Battery Care and Maintenance
For a battery to remain in good working order, it should be maintained in a fully charged state by the vehicle’s charging system. Where a battery is used as a means of alternative power, it is generally charged by means of an independent charger or rectifier which supplies controlled direct current (DC).
An independent charger is also used to charge motor vehicle batteries that have become discharged due to faulty alternators, charging systems or if left unused for prolonged periods.
If the following hints are adhered to, a battery will provide extended and trouble free service:
- Store batteries in a clean and dry area (in order to prevent deterioration).
- Store batteries in a fully charged state. (12V Battery above 12.4V).
- Ensure a correct polarity connection when recharging and fitting.
- Follow proper recharging schedules to prevent overcharging. Ensure charging is conducted in a well ventilated area.
- Ensure that the battery is always clean and dry, with the terminals coated with petroleum jelly (Vaseline) or proprietary terminal protectors. Do not use greases which may contain metal additives.
- NB:Practice stock rotation and use a first-in, first-out system at all times.
- Always wear protective clothing when working with batteries.
- Do not store batteries in a discharged state.
- Do not test batteries by shorting across terminal posts with wire, spanners, etc.
- Do not allow open flames or sparks near a battery as it could explode (batteries give off flammable gasses).
- Do not use a single spanner to loosen or tighten the terminal clamp as this could damage the post lid seal. Use a spanner to the nut and a second spanner to the bolt.
- Do not use the starter motor to propel the vehicle or leave the vehicle parked with accessories switched on for extended periods.
- Do not lean over a battery when charging or testing.
- Do not put any metal objects on top of a battery.