Reconditioning Car Batteries at Home
Usually, If you own a car for any number of years you should have had replaced your battery a couple times at least. if a car battery no longer holds enough of a charge, you would throw it away and purchase a new one. It can get expensive buying new batteries and it seems to happen at a time you don’t have extra money on hand. What if you could keep your old battery and restore it back to usable condition and drive with it for months more.
Many people are restoring or reconditioning their car batteries and saving big money. This also applies to a golf cart, marine, and forklift batteries as well. You could even pick up used batteries for free or for very little cash and restore them back to life also. You could have an extra battery on hand to use while you restore the battery in your vehicle.
How about the ability to make some extra money on the side. Restoring batteries is not difficult to do and it does not cost much to get the tools together you would need. You could pick up those free or cheap used batteries, recondition them, and resell them for a discount. People could bring their dead battery to you and for a fee, you could restore it for them.
For those people that have or want to install solar power systems for their homes, they need good deep cycle batteries for back up power. They can be expensive too, but if you had reconditioned ones or could recondition the batteries they find you could save them a lot of money.
How To Get started With Reconditioning Car Batteries.
One of the common batteries to recondition these days is the car battery. People are more driven to recondition this type of battery considering how much it costs these days. A lot of people are afraid to reconditioning car battery by themselves. They fear the complicated process and the technicalities involved. If you only read thoroughly the laid step-by-step process, get yourself informed, and go through the instructions faithfully, be rest assured that everything will just be a piece of cake!
The default on the battery is caused by sulfation – the accumulation of sulfur crystals in the lead plates. This is the main reason why the battery becomes irresponsive. Sulfation causes permanent corrosion of the lead plates. That is why it is important to note that reconditioning car batteries should be done five times at most.
What You Need in Reconditioning Car Batteries
- Plastic funnel
- Rubber gloves
- Distilled water
- Drill – for sealed batteries
- Plastic plugs – for sealed batteries
- Safety goggles
- Battery charger
- Epsom salts or magnesium sulfate
6 Easy Steps in Lead Acid Battery Reconditioning
- Assess the battery if it holds a charge using the voltmeter. If it holds 10-12 volts, then there is a big possibility you can restore the battery to full capacity. If the charge reads below 10 volts, then you are better off throwing it away.
- Mix the 7-8 ounce of Epsom salt in the preheated distilled water. The half quart water must be heated at 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Take off the cell caps of the battery. Drill through the “shadow plugs” to uncover the opening, if dealing with a sealed battery.
- If there is any fluid remaining in the battery, drain it. Fill the cells of the battery with the solution of Epsom salt using a plastic funnel to avoid spilling.
- Close the drill holes with plastic plugs or change the battery caps. To assure proper distribution of the solution inside the battery, shake it.
- Recharge the car battery for at least 24 hours. To ensure you that it will be restored to full capacity, let it linger in the charger for 3-4 nights. After, install it again in your car to test it.
10 Tips to Increase Car Battery Life
10 tips for car battery reconditioning, in order to reduce its running cost by properly maintaining lead-acid batteries. Statistically, a standard car will need battery replacement every two years, so by taking good care of its battery, you can increase that.
So, here are the 10 tips for car battery reconditioning and maintenance:
- Make maintenance a routine. To maintain the battery’s state of charge, you need to charge and recharge the battery often.
- The depth of battery discharge must be reduced to avoid worn out.
- Do not overcharge the battery. It may result in power loss.
- When your battery reaches 80% state of charge, you need to recharge it so as to prevent it from sulfation, a process of getting crystals in the metal plates within the battery, thus decreasing power.
- If possible, it’s best to use a switch to disconnect it from other car appliances that energy, HOWEVER, this may result in resetting the car’s clock and other issues that depend on the battery – consult with a certified technician FIRST.
- 10.5 V is the limit for allowing it to be discharged. No less than that.
- Pour water into the battery after charging, not before!
- Do not overheat the battery – I can’t stress this enough.
- While charging place the vent caps on the battery to prevent water loss from gassing.
- And being a friendly guy to the environment, please recycle the lead and plastic or batteries!
How a Battery Desulfator Circuit Works
The battery is among the most important parts of your car. In fact, it is an essential part of any electrical system that is regularly used and expected to perform with high efficiency. It is, therefore, necessary for you to know how to take care of your batteries and extend its life with the use of a battery desulfator circuit. How does such a circuit work? To answer this question, it may be best to look into the inner workings of the battery.
Lead acid batteries normally contain very small spheres that are sintered together in order to form its chemically-reactive lead plates. The battery cells contain sulphuric acid, which acts as the electrolyte. When the battery is discharged, the sulfate ions from the electrolyte tend to combine with the lead content of the plates to form lead sulfate that crystallizes on the surface of the battery’s plates. When the battery is charged once again, the chemical reaction is reversed and the lead sulfate crystals are reconverted to its original forms.
Most batteries, however, are very seldom charged to a full capacity and so some of the crystals remain on the lead plates without being reconverted. These crystals accumulate each time a battery is used and begins to clog the battery’s lead plates. After about five years of use, you can expect the battery to start failing because of this clogging. Furthermore, the fact that most of the sulfate ions in the electrolyte have gone to the crystals can make the electrolyte’s water content freeze, thus adding another reason for the battery to stop functioning.
How, then, do you prevent lead sulfate crystals from clogging up the battery’s lead plates too soon? You can do this by subjecting the battery to some short, but high-voltage electrical pulses from time to time. This process is known as desulfation.
Lead acid batteries normally possess something called resonant frequency. It can be compared to a stringed musical instrument, which creates a tonal vibration each time you pluck a string. In the same way, an electrical pulse can create a vibration in the sulfur ions that are contained in the lead sulfate crystals. As these vibrations occur, continuous collisions between the sulfur ions and the lead plates also occur, until the crystals start breaking up.
As you may already have guessed by now, the electrical pulses needed to break up the lead sulfate crystal deposits on the battery’s lead plates is delivered by the battery desulfator circuit. The entire process may have sounded very simple, and indeed it is, but you can also expect it to take a bit of time. Desulfation can often take days, or even weeks, to complete, depending on the severity of the crystallization. There are several kinds of desulfators up for sale, but you also have the option of making your own. If you decide to go the DIY route, there are several desulfator circuit models and instructions you can find online.
In any battery reconditioning process – car battery reconditioning included – you need to keep in mind your safety first. Make sure to work on a well-ventilated area away from flames to avoid suffocation and causing a fire especially when working on car batteries. Arm yourself with gloves and goggles. Cleanse immediately with water when you get acid on your skin. Remember these warning tips to assure your safety while working.
Some people are now looking into car battery reconditioning as a good way to earn some extra cash. If you are one of these people, then you may want to start to learn how to make your personal lead-acid battery desulfator, which is a necessary device for reconditioning car batteries.