Li Time TM vs Redodo Mini: Best Budget Lithium Battery Review

When we built our camper van in 2019, lithium batteries were expensive! If you wanted one (100Ah @ 12V), you could expect to spend at least $800. Our three Battle Born batteries cost $950…each! But now, in 2023, budget lithium batteries are becoming increasingly available, with brands like Li Time and Redodo flooding the market with cheap LiFePO4 power storage units. Due to this increased availability, lithium batteries have become increasingly popular in camper van conversions.

“Budget” used to mean inferior build quality and specs. But now you can get Chinese-branded lithium batteries with built-in battery monitoring systems (BMS), internal heating, marine environment protection, comprehensive instruction manuals, and English-speaking customer support. And all for less than $350 for a standard 100Ah 12V battery.

But are these budget lithium batteries worth it? Should you take a chance on them?

Image of two lithium batteries (Li Time & Redodo)
Li Time “TM” (Trolling Motor) vs. Redodo Mini

We received a Li Time “TM” (Trolling Motor) lithium battery and a Redodo Mini lithium battery for this comparison post. We aim to do a full comparison review to show you what you are getting for your money. Specifically, we will compare the following areas:

  • Basic battery specifications
  • Dimensions & weight
  • Construction differences
  • Packaging outlook

Ultimately, we will give our verdict and assessment of which budget lithium battery comes out on top.

Don’t Know Anything About Camper Van Batteries? Read our leisure battery guide to get a basic understanding of camper batteries. This will help you before reading this comparison post.

If you’re ready, let’s get to it.

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Best Budget Battery Winner (Spoiler Alert)

We give our final recommendation below if you want to cut to the chase. If you are into the nitty-gritty details and are interested in a more comprehensive comparison with specifications on each battery, keep reading!

Top Recommendation: Li Time TM (Trolling Motor) Battery

Although designed for boats, the TM battery also excels in mobile home situations. The battery’s already robust BMS also includes the all-important low-temperature protection feature, which is crucial to protecting the battery if you travel in sub-freezing environments.

Additionally, the battery casing provides superior shock resistance and improved sealing against the intrusion of moisture & dust.

Lastly, the TM battery has larger terminal contact plates than the Redodo Mini for improved power transfer efficiency.

Best Budget LiFePO4
Li Time | Lithium Battery (100Ah)

Our top lithium battery recommendation! The Li Time "TM" packs a serious punch in a compact enclosure. Wide-ranging BMS with low-temperature protection. And superior shock resistance.

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Runner Up: Redodo Mini Battery

The one advantage the Mini has over the Li Time is how compact the unit is. At over 39% smaller than the Li Time TM battery, the Redodo Mini is an excellent choice if you prioritize maximum space efficiency. But because the Mini lacks low-temperature cut-off protection, we would not recommend the Redodo Mini if you plan to travel to places that are below freezing.

Great Value Pick
Redodo Mini Lithium Battery (100Ah)

Lithium batteries outperform standard AGM batteries in virtually every category. The 12V Redodo battery is a great option (at a fantastic price) to 'go lithium' without breaking the bank.

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Battery Introductions

Now we begin our detailed comparison of the Li Time “TM” (Trolling Motor) battery and the Redodo “Mini” battery, starting with proper introductions of each one. 

Li Time lithium battery and Redodo Mini lithium battery sitting side-by-side
LiTime TM vs. Redodo Mini

Li Time TM

The TM “Trolling Motor” is Li Time’s newest battery. Although this unit can serve the camper van and RV communities, it is specifically intended for marine use on boats (hence the name “Trolling Motor”). The battery is marketed as having improved shock absorption and additional protection against salt spray and moisture, which is helpful for those intending to use the battery on boats or camp near salty air coastlines.

Redodo Mini

The Redodo Mini is among the most popular batteries in the company’s product lineup. With its remarkably small footprint, the “Mini” provides one of the highest “Watt-hours per square inch” of battery space. This fact alone makes the Mini appealing for camper vans, RVs, and tiny homes.

Battery Specifications

In this section, we look at the listed marketed specifications and characteristics of the Li Time & Redodo batteries. We will first compare the “basic battery specs” and then compare the battery monitoring systems (BMS) for each unit.

Basic Specs

Below is a table listing the most critical “basic battery specs.” Unsurprisingly, the Li Time & Redodo lithium batteries market the exact same specs.

* Note: The max discharge current (5 seconds) is the only notable difference. This is because the Li Time battery we reviewed was designed to serve boat customers with trolling motors.

Battery Monitoring System (BMS) & Protections

Lithium cells are finicky. They don’t like extreme temperatures, shouldn’t be overcharged, and have the potential to overheat. That’s why it is critical for a lithium battery to include a BMS to manage and shut down the charging/discharging process, if necessary, to protect the battery.

The Li Time and Redodo batteries we reviewed have a BMS that protects the battery during charging and discharging. However, the Li Time battery has several additional protections against external environments.

Most notably, we like that the Li Time battery BMS provides low-temperature protection and superior shock resistance. These are critical features to have not only on boats but in mobile homes as well.

Specs Winner: Li Time TM

It’s clear that the Li Time TM battery is a more rugged battery designed with boaters in mind. The TM battery better resists moisture, salt spray, physical impacts, and extremely low temperatures.

The low-temperature protection is an important feature in our experience because we do expose our camper van to sub-freezing temperatures at times, and we want to take every precaution to protect our batteries in these situations.

Dimensions & Weight

If you are going to live in a camper van, boat, or tiny home, prioritizing space-efficient design and products is essential. Below, we list the TM and Mini battery dimensions and weight. We ignore the listed specs on the product info sites and do the measurements ourselves.

LiTime TM lithium battery length measurement
LiTime TM length measurement
Redodo Mini lithium battery length measurement
Redodo Mini length measurement

Note: The final length measurements in the table above do not match the picture measurements because we measured the batteries at their widest point, which was at the top, not the bottom, of the batteries.

Dimensions Winner: Redodo Mini

We love the Redodo Mini for its compact design. It is significantly shorter in length and thinner. The Mini is 39% smaller by volume than Li Time’s TM battery. The space savings you would get with Redodo are amplified if you get two or three of these 100Ah batteries.

Length comparison between Redodo Mini and LiTime TM lithium batteries
Redodo vs. LiTime length comparison

Construction Differences

When we compared the physical battery enclosure, we found no discernible differences. Both batteries are packed in a nice, sturdy case and come with strong enough straps to help you carry the battery.

The only physical difference between the two batteries was the size of the terminal contact plates, with the area of Li Time’s contact plate being ~44% larger than Redodo’s.

Comparing terminal post contact plate diameter between Redodo and LiTime lithium batteries
Post contact plate diameter comparison

This is a significant difference because we want to maximize the contact area between the terminal plate and the lug, which will be connected to our electrical wire. The more contact area, the more efficiently electricity can flow.

Does this mean the Redodo battery should not be used? Not necessarily. But we like that Li Time’s TM battery uses better quality materials (e.g. larger metal components).

Construction Winner: Li Time TM

Packaging Outlook

In this section, we look at the packaging and presentation of the product. While this isn’t the most essential element of a lithium battery, we like to see the quality at which the brand promotes itself and if they pay attention to tiny details.

Li Time TM Battery

Box & Initial Packaging

This is how the Li Time battery arrived. Nothing fancy, just a standard brown box with the Li Time logo, company information, and the motto of “Life & Discovery”.

LiTime lithium battery outer shipping box
LiTime outer shipping box

When we opened the box, we immediately found the information packet placed on top (more on this later).

Unboxing the LiTime lithium battery shipping box
LiTime battery unboxing

Bolts & Included Accessories

The M8-sized bolts are located in a cavity inside the Styrofoam to the left of the indicating sticker. Inside are bolts and protective caps to cover the bolt heads.

LiTime battery post bolts
Post bolts for LiTime battery

To learn how to connect a battery to a 12V electrical system, download our free ebook or visit our electrical wiring diagrams page.

Information Packet

Li Time does a fantastic job with its information and marketing materials, which are thoughtfully designed and come in a nice plastic zip folder. Again, these things may be considered superfluous since the battery is ultimately the most important, but we like to see this quality and attention to detail. It shows that the company takes pride in its brand and prioritizes the customer experience.

Included inside the folder are:

  • Product manual
  • Service card (with operating precautions)
  • Product catalog & customer service pamphlet
  • Social media pamphlet
  • Stickers (very cute!)
Instruction manuals and marketing material for LiTime lithium battery
Instruction manuals and marketing materials

Redodo Mini Battery

Box & Initial Packaging

This is how the Redodo lithium battery arrived to us. The cardboard box is printed with the Redodo logo, company information, and a cool flying cat!

Redodo Mini lithium battery outer shipping box
Redodo outer shipping box

When we opened the box, we were also met with the product information package on top (more on this later).

Displaying the user manual for Redodo Mini lithium battery
Redodo unboxing

Bolts & Included Accessories

Two pairs of M8 bolts (1 pair as backup) and protective caps are also provided, and you can find them underneath the sticker, inside the Styrofoam.

Post bolts included with Redodo Mini battery
Four post bolts included (2 backup)

Information Packet

Just like Li Time’s, Redodo’s information manuals come in a plastic zip folder. The product manual is 100% the same as Li Time’s. The contents of the folder include:

  • Product manual
  • User precaution card
  • Stickers (semi-cute!)
User manuals included with Redodo Mini lithium battery
Included user manuals

Packaging Winner: Li Time (Slight Edge)

The packaging style of these two brands is too similar to be a coincidence. Clearly, one of the brands copied the other. We don’t know who, but we’re not in the business of shaming; we’re just reviewing. In the end, Li Time and Redodo have fantastic product packaging designs, and we give both two thumbs up.

However, we give the edge to Li Time as the graphic design is slightly more refined, and the provided stickers are more adorable (although that is just our personal preference).

Sticker comparison between LiTime and Redodo battery brands
LiTime and Redodo sticker comparison

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Which Budget Lithium Battery Would We Choose?

If we converted another camper van, we would use Li Time’s TM battery. Although this budget lithium battery is not as compact as Redodo’s Mini, we would be willing to sacrifice space for the TM’s superior shock resistance and improved battery protection against freezing temperatures, moisture, and dust.

The TM’s larger terminal contact plates (44% larger) also allow for greater power transmission efficiency and reassure us that the TM is manufactured with higher-quality parts.

Best Budget LiFePO4
Li Time | Lithium Battery (100Ah)

Our top lithium battery recommendation! The Li Time "TM" packs a serious punch in a compact enclosure. Wide-ranging BMS with low-temperature protection. And superior shock resistance.

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If you have any questions about these two budget lithium batteries, please leave a comment in the section below.

Check out our DIY electrical system guide if you plan to build an electrical system in your camper van conversion.

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