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Batteries Gel or Glass mat?

Old 01-11-2019, 01:51 PM
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The problem with modern batteries is not so much their design but where the auto mfr puts them. In order to service the C4 battery I have to remove it from the car to reach cap located closest to the engine to add distilled water. After 28 years I'm on my 3rd AC Delco from taking delivery in 1990. The first one lasted 12 years. The secret is constant use of a maintainer.
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Old 01-11-2019, 03:53 PM
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Mickey5 you are absolutely right! If the battery is kept fully charged all the time it rarely looses capacity like those that are cycled hard and left partially charged. They need to find a way to keep the battery cooler by re-locating it to a safe location away from heat. Actually I have wondered why the auto manufacturers let the under the hood temperatures get so bloody high today in the first place. A lot of parts are getting damaged every day from "Heat Soaking" with these ridiculous under the hood temps. It damages far more than just the battery.

With the self discharge of the FLA batteries being higher than other batteries it is wise to keep a good maintainer on the battery when not in use. There are maintainers out there that will float your battery after it reaches a full charge. I bought a cheap one and it left my battery dry by springtime and I had to buy another battery. The maintainer I bought was advertised it to be a "1 amp battery maintainer" and it was just that, 1 amp at 12 Vdc continuously 24/7 no matter what the battery voltage was.
The battery left un-attended for the winter months will loose charge continuously due to the self discharge eating away at the battery. When you charge it up in the spring it may be too late as the capacity has been reduced by sulfation of the plate surface that was not fully charged. Some sources even suggest that the self-discharge rate of a FLA battery is more like 5% per MONTH and it goes up on older batteries.

The self-discharge of all battery chemistries increases at higher temperature, and the rate typically doubles with every 10C (18F). A noticeable energy loss occurs if a battery is left in a hot vehicle. High cycle count and aging also increase self-discharge of all systems.

Before you use the battery when the weather warms up be sure to give it a full charge on a regular charger to de-stratify the electrolyte. To de-stratify the electrolyte you need to charge it a high enough rate to get it bubbling.
"Acid stratification cannot always be avoided. During cold winter months, starter batteries of most passenger cars dwell at a 75 percent charge level. Knowing that motor idling and driving in gridlocked traffic does not sufficiently charge the battery; charge the battery occasionally with an external charger. If this is not practical, switch to an AGM battery. AGM does not suffer from acid stratification and is less sensitive to sulfation if undercharged than the flooded version. AGM is a bit more expensive than the flooded version but the battery should last longer." this was taken from the "Battery University" on the web.

Good Luck My Fellow Corvette Enthusiasts!
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Old 01-11-2019, 08:33 PM
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St. Jude Donor '05

Good point on heat, MB figured that one out a long time ago.
Daily (truck) goes through a battery a year, avg since new. Same with the pcm, fuse boxes love heat and grease too!
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