Reconditioning a "dead" car battery -- Epsom salt method? New acid in battery?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2017: Reconditioning a "dead" car battery -- Epsom salt method? New acid in battery?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Max L. Christenson on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 08:39 pm:

Is anyone on this forum familiar with a simple and successful method of reconditioning an otherwise "dead" car battery? By "dead" I mean a battery that will not take and keep a charge. I have heard of using Epsom salt in a liquid solution, but not sure how that works. Or, does pouring out the old battery acid and putting new acid in the battery revitalize the battery? Reconditioning would seem cheaper than buying a new battery. Any ideas?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary H. White - Sheridan, MI on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 08:49 pm:

Google it and you will be swamped with all kinds of ideas. Some even plausible.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By gary hammond on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 08:57 pm:

try this:http://www.ebay.com/itm/Battery-Desulfator-Desulphator-Reverse-Pulse-Rejuvenator -Doctor-Repair-Fix-12V-/231951914162?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Richard Eagle Idaho Falls on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 09:46 pm:

I believe my neighbor went to prison for Salt-in-the-Battery. [80(


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By keith g barrier Savannah Tn. on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 09:47 pm:

I have used the Epsom salts several times with good results, test each cell of the battery first because if a cell is dead you are wasting your time. No need to put in new acid after filling with the Epsom salts as you can never completely empty a batty out as a lot of the electrolyte is held in the blotters between the cells. KGB


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By HARRY A DAW Troy, Mo. on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 10:23 pm:

Once heard that over the road truckers would put an aspirin in each cell occasionally.. can't prove it.
A battery goes bad when enough settlement fills up in the bottom and shorts out the battery plates.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary H. White - Sheridan, MI on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 11:04 pm:

I have used a battery desulphanator with good results. It takes a while but I brought back a couple batteries that I was going to trade in as they would not take a good charge with a regular charger. It's worth while to get a good charger/desulphanator.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Les Schubert on Thursday, January 05, 2017 - 11:22 pm:

I have used a Schumacher brand 1 amp non automatic battery charger. Be sure the cells are topped up with distilled water. Give it a couple of days. Once the cells are "gassing ", try it in a car


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Troy Todd on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 12:15 am:

I brought a couple back with a desulfator this summer. A couple others failed to come back.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Terry Woods, Richmond, Texas on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 01:22 am:

Good one, Dick Eagle! HA. HA.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John McGinnis in San Jose area, CA. on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 09:05 am:

Google *battery rejuvenation*...lotsa sources.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Royce in Dallas TX on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 10:04 am:

When battery reconditioning is mentioned it makes me think of my grandfather Adolph Peterson. He ran a business called the Auto Inn located at the corner of West Main and North Central in downtown Eagle Bend, Minnesota. The business was open from mid 1916 until mid 1934. They mainly worked on Model T Fords, but were a Chevrolet dealer for a few years in the early 1920's.

I never met my grandfather, so the only things that I know about him are from recollections of my father, who went to work at Auto Inn in 1930. He remembered that Model T batteries and generators were being worked on every day. One of their best selling items was exchanging dead T batteries for overhauled batteries.

My grandfather would work out back of the shop in the yard, taking all the plates out of T batteries after pouring the acid in a big glass jug. The lead plates would be laid out separately. The insulating material between the plates would be a mass of corrosion that was scraped off and thrown in the trash. The plates would be straightened. If needed new terminals would be soldered on with a gasoline torch. Some plates would be corroded beyond use, they would be thrown away.

Using plates and terminals from other batteries that had been scrapped a refurbished battery could be assembled. Once it was together the acid could be poured in, and the battery would be charged and put on the shelf for the next customer.

If a Model T part was needed, there were no auto part stores any closer than Osakis, Minnesota, where there was a Ford dealer. Parts for Model T's would be sourced first from the town dump which was only a mile away on the outskirts of Eagle Bend. The owner of the dump had dozens of Model T carcasses, and would sell parts for pennies on the pound. If an actual new Ford part was needed it was ordered over the phone and delivered by the mail man the next day.

Dad's visual description of my grandfather always included mention of his clothing, which was always full of holes from the battery acid. My grandmother would patch the holes, until all the clothes were nearly covered with patches that had holes in them.

The photo below shows the Auto Inn circa 1919. Adolph is in the white shirt by the gas pump:



Here is a recent photo of the building from a Forum member:


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ron in Central Massachusetts on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 10:09 am:

Royce - that was a great story and the pictures are fantastic. Thank you for reminding me why I enjoy this Forum.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Erik Johnson on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 11:05 am:

Rebuilding storage batteries was common practice and pre-dates the rise of the automobile. There were businesses that specialized in it.

Over the years, I have seen many battery maintenance and rebuilding textbooks in the automotive sections of used book stores. Here are examples you can view online:

http://www.zetatalk.com/energy/Rebuilding%2520Lead-Acid%2520Batteries%25201922-W itte.pdf

http://www.powerstream.com/1922/battery_1922_WITTE/battery_WITTE.htm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mack Cole ---- Earth on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 01:34 pm:

My grandfather and my dad rebuilt battery's back many years ago. you cut the top off and cleaned everything and put it back together with some type of tar sealer stuff. Can't buy that stuff any more i don't think.
I would like to know if these refurbish chemicals really work because I have 2 golf carts with 6 volt battery's that are getting old.
If I could squeeze a couple more years out of them with a kit off ebay or something I would go for it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tim Wrenn-Monroeville OH on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 01:56 pm:

Just go get a new one. And to that, be prepared to find out that most batteries will be lucky to last you three years. Nothing's made to last anymore.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jerry VanOoteghem - SE Michigan on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 03:19 pm:

Max,

Buy a battery.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 03:36 pm:

What Jerry said. Fact is you're going to be doing it anyway. Ran the lead acid battery shop at Homestead AFB in the 60's and had a Sergeant that would come in once a week with his battery and had me dump it out and re-fill it with fresh acid. Went on for about 5 weeks until he finally broke down & bought one. It doesn't work.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Robert Brough on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 03:47 pm:

I read about the Epson salt and distilled water "trick" and actually started selling the "powder" and instruction on eBay. The negative feedback was not worth the $2 I was making on the scheme. It's just Epson salt and distilled wated, heated up to dissolve the salt and pour into the battery cells. The thinking is that tap water with it's chlorine and other chemicals build up on the plates and weakends the chemical reaction. The Epson salt with clean up the plates. Maybe it does and maybe it doesn't. Maybe a little and maybe a lot.

IMO, for the pennies it will cost you to try it, try it. Even if you only get a few more monts out of your battery, it's worth it. But don't be surprised if nothing happens.

I use it in my golf cart batteries because they are on charge a lot and vent off a lot of water, so I'm always refilling them anyways. A little Epson salt fnd distilled water (neutral ph is reason) won't hurt.

Good luck.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mack Cole ---- Earth on Friday, January 06, 2017 - 11:05 pm:

So you put some Epson salt water in the battery's while in the cart with acid in them?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Duey_C on Saturday, January 07, 2017 - 02:07 am:

Industrial lead acid batteries for electric powered machines are expected to last (at their potential) for about two years. Proves true.
Royce, Eagle Bend? Osakis? You're getting awfully close to my...
If that battery is sulfated, buy another.

(Message edited by Duey_C on January 07, 2017)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Erick Keenan - Vineland NJ 08360 on Saturday, January 07, 2017 - 08:35 am:

Distilled water and plain aspirin about 6 per cell.
Then charge. Erick


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By oussama touzni on Thursday, March 30, 2017 - 04:27 pm:

I was thinking that reconditioning batteries is a big lie , after reading many online reviews I figured out it is real .
I read about EZ ( http://pharazone.com/reviews/best-seller-ez-battery-reconditioning-program-revie w-2017/ ) and purchased the pdf guide , I managed to restore an old battery thrown for more than 2 years ( spent 10$ ) and I got it working like charm again !


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dennis Seth - Jefferson, Ohio on Thursday, March 30, 2017 - 05:16 pm:

The above post is a spammer DON"T OPEN IT!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Fred Dimock, Newfields NH, USA on Thursday, March 30, 2017 - 06:20 pm:

Is oussama a mis-spelling of Obama?
Maybe stuck keys!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Willis Jenkins on Friday, March 31, 2017 - 09:07 am:

Buy a new battery! You will waste time and money farting around with that dead battery!

Willis


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jerry VanOoteghem - SE Michigan on Friday, March 31, 2017 - 10:13 am:

Even if there's a temporary benefit, it can't last long and will probably last just long enough to strand you far from home. Might last a week, maybe a month or two. Where's the benefit? You're gonna need a battery either way.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kenneth W DeLong on Friday, March 31, 2017 - 10:41 am:

A weak battery is hard on a self commencer if you have one.Are dead or discharged battery's more dangerous than fresh/new?? Bud. in Wheeler,Mi.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John F. Regan on Friday, March 31, 2017 - 11:20 am:

It amazes me how much effort guys are willing to go to in order to try and refurbish a battery but they rarely are willing to put the same effort into maintaining a good battery and will let one go dead and sit that way when simply finding out what is draining the battery is just not something they want to do before the battery is ruined. They opt for a battery disconnect switchs instead and that has its own set of issues. Just pouring acid out of a jug is a dangerous process. If you don't understand how dangerous it is you might end up with permanent loss of something you value. I am with Jerry - buy a new battery and take care of it. Mine is over 10 years old and working fine. The one before that made 11 years in the same car. It isn't rocket science but I have to be honest - there is a ton of misinformation out there when it comes to batteries and chargers so I kinda understand why nothing much changes with battery and charger info since it would not be in the interest of the battery maker nor the charger manufacturer for you folks to know something.

FYI - Telephone office batteries for land line telephone system used lead acid batteries which were essentially the same technology as the wet cell in your car. Because these batteries were huge and expensive the Telco took really good care of them and were rewarded with typical life of 20+ years. It wasn't high tech.


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