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Old 09-26-2017, 09:43 AM   #1
1ton
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Default reconditioning an old battery

So I have this battery that is 12 years old. I was going to replace it because it acted like it didn't want to hold a charge or the cold cranking amps were diminished. My battery charger has a recondition mode on it that I've never used. From what I understand, a battery that sits for long periods of time will get some form of buildup on the internal plates which might be causing my battery to act like it does. I put the battery on the recondition mode and it took 24 hours before it was done. It quickly took a full charge and after installing it back in the car I was amazed. My car was not starting right up after sitting but the battery cranked strong and did not slow or show any signs of weakening. So my question is Does anybody have a clue as to what's going on when you recondition a battery like this?
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Old 09-26-2017, 10:18 AM   #2
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Dont get your hopes too high on a 12 yr old battery. Good luck.
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Old 09-26-2017, 10:21 AM   #3
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Tom would have the answer for that.................
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Old 09-26-2017, 10:22 AM   #4
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Your'e whipping a dead horse.
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Old 09-26-2017, 10:29 AM   #5
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Anyone remember Old Battery Shops that pulled batteries apart & "rebuilt" them. The process was SO INTERESTING!!! I always bought the rebuilt ones & with a 1 YEAR Warranty. When one failed, just after warranty, Don would always give me the BENEFIT of the DOUBT! What GREAT People I've known!
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Old 09-26-2017, 11:31 AM   #6
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Sounds like your charger has a trickle mode (fractions of an amp) as opposed to the jumpstart mode (multiples of an amp). In my experience, the trickle charge is much more gentle on batteries and extends their life as opposed to a harsh occasional jump start.

Good luck with that battery.
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Old 09-26-2017, 11:41 AM   #7
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

I have a few battery chargers that have a system that " rattles" the plates. I have no idea how or what it does but it works. I have saved several batteries that would not hold a charge otherwise. Some times it takes a few days, sometimes it doesn't work at all. But it's worth a try. I have asked my Interstate dealer what this charger is doing and they didn't know. You have nothing to lose, you probably have gotten your money out of a 12 year old battery so enjoy it's extended life.
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Old 09-26-2017, 11:54 AM   #8
1ton
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

By no means am I claiming that I have a like new battery. I'm merely stating what I have experienced. As for this being a long term fix, who knows. The recondition mode says it "desulfites" the battery. Apparently it cleans the lead plates. I have opened up a car battery before and at the bottom there are wells that collect junk. The plates fall quite short of reaching the bottom. I assume that when these wells fill up with crap and connect the bottom of the plates is when that battery will fail. Much like running it with the water level below the top of the plates.
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Old 09-26-2017, 12:12 PM   #9
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

The reconditioning hits the batteries with a higher voltage for a timed period to de-sulfate a battery. It basically cooks the plates clean. Depending on the charger this could be done over several cycles. This will help out, but with a 12 year old battery this could easily give you a false sense of security on the health of the battery. Make sure you are keeping your battery filled, but I would plan on changing the battery in the near future so it will not leave you high and dry on the road.
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Old 09-26-2017, 12:29 PM   #10
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

A new battery can eliminate a whole lot of frustration in my opinion.
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Old 09-26-2017, 01:02 PM   #11
Dollar Bill
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

My newer electronic battery charger uses RF to break up any of the plates that have sulfated.
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Old 09-26-2017, 01:37 PM   #12
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

I say go for it, and keep us posted on how long this battery lasts.
I don't have that feature on any on my chargers, but have heard good results with it.

BTW, I never worry about an old battery leaving my Model A high and dry, because I can hand crank it or push start it. Even if the battery is stone dead, the generator will fire it up with a push start or roll down the hill, then when I get home I can buy a new 6 volt battery.

In the early 70's I put some of that blue juice in my 1952 Studebaker Land Cruiser battery, and it brought it back to life, but 3 neighbor kids stole the battery, so I never got to see how long it would last.
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Old 09-26-2017, 01:56 PM   #13
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Just a friendly reminder to be careful when charging a battery, which produces hydrogen. A spark or flame nearby will set off the hydrogen, which will then pop a cap off at least, or more likely blow the top off or a side out. This, in turn, spatters battery acid all over. Best to wear full safety goggles.
All it takes is one time of forgetting to turn the charger off before unhooking it. Yeah, you (and I) have gotten away with it before but under the right conditions: Boom!
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Old 09-26-2017, 04:26 PM   #14
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Desulfate is one of the words used in the instructions for my chargers that " rattles" the plates. Only trick is the battery must be disconnected from the system, BOTH cables taken off.
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Old 09-26-2017, 04:41 PM   #15
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Chiefs'solution to a "testy" OLD Battery: Hook a cable to both posts & run it DAID-DAID, then a 24 Hour Trickle Charge. After that, I've seen OLD batteries go another year or so.
We had NO electricity & had to buy "throw away" batteries for the radio. Chief rigged it to run on a 6Volt car battery. Even a mediocre battery would run it for DAYS & DAYS. Momma & I enjoyed 24/7 MUSIC & SOAP OPERAS!
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Old 09-26-2017, 07:11 PM   #16
Tom Wesenberg
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Will that rejuvenator help this old Delco Light Plant battery
Technically it's a cell, as a battery is a group of cells.

It's on ebay with an opening bid of $60.
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Old 09-26-2017, 09:40 PM   #17
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Quote:
Originally Posted by noboD View Post
Desulfate is one of the words used in the instructions for my chargers that " rattles" the plates. Only trick is the battery must be disconnected from the system, BOTH cables taken off.
Battery chargers with Desulfation programs use Alternating Current (AC) input to the battery. Some accessories can be (or theoretically can be or they have no idea what you have connected so prudence is safer) harmed by AC current so manufacturers recommend isolating the battery.

I have had good success rejuvenating older Optima batteries with the easily accessible breather plugs (to add water) by desulfation (may take weeks) however I only use rejuvenated lead acid batteries as shop power supplies because they are very prone to breakage of cell to cell and cell to terminal connectors due to vibration.
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Old 09-27-2017, 08:11 AM   #18
FRANK PKNY
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Rich question. Optima batteries are sealed, spiral wound, there is not way to add water, as far as I have ever seen?
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Old 09-27-2017, 11:32 AM   #19
joel rapose
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

I Taught Auto Shop for 30 years...and for my money I will not mess with a battery that is not 100%....It is always going to fail when you are miles from home at midnight....spend the money and buy a good battery.
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Old 09-27-2017, 12:44 PM   #20
H. L. Chauvin
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Default Re: reconditioning an old battery

Hi 1 Ton,

Thanks for sharing this information.

My son & I have had similar experiences 10 years ago & these old batteries are still going strong.

New micro-processing technology makes old battery tenders and old battery chargers look like tin can and string telephones.

In the Model A World we often hear:

"Stick to the old for it is good".

Sometimes it is like Grandpa watching his old one (1) channel, 12" screen, Black & White TV while his lungs get clogged as he puffs away on his Camel cigarettes.

After both my son & I having this this little 4.5 rated "red" micro-charger below from Amazon.com, it has worked wonders to bring back dead batteries on all types of 6V/12V batteries ..... even Marine batteries.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Schumacher SP-1 2/4-Amp 6/12-Volt Automatic Battery Charger/Extender
by Schumacher ......... $ 34.89 Prime
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hope this helps someone looking for a Hi-Tech electronic battery charger/maintainer.

Last edited by H. L. Chauvin; 09-27-2017 at 12:46 PM. Reason: typo
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