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Country Discussion Topics
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Side post batteries
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Mark/Ks    Posted 01-15-2005 at 17:00:32       [Reply]  [No Email]
Fern mentioned side post batteries in his report today.Just so you'll know,I'll tell you why they invented them in the first place.

You know how a regular top post battery gets that corrosion on the posts?This is caused by hydrogen gas escaping from the battery caps.It reacts with the lead battery post and corrodes.

Delco designed the first side post batteries in the 70's as a simple solution to this problem.Hydrogen gas,being lighter than air,rises.By lowering the terminals of the battery,the hydrogen rises away from the posts and therefore reduces corrosion.

Mankind,or at least the owners of GM vehicles,have been cussing ever since.Just as another piece of friendly,side terminal battery advise...DON'T OVERTIGHTEN A SIDE POST BATTERY TERMINAL.The way the battery is made offers a very weak point inside the battery between the terminal and the end cell connection.The lead connector inside is only,in most manufacturers,about the size of a pencil.Overtightening the battery cable to this terminal can,and often does,cause a stress fracture in this internal connector.Often it shows up on a real cold morning,when you hit the key.All of the amperage in the battery is being delivered to the terminals when you start the engine.The rapid heating of this can cause the stress fracure to literally blow apart.The terminal can actually fall out of the battery.Also,the prior mentioned hydrogen gas inside the battery can,and often does,explode as a result of overtightening the bolt,sometimes months or years prior to the failure.

Just some boring information from my world,the world of batteries. Mark in Kansas


Quint    Posted 01-15-2005 at 20:13:21       [Reply]  [No Email]
I've always liked the side terminal batteries myself. I have had much less trouble with them and the side post OEM Delco battery in my 89 Chevy truck was simply an incredible performer. Much easier to fit into vehicles with low hoods too. The thing lasted for years after the little green "eye" went out. It just didn't want to die. when it did (was in the late 90s I think - I have NEVER had a battery last like that one.) it died in the winter which was a switch. I've had more of my batteries die in the heat of summer than winter. I think heat will kill a battery as much as the cold will.

I worked in a battery plant once. Horrible place. Acid fumes were hard on the lungs let alone the lead exposure. Having batteries blowing up feet from you was always made for interesting shift.


Mark/Ks    Posted 01-16-2005 at 07:52:42       [Reply]  [No Email]
I started out in a battery plant too.I hated every shift I was ever on,whatever the job task.I looked for a new job everyday,and even watched the obituaries to see who died that had a job I could do.That is the awful truth.

You are correct about Delco batteries lasting longer,IF they are in GM vehicles.The Delco battery is manufactured using different metalurgy than other brands of batteries.This enables the battery to produce very little gassing,and therefore much less water loss.That is why they were the pioneers in maintenance free(never add water)batteries in North America.It was discovered that in order to give the battery a long service life,the charge voltage for the Delco battery had to be increased.That is primarily why GM vehicles have a higher voltage output alternator than say a Ford or Daimler Chrysler vehicle.

As for the "green light"on the battery.It is simply a small hydrometer,installed in and reading only one cell of the battery.It isn't a fool proof indicator of a good or bad battery,but it is a good thing to watch with regard to trouble shooting and maintenance.

You are right about summer's heat on batteries.Under the hood temps in modern vehicles essentially bake the battery and many other component parts.Most times,the battery cooked and became doomed in the heat of summer,but didn't die until a nice frosty morning when it just didn't have enough power to start the engine. Have a good Sunday. Mark in Kansas


Quint    Posted 01-15-2005 at 20:12:10       [Reply]  [No Email]
I've always liked the side terminal batteries myself. I have had much less trouble with them and the side post OEM Delco battery in my 89 Chevy truck was simply an incredible performer. Much easier to fit into vehicles with low hoods too. The thing lasted for years after the little green "eye" went out. It just didn't want to die. when it did (was in the late 90s I think - I have NEVER had a battery last like that one.) it died in the winter which was a switch. I've had more of my batteries die in the heat of summer than winter. I think heat will kill a battery as much if not more than the cold will.

I worked in a battery plant once. Horrible place. Acid fumes were hard on the lungs let alone the lead exposure. Having batteries blowing up feet from you was always made for interesting shift.


deadcarp    Posted 01-15-2005 at 18:51:09       [Reply]  [No Email]
interesting - did you know that if we rewired the car & reversed our battery's polarity, the body wouldn't rust?


HOGMAN    Posted 01-15-2005 at 19:14:49       [Reply]  [No Email]
Old Henery weren't so dadblamed stupid afterall??????????


Grove r    Posted 01-15-2005 at 21:24:56       [Reply]  [No Email]
Ten four, Hogman...bin tryin ta tell people that all my life...ole Henry's bin so far ahead of the game, everybody else figures they'er first, an' come up with all sorts o "new" stuff thats bin on H F's autos fer years....guess they say immatation is the best form of flattery..... drive nice, R.E.L.


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