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Old 04-30-2012, 08:48 PM   #1
joeyd71
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Default Batteries are boiling when charging...what gives?

I have two old Japanese motorcycles and recently I have been struck with bad battery luck. I have had them hooked up to battery tenders (trickle chargers) for days on end to keep the battery fresh. Well I just started noticing that the batteries are boiling...or at least thats how they sound. Stupidly, I decided to open one of the cells of the battery when one was boiling, and I got an eye full of battery liquid (yes, it burns). Well today I pulled my bike out and found that one of the caps burst off, spraying the liquid all over my paint and chrome, ruining most of it. I did notice that the overflow tube was pinched, which might have been building up pressure inside the battery?

The strangest thing is that I did not have this problem at all (that I know of) last year.

I'm not sure. Has anybody else had a problem like this before? When I took my other bike out the other day, 3 of the cells were bone dry, which I assume is from the liquid inside boiling up and discharging down the overflow tube.

I have also taken the batteries out of the bikes and hooked them up to the tender outside of the bike, and I still get the same problem. Maybe just bad battery tenders?

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Old 04-30-2012, 10:34 PM   #2
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Are you using a trickle charger or a battery tender? You mention both, but they are different machines.

Are the batteries boiling when charging or when the motorcycle is operating? If it is while they are being charged with the engine, the voltage regulator is the most likely suspect.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:33 PM   #3
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Batteries 'boil' when they are charged at too high a rate, or reach too high a voltage during charging. A quick check with a voltmeter will show if the voltage is too high. True tenders do not do this, unless defective, but trickle chargers do, especially ones meant for auto batteries.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WintrSol View Post
Batteries 'boil' when they are charged at too high a rate, or reach too high a voltage during charging. A quick check with a voltmeter will show if the voltage is too high. True tenders do not do this, unless defective, but trickle chargers do, especially ones meant for auto batteries.
That's interesting...thanks.

As far as I know, the ones I have are meant for auto batteries. It just puzzles me that the chargers seemed to work fine for a while, but now they are doing that boiling problem.
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Old 05-03-2012, 08:50 AM   #5
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A "tender" stops all charging when the battery gets to a charged state and do not charge again until that battery charge drops. A trickle charger (most anyway) puts out a small amount, but does so constantly. I use a couple of Battery Tender Jrs. for my bikes. They're small and look like a wall charger for electronics. IIRC they ran about $25 and they come with a quick disconnect lead so you can attach the pigtail to the battery permanently, zip-tying the end somewhere handy on the frame. Then all you do is plug the tender in to the pigtail on the bike and plug the charger in. You can leave these plugged in all the time and they will not overcharge the battery. (By the way, if you use batteries where you fill with acid your self, the initial charge should not be done with the tender, but with your regular trickle charger.)

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Old 05-03-2012, 09:41 AM   #6
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The above posts have all the info correct. If your bateries are boiling over it is not only bad for the batteries, but potentially bad for you. When a battery overcharges it can release Hydrogen gas (think Hindenburg). This can really ruin your day.
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Old 05-16-2012, 12:14 PM   #7
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ur right badlands....
U should see it jump(fire) across the tops of batteries from the hydrogen gas when an exide batt. plant catches fire, when all the chargers were turned on at once.....
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Old 05-17-2012, 04:41 PM   #8
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Default Tenders vary...

And, not all tenders are the same; some suck. I have had a microprocessor-controlled tender/charger boil (at a low, low level) a regular lead-acid battery, not to the point of being a problem, but it didn't quit even after the specific gravity was at a fully charged state.

Also, some have different modes for different battery types...
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