them to get a status update. They said they were working on it. The next day, I heard back from them. After more confusion about how many batteries I had there and how old my battery BMS was (the battery was brand new and so was the BMS) and they said a thermal wire was loose which made the BMS go bad and it ruined a mod pack, so they were replacing the BMS and mod pack and I'd have the battery in a few days. Which brings me to today.

I received the battery but the serial number is different than the one I sent in. It is a much lower serial number. I called BB to express my concerns that this wasn't the same battery serial number and to see how the serial numbering system works. I know a little about serial numbers because as I said, I already have two previously purchased Battle Born batteries along with the two recently purchased batteries which are serial numbered in the following ranges:

Battery 1 October 2019 - 23,000
Battery 2 January 2020 - 31,000
Battery 3 February 2021 - 73,000
Battery 4 February 2021 - 73,000

I returned battery four for repair as described above and received a battery with a serial number in the range of 6,000.

Battle Born says batteries are not serialized based on date of manufacture but instead based on lots. When asked why my serial number changed if they just fixed the battery, they said if they change out enough parts it is considered a 'new' battery and reserialized (if my battery was reserialized, I would have expected it to have something in the 70,000 range to match the previous two new batteries I had just purchased). Of course, I am thinking that they messed up in returning the battery and sent me someone's very old battery and sent them my new battery.

Does anyone have any thoughts on what might be going on here or does anyone have experience with BB repairs? If you have a Battle Born battery, would you mind sharing the month/year it was purchased and the serial number range? If you sent it in for repairs was it reserialized?
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Old 03-02-2021, 03:04 PM   #2
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Old 03-02-2021, 03:10 PM   #3
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They do seem to think quick on their feet, don't they?
Your questions were all good, their answers, not so much, but who knows?

I have Relions, 2 X 100Ah, and they've only been tested once. 7 days, 4,000 miles of travel, no hookups, and they seemed to be OK. I don't have all the gadgets to monitor them, just the One Place and the Zamp battery state of charge voltage indicators, so I'm not going to be much help for you on the details.
There are other BB owners on several sites, (WinnieOwners for one) so hopefully someone will add something more helpful for you.
I'm interested in how this all works out for you. Good, I hope.
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Old 03-02-2021, 04:05 PM   #4
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Not sure you have a problem, LiPo batteries do not age out like tires. Your new battery should have the same warranty as any other new battery. I have bought 10 Battleborn's over the last 5 years and have not worried about the serial numbers on any of them. From what I have heard, Battleborn will stand behind any battery they sell, new or old.
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Old 03-02-2021, 08:18 PM   #5
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I would suggest that everything "ages out". Whether biological or chemical.
LiFePO4 batteries do "age out" but at a much slower rate than their more common FLA/AGM cousins. The chemistry makes them more durable to repetitive charge/discharge cycles, which is the reason so many of us are switching to them. They last a lot longer, but they aren't immortals.
If I sent in a high serial number battery and got one back that was clearly not the original, after the manufacturer said "they repaired the original", I'd have some serious questions about the veracity of the manufacturer's statement.
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Old 03-03-2021, 12:02 AM   #6
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I'm really surprised that BB didn't send you a new unused replacement.

Is the serial number stamped into the case? Does the case show some wear and tear that you didn't put on it? I'd be a bit more comfortable if the "new" serial number is on a fresh stick-on label or similar. That would suggest that the battery may indeed have been recently refurbished.

I had a problem (blue tooth failed) with a Lifeblue battery at 18 months. Lifeblue swapped it for a brand new unit.
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Old 03-03-2021, 02:38 AM   #7
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Old 03-03-2021, 04:54 AM   #8
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If the replacement works and still covered by the same warranty for 10 years from purchase why sweat it, if it's performance falls they'll send you someone else's repaired warranty battery that was replaced.
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Old 03-03-2021, 06:30 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hclarkx View Post
I'm really surprised that BB didn't send you a new unused replacement.

Is the serial number stamped into the case? Does the case show some wear and tear that you didn't put on it? I'd be a bit more comfortable if the "new" serial number is on a fresh stick-on label or similar. That would suggest that the battery may indeed have been recently refurbished.

I had a problem (blue tooth failed) with a Lifeblue battery at 18 months. Lifeblue swapped it for a brand new unit.

The battery has a sticker with a serial number on it. I did a bunch of research on what I could find on Battle Born serialization. Based on what I have seen, this battery is from 2014-2016. BB does put stickers on with new serial numbers if they've changed enough parts inside, but I don't believe that to be the case in this instance because the serial number is so low and all they changed in this guy's battery was the BMS and one mod pack. There is no evidence that they 'reuse' old serial numbers and it wouldn't make any sense for them to do so. In fact, one person on the internet who called BB for service surprised the person on the phone by calling for warranty service on a battery with a four digit code, calling them an 'early adopter'. This new battery they sent me also has a four digit serial number.
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Old 03-03-2021, 06:40 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by jcussen View Post
Not sure you have a problem, LiPo batteries do not age out like tires. Your new battery should have the same warranty as any other new battery. I have bought 10 Battleborn's over the last 5 years and have not worried about the serial numbers on any of them. From what I have heard, Battleborn will stand behind any battery they sell, new or old.

Hi, you and iterant1 have a similar comment about maybe keeping this battery since they stand behind their batteries. What I've heard others say online that they've heard from Battle Born, is that you should add batteries within two years. Given the serial number, this battery is between 5-6 years old. It's a lot to troubleshoot things that go wrong and I don't want this to be an added element of potential issues as I expand the system (adding a Victron 3000 multiplus this year) and potentially another battery and 300 more watts on the roof.
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Old 03-03-2021, 07:55 AM   #11
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'If' the replaced is an old battery you'll still have your same warranty and when it falls on its face it's warrantied. If you're not a fulltimer living on them continously boondocking I'll bet they'll age out first beyond the warranty. Right now on my non Battleborn 500ah batteries there are over 1,600 + cycles 35-40% daily, I am a fulltimer living off lfp/ solar boondocking mainly for the past 5 years and still can't notice any difference in power even drawing loads of 175-200a at 25% SOC or 75% DOD depending on how you look at it.
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Old 03-03-2021, 08:02 AM   #12
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'If' the replaced is an old battery you'll still have your same warranty and when it falls on its face it's warrantied. If you're not a fulltimer living on them continously boondocking I'll bet they'll age out first beyond the warranty. Right now on my non Battleborn 500ah batteries there are over 1,600 + cycles 35-40% daily, I am a fulltimer living off lfp/ solar boondocking mainly for the past 5 years and still can't notice any difference in power even drawing loads of 175-200a at 25% SOC or 75% DOD depending on how you look at it.

I am a full timer and the batteries are used heavily on a daily basis, being charged with the sun during the day and run down overnight (to 50% if it was sunny the previous day and down to near zero if it wasn't). At least as it is currently configured. I may be adding more panels soon to capture more sun on cloudy day and another battery so I don't have to run down near zero when the sun didn't charge the batteries much during a cloudy day.
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Old 03-03-2021, 09:51 AM   #13
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I would not be happy if I payed over $1000 for a battery and they sent me one several years old. Call or send an email and tell them you are returning this battery as it's not the one you purchased.
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Old 03-03-2021, 04:07 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by TiffinAlleg View Post
Hi, you and iterant1 have a similar comment about maybe keeping this battery since they stand behind their batteries. What I've heard others say online that they've heard from Battle Born, is that you should add batteries within two years. Given the serial number, this battery is between 5-6 years old. It's a lot to troubleshoot things that go wrong and I don't want this to be an added element of potential issues as I expand the system (adding a Victron 3000 multiplus this year) and potentially another battery and 300 more watts on the roof.
Are you sure this battery is 5 or 6 years old? Plastic case may be that old, but if it was returned with a problem, cells and or BMS could be new. A friend had a problem with his battleborn, and they sent him a new, or maybe rebuilt, one before he even sent the bad one back. Think water pumps, you buy a reman one and have to turn in your core to be rebuilt and sold to someone else. You don't know how old the actual body of the pump is, but you normally expect it to have new berings, seals etc, and perform like a new one. Battleborn seems like a pretty stand up company to me, and I don't think they would send you a 5 or 6 year old battery, without checking that it met their present specs first.
Agree, that if you are going to near 0% SOC in one day without sun, you do need another battery and perhaps more solar.
Personally, if I get to 30% SOC without the prospect of solar charging in the very near future, I either shed loads or get the generator going.
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