Leisure battery maintenance

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by SMB, Mar 30, 2015.

  1. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    As a complete beginner when it comes to electrical systems, I have a few questions which the average 12-year-old would laugh at. I recently replaced my old leisure batteries with Banner energy bull 110A lead acid batteries and would like to know:
    - is it okay to top-up the water while the batteries are still connected?
    - what precautions should I take?
    - what is the best way to test the efficiency of the battery without removing it/unconnecting it ie hydrometer, voltmeter?

    Any other advice would be appreciated as well.
    Thanks.
     
  2. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    no problem topping up whilst connected. Efficiency can only be tested with a regulated discharge test. You can however test the state of charge with a voltmeter which could give some indication of a failed cell.
     
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  3. JeanLuc

    JeanLuc Funster

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    Are the batteries inside the van or in a sealed compartment? Energy Bull are not sealed batteries and if inside, it would be prudent to vent them to the exterior.
    What kind of batteries have they replaced? If the previous ones were gel, you need to adjust the charger setting accordingly because gels need a different regime to wet lead-acid. If the previous ones were wet lead-acid, you can ignore this point.
     
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  4. quickweh

    quickweh Funster

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  5. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    Thanks Wildman that's very helpful :) I will look into regulated discharge tests
     
  6. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    Thanks Mike, I had already downloaded the pdf and it is helpful, funnily enough I got the batteries from Roadpro last year. I thought maintenance-free meant they didn't need topping-up ever but apparently it only means if they are used correctly. Sealed batteries appear to be the ones that don't require top-ups which I wasn't previously aware of, as I said I haven't got much of a clue regarding electrics (and a lot of other things) :rolleyes:
     
  7. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    Hi JeanLuc, the batteries are in vented compartments and have discharge tubes fitted. The previous batteries were wet lead-acid and I went with these again as I understand they work best with a b2b charger, which I also had fitted. It's always good to know though as since I have been reading up on batteries, I understand that you can run gel batteries down to 20% before causing problems and I might consider having them fitted in the future. Unless the new lithium batteries drop massively in price of course, having four of them would be fantastic ;)
     
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  8. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    Both are the same....just different terminology.

    Maintenance free and sealed are sealed for life and dont, or indeed cant, be topped up.

    They have a special valve in the lid which condenses the 'gas' and dumps the electrolyte back in the cell.



     
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  9. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    Thanks for that Pappajohn, no wonder I get confused. Maybe a glass of wine will help me understand it better..:wine:
     
  10. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    Batteries should only be topped up when fully charged.
     
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  11. SMB

    SMB Funster

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  12. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    Maintenance free means that you can't top up even is needed so they die, sealed as in Gel is as it says sealed so nothing can get out so nothing needs or can be put in.
     
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