Illinois Doctor Converts His BMW To Electric Power Using Nine U.S. Battery 12-Volt Deep-Cycle Batteries

Karl Klontz Battery Conversion

Dan Sanchez | U.S. Battery Manufacturing

With only a 12-mile commute to his office, Dr. Karl Klontz thought it would be environmentally responsible to convert his 1994 BMW 318i from gas to electric power, which would also coincide with his solar energy lifestyle. “As a hobby, I work with solar power, going abroad annually to install solar arrays at schools, clinics and hospitals in developing nations at no cost to the recipients,” says Klontz. “I decided to make the car electric as I’d already installed small solar arrays on my house to power the lights and appliances.”

Klontz realized he used his vehicle on a daily basis and that it consumes the most energy out of all his possessions. “I figured my car was a candidate, so I converted it to electric in order to commute to my job 12 miles away each day,” said Klontz. The conversion of his BMW to electric wasn’t easy, but he managed to gather up the components and put it all together to make it work. “The trickiest parts were finding the proper alignment and bracing for connecting the electric motor to the drivetrain, and the arrangement of the electric components,” said Klontz. “I worked slowly over two years to complete the project in my free time.”

The vehicle is powered by nine U.S. Battery US12V XC2 deep-cycle batteries wired in series that make up a 108-volt system. “I’ve heard from a number of sources in electric car conversion circles, that U.S. Battery products were very reliable providers of energy for jobs such as the one I undertook,” said Klontz. He checked into using Lithium-ion batteries, but the cost was prohibitive. Nonetheless, Klontz’s conversion works fine for his daily driving routine.

“The system has lasted roughly two years with approximately 1,400 charge/discharge cycles,” says Klontz. “With the car in its fifth year of running, I’ve logged nearly 20,000 miles on the vehicle.” Klontz is well versed on making flooded lead-acid batteries last, and adds a maintenance routine to keep the batteries in top condition. “I rely on a number of strategies to keep the batteries running as long as possible,” says Klontz. “I try not to discharge them too deeply on any drive. I recharge them immediately after making each trip, particularly in cold weather. I check their fluid levels regularly. I keep the terminals clean, and I check their individual cell specific gravity at the first sign of any voltage lowering.”

Since Klontz recharges the batteries using the solar array on his home, the cost to operate his car dropped to almost nothing, and his carbon footprint is greatly reduced. Overall, the conversion and its advantages showcase what’s possible and Klontz is happy with what he’s accomplished. “If I were to convert another car to all-electric, I’d choose a lighter model,” said Klontz. Lighter models, however, come with less overall structural protection for the driver, and the BMW has proven to be an exceptionally rigorous vehicle in terms of suspension, brakes, and other underlying features.”

 
The content & opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of AltEnergyMag
US Battery

US Battery

U.S. Battery Manufacturing Company

Other Articles

Understanding the Differences Between AGM And Flooded Deep-Cycle Batteries
The main design difference between FLA and AGM batteries is how the electrolyte is managed. In FLA batteries, the battery plates are submerged in the liquid electrolyte. During use, water in the electrolyte is broken down into oxygen and hydrogen gases and water is lost.
Deep-Cycle Batteries used for Energy Storage
It is much more efficient to add energy storage closer to the point of use; such as with homeowners, subdivisions, communities, small towns and cities.
Consistent Battery Maintenance Is Key To Longevity And Performance
Failing to consistently check water levels and add water to your batteries can also result in low capacity and eventual battery failure if left unchecked.
More about US Battery

Comments (0)

This post does not have any comments. Be the first to leave a comment below.


Post A Comment

You must be logged in before you can post a comment. Login now.

Featured Product

HPS EnduraCoilTM Cast Resin Medium Voltage Transformer

HPS EnduraCoilTM Cast Resin Medium Voltage Transformer

HPS EnduraCoil is a high-performance cast resin transformer designed for many demanding and diverse applications while minimizing both installation and maintenance costs. Coils are formed with mineral-filled epoxy, reinforced with fiberglass and cast to provide complete void-free resin impregnation throughout the entire insulation system. HPS EnduraCoil complies with the new NRCan 2019 and DOE 2016 efficiency regulations and is approved by both UL and CSA standards. It is also seismic qualified per IBC 2012/ASCE 7-10/CBC 2013. Cast resin transformers are self-extinguishing in the unlikely event of fire, environmentally friendly and offer greater resistance to short circuits. HPS also offers wide range of accessories for transformer protection and monitoring requirements.