Submitted: Friday, Oct 07, 2016 at 22:17
ThreadID: 133572 Views:4135 Replies:4 FollowUps:5
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This is what happened when I woke up and could smell rotten eggs, looked every for what was off then looked in battery box nearly had a heart attack. It was red hot, so guys check ya battery's every now and then you never know when this can happen
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Reply By: Dean K3 - Friday, Oct 07, 2016 at 23:08

Friday, Oct 07, 2016 at 23:08
evidentally a charger or regulator has malfunction for this to occur, seen it happen to smaller 7ah sla used for base station radios when a batch of 24v p/supplies were incorrectly supplied and used- won't go into QA checks along the way either.

smell is hydrogen gas not rotten egg smell which is hydrogen sulfide which builds up with rotting vegetation near lakes in eutrophic conditions etc -although to casual nose might seem similar
AnswerID: 604997

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Friday, Oct 07, 2016 at 23:52

Friday, Oct 07, 2016 at 23:52
it probably is hydrogen sulphide ....... plenty of both hydrogen and sulphates in batteries.
FollowupID: 874764

Follow Up By: Echucan Bob - Monday, Oct 10, 2016 at 09:39

Monday, Oct 10, 2016 at 09:39
Hydrogen is odourless.

"Over-charging a lead acid battery can produce hydrogen sulfide. The gas is colorless, very poisonous, flammable and has the odor of rotten eggs. Hydrogen sulfide also occurs naturally during the breakdown of organic matter in swamps and sewers;" from Battery
FollowupID: 874805

Reply By: The Bantam - Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 00:05

Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 00:05
Ladies and Gentleman .... If left in service sooner or later ALL batteries will fail ....... how they fail, well that is a lottery.

People are often far too careless and push their luck with where they put batteries, how they are mounted and how well they are ventilated.

Sealed batteries may be all fine a beaut, cleaner and far less dangerous than screw top, wet batteries ......... but when they fail, they all can and will vent explosive gasses and corrosive vapour or liquid.

It's quite possible that this battery could have exploded or caused a fire.

Think about this when housing batteries.

There are also some known issues with "smart chargers" ...... under certain circumstances when left on contuinuously, and certain battery faults occur they can be fooled into running in boost charge killing batteries and /or posing a threat.

It realy does pay to check your batteries regularly.


AnswerID: 604999

Follow Up By: neil g7 - Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 01:42

Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 01:42
Was told a cell in the battery had failed and it still kept being charged, also most chargers have a heat sensor that should be taped to top of battery mine wasn't. Only had this van for a year didn't even know about the sensor until today guy before me had left it hanging. It's taped now!!!
FollowupID: 874767

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 09:31

Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 09:31
Yes that is one of the situations that can fool a " Smart Charger" .... one of the cells fails going partly short circuit ...... there is enough voltage in the other cells to convince the charger that the battery is in a low state of charge so it kicks into boost mode .... the result is problem like you have seen.

Yes SOME not most multi-stage chargers have a temperature sensor or can hane a sensor connected ...... but it is not the majority.

Mostly that temperature sensor is there to optimise charging for temperature ...... a temperature sensor may reduce the risk ..... but they can not be relied upon, particularly in multi battery installations ..... such as where there are 2 x 12 volt batteries in paralell or 2 x 6 volt batteries in series.

While I am left with no doubt that a modern Multi-stage charger will stick more charge to a battery safer to a healthy battery,....... I am not convinced that leaving batteries on large Multi-stage smart chargers long term is a good idea.

I have some old school Voltage regulated, current limited analogue chargers I'll use for that.

FollowupID: 874770

Reply By: Murray48 - Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 01:58

Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 01:58
Had the same issue in our van.
Battery was just under 12 months old and we were staying at a park for 4 days so plugged the caravan in.
About day 3 we had the same smell, and yes, it is hydrogen sulphide.
At first we blamed the toilet but fairly soon worked out that wasn't the problem. Opened the battery box and the battery was red hot and the ends bulged out, not as bad as the one in the photo.
I initially blamed the charger as the battery was not that old but put another battery in it and all is fine.
It would seem the battery failed and the charger kept giving full current, cooking the battery.
Seems a few of us have learnt the hard way.
AnswerID: 605001

Follow Up By: Gronk - Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 08:59

Saturday, Oct 08, 2016 at 08:59
If the charger is working properly and the battery just fails, not a lot you can do ?
I regularly check the charge voltage to make sure the charger output is normal, but apart from noticing any difference in normal performance of the batteries, these things can and will happen..
FollowupID: 874768

Reply By: Member - Trevor_H - Sunday, Oct 09, 2016 at 22:34

Sunday, Oct 09, 2016 at 22:34
When I renovated the electrical system of my Golf caravan, I fitted digital Ammeters where they are readily seen, one for charge and one for discharge. The shunts are external and with the rest of the electrical components. I thought probably an overkill at the time, but would give warning of a situation such as described. It has saved me embarrassment at times when I've left the charger switched on then changed from mains to invertor. ("Why have I got a large discharge and small charge?")
AnswerID: 605027

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