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PRODUCT EVALUATION SHORAI BATTERY A better-than-stock replacement

 
(10/31/2012)
By the staff of Dirt Wheels

q Aftermarket ATV batteries are changing. These days, you don’t have to go to the dealer and order up a big, heavy battery to replace the big, heavy one that unexpectedly went dead in your quad. Replacement batteries are getting smaller, lighter and less expensive. A new product from a company called Shorai offers all of the above.

Shorai’s $130 Lithium Iron Phosphate  (LiFePO4) battery is one of the best replacement batteries we have had the pleasure of trying. First off, their batteries are much stronger than what comes stock in any ATV. Most “stronger than stock” aftermarket batteries we have tried in the last few years sell in the $200–$300 range.

For example, the 6x6x3.5-inch 12-volt battery we replaced had a cold-cranking-amp (CCA) rating of 200. The same-size Shorai battery is priced from $360–$540. The only reason you would need a higher CCA rating is if you were dramatically raising your engine compression, or if you live in the Arctic.

So to get enough power out of a Shorai battery to start a typical ATV, you can go with a much smaller product. We chose to install a 4.5x3.5x2.3 battery with 210 CCA. This battery weighs a remarkably low 1.7 pounds compared to an 8-pound stock battery. Unlike some aftermarket battery companies that sell you smaller products, Shorai ships their battery in a box with about 10 small 1/4-inch-thin foam strips (with adhesive on one side) so you can adapt your larger battery box for a proper fit—now that’s thinking.

We installed the Shorai battery in an older Kawasaki Prairie with a big 700cc V-twin. It sits unused from time to time, and the original battery always seems to go dead if we don’t keep a battery tender on it. That’s another benefit of these LiFePO4 batteries as they don’t require a constant trickle charge. If you leave most other ATVs sitting for more than six months, the batteries will go dead.

Although we have only had our Shorai battery in operation for three months, it starts our big Kawi quick and easy. It is installed nice and tight, and we can’t help but love the weight savings this battery gave us. Shorai has an easy-to-navigate web page that will explain different battery options for your particular make and model ATV. You can also call them directly at (888) 477-4848. q
 
We swap batteries all the time. Our biggest problem is finding the right battery to fit the battery box in need. Shorai ships their product in a box surrounded by thin foam strips that can be used to securely mount a smaller battery in a large battery box.
 
Shorai even addressed one of the most common problems we face when installing a battery: they glued small chunks of foam under the terminal nut so you can easily tighten down the battery cables.
Shorai batteries use lithium iron phosphate technology to make a product that is not only stronger than stock equipment, it’s way lighter. This battery was nearly 7 pounds lighter than our stock unit.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Topic: Product Tests

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