How to Water a Battery...
When to Water an Industrial Battery

Now that we understand the combined depleting effects of evaporation via heat and gassing through electrolysis, the topic of when to water a battery can be addressed. Use the following guideline to help decide when it is appropriate to water your batteries:


Visual Check - Prior to and before starting the charging cycle, each individual cell should be visually checked to assure that the electrolyte level is at least above the separator protector - at this point, how much above is not important.


Add Water - If the visual check indicates that the electrolyte level is below the separator protector, and is not readily visible, sufficient water should be added to bring the level approximately 1/4 inch above the protector.


Are Water Levels too High? - When electrolyte levels are excessively high, or when the cells have been overly watered prior to the charging cycle, pumping of the electrolyte will occur due to expansion of the electrolyte. This expansion, as previously discussed, is a combined effect of both heat and gassing.


This pumping action can be a major cause for loss of electrolyte which is forced out of the cell(s) and exits through the vent caps - if allowed to continue over a period of time, battery capacity and efficiency can be affected.


Begin Charging - Once electrolyte levels, and temperatures, are deemed satisfactory, the charging cycle may be initiated.


After Charging - At the termination of, and immediately following the charging cycle, the electrolyte levels are at their greatest volume, height within the cell(s), due to the combination of gasses being temporarily trapped within the cell element(s) and expansion due to heat generated during the charging cycle.

  If upon re-inspection, electrolyte levels are below the cell cover vent-well extension tube, consideration must be given to watering the battery at that time to bring electrolyte levels back to acceptable levels.
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