# What is the Voltage of My Batteries?

## Lead-Acid Batteries

(Commonly used in cars, trucks, boats, golf carts, forklifts, RV’s, solar/wind systems and many other applications)

### Voltage of a battery

**Lead-acid batteries include AGM, VRLA, Gel Cell and Flooded batteries. Lead acid batteries are composed of battery cells.**

Each battery cell is approximately 2 volts. In most batteries, you can determine the voltage by counting the battery cells.

In flooded batteries, each filler cap is a battery cell. In sealed batteries, the caps are sealed. A battery with 3 caps is a 6 volt battery.

Examples:

6 volt Golf Cart BatteryThe 3 filling caps are circled |
12 volt Sealed Gel Cell BatteryThe 6 sealed caps are circled |

### Voltage of a battery system

Now that we know the voltage of the batteries, we can now determine the voltage of the system.

**Golf Carts:** Count the number of batteries and multiply by the voltage. 6 x 6 volt batteries is a 36 volt system.

**Other systems:** To determine the total voltage of a battery system, you first must determine how the system is connected. Battery systems are either connected in series or in parallel. First, observe the connections between the batteries.

**Series connected** battery systems are connected from the positive (+) terminal of one battery to the negative (-) terminal of the next battery, or vice-versa. To get the total voltage of a series connected battery system, multiply the number of batteries by the voltage.

3 x 12 volt batteries connected in series is a 36 volt system.

**Parallel connected** battery systems are connected from the positive (+) terminal of one battery to the positive (+) terminal of the next battery as well as the negative (-) terminal of the same battery to the negative (-) terminal of the next battery. The total voltage of a parallel connected battery system is the voltage of one battery. 3 x 12 volt batteries connected in parallel is a 12 volt battery system.