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Old 02-02-2013, 12:51 PM   #1
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battery fluid levels

I purchased and installed 4 new golf car batteries in April of 2012. Purchased from Costco. The other day I was checking the water levels and all of the levels were down a bit except one center cell on one of the batteries. I added water to all of the cells that needed water to bring them up to the correct level. Is this an indication of a problem that may be coming my way?
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Old 02-02-2013, 12:57 PM   #2
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When charging the battery, some water will be distilled away. Having to add water at almost a year is normal.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:08 PM   #3
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"Down Some" at one year is in fact Excellent,, Plates exposed after a year is normal (That's down too far).

The only recommendations I have are these two

1: Check more frequently

2: The book says fill to the bottom of the split ring (That's the bottom of the filler tube) I like to leave just a little bit of gap, liek 1/8 to 1/4 inch. between the top of the acid/water and the bottom of the tube.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:11 PM   #4
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The deep cycle batteries are always prone to boiling off electrolyte. By design they are meant to be heavily discharged, then charged. The charging process releases hydrogen. This is why batteries can explode, hydrogen is highly combustible.

What happens is that as the hydrogen is bubbling off during charging it lifts acid (electrolyte) into the air as mist, and it exits through the vent holes in the battery. This means that you need to add water fairly frequently, and that you tend to get a lot of corrosion on the battery terminals and in the battery compartment.

You can reduce both of these conditions quite significantly by buying some mineral oil at your local pharmacy and adding 4 ounces per cell on a 6v battery. The oil still allows the hydrogen to bubble off, but because the oil floats on the electrolyte it prevents the acid from misting into the air.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:54 PM   #5
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Agree with what others have said. Next time you purchase batteries I would suggest deep cell sealed batteries then you won't have to worry about checking and filling. Not cheap but one less thing to maintain.
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Old 02-02-2013, 09:41 PM   #6
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my bateries are equiped with a watering system called "Pro Fill". You just fill them using a hand pump. works good for hard to reach batteries. Jim
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Old 02-02-2013, 09:47 PM   #7
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To answer your question: differing amounts of added water does not indicate a problem
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:28 PM   #8
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Your question of various water levels from cell to cell seems normal to me. All the batteries I've checked over the years will take various amounts to top off from cell to cell.
It seems they should all be the same but, in my experience, they aren't.
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by distaff View Post
....

What happens is that as the hydrogen is bubbling off during charging it lifts acid (electrolyte) into the air as mist, and it exits through the vent holes in the battery. This means that you need to add water fairly frequently, and that you tend to get a lot of corrosion on the battery terminals and in the battery compartment.

You can reduce both of these conditions quite significantly by buying some mineral oil at your local pharmacy and adding 4 ounces per cell on a 6v battery. The oil still allows the hydrogen to bubble off, but because the oil floats on the electrolyte it prevents the acid from misting into the air.
Great idea! How long would the mineral oil last?
Thanks,
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:24 PM   #10
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Best recomindation I found today-Don't trust the dealer when you ask if they checked the fluid in the batteries.
I have had my Holiday Rambler for just shy of 6 months and today it got warm enough to go outside, so I checked the batteries-I could see the top of the plates in all 4 batteries.
I ended up using just over a gallon and a half of distiled water, in four batt's.
All seemed to be bubbling so they were charging, tomorrow I will go get a hydrometer and check the condition.
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