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Fire Hazard Assessment of Lead-Acid Batteries

Fire Protection Research Foundation report: “Fire Hazard Assessment of Lead-Acid Batteries"
Authors: Trent Parker, Larissa Obeng and Qingsheng Wang, PhD, PE, CSP
Date of issue: July 2020


*Errata issued December 7, 2020. Download the Errata. (PDF)


In recent years, lead acid batteries have been replaced by lithium ion batteries in many applications. This is a result of the lithium ion batteries having a greater energy density, efficiency, and lifespan as compared to lead acid battery chemistries. These batteries, however, are capable of storing large amounts of energy and often utilize a volatile or combustible electrolyte and thus are prone to fires and explosions. As a result, significant testing has been conducted to identify the fire hazards associated with lithium ion batteries. However, little testing has been performed on the lead acid battery chemistries.

Download the report summary. (PDF)