Guide: How To Make Your Car Battery Go On & On!


Thread Starter #17

Dr MUDHAN

Honoured Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2013
Messages
768
Likes
1,557
Location
COIMBATORE
.
WHY DISTILLED WATER & WHY NOT A MINERAL WATER?

Is it important that our battery should be topped up with only distilled water?

Yes. Because distilled water has no contaminates, minerals etc. that could deteriorate the lead cells / accumulate on the battery plates which will reduce their effectiveness.

Minerals like calcium can coat the cells in the battery and after some time reduce the flow of electric current.

Mineral water has minerals which have ions that could cause reactions with the H2SO4 hydrogen sulfate in the battery acid or upset the pH balance.

Regular tap water too has minerals & chlorine that will affect the battery chemistry & overall life.

In other words, the conductivity of water is more important. The conductivity / Electrical conductance is nothing else but the reciprocal of the resistance.

It depends on the dissolved solids especially on minerals. Distilled water is almost pure and has a very low conductance. The purer the water, the lower the conductance or higher the resistance.

Distilling means boiling water and condensing the steam. The result is free of dissolved solids. In practice the Distilled water conductance is less than 10 µS/cm.

The following table shows the different waters and their conductance. The distilled water has the lowest conductance and the highest by the salty sea water.

Water Conductance [µS]

Distilled water 7 - 20
Rain water 5 - 50
Drinking water 300 - 750
Ground water 30 - 2,000
River water 1,000 - 5,000
Sea water 45,000 - 56,000


The life expectancy of acid batteries will drop significantly and the batteries will be destroyed earlier by other than distilled water. So go for only Distilled Water!

MUDHAN.jpg
Source: Hospital Management Guide (Frank's Training Course)
 
Thread Starter #18

Dr MUDHAN

Honoured Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2013
Messages
768
Likes
1,557
Location
COIMBATORE
.
12 VOLTS vs 14 VOLTS

FH11FEB_ALTEST_01.JPG


You would be surprised to note that the current reading of 12 volts car battery is 14+ volts while running the Engine / Alternator!

Why it is so, whether it is correct … some queries would have flown in your thoughts!!

Yes, it’s normal for the alternator to put out 14.5 volts while running & it is necessary.

Because we are so used to hearing about 12V automotive electrical systems, we tend to ignore the exact battery voltage.

Take for example a battery that reads 12.35V. At first it seems to be in perfect condition but in reality a 12.35V battery is only 50% charged, 12.0V is 25% and 11.80V is completely drained.
Whenever the battery reads 11.99V or lower it is basically a "dead" battery that has lost almost all of its charge.

To charge the battery, the alternator voltage output has to exceed a minimum charging voltage that is 13.8 volts.

A single lead-acid cell starts to charge at anything over 2.25 volts. Since a 12 volts battery has six cells, any 12 volts lead-acid battery needs at least 13.8 volts to start to charge.

This voltage will be enough to fully charge or maintain the battery, but the charging time will be very long at 13.8 volts.

Therefore to charge the battery fully in reasonable times, alternator output must be 14.2 V to 14.5 V as measured right across the battery posts.

Charging voltages over 14.8 volts can prematurely dry the battery by boiling out electrolyte.

Less than 14.3 would be a "weak" alternator or regulator.

Much less than 14.2 at a fast idle is bad wiring, bad alternator or regulator, or a bad connection.

What about car gadgets & electrical parts?

Since the system must operate at about 14volts, electrical parts are designed for best performance and longest life when operating at about 14 volts. The parts can generally withstand 15 volts.

.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Nov 7, 2013
Messages
1,357
Likes
1,058
Location
Kuwait, KL03
.
Is it important that our battery should be topped up with only distilled water?

Yes. Because distilled water has no contaminates, minerals etc. that could deteriorate the lead cells / accumulate on the battery plates which will reduce their effectiveness.
Thanks for the detailed information. Yes. There are technical reasons, and advised to use distilled water.

What is the impact of pH value of water? Any impact on pH value of distilled water? Ionized alkaline water is better for drinking. Some filters change the pH values to more alkaline.

The distilled water will be added to the existing acid in the battery container. The acid will get more diluted, and water looses its properties. Any insight?
 
Thread Starter #21

Dr MUDHAN

Honoured Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2013
Messages
768
Likes
1,557
Location
COIMBATORE
Mathew, are you talking about human body system or battery system?
[lol], No problem. I will explain.

I. DRINKING WATER OF HUMAN BEINGS

Our body pH should be approximately 7.4
The more acidic we are, meaning a 6.6 pH or lower, the greater opportunity we have provided disease to flourish in us.
Alkaline water is full of Hydroxyl ions - No health benefits to drinking “alkaline water” only.
Acidic water is full of Hydrogen ions – good for outside of our body & great for plant growth.
Only Alkaline Ionized Water has the health benefits. 1. It is a powerful antioxidant 2. Ionized Water Balances body pH because it is very alkaline as our diet is often extremely acidic; remember the amount of soft drinks, fast foods we consume. 3. It has a different molecular cluster size, which gives a very good detoxifying effect.

Sometimes, when you were dehydrated and drunk some reputed mineral water brand in 500ml/1 lit bottle, you would have felt that the same is tasting as a mild tender coconut water. They are Alkaline Ionized Water.


I stop here as this thread is not for these issues.



I will address your next clarification:​

II. WHY DISTILLED WATER & WHY NOT BATTERY ACID?​

100% charged battery will have a specific gravity of 1.265 and this is maintained by battery electrolytes produced by the battery acid.
H2SO4 is a molecular formula for Sulfuric acid, it is a strong mineral acid and it is soluble in water at all concentrations, electrolytes are produced against lead plates.

Once a Lead acid battery had been activated by adding the electrolyte to the dry cells; and ONLY distilled water should be added.
Battery electrolyte levels should be just below the bottom of the vent well, about ½ - ¾ inch above the tops of the separators. Constant charging / discharging, heat produced internally and evaporation due to environment … all these process will make the electrolyte level to drop.

We should never let the activated electrolyte level to drop below the top of the plates and that’s why distilled water is necessary to maintain the required concentration. In between adding of battery acid will not do anything better. And may dilute the already activated electrolytes.

Ok?

Dr MUDHAN


.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Feb 17, 2013
Messages
612
Likes
447
Location
Kannur, Payangadi
I have noticed some taxi drivers are hitting hard on the accelerator prior to ignition off, keeping more current to battery. Any impact on battery charging.
Cars can either have a dynamo or an alternator.
Newer cars comes with alternator which helps in providing a constant output even in lower rpm. In the case of olden cars it came with dynamo, in which its output varies with rpm and it works best with higher rpm.
This is the reason why drivers hitting the accelerator prior to ignition off.
Still there are people who follow same procedure unknowingly with the alternators.

A 12V battery showing reading above 14V. Is it logical?
A 12volt battery is made up of 6 cells with approximately 2.15volt per cell.
So in total it gives about 12.9V approx(fully charged battery).
The alternator need to give higher voltage to provide enough juice for the battery and for other electrical appliances.

Generally charging voltage of a battery use to be around 10-20% extra volt.
So the battery terminals showing 14v when the engine is ON is not at all a problem. It can even show 15V or higher when the situation calls for it.

Attaching the link of my car's battery voltage test..
A-star stock Amaron battery. - YouTube
Its a 2009 March mfg Maruti Suzuki A-star vxi car.
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2013
Messages
1,357
Likes
1,058
Location
Kuwait, KL03
.. battery electrolytes produced by the battery acid.
H2SO4 is a molecular formula for Sulfuric acid, it is a strong mineral acid and it is soluble in water at all concentrations, electrolytes are produced against lead plates.

Once a Lead acid battery had been activated by adding the electrolyte to the dry cells; and ONLY distilled water should be added.
Battery electrolyte levels should be just below the bottom of the vent well, about ½ - ¾ inch above the tops of the separators. Constant charging / discharging, heat produced internally and evaporation due to environment … all these process will make the electrolyte level to drop.
Agreed.

In this region, we are having Ionized Alkaline water through special filters. The pH value of these ionized water varies, and available around 8 (Depends). We have RO filter, with less TDS and other contaminants. The RO filter have pH value depends on the inlet water. The bottled water is having pH slightly above 7. It was a hot discussion in this place before. [read here] The distilled water available from these water (ionized water or bottled mineral water) will have the same pH value. Distilled waters are available in this region manufactured by a local small scale unit. They are using these water to prepare distilled water. Hence, my question pH have any effect on the system?

WHY DISTILLED WATER & WHY NOT BATTERY ACID?
We use battery acid (sulphuric acid). Battery acid will be consumed in the functioning of the battery. We will be maintaining the level by adding Distilled water, not battery acid. Your detailed reply clarify this.

Your Information useful to many.
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2013
Messages
1,357
Likes
1,058
Location
Kuwait, KL03
As a general practice, we replace batteries to correct specifications. The battery in your vehicle is of type 38B19L-MF. The Amaron battery in the previous post is having battery models, 50B20L, 42B20L, BL400LMF etc. The indications of these letters such as L, MF, B, BL, R and etc may give more insights to different batteries. Capacity of 38B19L-MF, is 38AH or different? There are batteries with R option?

Any information to these letters and numbers?
 
Joined
Dec 1, 2011
Messages
3,141
Likes
2,007
Location
Pune
Fantastic writeup Dr. Mudhan, I am a fan and i know how much efforts go behind writing such articles - Kudos to you!
 
Thread Starter #26

Dr MUDHAN

Honoured Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2013
Messages
768
Likes
1,557
Location
COIMBATORE
As a general practice, we replace batteries to correct specifications. The battery in your vehicle is of type 38B19L-MF. The Amaron battery in the previous post is having battery models, 50B20L, 42B20L, BL400LMF etc. The indications of these letters such as L, MF, B, BL, R and etc may give more insights to different batteries. Capacity of 38B19L-MF, is 38AH or different? There are batteries with R option?

Any information to these letters and numbers?
Dear Mathew,

‘38B19L-MF’ is Honda’s specific OE Battery part number for that model / version of their car. May be based on the electrical systems designed for that version. Say whether it has electrical foldable mirror/ electrically controlled sun roof etc., depends upon the amperes needed.

The almost equivalent aftermarket battery for standard ANHC (3rd GEN) cars from Amron is ‘38B20L’

The battery in my vehicle is ‘34B19L-MF’ and not ‘38B19L-MF’ as indicated by you. May be less ampere, cost effective.

It is nice you have observed.

I found more interesting information about batteries from this pdf file.

Please also go through.

Regards,
Dr MUDHAN
 

Attachments

Last edited:
Thread Starter #27

Dr MUDHAN

Honoured Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2013
Messages
768
Likes
1,557
Location
COIMBATORE
Fantastic writeup Dr. Mudhan, I am a fan and i know how much efforts go behind writing such articles - Kudos to you!
Dear Iron Rock
Getting appreciation from Marshal is really a great thing.
I am really overwhelmed by your endearing words.
Thank you very much.
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2013
Messages
1,357
Likes
1,058
Location
Kuwait, KL03
The almost equivalent aftermarket battery for standard ANHC (3rd GEN) cars from Amron is ‘38B20L’

The battery in my vehicle is ‘34B19L-MF’ and not ‘38B19L-MF’ as indicated by you. May be less ampere, cost effective.
Dr MUDHAN
The pdf document is informative. Thanks for your effort.

MF-Stands for Maintenance Free type battery.
L -Left
R -Right
L and R are Positive Terminal positions subject to a person facing to the vehicle.

B, BL -- No Idea? May be capacity. Back to the model "38B19L-MF", It will be a maintenance free battery. 38 Ampere current. Positive Terminal on Left Side. The number 19 indicates what?
 
Thread Starter #29

Dr MUDHAN

Honoured Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2013
Messages
768
Likes
1,557
Location
COIMBATORE
.

WHAT ALL OF THE SPECS ON BATTERY MEAN AND HOW TO KNOW WHEN IT MATTERS!

The battery specification is based on certain international accepted standards - Battery Council International / Japanese Industrial Standard.

Honda quotes part no. 38B19L-MF. ( Other examples:34B19L / 40B19L / 42B19L / 44B19L / 60B19L)

Example for ANHC

34B19L - MF
Voltage:12 Volts / Capacity:36 Ah / CCA:280 A / Length:196 mm

38B19L – MF / 38B20L - MF
Voltage:12 Volts / Capacity:36 Ah / CCA: 280 A / Length: 198 mm

34 B or 38 B - refers to the class, physical size, average Amperes & CCA (higher AMPS & CCA will be ‘D’ class)
19 or 20 - Refers to overall length in mm 196 to 200 mm
L - Refers to left side negative terminal on the battery.

CAR BATTERY.jpg
MF - Refers maintenance free. Modern 'maintenance free' lead acid car batteries all contain calcium. Calcium is used to 'reduce' water loss. They require a higher charging voltage of 14.4 volts compared to the 13.6 volts required by older lead acid batteries.



SOME MORE USEFUL INFORMATION WHILE BUYING A BATTERY:​

Make sure the battery you are ordering is the right one for your car!

Replacement car batteries should be chosen by the battery's physical size. Understand the measurements of the length, width and height of the battery you are replacing and use those physical dimensions to determine which replacement battery to order. It is not necessary for the replacement battery to match the dimensions of your current battery exactly but they should be close in physical size.

Take note of the terminal diameter, it should be either 10mm or 20mm, and whether the negative terminal is located on the right or left side.

Locate the replacement car battery by the part number. Typically, part numbers are typed on the top label of the battery. They consist of either numbers and letters or numbers only.

For the best possible results and longest service life, install a car battery with the CCA and RC ratings recommended by the car's manufacturer.

Using a car battery with lower capacity could shorten battery life and can occasionally cause electronic malfunction. A battery with higher capacity will not do any damage to the starter or electronics, but it will extend the battery discharge time and ultimate service life.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Oct 12, 2012
Messages
1,107
Likes
1,175
Location
Hubli
@Dr MUDHAN

Being a ANHC owner, I find very useful data here. Thanks for taking your time to guide us all.

I have ANHC VMT 2009 which came with Amaron OE battery with Status Indicator (3rd Picture) and have not replaced yet nor it gave any problems till date.

I would like to check the water level and add distilled water if necessary, however these Amaron batteries look different then standard, semi tubular or tubular batteries. I mean the 2v x 6 distilled water cells. I guess they are inside two square caps left and right (DANGER/CAUTION, RECYCLE & etc warnings written above) but don't wanna take risk opening them.

It would be good if you provide detailed info on how to check the water level and add distilled water.

Also let me know, whether do we need to unplug battery terminals before checking and adding distilled water?

Thanks...
Best Regards
 

Top Bottom