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Old 05-28-2020, 10:03 PM   #1
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Battery Testor

I have been looking at getting a battery tester for my batteries. A lot of them out there. Any suggestions on which ones work the best?

Phil Weingart
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Old 05-28-2020, 10:08 PM   #2
"Formerly Diplomat Don"
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Since they don't get used that often, I bought a Harbor Freight load tester years ago. It works fine for occasional testing. Keep in mind, you can't test dead batteries. You need to charge them and then test them.


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Old 05-29-2020, 12:31 AM   #3
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A load tester such as Don shared will do. Plus, if flooded batteries, you will want a hydrometer to check specific gravity.

If your batterues should be equalized periodically, do so.
Vince and Susan
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Old 05-29-2020, 03:52 AM   #4
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Short term load tests don't tell you anything about a deep cycle batteries capacity.

Sure, if the battery is discharged or bad, it will tell you that, but not if its worn out beyond usefulness.

To do a capacity test, you need to load the battery to the 20 hour spec ( 5 amps per 100 AH ) and see if it stays above 10.6 volts after 20 hours.

If the voltage drops to 10.6 volts in 10 hours, the battery is at 1/2 capacity. Still servicable but my not be enough for your particular situation. That depends on your total battery bank capacity and how long between recharge cycles.

The cheap testers are probably better for making toast then deep cycle battery testing.
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Old 05-30-2020, 07:40 AM   #5
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You don't say why you want a battery tester but I assume it could be you wonder why they are running low so fast. I suggest you get a load monitor system for your entire house battery bank or the model for both the house and chassis banks. I use and older version of a Victron device like this.


It will tell you current state of charge, voltage, current draw and accumulated total of amp hours used. You can then tell if your batteries are getting charged right, find phantom current draws and see when you batteries are getting tired and not providing the rated amp hours any longer.
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Old 05-30-2020, 07:49 AM   #6
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The load testers like the one from Harbor Freight are good to determine if you have a bad cell in the battery, but as previously mentioned, will not give you a check on the capacity of the battery. In the lithium radio control world there are testers that do capacity tests on the battery packs; I'm not sure there is a consumer grade FLA battery equivalent.
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Old 05-30-2020, 01:17 PM   #7
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Dutch Star Don is spot on. The cheap tester is good enough for a generalized test and as a comparison test for batteries. Say you have four 6 volters they should act the same.

But you do need something to test the specific gravity etc.

Doing regular maintenance on them will give you a real clue when something starts going south.

Remember this, Batteries and Beer are only rented. You will need to replace both and can run out at any time.

Myron & Deborah
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