Battery Failures - Team Camaro Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical.

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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old May 30th, 00, 05:24 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Monument, CO, USA
Posts: 125
In a previous post concerning the turn signals it was discovered that the hazard blinker switch was pressed in. This happened after I was in a shop for some carb work. The symptoms were non-working turn signals and both turn signal indicators turning on when I pressed the brake pedal. At the time I ignored the problem and parked the car for a week. With the hazard blinker switch pressed in the battery died. I charged it up but only get about 10.5 volts and it appears one of the cells is dead. Can someone explain to me the failure mechanisms of a battery? Convince me I need a new battery before I go out and buy a new one tonight.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old May 30th, 00, 10:43 AM
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A battery is a chemical reaction caused by the plates and the electrolyte in each cell. When the chemical reaction stops of course the cell is dead, that is why you have the voltage drop. Think of rust, it to is a chemical reaction and it will stop only when there is nothing left of the metal it is reacting with or neutralized.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old May 31st, 00, 04:38 AM Thread Starter
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Location: Monument, CO, USA
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OK, I broke down and bought a new battery and now all is well. I didn't think these things ever wore out since the last time I bought one was over 25 years ago. That was when I was 17 and I broke a post trying to tighten the clamp way to tight.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old May 31st, 00, 07:37 AM
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Broomfield, Colorado
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Batteries last a lot longer when the car is driven regularly. If it sits for long periods of time and the charge drops very low it will have a much shorter life. That's why they have special batteries for boats and RVs. If your car sits for short periods you might hook up a trickle charger. In the winter months I would pull it out of the car and put it in the basement - just set it on a board - if you place it on the concrete it will suck all the juice out!

'69 400SB, Richmond 5-speed; '99 HD Road King Classic
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old May 31st, 00, 10:14 AM
David Pozzi
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Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: Central California, USA
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We have a fleet on our farm, we see about 3 to 5 years on a pickup use. Vibration hurts them a lot shaking pieces of the plates to the bottom until they build up and short the plates at the bottom. HD batteries have shorter plates for more room for sediment.
You can kill a fairly new battery by letting it sit dead, or with a drain. A dead battery will build up sulfite, or sulfate? deposits on the plates when it's sitting discharged. That will prevent the plates from functioning properly.When discharged, the acid turns more to water and it can even freeze.
The most I've seen is a life of about 7 to 8 years on my dads old Cadillac, the nice floaty ride took it easy on the battery, and it got used about once a week, the rest of the time it sat.
The best thing you can do for your battery is keep it charged and disconnect it if it will sit.

The older I get, the faster I was!
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old Jun 2nd, 00, 08:45 AM
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: denver, co USA
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I always thought that most batteries croaked when the weather turned really cold. I was in Sears this week getting a battery for my driver and the guy told me that they sell more batteries this time of year than any other. Seems when the heat comes (not the cold) the batteries die.
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