Ecobat discusses battery-related breakdowns

Ecobat discusses battery-related breakdowns

John Bentley, Technical Sales Manager for Ecobat, discusses how fleet logistics companies and hauliers are potentially losing thousands due to a surge in battery-related breakdowns.

Battery failure is still the number one cause of vehicle breakdown, but with the fact that many companies are now operating on double, or even triple, driver shift patterns, it is not difficult to see why conventional starting, lighting & ignition (SLI) commercial vehicle (CV) batteries are struggling to cope with the demands of continuous use. Add to the cost of replacing spent batteries, with call out costs and late delivery penalty payments, it isn’t hard to understand why it’s costing companies thousands of pounds.

Although engine starting currents haven’t significantly changed over the years, the recent surge in electrical demands, means that conventional SLI CV batteries are failing at a rate not seen before. This is not just the case here at home, it’s also an issue for intercontinental drivers as the move towards drivers sleeping in their cabs, now common place while trucks are parked overnight, is also having a huge impact as vehicles double-up as hotel rooms, with the battery becoming the sole source of power for cooking, heating, lighting, GPS, and charging tablets or laptops etc.

Other factors, such as multiple drops that facilitate the use of the vehicle’s tail lift, which, due to key-out functions enforced by low-emission zones, are powered only by the battery, also have a dramatic effect as it continues to ‘walk down’ in charge available to such a point that starting the engine is compromised.


In addition to the fact that a conventional SLI battery fails to function effectively below 20% state of charge (SOC), the onset of cold weather adds another challenge and heightens the risk that operators will be faced with another call out, with the inevitable associated costs that will incur.

The unfortunate truth is that all this inconvenience is as a direct result of relying on an unsuitable battery, incapable of operating effectively at a low SOC and therefore unable to cope with the demands of modern CV usage, with many failing in as little as six to eight months. However, there is a solution that’s both affordable and provides an extended battery service life!

Engineered with specialist thin plate pure lead (TPPL) technology, which was first used in aerospace and the military, Odyssey AGM batteries are able to be discharged to 80% of their capacity, but crucially, can still start the engine and with an inherent fast-charging capability, it means that with this option, battery related breakdowns become a very rare occurrence. In addition, providing twice the power and three times the life of conventional SLI batteries, they are typically lasting for four years plus.

“Too good to be true” and “there must be a catch” are two thoughts operators can have in response to this, and yes, this advanced technology comes with a cost. However, despite being twice the price of a conventional SLI battery, the Odyssey AGM battery alternative becomes by far the cheapest option when they consider the savings they’ll make in terms of call out costs and unprofitable downtime, as well as providing them with a minimum four-year service life, during which time it’s likely they would have had to replace their conventional SLI batteries three times. So, the total cost of ownership (TCO), which is the true cost to their business, is considerably reduced.


Ecobat welcomes operators to contact it to find out more about how Odyssey TCO works out and why AGM TPPL technology is keeping truck fleets running efficiently, by emailing

As the UK’s largest independent battery distributor, supplying prominent brands such as Odyssey Battery, as well as Exide, Varta, Lucas and Numax, Ecobat has built its reputation by providing a level of service that reaches far beyond mere battery sales.

This means that as well as its unrivalled ability to supply the batteries needed, when their customers require them, the company is able to supplement this core discipline with other support functions, to enable businesses to consistently grow their battery sales. Among these additional roles is highlighting the environmental responsibilities that affect both workshops and wholesalers.

Underpinning the Ecobat sales team, is a 13-strong national branch network across the UK and Ireland, which means that as well as outstanding knowledge and service, its customers also benefit from excellent availability of the industry’s most prominent brands.

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