Updated: May 23, 2022
A battery has two important components, that is electrolyte and electrode. Here, the electrolyte is the medium that enables the moment of current between electrodes and it is could be in
wet form [also called flooded],
acid socked glass mat or
Also, electrodes are metallic terminals made of two different compositions. One terminal is called the anode and carries a positive charge. And Another terminal is called the cathode and carries a negative charge. These electrodes could be
tall tubular type.
Here, is an interesting fact for you. The name of a battery depends upon the type of electrotype and electrodes it has. So, gel battery has gel form electrolyte and tubular has tubular shaped electrodes. However, a gel battery could have a flat plate, tubular or tall tubular electrodes. Similarly, the electrolyte of a tubular battery could be gel form, wet or dry.
Moreover, there is an unwritten industrial standard that flooded batteries are generally named by the type of electrode they have [for example; Flat plate battery and tubular battery] and gel batteries are named gel batteries irrespective of the type of electrode they have. However, the type of electrodes of the gel battery has been printed somewhere on its sticker.
So, a gel battery could have tubular electrodes and a tubular battery could have gel-type electrolytes. Furthermore, to make a fair difference between gel battery and tubular battery we will list the difference between flooded tubular battery and gel tubular battery.
1. Spill-proof/Leak-proof [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
The electrolyte of a gel battery is in gel, hence the acid inside it won’t spill out even if you place it upsidedown. This makes the gel battery most suitable for the people changing rooms months after months.
However, the flooded tubular battery’s electrolyte is in liquid form. Hence you need to handle it very carefully while handling, otherwise its acid will spill out.
2. Sealing/Gas Release [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
While charging and discharging the flooded battery, hazard gases are produced. However, the gel battery didn’t produce any hazardous gas during charging or discharging. This makes it the most preferable battery for renters. Renter having small rooms can place it in this room without any worry of hazard gases.
3. Self-Discharge [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Battery losses its stored power over time when it is not connected to load and this phenomenon is called self-discharging. Flooded tubular batteries have a self-discharge rate of 12 to 15% per month, whereas for gel tubular batteries the same is 1-3% per month. This low self-discharge rate makes the gel battery more suitable for storing for a long time.
Do you wanna know why Lead-Acid batteries get self discharged? Click here to read our blog on the Self-discharge process in Lead-Acid batteries.
4. Maintenance [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Flooded batteries require regular water replacement to continue to perform effectively. However, compared to flat plate batteries, tubular batteries required less maintenance. Moreover, gel batteries required no maintenance.
That’s the reason, gel batteries are also called maintenance-free [MF] batteries.
5. Energy Density [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Energy density is the amount of energy stored in a battery for a given size or weight. Flooded battery stores more energy than a gel battery of identical weight. However, the weight of a tubular battery is higher than a gel type. Hence the energy stored in a tubular battery is higher than in a gel battery.
6. Power Density [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Power density is the maximum load a battery can serve for a small backup time. The power density of the flooded battery is higher than a gel battery. Whereas gel batteries are more suitable for longer backup with a lower current cycle.
7. Deep-Cycle Capability [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
The deep-cycle capability of a battery defines how deep it can be discharged without damaging itself. A tubular battery can be discharged up to 80% without damaging it. Since both gel tubular batteries and flooded tubular batteries have the same electrode structure. Hence both have the same deep-cycle capability.
8. Recharge Time [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Flooded batteries need a higher amount of overcharge than gel type batteries to avoid harmful effects known as stratification. Hence flooded tubular batteries required more recharge time than a gel tubular battery.
9. Round-Trip Efficiency [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
While charging and discharging, batteries generate heat and this generation of heat affects the efficiency of the battery. The higher the heat generation, the lower will be the battery efficiency. Flooded batteries have typically a round-trip efficiency of 70-80%, while gel batteries have an efficiency of 80 to 90%.
Hence gel tubular batteries have high round-trip efficiency than flooded tubular batteries.
10. Dimension [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
The dimension of the luminous gel tubular battery is (LxWxH) 51 x 28 x 27 cm however, the dimension of the luminous flooded tubular battery is 51.8 x 27.2 x 30.7 cm. Hence the dimension of both batteries is almost identical.
11. Weight [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
The weight of luminous gel tubular batteries is 24.44 Kilograms, however, the weight of the luminous flooded tubular batteries is 38kg. Hence tubular batteries are heavier than gel batteries.
12. Warranty [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Due to low maintenance and low discharge rate gel batteries have a slightly higher warranty period than tubular batteries. Luminous gel tubular battery has a warranty of 48months, however, luminous tubular battery has a warranty of 42 years.
13. Cost [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Due to high-end electrolyte and tubular electrode structure gel batteries are 50% higher in cost than tubular batteries.
14. Life span [Gel battery vs tubular battery]
Due to battery thermal and electrical characteristics, Gel has a higher life span than a flooded tubular battery.
Which is better luminous gel battery vs tubular battery?
Luminous Tubular batteries have battery overcharge properties than a Luminous gel battery. Hence it is ideal for off-grid solar power plants. However, gel batteries are easy to carry and don’t produce hazardous gases. Hence gel types are ideal for small houses and renters. Moreover, luminous gel batteries are 50% more costly than tubular batteries and 36% more costly than tall-tubular batteries.
Hence between luminous gel batteries and tubular batteries, tubular batteries are the most economical batteries.