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Maintenance of Battery

Today, open-system batteries are also used for heavy vehicles and buses although totally-enclosed system batteries are mostly preferred. Whet enclosed or open system batteries, it is required to check certain matters in determined periods. Control periods vary depending on conditions of use, but batteries should be checked every six months at minimum or every 3 months for commercial used. Area of battery terminals should be checked first. If there is oxidation on terminal, battery terminals should be cleaned with hot water.

If you continue to use your oxidized battery, battery or vehicle may break down due to melting on terminal and energy transmission problems. Another important point is frequency of battery holder attachment. If loosening or dislocation happens especially in heavy vehicles and tractors, battery may lose its performance due to melting on terminals, deformation of box, extreme quaking and spillage of active agent on grids due to vibration.

If battery is an open-system battery, electrolyte level and intensity values in cells should be checked. Level should be adjusted to be one finger above the plates. If any decrease, you should add only pure water. If cell in the battery is overfilled, cables or connection points may be damaged due to release of liquid in the cell in case of a quake in the vehicle.

If electrolyte intensity value in the cell is below 1.24 gr/cm3, it means sulphation (capacity loss) started in the battery. In such case, rectifier charging should be applied. Since intensity value cannot be measured in enclosed-system batteries, you may understand accuracy of battery by measuring voltage value. If voltage value is below 12.4 volt, rectifier charging should be applied. It is required to consider that if battery is exposed to charging on vehicle, voltage values should indicate a higher value instantly. It is required to rest and measure the battery or open differential lighting of the vehicle for 5 minutes and measure the battery after resting it for a while. Rectifier charging is applied to correct sulphation in battery plates. For this process, a rectifier with limited voltage and fixed-current adjustability. It is required to determine three criteria before charging. These are time, voltage and current.

Charging time may be counted through charging table by measuring stationary voltage or cell intensity of battery. For example, if battery capacity is 60 ampere-hour, stationary voltage is 12,26 volt, we may determine charging time is 12 hours according to our table. According to rectifier charging instruction, Rectifier voltage should be 16,10 volt and Rectifier current should be adjusted to be 20/1 of battery capacity. For 60 ampere-hour battery, Rectifier current should be 3 ampere as 60/20. If we charge this battery under these circumstances, intensity values in cells will increase and battery capacity will reach values specified on the label since sulphate ions in plates will liquefy again. In order to check accuracy of this process, it is required to rest battery for 24 hours after charging. Then, stationary voltage should be above 12,7 volt. If voltage value is below 12,7 volt, charging process was inappropriate or there is another failure in battery other than sulphation.

One of the most important points to be considered in rectifier charging process is to ventilate charging area adequately.

Hydrogen gas is released while charging the battery; if hydrogen gas rate in the environment is more than 4%, this will increase the risk of explosion. Even a small spark, fire or static electrification on our hands may cause explosion of battery. One of the common mistakes in services is to mount battery to the vehicle shortly after charging and desire to use as soon as possible. If vehicle is started while hydrogen gas entrapment happening while battery is charged continues, a micro spark in the cell may cause explosion of the battery.

Battery Charge Time Table
DENSITY gr/cm3 COLOR VOLTAGE RATIO OF FULLNESS BATTERY CHARGE TIME
1.280 Green
>12.60 Full Charged *100% Suitable
1.246 Green
12.60-12.40 100%-75% 6 hours
1.213 Yellow
12.40-12.20 75%-50% 12 hours
1.180 Yellow
12.20-12.00 50%-25% 18 hours
1.146 Red
12.00-11.70 25%-0% 20 hours
1.113 Red
<11.70 Deep Discharged 22 hours

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