Engineers Edge


Battery Maintenance General

Battery Application & Technology

Proper maintenance will prolong the life of a battery and will aid in assuring that it is capable of satisfying its design requirements. A good battery maintenance program will serve as a valuable aid in determining the need for battery replacement. Battery maintenance should always be performed by trained personnel knowledgeable of batteries and the safety precautions involved.

Most of the following material concerns flooded, non-maintenance-free batteries. However, so called "maintenance-free" and valve-regulated batteries also require some maintenance. They do not require water addition or checking of specific gravity, but they may require periodic cleaning, monitoring of cell and battery total float voltage, load (capacity) t7esting, terminal resistance measurement, or cleaning and torque verification of terminal bolts depending on the importance of the application.

Flooded lead-acid batteries can function for 10 years or longer if properly maintained. The six general rules of proper maintenance are

1. Match the charger to the battery requirements.

2. Avoid over discharging the battery.

3. Maintain the electrolyte at the appropriate level (add water as required).

4. Keep the battery clean.

5. Avoid overheating the battery.

6. Provide an equalizing charge periodically to weak batteries/cells.

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