lithium battery warning


Eric Meury
 

take this for what it is worth.  

This may be a new reality.  but it is information you can decide what is best for you.  I posted this on the Amel FB group

LIthium battery warning!!!!
background : We are considering selling our santorin and looking at French Alum. Centerboard Sloops. In my research, i decided to call our insurance "the jackline" THE FIRST QUESTIONS SHE ASKED ME was "what type of batteries does the boat have" The very first! .... this prompted a discussion and these are what she said for the boats to be underwirtten. This is a big deal for even those Amels that have converted already. When you want to sell others may not be able to bind coverage. This changes my thoughts regarding intalling lithium in our current boat or any possible boat we purchase.
These are the rules.
lithium batteries have to bms. can't be self installed, and have to be installed by US person that has experience, and the value of the boat has to be under 150k.


Michael Markstaller
 

Sorry, this is IMHO just GOSSIP for making poeple crazy/scary!
LiFeYPO4 batteries are even safer than GEL/AGM, muuch more powerful and
resistant against cycles/deep discharge.
Yes, one needs a BMS for every cell, like it (should!) be for every
other battery.

But I'm looking forward for my 800Ah @ 12V to arrive soon and install
with > 1kWp PV :-)


greets, Michael


Am 03.08.21 um 17:58 schrieb Eric Meury:

take this for what it is worth.  

This may be a new reality.  but it is information you can decide what is
best for you.  I posted this on the Amel FB group

LIthium battery warning!!!!
background : We are considering selling our santorin and looking at
French Alum. Centerboard Sloops. In my research, i decided to call our
insurance "the jackline" THE FIRST QUESTIONS SHE ASKED ME was "what type
of batteries does the boat have" The very first! .... this prompted a
discussion and these are what she said for the boats to be underwirtten.
This is a big deal for even those Amels that have converted already.
When you want to sell others may not be able to bind coverage. This
changes my thoughts regarding intalling lithium in our current boat or
any possible boat we purchase.
These are the rules.
lithium batteries have to bms. can't be self installed, and have to be
installed by US person that has experience, and the value of the boat
has to be under 150k.
--
Für Rückfragen stehe ich jederzeit gerne zur Verfügung.

Mit freundlichen Grüssen

Michael Markstaller
Softwareentwicklung & IT-Dienstleistungen

Am Birkengarten 19b
82024 Taufkirchen
Tel: +49-89-21553825, Mobile: +49-179-2080789
USt-ID: DE293191950
--
Daniela & Michael
Blue Horizon - EUROS #215


Mark Erdos
 

This is going to continue to grow as an issue for people with lithium battery installations (especially those who self installed). The ABYC now has TE-13 which specifies notifications (visual and/or audible) prior to BMS disconnect. Only a few high end UL listed LiFePo4 batteries have this feature.

 

 

With best regards,

 

Mark

 

Skipper

Sailing Vessel - Cream Puff - SM2K - #275

Currently cruising - Tahiti, French Polynesia

www.creampuff.us

 

From: main@AmelYachtOwners.groups.io [mailto:main@AmelYachtOwners.groups.io] On Behalf Of Eric Meury
Sent: Tuesday, August 3, 2021 5:58 AM
To: main@AmelYachtOwners.groups.io
Subject: [AmelYachtOwners] lithium battery warning

 

take this for what it is worth.  

This may be a new reality.  but it is information you can decide what is best for you.  I posted this on the Amel FB group

LIthium battery warning!!!!

background : We are considering selling our santorin and looking at French Alum. Centerboard Sloops. In my research, i decided to call our insurance "the jackline" THE FIRST QUESTIONS SHE ASKED ME was "what type of batteries does the boat have" The very first! .... this prompted a discussion and these are what she said for the boats to be underwirtten. This is a big deal for even those Amels that have converted already. When you want to sell others may not be able to bind coverage. This changes my thoughts regarding intalling lithium in our current boat or any possible boat we purchase.

These are the rules.

lithium batteries have to bms. can't be self installed, and have to be installed by US person that has experience, and the value of the boat has to be under 150k.


Eric Meury
 
Edited



Michael.     look i'm not trying to gossip or stur up anything..  I"m part of this group, i'm an amel owner, and i have insurance via the jackline.  You can believe what you want AND I AGREE 100% with  i'm just tellign the group what was just told me.  I didn't ask about lithium   It should be telling that this was the companies first question.  Not the age of the bolt, not the condition, not the model, not the hull material.  She didn't seem to happy about it.


Ruslan Osmonov
 

@Michael, insurance has a different point of view on lithium 🙂 it is about stats and making money.


here is a quote from AAC website on tips about insurance. One of them about Lithium. 


https://www.morganscloud.com/2021/07/05/27-tips-to-get-insurance-for-offshore-voyaging-part-1-us-and-our-boat/

And while we are thinking about excuses underwriters can use to say no, think very carefully before adding new technology to your boat. For example, two AAC members were turned down by a major American underwriter because their boats have lithium batteries.


Jose Venegas
 


karkauai
 

Here's the latest from Jackline policy representative on Lithium.

"Markel's underwriters are not currently receptive to insuring boats with Lithium batteries.  If we learn of lithium installations on boats they already insure, we must bring that to their attention for review which could result in a cancellation.  They are very sensitive to the exposures they have of both physical damage losses and the even larger potential for resulting liabilities should a failure occur to a lithium set up.  They recently started to consider coverage for some lower valued vessels using LifePO4 batteries with a BMS by a US manufacturer, if professionally installed in the states.  However, Kristy’s hull value is higher than that current threshold.  Unfortunately, Markel is not going to consider any changes to their position until 2022 at the earliest.  It is my hope that they will become more flexible on the matter since many cruisers are looking to make the upgrade.

 

If you wish to move forward with the upgrade, we will need to seek quotes from an alternate carriers."

I've asked her to look for another carrier, will report what she finds.

--
Kent & Iris
KRISTY
SM243


Billy Newport
 

I have a similar question in to the under writers for Markle right now. They are my insurers, I'm still using mastervolt gels on Coder. I'm asking them about upgrading to mastervolt lithiums.


Mark McGovern
 

Gowrie Group told us the same thing earlier this year when we tried to get a quote from them.  If you have Lithium batteries installed on you boat and your boat value is greater than US$150,000, Markel will not underwrite an insurance policy.  The brand did not matter.  Self-installed or "professionally" installed did not matter.

I was very happy with the service that I received from Gary Golden at Manifest Marine:  Gary@... 

I guess you never really know how happy you are with your insurance policy until you have to use it.  Thankfully, I have not!

--
Mark McGovern
SM #440 Cara
Belfast, ME USA


Justin Maguire
 

Wow…

But they’re somehow ok with new boats with factory installed lithium? 

What’s the rationale?


On Sep 3, 2021, at 09:39, Mark McGovern <mfmcgovern@...> wrote:

Gowrie Group told us the same thing earlier this year when we tried to get a quote from them.  If you have Lithium batteries installed on you boat and your boat value is greater than US$150,000, Markel will not underwrite an insurance policy.  The brand did not matter.  Self-installed or "professionally" installed did not matter.

I was very happy with the service that I received from Gary Golden at Manifest Marine:  Gary@... 

I guess you never really know how happy you are with your insurance policy until you have to use it.  Thankfully, I have not!

--
Mark McGovern
SM #440 Cara
Belfast, ME USA


Mark McGovern
 

Justin,

They didn't give a rationale.  My guess is because there is no justifiable rationale just a knee-jerk reaction not a very well thought out policy to reduce their exposure.  Especially given that I can have all the lithium ion batteries that I want on my boat in my phones, tablets, electric bikes, electric scooters, power tools, etc. and they will happily insure me.  While I will stipulate that these are all much smaller batteries than a house bank, they are also made from much more flammable chemistries than LiFePO4 batteries.  Given how flammable fiberglass is, I'm pretty sure any one of those devices could set your boat on fire and sink it.  Certainly the batteries used in some of the cheap e-bikes you find on eBay and Amazon could do it.  They didn't ask me if I had any of those aboard.

Here's an interesting thread on just such an incident from earlier this year on Crusier's Forum.  Interestingly, the underwriter was, you guessed it, Markel.  And the insurance was the Jackline Policy from the Gowrie Group:  https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/f166/explosions-fires-rescue-at-sea-229844.html


--
Mark McGovern
SM #440 Cara
Belfast, ME USA


Bill Kinney
 

People frequently describe insurance companies as "risk adverse," and while that's kind of true, what they really are is adverse to unknown or uncertain risks that they can't plug into their financial models.

In the absence of guidance (so far) from the ABYC on marine installations of lithium systems the underwriters do not know what a safe lithium system looks like.  Certainly if you go to any of the cruiser's forums you can read about people buying the cheapest possible, unbranded, Chinese made, lithium cells and pairing them with a home brew BMS. Given the amount of energy involved, I KNOW some of these system are very dangerous, but like the insurance underwriters, I don't know which ones.

It's not even a comment on the relative risk of Lithium vs Lead Acid.  Certainly there are loss risk associated with a standard FLA battery installation.  The difference is the marine industry KNOWS what a dangerous FLA battery install looks like, and every good surveyor can spot one.  The inherent risks of a lead-acid battery system are also well know from many decades of experience and are baked into the cost calculation for an insurance policy.  Right now, the lithium world is very much the wild west, and there is no way for the insurance underwriter to sort out the good, from the bad and the ugly.  At least for the foreseeable future, they can just say "No, Thank you."

There is also rational thinking behind making exceptions for systems installed by boat manufacturers, or professional installers using USA built parts.  If there is a latent defect in the product or installation that causes a loss, there is somebody else to share the financial pain with.  If that Chinese BMS installed by the boat owner causes a boat fire because of a basic design flaw nobody will never collect anything from them.

It sounds like at least some of these underwriters are waiting for a standard to issue from the ABYC so they can have a way of selecting safer installations, and avoiding those that none of us would want on our boat!

Bill Kinney
SM160, Harmonie
Annapolis, MD, USA