Updated 11/10/2018.



                            IS THE NCC VERIFIED BATTERY SCHEME FLAWED?


Breaking news : The Trading standards big brother, the DBEIS, has started sending out letters to Leisure Battery Retailers saying their Wet Lead and AGM batteries are under test and they want to visit the premises. 
The safety of Lithium batteries has been added to the scope. 
DBEIS have the power to seize stock, shutting down premises on the spot so watch for some headline breaking news soon. 


The NCC Verified Battery Scheme promised such a lot when it launched a couple of years ago, but it isn't delivering.  

Did you know that the NCC verified scheme condones manufacturers being able to overstate a Batteries Capacity? You could be buying a 'Verified' battery that has only 95% of the stated capacity?
See the NCC Document in full further down the page, relevant here is section 5.2.1 - 

"5.2.1 Capacity (C20) in Ah, - To meet the requirements of the scheme the capacity must be no less than 95% of that claimed by the manufacturer within the submitted documentation".


The 'Budget' battery manufacturers are taking advantage of this to provide a battery that is only 95% of what it says on the label, defrauding the public. 

Contrary to the approach by the 'budget' suppliers, the big battery companies like Yuasa, Varta, Exide, Banner, etc. do the opposite and understate the battery capacity, so with a big name manufacturer you may get a 104Ah when it says 100Ah. 

For example, we have seen the Industry Standard BS EN test results for the Yuasa L36-EFB that show it achieved 104Ah and 233 cycles, yet the label lists it as a 100Ah, 200 cycles battery. 


If you don't believe how big the gulf can be between a top name brand and a 'budget', read the below comparison between a £109 Platinum Budget with an 'alleged' 70 cycle life versus a £105 Varta LFD90 with 200+ cycle life. Almost the same price but one is 3 times the better battery :


This Platinum LB6110L Battery : https://www.alpha-batteries.co.uk/110-ah-platinum-low-height-leisure-battery-lb6110l/ 
It is rated at a poor 70 cycles yet costs £109. 

Versus the best in the Class, the Varta LFD90 : https://www.alpha-batteries.co.uk/12v-90ah-varta-lfd-90-professional-leisure-battery-930090080/ 
It is rated at a very good 200+ cycles at £105 

So a "Life Time" comparison can now be done by anyone using the excellent Alpha Batteries web pages that shows the 'Budget' Platinum will require three batteries to be purchased over the same period to match a single Varta, or £327 for the Platinum 'Budget' option versus £105 for Varta quality. 







You can see the description on the label of the Platinum LB6110L above states a very misleading "Extra Long Life" when 70 cycles is extra SHORT life", that is blatant misselling yet this is an NCC Verified battery that the scheme claims it weeds out.

The model name of LB6110L is also designed to deliberately deceive that this could be a 110Ah battery, not the 90Ah we rate it as. 
That gives a clue to how the Platinum marketing team approach things - with deception.
 
You can easily see how their approach to deliberately mislead might extend to inflating the Capacity and cycling figures? You probably wouldn't get even 95 Ah or 70 cycles, just as we didn't when we tested one. 
Our own test on this battery showed it delivered less than 30 cycles and had a real capacity of nearer 90Ah, making it's real cost comparison versus the Varta over a 5 year ownership of over £600 versus a Varta's £105.   
 

The NCC Verified Battery scheme claims to protect consumers so should never allow a battery, that is clearly in breach of Trade Description guidelines, never mind anything else, into the scheme. 
In fact the NCC Verified scheme even bans manufacturers from using names that confuse, see section 4.1.4 in the Schemes Details Document - 
"4.1.4 Model numbers that can be confused with capacity, i.e. 12V110, shall not be used". 

So how does such a poor performing battery, that also breaks so many rules, including trading standards, make it into the NCC scheme?
Could it be something to do with the fact the NCC are paid money to rate a Battery on the scheme? 

But one of biggest issues is that the NCC promote AGM batteries for use into Caravans and Motorhomes when almost zero Caravans have an AGM optimised charger and less than 1% of motorhomes. All AGM battery manufacturers state that the battery life will be shortened if the correct charging solutions are not used.
We want the NCC scheme to warn that AGM batteries must have AGM optimised chargers and Alternaters.


Odd how the NCC refuse to publish any 'Test results' to show it really is open and fair? 
One man at the top of the Government Agency investigating Battery mislabelling has described the Leisure Battery industry as 'corrupt' and they are currently testing Batteries to provide the evidence to take action. 
The NCC Verified scheme is on their list.
  
Clearly the NCC Verified battery scheme needs change so while the government DBEIS investigation progresses, we suggest you make a point of taking the NCC's fake verification's with a 'Pinch of Salt'.


Alpha Batteries have already started adding more Technical Information and Downloads to the website sales pages so people are better informed ready for the move to our new hoped for National Battery Labelling Standard. See bottom of the page for more info on our Battery Label proposal. 

The Alpha website contains so much information, it allows everyone to do their own comparisons. 
If the same information was on the battery label in Green to Red 'Traffic Light' colours, it would allow anyone to make better decisions on what battery is right for them. 




The nicest surprise in support of our assertion that AGM batteries are not suitable in Motorhomes, this week came from an article in Septembers Caravan and Motorhome Club magazine on 'Choosing Leisure Batteries',  Page 114.  Thank you Arthur for the Info.

For the first time EVER, the CAMC publishes advice to actually avoid AGM batteries in line with our campaign. See further down these pages, for our reasons why AGM batteries don't work in motorhomes.

 
The CAMC must be reading/listening to our campaign, because the same battery article specifically tries to fend off our criticism on the CAMC/NCC inadequate 'NCC 6 cycle capacity test', where we criticise the 'test' parameters in it. Once again, see about 2/3rds further down this page.  

The CAMC article states something like :- 

"In general, it's probably best to avoid AGM batteries unless you are absolutely sure your charger is suitable, as the otherwise excellent performance counts for little if the performance is compromised through damage by inappropriate charging". 


That warning has never before been published by a Magazine or Club. 

Even the recent, August 2018, MMM 'big' battery articles which promoted the purchase of two AGM's failed to give any warning on mains charger/Alternator suitability, despite one of the batteries websites stating it doesn't just need an AGM charger, but a special AGM charger, which will never be found in a Motorhome/Caravan.  


We consider that a huge breakthrough in helping to stop people from being disadvantaged by unsuitable battery sales that end up costing the buyer twice as much with half the life. 


Hopefully things will now change and the NCC Verified scheme front page will also start warning people that AGM batteries should only be used if the Alternator output voltage (most are too low) and the mains charger is optimised for AGM with a specific AGM/Gel/Wet profile switch? 
I will take that as another success for our efforts. 



However, that elation is a little tempered that the CAMC makes such a big issue of defending the 'NCC 6 cycle Capacity' test in the same article. It is a shame they press the point the 6 cycle tests 'ensures the battery is the exact quoted capacity', when the NCC scheme rules allow the 'budget' battery companies to then reduce that to 95%.



So I am sorry CAMC, you get 10/10 for the warning to avoid AGM batteries, but a Black mark for defending, and being part of a scheme where a battery buyer is defrauded by being passed off with only 95% of the Capacity they are paying for. 
Maybe you would be happy with only getting 95% of any Cash withdrawal from a Cash Point, but most would be straight into the Bank. 
The '6 cycle' test is inadequate, so is allowing manufacturers to short change us on Capacity.


 
And before you try and argue that isn't true, right on cue, we have new proof that during the life of the NCC Verified battery scheme consumers have been deceived on Battery Capacity :-


There have been rumours for a long time that the '110Ah' budget batteries are heavily overrated and here is the evidence -  

We Make Another Major Step Forward With Our Campaign :
Manbat/Eurobat (biggest wholesaler in the UK) has revised the entire range of batteries they sell as 'own brand' style batteries.
They have down graded EVERY budget Leisure batteries 'label' capacity. 
Have a look at the new version of the 'new' Numax XV110Ah which is now being listed at 105Ah, see : https://www.tayna.co.uk/leisure-batteries/numax/xv31mf/

They are exactly the same battery as before, but now the label is more honest. All the batteries have had their label 'corrected' by between 5Ah and 10Ah less
I saw the old 85Ah and new 75Ah batteries side by side. Exactly the same battery, but the new one shows an honest 75Ah on the label. 

Anyone following our threads will be aware that in the past we have applied 'pressure' to the battery wholesaler Manbat/Eurobat by putting their batteries through testing.  
Massive progress for the consumer and very well done to Manbat/Eurobat for more honest labelling.
They said they wanted to change, improve and become the best battery wholesaler. 
Manbat have also committed to putting clear battery manufacture dates on all their batteries, a real plus for consumers who are sometimes sold batteries that have had their life shortened by being sat unsold on the shelf. The consumer can't currently tell the battery age very easily, but Manbat have committed to change that for the consumer. 

I truly believe that Manbat have recognised that things must change and are leading that change, please support them and that will develop further.


The Battery Wholesaler Platinum Batteries, on the other hand, have quite a way to go towards putting the customer first.



The NCC Hide The Truth :
We have been asking the NCC to publish the tests that prove the batteries perform as stated, because we have evidence many do not.
But the NCC have refused, they don't seem to want to achieve the schemes stated aim to  -
" bring transparency to the leisure battery marketplace and help consumers select a product that’s right for them"?


But don't take our word for that.
James Brown from the Motorhome Fun forum, just about the biggest forum there is, wrote to the NCC with -

"Hello, We have heard through a web source that your Verified Battery Scheme is not what it seems.

You state that "Battery verification comes via a comprehensive, industry-leading, testing process conducted by suitably certified and audited test houses”. 
Could you please confirm what test houses you use so we might verify your testing claims. If this is not possible might you supply some of the test results so we can put our member's minds at rest that recommendations from the council are based on sound, independent testing as promised?

Kind regards

James Brown BEM


A very reasonable email, asking for details of the test houses the NCC used or copies of the test results so that, "we can put our member's minds at rest that recommendations from the council are based on sound, independent testing as promised".


When the NCC replied, it didn't reveal the Test Houses it uses, or offer any Test results. It replied with a lot of woolly political style phrases that avoided the questions entirely. Not one question was addressed.


See the questions posed to the NCC by James and the full response of the NCC on the Motorhome Fun Forum here :  https://www.motorhomefun.co.uk/forum/threads/ncc-verified-battery-scheme-latest.178056/page-3  



                                              NCC Verified Batteries are made of Concrete?
On the 22nd August 2018 we were shown a battery which had concrete in the bottom to disguise that the real Lead content was next to nothing. The Lead plates were half length so the real battery capacity would not have been the 110Ah on the label but about 45Ah. 
More info here :  



We want the NCC scheme to develop and do so much more, at the very least do what it promises. 
Until that happens we will be exposing it's weaknesses.



The NCC is a company that in 2017 had a £244 million revenue and £18 million profit. 
The NCC is funded by the industry, for the industry. 
They are not the independent company that many think.

Money changes hands to get a battery on the NCC webpages. There is no transparency to show that has been done correctly. 
The top government agency in the UK that sits above Trade Standards Authority, is investigating battery mislabelling and mis-selling. They describe the industry as 'corrupt'. 
That is a word they used to us and said we could quote. 



We would question the merit of the Camping Club and CAMC selecting the NCC for a scheme like this without also insisting on transparency.  




Challenging the NCC is only one part of our drive for improvement through the whole Leisure battery industry, right down to battery labelling.



So what have we achieved so far?

1. In a short time we have put batteries through tests and proved they have been deliberately overrated by the NCC. This is now being investigated by government agencies.

2. We have 'worked with a wholesaler' and their batteries have received down rated labels.

3. We have achieved a massive break through on the warnings that AGM batteries are rarely suited to Motorhome use. It is slowly being acknowledged by the Industry and it is now acknowledged by the CAMC, hopefully other clubs/magazines will follow.

4. We are also working with a retailer to provide ground breaking, ethical service, with a proposal to develop a new National battery labelling standard see below.



I would argue those are better results for the consumer in 11 months than the NCC Verified battery scheme have achieved in years. 


We now intend to target the wholesaler Platinum Batteries by putting some of their budget 'own labels' through further tests as we have evidence that some of these also carry labels with exaggerated figures. 
We are in the process of collecting formal evidence (batteries already on test)  that will stand up in Court so we can supply them to the Trading Standards 'special battery' unit. 
Watch this space.


  


More great news - 03/08/2018

Alpha Batteries have agreed to work with our ideas to become the retailer the consumers want. They are already one of the most competitive, selling the Varta LFD 90 within 92 pence of the Battery Megastore and Tayna's price, but want to be the best. The battery advice they give will be based on exactly that, not targets or profit driven as most other retailers seem to be.  They have already retrained the staff on the phone desk.

They have further agreed to change their website to include more information, including battery cycle life, ideal charging voltages, etc and lay it out in a Traffic Light style format, rather like the Food 'Traffic Light' Labelling standard. 

This will hopefully lead to more information being available, but in an easy to understand format. 

It is based on our new National Battery Labelling proposal, so this adopting on their web pages could be a good guide to how our idea will shape up. 



The Alpha Batteries email to us on 03/08/2018 stated - 
"Hello Allan, The more information the customer gets at the point of sale and enquiry the better. We need to apply what's happening on the phones now to the website. (This refers to the recent retraining of the phone desk staff to increase their technical knowledge and so give better advice). 
We do have more information than most at this stage, but it can and will be much better. 
I have emailed our web company with an outline of making key specs readable in traffic light format. They will get back to me with the options we can implement and the timescales. 
So, do you think these key points should be under the traffic light system :- 
Voltage 
Capacity 
Cycles 
CCA - EN DUAL PURPOSE 
Watt Hours 
Charge Voltage 
Weight 
Fluid consumption 
Venting required? 

I'm really committed to the plans and hope you don't feel this is marketing or lip service. 
Watch this space... 

I can't do it overnight but good plans are in place. 
John G, MD - Alpha Batteries" 



I genuinely believe this company mean to be the best by adopting an ethics based policy of working. 

They were the first to adopt warnings about AGM batteries needing AGM optimised chargers. They retrained their staff to give those on the front Sales desk better knowledge to advise customers, not like most other Sales teams that direct a customer to the battery that generates most profit.

I for one am going to give them a chance to show us what they can do. Please support them, it will encourage them that their new direction on an Ethics based track is what consumers want.

 

If you mention us when buying a Varta LFD90 or Yuasa L36-EFB (our Best Budget and Best Mid range Buys) from Alpha Batteries, you may be offered a small discount. 
The discount is discretionary and is not designed to be a 'proper' discount, but merely enables them to gauge support for what they are doing.






NCC VERIFIED SCHEME BATTERY - UPDATE. 
We have been sent a document that lists the full Technical details of the NCC 'Verified' battery scheme where the NCC clearly condone manufacturers misleading consumers.

Section 6.1.7 in the document states that ONLY 6 CYCLES OF CAPACITY TESTING are necessary to confirm a manufacturers claims of battery capability.
The manufacture just needs to submit a 6 cycle capacity test and that is enough to back up whatever the manufacturer claims about the battery spec. 
The durability of a Leisure battery, the most important thing to most buyers, is treated secondary and not tested adequately.

Click on the link below to see the document in full, where it states :
 
"6.1.7 The testing shall then be repeated until a sequence of 6 cycles has been completed".

Then they just make a guess.




This really is the NCC's idea of a 'Verified' test, click on the link above to see the full details on page 5, section 6.1.7


So, even where a test is performed it is wholly inadequate and in direct contravention of the spirit of the scheme.
No wonder they won't publish any of the tests, they either don't have any or they are laughable.

 
Ask yourself how does the quality Exide EP800, weighing a chunky 26.5kg,  only receive a verified 360 cycles from the NCC scheme, yet the very ordinary Leoch Xtreme XR1750 manages 600 cycles with only 21.2kg of Lead?
The Leoch is a very ordinary battery, it is almost 25% lighter. With the technology it uses, it would be chemically impossible to even match the Exides 360 cycles let alone reach 600. Battery experts we have spoken to think it would struggle to reach 200 cycles.  
You can understand why some people are thinking money has changed hands for the XR1750 to be given such a rating by the NCC Verified scheme. 


The Platinum LB6110L AGM (a battery recently 'promoted' by an MMM article) has a lower durability lighter weight construction than the EXIDE EP800. Yet the NCC 'verify' it at the same 360 cycle life. Unbelievable.

Have a look closely at the NCC verified table and check out just how many high reputation big name batteries are being 'outverified' by clearly inferior 'clone' batteries from Asia where the testing criteria seems to inferior to the UK's.


Why aren't the Camping Club and CAMC, who are the originators of the scheme, insisting on the scheme being more open to show it is 'above board'? 

Can we ask everyone to get involved, write to the groups involved, magazines, etc with questions on why the NCC don't publish the test results.


If you want more evidence the scheme is corrupt, read on. 



The following document shows how deceitful the NCC are being, especially in light of the reply to the Motorhome Fun forum.
This letter below is from the Korean battery company and shows no independent testing of the battery took place :



It was sent to David Reid of the NCC 'confirming' why the  DCxx battery in question merits a high cycle rating when the Atlasbx Sales brochure showed the batteries have a cyclic capability of LESS THAN 80 CYLES.
The Graph used in supporting evidence in the letter above 'suggests' that the battery reaches a 'claimed' 220 charge/discharge cycles.

However, you will also see that the graph shows how badly the capacity of the battery drops as the Charge/Discharge test progresses. 
Batteries lose capacity as they are used, a battery becomes 'smaller' with each use. A healthy 100Ah battery can be down to 90Ah maximum capacity at a year old. The industry regard a battery as expired when it's capacity drops to 80Ah in the case of a 100Ah battery. 

If you apply the rules of BS EN 50342, the graph shows the battery struggles to achieve 170 cycles, never mind 220. 

So while the letter actually contains a graph that proves the battery should be rated at a maximum 170 cycles, the NCC have listed it as 220 cycles, following the text written by the battery manufacturer. 

 

You may ask why, if the NCC have all the test data, did the NCC need a letter in the first place?

If you look at the last few paragraphs you will find the answer. The letter is being written in response to questions on the technical content of the AtlasBx Sales Catalogue, it states -

"The graph you referred to with Numax DCxx is old information before the battery was redesigned and should not have been in our catalogue"


You may also ask why was the NCC looking at the 'Sales Catalogue' in the first place and using it to query a batteries Tech. Spec. if it had all the laboratory test data? 

But then again, you have probably worked out the answer already?


The battery has been listed in the NCC 'verified' scheme as having 220 cycles, so clearly this letter has been used to 'verify' the battery.


The battery we tested didn't reach 80 cycles, a huge variance from the NCC 'Verified' 220 cycle rating. 

The Graph below from the Battery manufacturers catalogue shows the DC range ONLY achieves around 80 cycles at 50% Depth of Discharge (DOD)


 


Strangely enough our test of less than 80 cycles isn't far off the cyclic figure shown on the battery manufacturers catalogue Graph. So is it a coincidence they match or is 80 cycles the real figure?


That is clear evidence that the NCC portray the scheme very differently to the way it actually operates. The skills of the operators of the scheme, from it's setting up, description, aims, verification, etc all show a serious lack of battery knowledge and dedication to honesty. 


More worrying is that the Asian Battery manufacturers are testing to a completely different standard to that of the UK.




Yuasa now prints on the battery casing the number of cycles a battery will achieve. We think every manufacture should follow this lead, so there can be no excuse or 'mixup' when the battery is independently tested by Trading Standards. 


As of the 15 June 2018, when we took our 5th snapshot, the NCC Verified Battery Scheme website stated -
"Battery verification comes via a comprehensive, industry leading, testing process conducted by suitably certified and audited test houses". 
Clearly this statement is intended to lead consumers into believing that audited test houses have carried out a testing process for the NCC to Verify those test results. We know that is not the case.




In the mean time all of the testing we have done suggests that you should be safe buying big name battery manufacturers products, like Yuasa, Varta, Bosch, Exide and Victron Energy.
In our experience these companies make quality long life batteries that perform to specification.

However, we suggest you avoid - Platinum, Haze, Enduroline, Powerline, Hankook, etc. It seems that the 'technical' author that writes the specifications for these companies is related to Hans Christian Andersen. 

   

Yuasa have already shown us full and complete BS EN test data for some of their batteries, hopefully other manufacturers will come forward with their test data to prove a full test has been carried out. 
One of the tests we have seen is for the latest high technology Yuasa L36-EFB and it has become our "Best Mid Range Buy". 
A target price of just on £119, buys 100AH of the very latest Enhanced Flooded Battery (EFB) technology. 

It achieved over 230 cyles at 50% DOD in the test, but Yuasa are claiming only 200 cyles on the battery label. It is 100Ah @ C20, 850 CCA, 1050 SAE cranking amps. Expect it to punch above it's specification. Performing in real World use better than batteries that allegedly have a higher 'paper' specification. 




All the figures are higher than our £98 "Best Budget Buy" Varta LFD90 which is still a battery we rate highly.  


Note we do not sell batteries, we suggest you try Alpha Batteries - 01706 356356
 




But Worse Than False Figures.

All the above questions what the scheme is trying to be and the integrity of the data, but the third, most serious issue in my book, is that the NCC scheme is actively promoting AGM batteries that are unsuitable for the application the scheme claims they are 'Verified' for. 

Alpha Batteries are the first retailer we have seen that now posts a prominent warning on their web pages about AGM batteries :-

"Please ensure your charging method can accommodate AGM batteries as charging at non AGM charge settings can adversely affect the life of the battery". 

Well done Alpha Batteries. 

A champion retailer - that is putting the consumer before profit. 


All big battery manufacturers state that their AGM battery must be charged with 14.7v charging systems. Some also specify lower than the usual Leisure vehicle 13.8v Float charge rate.


Banner Batteries have an FAQ on their website with a question on charging AGM :  batterieshttps://www.bannerbatterien.com/en-gb/Support/FAQ.

Not only does it stipulate a higher 14.8v 'Boost' charge rate, but the Float rate should be an ultra low 13.5v, which is exceptionally rare on ANY Caravan/Motorhome multi stage charger, let alone an AGM specific version. 

The FAQ states :-

"What values should I use when setting an external charger for AGM batteries in the caravan? How high should the charging and float charge voltage be?"

"Please employ the AGM setting, which means that the charge voltage should be set at max. 14.8V and the float charge voltage at 13.5V. Best of all, use an IUoU characteristic with temperature compensation".


Note that it additionally suggests temperature compensation on the charger. We would estimate less than 1% of Caravans/Motorhomes would have one of these.  

A Motorhome/Caravan with 14.8v/13.5v mains charger and temperature compensation has NEVER been fitted to a mainstream Leisure vehicle. 


The Caravan and Motorhome experts that work for the magazines have been fully aware for years that AGM chargers are hardly ever fitted to  Motorhomes and almost zero Caravans. 

The battery manufacturers say that failure to charge an AGM exactly as the manufacturers spec, results in premature failure, often less than 2 years, typically 18 months. 

Something Hymer and Banner found out when they started rolling out AGM's in all new Hymers around 2014. Some of the posts on the forums said they didn't even get 9 months life out of the battery.  

There were so many failures recorded, that Hymer rushed through, new chargers with an AGM specific charger profile. 


The August 2018 copy of MMM magazine contains a 'Power Packed' battery article promoting two AGM batteries, both of which we have severe concerns about.

The Haze AGM 'Electric vehicle' battery at £239, is promoted by the MMM, yet the Haze web site states these are totally unsuitable for use in a Motorhome. They not only need an AGM specific charger, but a special version that is vital to decent battery life. The Haze website states - 

To obtain the optimum cycle life performance from the Haze EV range it is vital that the correct charging profile is utilised. Haze specifies a charging profile with an equilizing/desulphation phase as detailed in the Haze document “Charging - Cyclic Applications” 

Clearly the installation of such a battery into the average motorhome or Caravan is going to lead to tears because such a charger won't be present. 

I can imagine that installing a Haze in a motorhome with a Sargent EC500 is likely to result in the already poor Haze 12 month warranty being void. Yes I did double check the Haze warranty, the website quotes a measly 12 months guarantee. Even a Platinum budget gets 2 years warranty.



Does it make you wonder if the promotion of AGM's by the NCC is a deliberate ploy to fatten the bank accounts of the companies who make payments to the NCC?

The sale of double the cost batteries with half the life of a budget battery delivers a big enough financial incentive to not be honest.


We were highlighting premature AGM Motorhome battery failures in 2014, some that didn't last 18 months. See here for more info on the limitations of AGM batteries.


The Battery Industries perception that Caravans and Motorhomes contain sophisticated chargers is wrong, they are often crude Power Supply/Chargers. 

For anyone who mistrusts our claim that 99% of British motorhomes don't have AGM optimised chargers, then read the "A bit of History on the Leisure battery chargers installed in Caravan and Motorhomes" section towards the bottom of the AGM Battery web page.









Thank you to everyone who has offered help and support, really appreciated.

We need to point out again that we do not have any evidence that any of the big name battery manufacturers have done anything wrong. The support we have had from the big Battery manufacturers has been exceptional.
Some have already supplied BS EN test data to prove the batteries stated performance, despite the NCC saying the data can't be released. 



If anyone from 'Which' magazine is reading this, we could do with some help here!!




                                   Campaign for Better Battery Labelling


We want to work with the industry towards clearer battery labelling. Through this campaign to drive change with the NCC scheme, we have now gained links to the big battery manufacturers and a voice. 

Trading Standards want battery labelling to change for the simple reason it is hard to prosecute a rogue selling a Starter battery as a Leisure battery if the labelling is so confusing. 

Mandated labelling might happen if we can create a good standard 



We have talked before about a 'Traffic Lights' label on the battery. Is this what's required?
We love the Yuasa new labelling scheme, it is clearly aimed at helping the consumer by delivering more information in a friendly, easy to understand way. But can it be enhanced further with more colour?


If you look at the image below you will see all key symbols, both circles for presumably Leisure specifications and 'squares' for Starter battery, like cranking amps, etc. grouped together at the bottom left. 
See at the bottom right, symbols of a Motorhome, Caravan and Boat, obviously a proper Leisure. How beautifully clear is that?





Hopefully, you will also note how clear the other labelling graphics are and see, for the very first time on a mainstream battery, that it publishes it's cyclic ability on the casing. We have seen official Test Data for this battery and it actually achieved nearer 240 cycles, but they did not want to overstate the specification so print 200 cycles. This is one battery that will outperform it's paper specification by a big margin.

To have the real Cyclic Life printed on the battery case is a first.

Note also the new graphic showing Watt hours, a much better guide to real capacity than just the Ah rating. 

This is a major step forward, well done Yuasa. People have asked for this clarity for years and finally Yuasa have delivered. 

I think we have found a manufacturer who really wants to drive change in the Leisure battery market place to help the consumer make a really informed choice on their purchase. Lets hope all the big players want to join in to create an informal European standard.

This battery is truly a leader amongst batteries in so many ways that are good for the Leisure community.


So can we improve it with colour and will Yuasa work with us?


For example :
Battery Cycles could have a Red/Orange/Yellow/Green/Light Green Circle with the actual number of cycles printed in the middle of the circle? Red would indicate an ultra low cyclic light duty battery, say below 5 cycles. Orange a low duty between 7 and 70, etc.


The resting Battery Voltage could also have a colour code that somehow reflects a VRLA's nearer 13v compared to conventional 12.6v?


Special Charging voltage requirements also as Orange/Yellow/Green Circle with the number of 'Charging volts' printed in the middle of the circle? Where a battery needs a high 14.8v the circle might be Orange to indicate it has special charging needs, or Green if it will tolerates a Caravans 13.8v Power Supply/Charger, etc


Tolerance to being left on long term permanent charge from Electric Hook Up/Solar could also be a Red/Yellow/Green Circle with the ideal Float voltage in the centre. Red for very intolerant and maybe a low 13.2v, Yellow for quite tolerant and 13.4v, etc


The background colour behind the new graphics on the label, not necessarily the whole label, might be Pale Orange to indicate Wet Acid, Pale Green for Gel, Pale Yellow for AGM, and Pale Blue for Lithium. or whatever, etc.


Maybe we should have a 'Price band' traffic light so I can see in a table those batteries which are low cost and those that need a mortgage?


This same colour coding could also be used to very good effect in a Table of 'Approved' battery characteristics. 
Anyone looking for a medium cyclic Gel battery would just look at the rows in pale Green and at the columns in Yellow.




Manbat Eurobat Solicitors Letter :