The difference between maintenance-free and maintainable batteries

maintenance-free and maintainable batteries


There are many different types of batteries but two main types of starting batteries are, maintainable and maintenance-free. Maintainable batteries require constant maintenance and refilling. Maintenance-free batteries, on the other hand, are sealed and do not require any refilling during their lifecycle. In this article we will look at these two battery types in detail:

Maintainable batteries are batteries which have removable caps.

Maintainable batteries are batteries which have removable caps. They are refillable, so you have to add water after the battery is drained and to use the battery again. These batteries require regular maintenance and can be used multiple times before they need to be replaced.

On the other hand, maintenance-free or sealed lead acid batteries are filled with electrolyte and cannot be refilled. Maintenance free batteries have a condensation cap/cover, so the electrolyte cools and goes back into the battery cells rather than the electrolyte being vented to the atmosphere.

The purpose of removable caps on maintainable batteries is to enable users to add water during the battery life cycle.

Removable caps are designed to enable users to add water during the battery life cycle. It is important to note that most removable caps are made of plastic and not metal. This is because plastic does not conduct electricity as well as metal, so it will not cause a short in your battery when you remove them.

In most cases, the purpose of adding water is twofold:

  • To prevent drying out of electrolyte and causing the battery to explode
  • To prevent overheating during charging or discharging

Maintenance-free batteries are filled and sealed, no refilling required.

The difference between a maintainable battery and a maintenance-free battery is that the maintainable batteries have removable caps, which allow you to do some maintenance/refilling. However, this doesn’t mean that you can just unscrew the top and add water whenever you want. Some batteries have special systems for topping them up during their lifecycle. For example, batteries with caps need to be refilled because they have an internal reservoir to add water when necessary. Remember to always fill a maintainable battery to the assigned fill lines on the battery, Do Not over or underfill a maintainable battery. If a battery doesn’t have any of these features then it’s probably best not to open it up at all, even if there are no signs of corrosion or damage inside, because using your hands as an instrument could introduce dirt or unwanted connections which could cause problems later on down the line!

Maintenance-free batteries may be under warranty for up to 36 months and longer.

You can expect your maintenance-free batteries to be under warranty for between 24 Months to 36 months. That’s right, 36 whole months! These batteries are guaranteed to last longer than you expect and will be replaced by the manufacturer if they don’t meet the standards of performance that were promised.

However, if you over charger, undercharge or damage any battery, it is not covered by any warranty. Ensure you abide by the instructions given when buying the battery and do not tamper with the battery or battery terminals unless you are trained to do so. 

Most auto parts/battery stores no longer carry maintainable batteries due to the cost/hassle of the ongoing maintenance required.

Three key differences between maintainable and maintenance-free batteries are refillable, sealed and warranty period

  • Refillable – A maintenance-free battery is sealed, which means it requires a lot less maintenance over its lifespan, it is also a lot safer than the maintainable type of lead acid batteries. On the other hand, a maintainable battery requires technicians to check the electrolyte level and refill with distilled water when necessary.
  • Warranty period – The warranty period varies between different brands of batteries and depends on what type they are (maintenance-free or maintainable). For example, some manufacturers provide a full 3-year warranty on their maintenance-free batteries whereas others only offer 1 year on their maintenance-free options.
  • Sealed – A sealed battery is one where there is no way of accessing its interior as it has been designed with an impermeable cover protecting its inner workings from damage due to exposure at high temperatures or pressure levels during transportation or installation process while also preventing moisture intrusion over extended periods without use.


Maintenance free batteries are a better option for most people since they don’t need to be constantly filled with distilled water.. This is especially useful if you live in an area that has hard water or if the temperature changes dramatically during the year. Maintenance-free batteries do not require any maintenance and will last longer than traditional types of batteries, they end up costing less over time due to their reduced maintenance requirements.


You can shop our range of Maintenance-free batteries in our new retail store at

1/21 Empire Crescent Chevallum

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