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Wow, Car battery gernaded

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by bsa0021, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. bsa0021

    bsa0021 Feeling the Heat

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    I have a car that I store in the winter and I didn't take it out this summer so since the weather was nice today I thought I would start it and run it around the block. I put in a good battery that had been on a trickle charger and when I turned the key BAM the battery expolded. Fortunatly, the hood was closed. The battery was completely dry so I figue my 1 amp charger must have cooked the battery and adding a load to it caused the explosion. Am I right on this? I guess I better invest in a couple of battery tenders that are safer to use.

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  2. snowleopard

    snowleopard Minister of Fire

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    Had to read that twice--first time I read, "I have a car that I stole in the winter . . . " :gulp:

    How long did you have it cooking? Had you checked the liquid levels in it before you put it on the charger? Why do you keep it on a charger--how about just disconnecting the battery and storing it someplace warm?
  3. Hass

    Hass Minister of Fire

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    I just keep spare batteries out in the cold...
    I know it's not good for them, but sometimes you don't have space.
    I put them on a trickle for a day or two every other month or so.
    Haven't had any problems yet.
  4. bsa0021

    bsa0021 Feeling the Heat

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    I had two trickle chargers I used for 20 years that I left two batteries hooked up to all winter in an unheated garage and I never had a battery run dry. Those chargers died this spring and I've been using a 1amp trickle motorcycle charger and apparently it was overcharging both batteries. I should have been more careful when I used a different charger. It's too bad I ruined the better of the two batteries.
  5. charly

    charly Guest

    Batteries do need to be charge on occasion. They get what's known as stand loss, and sulfate. You do need a charger that senses when the battery is fully charged, so it shuts down and doesn't boil the battery dry. Slow charging is the best. Some better chargers I believe pulse charge the battery as it gets nearer to a full charge. Heat is a batteries' enemy.
  6. woodgeek

    woodgeek Minister of Fire

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    1 amp is way too much for a trickle. I would think 0.1 would be plenty.
  7. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    Yes, you are right.

    The battery had hydrogen gas in it, a byproduct of charging, along with some oxygen from the air. Being dry, when you put a load on it, there was a spark inside the battery. Result = explosion.

    Glad you had the hood closed! Wash the car with baking soda/water mix to neutralize the acid.

    Battery minder chargers regulate the current, and won't overcharge a battery.
  8. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Beat me to it. Right on the money seeker.
  9. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    Woo Hoo! That's one in a row! :lol:
  10. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

  11. Renaissance

    Renaissance Member

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    What you want is a float charger, which is a trickle charger with brains. A trickle charger is just a glorified DC adapter.

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