Starter Battery Condition

Submitted: Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 16:44
ThreadID: 103123 Views:1140 Replies:3 FollowUps:3
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Is it possible to 'measure' the condition of a starter battery? Mine is showing signs of struggling on these cold Melbourne mornings?
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Reply By: Member - Boo Boo (NSW) - Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 16:55

Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 16:55
Mate

take it to a battery place and they will test it 'under load'.

AnswerID: 514391

Follow Up By: 08crd - Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 20:34

Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 20:34
Boo Boo is spot on, you need to put a load test on the battery, it will load up the cells and show if any are failing.
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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 22:06

Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 22:06
Totally aree
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Follow Up By: blown4by - Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 22:26

Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 22:26
Yep a high rate discharge test will do it. This checks that the battery will provide the amps for the time it is designed to so that it will start the car. Sluggish starts on a cold morning is usually when they go because you asking the battery for everything it as got under the worst possible conditions....engine harder to turn over, thicker oil, cold air, etc. Still could be lack of charge, alternator, loose fan belt, dicky starter, bad connections, etc. Good luck.
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Reply By: The Bantam - Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 22:21

Saturday, Jul 06, 2013 at 22:21
The best way to test a starter battery is on a carbon pile battery tester...most good battery shops and some auto electricians will have one...it allows test under a variable heavy load.

The are simpler battery testers that apply a fixed load often refered to tong testers, because the early ones looked like a pair of tongs with a meter at the hinge.
I have one of these that give only a fair indication.

Bottom line if the battery is more than 2 years old and it is failing to crank with vigor on a cold morning...its hardly worth the effort of heaving it onto a bench to test it....it will be below spec.

cheers
AnswerID: 514418

Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Sunday, Jul 07, 2013 at 09:40

Sunday, Jul 07, 2013 at 09:40
Sometimes a low tech approach is OK too!

Is your battery a sealed, or unsealed type?
If you have an unsealed battery, you can unscrew the caps and check each cell with a simple hydrometer. This will display the specific gravity of each cell and if one or more are failing.

Bill


I'm diagonally parked in a parallel Universe!

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