We get many calls and emails involving the use of our products and competitive models. Most of those inquiries are straightforward and easily answered, but a portion fall within the related categories of application misunderstanding or product misuse. So, without further ado, the Top 7 Battery Service Myths and Misnomers:
1. It Is Not Worth the Hassle to Wear Eye Protection
This one is self-explanatory. When working on or around batteries, you should take the proper precautions to ensure your safety. This is first and foremost. And the number one area you should be focused on when it comes to safety is your eyes – always wear eye protection. You’ll be glad you did.
2. Shorting Clamps Together is Good Way to Determine if a Charger is Working
You should never short the clamps of a battery charger as a way of making sure it is working. This is common practice. Is my charger providing output? Let’s touch the clamps together to find out. Not a good practice. First, for newer smart chargers such as our PRO-LOGIX chargers, there is no output to the clamps unless a proper battery connection has been made, negating the purpose of this practice. But even with older chargers, doing this is a good way to damage the charger and possibly injure yourself. It is highly discouraged.
3. You Should Wait to Charge Your Jump Starter
Many people we speak to are under the belief that they should let their jump starter battery discharge significantly before putting it on the charger for a recharge. This is definitely a myth. Your jump starter wants to be charged often and prefers to be kept fully charged whenever possible. Like your car battery, as the jump starter sits inactive for the long periods of time, it self-discharges and, if left in that state, is prone to sulfation build-up. Regular charging prevents this from occurring.
4. You Should Remove the Cell Caps When Charging a Flooded Battery
We occasionally speak to operators who make a practice of removing the cell caps from a flooded acid battery prior to charging it. This is bad mojo. The cell caps are a safety mechanism built into the battery that function as pressure relief valves. Unless you are checking the electrolyte or adding water to a battery, you should not be removing the caps. This is particularly true when charging.
5. You Can/Should Recharge Your Jump Starter Directly From a Running Vehicle
We regularly speak to users who have figured out that if they leave their jump starter connected to the vehicle after a successful jump start, they can quickly gain back most or all of the energy used during the jump starting process. This sounds good and will happen to a certain extent on every jump start, even if you remove the jump starter quickly after the successful boost. The problem is that recharging through the clamps is unregulated and doing so drastically increases the risk of overcharging, which is very detrimental to battery health. It is always best to recharge the unit through its intended charger whenever possible.
6. You Can Use Any Battery Charger to Charge AGM Batteries
Newer battery types, such as AGM, Gel Cell and Spiral Wound batteries, should not be charged with old-school X-Curve (Volts Go Up, Amps Go Down) style battery chargers. Doing so runs the risk of elevating battery voltage beyond an acceptable level, which can result in damage to the battery’s lead plate structure and electrolyte. It is always best to invest in a battery charger optimized to charger the battery types you expect to encounter, such as PRO-LOGIX from SOLAR.
7. I Can Test Any Battery Using My Load Tester
Invasive load testers, such as fixed load coil wire and variable load carbon pile testers, are great tools for assessing battery health and more. But, it is important to remember that whenever you use an invasive load tester, the tested battery should have a State of Charge of 85% or more. If the battery’s State of Charge is lower, first charge the battery prior to testing. Testing a discharged battery using invasive load testing technology can result in unreliable results.
These are the most common myths we encounter here at Clore. We hope they are helpful to you. Did we miss one that you commonly see? We’d love to hear from you – please let know us in the comments below.