Managing 12 Volts: How to Upgrade, Operate, and Troubleshoot by Harold Barre

By Harold Barre

The best way to improve, function and troubleshoot 12-volt platforms with emphasis on knowing what might be improper with a method and the way to enhance it with a multi-stage charging method. first-class diagrams, transparent, concise writing.

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Additional info for Managing 12 Volts: How to Upgrade, Operate, and Troubleshoot 12 Volt Electrical Systems

Example text

24 Managing 12 Volts After the sulfate ions give up their negative charge, the sulfate combines with the lead in the plates to form lead sulfate. The amount of sulfuric acid in the electrolyte is reduced. The positive plates readily accept the electrons from the external circuit because they are short a negative charge. The hydrogen ions in the electrolyte move to the positive plates and combine with the oxygen to form water, further diluting the electrolyte. The lead on the positive plates combines with the sulfuric acid to form lead sulfate.

One thing in the gel cell's and AGMs favor is that they are maintenance free, and wet cell batteries need to be monitored for electrolyte level and occasionally may require an equalization charge. A properly maintained high quality, wet cell battery produces far more cycles and gives excellent service for lower initial cost than gel cell and AGM batteries. But for someone who wants batteries that do not give off hazardous fumes, require no maintenance and charge more quickly than wet cell batteries, gel cells and/ or AGMs may be a good buy.

This is the result of not recharging or of undercharging the battery. Sulfation can sometimes be reversed by performing an equalization or conditioning charge on a battery. This procedure is explained in Chapter 5. Conversely, periods of overcharging or prolonged trickle charging lead to gassing, a process in which excess charging current breaks down the water in the electrolyte into its component parts, hydrogen and oxygen, which then boils off. Water must be added to the cells, replacing the water which boils off.

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