Crackling sound!

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by Spottycatz, Jan 13, 2014.

  1. Spottycatz

    Spottycatz Read Only Funster

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    OK nice people, need some help here. Sitting in the van in Spain and a ticking/crackling noise is coming from the leisure battery under the passenger seat.

    Been running the heating for the first time, so the blower has been working a bit flat out.

    The indicator on the control panel shows the leisure battery is at 13.7 volts.

    Any ideas? Do we need to evacuate and get a hotel room? :Eeek:
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2014
  2. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Can you smell anything ?

    Seriously - have you a fire extinguish handy just in case - a seat is full of foam.
     
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  3. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    Can you smell anything?
    (Beaten to it by Hilldweller!)
     
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  4. movan

    movan Funster Life Member

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    Is it doing anything when you look at it .... like sparks? Does it smell?

    If it does either of these things I havn't got a clue what it means but it might help somebody else who does understand batteries:Eeek:




    Sorry Brian and BeeKeeper .... posted at same time!!
     
  5. Yorick

    Yorick Funster

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  6. PhilandMena

    PhilandMena Funster

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    It may be as simple as a loose/faulty connection.
     
  7. Phill D

    Phill D

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    you need to have a good look at whats causing it, as Brian says fire extinguisher nearby and i would not leave the van unattended until you find what it is.
     
  8. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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    a fizzing sound indicates the battery is gassing as it gets a rapid charge. if you smell bad eggs or something acrid near the battery make sure its well ventilated and whatever you do, no sparks, flames or smoking in the van. loss of gas leads to the battery breathing its last gasps

    you really need to monitor the battery condition over the next few days/weeks especially the electrolyte level if not sealed
     
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  9. Spottycatz

    Spottycatz Read Only Funster

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    We had been out for a few hours and when we came back, there was a smell in the van, but it definitely wasn't a burning smell. More a gassy smell.:Eek!:
    But I checked the gas and it was all switched off, although I did fill up the tanks this morning!

    I have an extinguisher right beside the battery:Doh: so it's at the ready.

    Can we go to bed? Your comments have just freaked the wife:Eeek:

    By the way the crackling noise isn't happening all the time.

    Also, I have taken the cover off the battery housing and in the darkness looked for any signs of sparking, but there's nothing?
     
  10. Allanm

    Allanm Funster

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    Have you checked the electrolyte levels? A funny smell in the van and fizzing sounds like the battery is overcharging or on its way out. It could have a dead cell.
    Allan
     
  11. Phill D

    Phill D

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    i think you need remove whatever input charge you have going into the hab battery off until you find the issue. also make sure the terminals are secure just in case its simply a loose terminal causing sparking.
     
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  12. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Time for some risk assessment. Assume that battery area bursts into flames.

    Can you get to the extinguisher ?
    Can you get out of the vehicle ?

    At least be prepared.

    The logical thing to do would be exit ASAP with extinguisher and attempt to fight fire from outside.

    Sorry to be a bit scary but you're one of us, we don't want to lose you.
     
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  13. movan

    movan Funster Life Member

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    :Eek!:Crumbs. Could he not just disconnect it until morning and go and have a good night's sleep?
     
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  14. Wickolad

    Wickolad Funster

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    Crackling sound

    Hi Spottycatz,
    If you have been drawing quite a bit of power from the leisure battery with the blown air heating, then the battery will now be charging, hence the 13.7v. At this charge voltage, gasses will be produced which makes the crackling sound, much like a glass of fizzy pop. As far as I can say, this is normal, once the battery gets towards full charge, the charging voltage from the charger should drop to about 13.2 to 13.4 volts.
    And go in to a 'float charge' state, until power is drawn from the battery, when again the charger will increase its output to recharge.
    If you have concerns, regarding the state of the battery, it may be worth a check of the electrolyte level, this should just cover the plates in all cells of the battery. Also, have a feel at the sides of the battery for any unusually high temperature as this could indicate a cell has failed. A new battery would then be needed.
    Sorry if this is a bit long winded, but I thought I'd try to explain as best I could, seeing as you seemed worried at the time. Hopefully I have explained it correctly.
    Happy camping, Wickolad.
     
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  15. Phill D

    Phill D

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    if you are not working the battery ( charging or discharging ) chances are it will remain stable.

    i would be removing any risk before i went to sleep if i was unsure.

    not trying to scare you but better safe :thumb: its difficult to assess and advise when we are not physically there.

    and easier to sort in daylight
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2014
  16. Trikeman

    Trikeman Read Only Funster

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    What ever you do don't put anything metallic (spanner) near the battery if its smelling/hissing without blowing hard/fanning with a magazine across the battery area, preferably with the door open. That gassy/slightly eggy smell is battery expelled 'telltail' hydrogen - one spark near the source and it's good night Eileen........ it will explode. I am not trying to frighten (more is to the contrary) but don't treat a gassing battery with contempt.

    As said above, its either overcharging/overcharged or the battery is breaking down.

    It may calm down as everything is off (that could be charging the battery) but please get it looked at.

    Trikeman. :Wink:
     
  17. ehuplad

    ehuplad Read Only Funster

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    Unplug the leccy cable, or turn off the charger until you can check it out in the morning.
    Also check it is not hot.
     
  18. Wickolad

    Wickolad Funster

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    Crackling sound

    Hi, sorry for long winded reply to post, I therefore missed the update. The gassy smell, would indicate the battery is getting overcharged ' boiled'. Turn off the charger. Do not mess with the terminals of the battery until the area has been well ventilated as a spark from the terminal when removing can cause ignition of the gasses. As previous, a cell may have gone down, electrolyte may be low or the charger is putting too much power in. Check electrolyte tomorrow in light of day but in meantime, ventilate the van and turn off charger. Hope this helps. Wickolad.
     
  19. Spottycatz

    Spottycatz Read Only Funster

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    OK the heating is off. The crackling has stopped but there is definitely an eggy smell in the van as previously mentioned.

    The battery is cool to touch and the voltage is 13.9.

    Can't get to the battery to check levels as it appears to be sealed!
     
  20. Wickolad

    Wickolad Funster

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    Crackling sound

    Hi,
    Now the chargers off, once the van is ventilated to rid of the gasses you should be okay. You'll be able to have a better look tomorrow.
    If the battery didn't feel hot, and by the sounds of it, a sealed maintenance free unit, then it could quite easily be down to the fact that if you left the blown air heater fan running, it has prolonged the higher voltage charge state from the charger causing it to ' boil the battery' so as to speak
    Wickolad.
     
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