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Many factors can contribute to thermal runaway in VRLA batteries. Most common is a combination of high temperature and high float voltage. Through tests that induced thermal runaway, the effects of external and internal battery conditions could be determined. It became more evident that battery health and manufacturer played a large part in determining battery susceptibility to thermal runaway. This paper outlines the theory of thermal runaway, describes tests to induce thermal runaway, and suggests different methods of preventing it.