Quantcast Testing of batteries

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TM 5-684/NAVFAC MO-200/AFJMAN 32-1082
c. Proper charging. The proper charging of a bat-
cloth or wiper moistened with a suitable neutraliz-
tery is as important as any other maintenance con-
ing agent. Cleaning charged batteries can present a
sideration , since a battery cannot function without
safety hazard if heavy corrosion is present. Cor-
a charger to provide its original and replacement
roded connections should be unbolted and cleaned.
Connector bolts should be tightened as required to
d. Water quality. Use of distilled or deionized wa-
ensure a good connection. Suitable means to con-
ter is recommended to eliminate the possible addi-
tinue service should be arranged for batteries which
tion of foreign contaminants, which will reduce cell
must remain in service. This may mean jumpering
life and performance. The battery manufacturer
out cells being worked on and jumpering in other
will provide information on the maximum allowable
cells, to maintain system voltage requirements.
impurities in water used for maintaining electrolyte
Normally, lowering of voltage, jumpered out by re-
levels if it is desired to test whether a local water
moval of some cells, will not degrade the ability of
the battery to supply the system, if the number
system provides the desired water quality. Approved
jumpered out is in accordance with the systems
battery water should be stored in chemically inert,
nonmetallic containers.
manufacturer's recommendations. Follow the
manufacturer's directions when cleaning heavily
(1) Additives. Nothing but approved battery
corroded posts and connectors. Do not clean the
water should be added to storage batteries. Never
surfaces so rigorously that the plating is removed. A
add acid, electrolyte, any special powders, solutions,
plastic bristle brush can be used. Once the connec-
or jellies. Special powders, solutions, or jellies may
tion is clean, a thin coating of an approved corrosion
be injurious; and have a corrosive or rotting action
inhibitor (such as No-Ox-Id) should be applied.
on the battery plates, reducing the voltage and ca-
Never use anti-corrosion sprays in aerosol contain-
pacity of the cells. The use of such additives will
ers. Observe the manufacturer's recommended
void the battery manufacturer's warranty.
torque values when remaking the connection.
(2) Impurities. Impurities in the electrolyte, be-
(3) Battery vent caps. Vent plugs must be in
yond the manufacturer's maximum levels will cause
place with their gas escape holes open. Flame arres-
irregular cell operation and should be removed as
tor vent caps should be cleaned periodically by thor-
soon as discovered. If removal is delayed and for-
oughly rinsing in clean, clear water. No solvents or
eign matter becomes dissolved, the battery should
detergents should be used.
be replaced immediately. It may be possible to re-
place the electrolyte, but only if the manufacturer
(4) Battery racks. Clean any corrosion found
recommends a procedure to correct the specific con-
and recoat the battery rack with a chemical-
dition which has occurred.
resistant coating, in accordance with the manufac-
turer's instructions. Replace cracked or broken
14-8. Testing of batteries.
corrosion-resistant rack covers. Consult the manu-
facturer if replacement spacers are required. Spac-
Do not overtest. Frequent testing will shorten the
ers are usually of foam plastic as they must be
service life. ANSI/IEEE 450 and ANSI/IEEE 1106
corrosion-resistant and nonswelling. Swelling of
require a performance test within the first 2 years
spacers can damage the battery jars. Recheck and
of service (a constant current capacity test, which
retorque all rack bolts and anchoring bolts, steel
discharges a battery to a designated terminal volt-
plates, and welds. Note and correct any deficiencies
age, to detect any change in the capacity deter-
mined by the initial acceptance test). Subsequent
performance tests are recommended at 5-year in-
tervals, until the battery shows signs of degradation
b. Trouble indication comparisons. If two succes-
or has reached 85 percent of the service life ex-
sive monthly readings for a particular cell are low in
pected. Degradation of lead-acid batteries is indi-
either voltage or specific gravity, a check should be
cated when battery capacity drops more than 10
made to see that this cell gasses properly while on
percent below its capacity on a previous perfor-
charge. If it does, no action needs to be taken unless
mance test or is less than 90 percent of the manu-
the reading goes still lower the next month. A lower
facturer's rating. Perform tests in accordance with
reading indicates an insufficient charge, a short cir-
ANSI/IEEE 450 requirements.
cuit, or impure electrolyte. The trouble should be
a. Capacity tests. The only true indication of bat-
corrected promptly. The manufacturer should be
tery condition and capacity is a discharge test. Sta-
consulted if necessary. The full-charge specific grav-
tionary cells designed for float operation should
ity decreases as a battery cell ages. Although no
have no more than two deep discharges per year.
definite value can be given, this decrease should not
The duration of these tests, test setup, personnel
be more than a few points per year and can usually
needed, and other requirements make frequent test-
be overlooked if the trend is regular.


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