The Duncan Download Blog: Business Aviation Advice & Observations

How to Reduce Business Aircraft Battery Costs

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Tue, Sep 06, 2011 @ 06:00 AM

Contributed by Michael Craft, Parts & Components Sales Rep.

Securaplane SLA Main Ship Battery

Securaplance Batteries are a high power, long life and low mantenance alternative to conventional aircraft batteries.

Aircraft operators usually don’t think about how much aircraft battery costs add to their bottom line. They’re used to it. What surprises me is how many operators don’t know that a more cost effective solution is available, and performs as well as (if not better than) conventional aircraft batteries.

Most people are familiar with Ni-Cad and standard Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) batteries. New Ni-Cad batteries last five years, are very expensive and involve recurring deep cycle inspections and cap check costs. Standard SLA batteries last about a year, are cheaper and are high maintenance.

The aircraft battery I recommend lasts five years, is a fraction of the cost of a new Ni-Cad battery and is a true no maintenance battery. It’s made by Securaplane, and I estimate it saves operators about $30,000 over a 10 year period (I break down the costs in this Aircraft Battery Comparison chart).

Securaplane’s Aircraft Batteries

I’ve been working with Securaplane’s aircraft batteries for several years now, and I recommend them to operators every chance I get. They’re a very cost effective and high-performance battery replacement. They hold their charge longer, have more cranking power in cold weather, and have a very high recharge capacity and discharge rate.

This aircraft battery is different from other SLAs because it uses very thin plate, pure lead, (TPPL) technology. Each cell can hold more plates, which makes the battery about four to five pounds heavier. However, this improves discharge and recharge capacity. It also reuses the Ni-Cad thermocouple (if installed) to prevent cockpit and wiring modifications, although the battery will never suffer from thermal runaway.

Battery Installation & Warranty

New Securaplane batteries come with Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) documentation and a hardware kit with a few Parts Manufacturing Approval (PMA) parts which are required for some installations, like battery trays and tie down rods (not all aircraft need the hardware kit). They also come with a 30 month non-prorated warranty that is renewed when the battery is reblocked, about once every three years.

A typical installation takes about an hour or less, and operators can do it themselves. Operators can also reblock the battery themselves (anyone with a wrench can change it), and the necessary capacity checks run on simple test equipment. They just do the installation, note it in their logbook and they’re good to go.

Duncan Aviation sells Securaplane batteries and reblocking kits which can be shipped worldwide, non-hazardous. Of the three Securaplane distributors in theUnited States, we are the only ones who can repair Securaplane emergency batteries. Our turn times average two to three days.

These batteries are great products, and can really save you a lot of money down the road. Please contact me, Michael Craft, for more information.

Michael Craft serves as Customer Focus Sales Rep. for Duncan Aviation’s Parts, Avionics, Instruments, Accessories and Propeller team in Lincoln, NE (LNK). He began working in aviation in 2000.

Tags: Aircraft Parts


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