Battery Explosion, The Sequel

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Lt.Mike
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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Lt.Mike » Tue May 04, 2021 9:38 am

SamsFarm wrote:
Jim Becker wrote:About 6 years ago, I reported on a battery I had that exploded while on a battery tender. Two weeks ago I had another battery explode.


Praise the Lord you were not on that thing!

I have 2 questions!

1) Was both of your batteries the same brand?

2) Who made those batteries?

What kind of battery tender are you using?
I use Deltran battery tenders and though their good I’ve had some fail and stop charging.
If it goes the other way and fails to shut off continuing to charge it can cook the battery and ya eventually it could blow.
Mine has a red and green light. If the red doesn’t change to green (charged and maintaining) in a reasonable amount of time that red light is a red flag that needs to be investigated. Bad connection, battery, or charger.
Quote by Gary Pickeral I like
"If it can cast a shadow, it can be restored"

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Jim Becker » Tue May 04, 2021 11:30 am

Dale Finch wrote:On all but the 2 newest cubs, I installed these connectors that came with my Schumacher Battery Maintainers. . . .

I use Schumacher maintainers as well. I try not to connect chargers/maintainers at the battery to reduce corrosion. On the 6-volt Cubs, I use the alligator clips and connect at the starter. The lug on the starter switch is direct to the battery. The ground clip goes anywhere handy. The 12-volt Cubs don't have a handy place to clip on. So I attached these connectors. I put the hot wire on one of the ammeter lugs and put the other on the rear tank support bolt next to the choke. I stuff it in on top of the Touch-Control where it can be pulled out either side. Normally they stay put but I did have one wiggle its way out and rest partly on an exhaust pipe. It didn't really hurt the connector, but I have since tried to make sure it is well stuffed out of harm's way.

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Jim Becker » Tue May 04, 2021 11:56 am

SamsFarm wrote:1) Was both of your batteries the same brand?

2) Who made those batteries?

I can't say for certain on the first battery as it has long-since been used as a core. But I believe it was a WalMart Duralast Everstart (edit) 12-volt group 26R. I bought it in May, 2012. So it was just under 3 years old.
The second one was a Rayovac from Batteries Plus. This was a 6-volt group 1. A date sticker on that battery says "C2", March 2012. Interestingly enough, the explosions were years apart but the batteries were purchased at about the same time.

I don't pay much attention to name brands on 6-volt batteries. I don't think there are more than about 2 factories in the US that make them. Whatever brand I buy, the plastic cases are usually identical and there are different stickers with the brand name stuck on the side.

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby dgrapes59 » Tue May 04, 2021 2:01 pm

Ok, Jim, your post convinced me to replace the battery in the '55 LoBoy :wink: I hooked up the load tester on the old battery for giggles, didn't hardly move the needle :shock:

Rural King to the rescue, group 1 battery $49.99 w/core exchange. They had 5 on the shelf, Feb. & Mar. ship dates and at least four on a pallet in the middle aisle, with April ship dates. I purchased a NAPA commercial G1, 6V battery less than a year ago for the 8N, was about $75.00 with the 25% off "bucket sale" they were running. It has a little better warranty, but without a sale price, about $105.00 now, I went with the Rural King one this time. Guess I can see how they compare over time, having one of each.

Now to put the covers back on the other '55 LoBoy...

Thanks again for the safety reminder,
David

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Stanton » Tue May 04, 2021 2:55 pm

So glad to hear you were not injured by the blast and battery acid, AND, you were far enough away to see it happen.
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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby indy61 » Tue May 04, 2021 6:36 pm

I bought an Optima 6v battery years ago and it's still going strong. You don't have to worry about corrosion or explosion.
I'm surprised lead acid cell batteries aren't obsolete. The technology is there.

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby k hutchins » Tue May 04, 2021 6:58 pm

I've had 2 batteries explode on my cub. I was in the seat both times. Blew the top right off the box (it had been bolted down)
Mine was from running a battery that was dead. I'd crank it to start.
Never go seriously hurt, but ended up with perferated pants legs from the acid.
Why is there never enough time to do the job right, but always enough time to do it over. :?:

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Barebones » Tue May 04, 2021 7:04 pm

Points well made. Guess I'm in store for a replacement. Been coaxing a tired 6v along not knowing of the inherent danger. Thank you for the alert.

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby SamsFarm » Wed May 05, 2021 12:34 pm

Gee!

Maybe now is a good time to go with the old faithful magneto and the ole hand crank and skip having a pesky battery!

:)
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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Scrivet » Wed May 05, 2021 7:12 pm

SamsFarm wrote:Gee!

Maybe now is a good time to go with the old faithful magneto and the ole hand crank and skip having a pesky battery!

:)

Might wanna research broken thumbs, broken arms, dislocated elbows, and hand cranks up side the head stories first ...........but that's a different thread. :wink: :lol:

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Barnyard » Wed May 05, 2021 7:51 pm

Scrivet wrote:
SamsFarm wrote:Gee!

Maybe now is a good time to go with the old faithful magneto and the ole hand crank and skip having a pesky battery!

:)

Might wanna research broken thumbs, broken arms, dislocated elbows, and hand cranks up side the head stories first

:thumbsup:
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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Redcub » Thu May 06, 2021 4:20 am

Explosive Hydrogen Sulfide gas comes off of batteries. If a cell goes bad, the other cells work even harder. It is a total set up for a fire or explosion.
If we introduce a spark to the area,... Boom! I only charge batteries outdoors, or I could I loose the barn. I treat that charger like a campfire after a marshmallow roast in the woods,... I don't trust it. I don't leave it, I check the temp.

This was a close one. Glad all of you are ok from all your battery stories.
Thanks for your stories and advice.
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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby SamsFarm » Thu May 06, 2021 10:43 am

Maybe we need a battery catagory that wont disappear in time like this topic will, and everyone that has a problem battery can list the brand, model, how old, and whatever else they like in relation to that problem battery!

Would be interesting to see if there is a manufacturer out there not up to quality standards!

Keep in mind that many different brands have the same manufacturer!
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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Super A » Thu May 06, 2021 1:19 pm

SamsFarm wrote:Maybe we need a battery catagory that wont disappear in time like this topic will, and everyone that has a problem battery can list the brand, model, how old, and whatever else they like in relation to that problem battery!

Would be interesting to see if there is a manufacturer out there not up to quality standards!

Keep in mind that many different brands have the same manufacturer!


I expect the point would be moot. It's already been established when the battery gets old, won't hold charge, is over-charged, etc. etc. etc. it's subject to exploding regardless of brand. The moral of the story is to maintain the battery and replace when it's time.

As far as manufacturers, it's hard to beat anything made by East Penn. I get an average of 5 years out of my 6v batteries and that's letting them sit for months at a time with no maintainers.

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Re: Battery Explosion, The Sequel

Postby Jim Becker » Thu May 06, 2021 2:22 pm

I don't see any point in trying to gather any correlation between battery brands and a tendency to explode. The explosions seem to be mostly the result of trying to use (or at least leave in place) batteries that aren't fit for use. If there was any correlation to be found, it would probably be to an individual production line, battery group number, or some other thing we'd never trace.

There are three US manufacturers I can come up with right now:
- East Penn (Deka is their marketing name.)
- Exide
- Johnson Controls.
I don't think East Penn has any non-US factories but the others do. I suspect all group 1 batteries come from East Penn or Exide.

I believe both my exploding batteries Rayovac (BatteriesPlus) and Everstart (Walmart) were made by East Penn. Note that above I called it a Duralast, which is incorrect. (My truck has a Duralast from Autozone.) If the two explosions were caused by a common manufacturing defect, they would have probably had similar length of life. I'm assuming all Walmart batteries come from the same place. However, they are big enough that they may have regional suppliers. From what I have been told, Interstate Batteries, for example, come from Johnson Controls. But their batteries for the southwest come from a factory in Monterrey Mexico.

One more observation. I stated earlier that the explosion blew my ground cable loose from the clamp. Although it seems unlikely, it is possible that vibration caused the cable to come loose. If so, the cable coming off could have produced a spark that caused the battery explosion. In that case, the explosion wasn't even caused by the battery. Again, I don't think it happened that way. But there is no real proof either way.


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