Pros/Cons of battery tender - VTXOA
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 01:22 PM Thread Starter
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Pros/Cons of battery tender

I have been wondering about battery maintenance for winter. Here in Minnesota the bike are idle for several months. What are the pros and cons for battery maintenance? Battery tender (float mode monitoring) vs. removing battery and storing in warm (basement) area.

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 01:27 PM
 
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I'm kinda like you. Batteries sit on shelves for months before we buy them, I have to wonder what is the difference? Any battery guru s want to share their secrets?
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 01:34 PM
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The battery that is sitting on the shelf has not had the acid put in them and not charged.

once the acid is put in it has to be charged befor you can use it, once charged you should maintain the charge with use or a tender.

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 01:55 PM
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I've bought several batteries in the last 5 years. A few car and truck, 1 motorcycle and 1 lawn tractor.
They all had acid already in them.

I thought for the battery tender to work properly, it had to be plugged in whenever the bike was not being used. Not just when it's stored.

Am I wrong?

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 01:57 PM
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I have a pigtail on my battery just under the side cover. I then once a month during the winter or whenever I haven't ridden in a while and I just hook up to the pigtail turn it on and after it is charged, I turn it off and put it away.

I do the same with my SeaDoo. I charge it about once every 2 months during the winter. I just plug in the battery tender to the pigtail and charge it and when it's done I take it back to the storage place and everything is cool.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 01:59 PM
 
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A tender is just a charger with a circuit board, it senses when the battery voltage drops then trickle charges it back to full charge,where the old style trickle charger couldn't determine when the battery was all the way charged, is this correct?
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 03:09 PM
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With my big block impala I stored it in a unheated cement block garage. I unhooked the negative terminal in the fall. In the spring I hooked up the cable and if it didn't crank it over enough to fill the two four barrels and start the engine I replaced it. Since I bought the car in 91 I think I'm on my 3rd battery. It mostly sets all summer also though. If a bike has a sealed battery I will use the tender if not I will take it out to make sure it has water in it in the spring and is fully charged.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xish
A tender is just a charger with a circuit board, it senses when the battery voltage drops then trickle charges it back to full charge,where the old style trickle charger couldn't determine when the battery was all the way charged, is this correct?
Yes, that is partially correct. The battery tenders can be left on all the time and when they get fully charged they cycle off. When the charge drops below a certain level it then cycles back on and charges the battery back up, then shuts down again. I do mine manually though so it isn't laying around in the way.

I think if you just plug it in once a month that is good enough. I only do my SeaDoo once every two months which is good enough. I do it more frequently on my bike because it is in my garage. But I don't want to keep it plugged in all the time as it gets in my way so I just plug it in once a month before I am ready to ride and I am good to go.

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 08:38 PM
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When a lead-acid battery is discharged, soft lead sulfate crystals are formed in the pores and on the surfaces of the positive and negative plates. When left in a discharged condition or excessive high temperatures, is continually undercharged, or the electrolyte level is below the top of the plates or stratified, some of the soft lead sulfate re-crystallizes into hard lead sulfate. These crystals cannot be reconverted during subsequent recharging. This creation of hard crystals is commonly called permanent "sulfation". It is the leading cause and accounts for approximately 85% of the premature failures of lead-acid batteries not used on weekly basis. The longer sulfation occurs, the larger and harder the lead sulfate crystals become. The positive plates will turn a light brown and the negative plates will be dull, off-white. These permanent crystals lessen a battery's capacity and ability to be recharged or hold a charge. Sulfation primarily occurs in deep cycle and power sport batteries that are typically used for short periods and then are stored for long periods where they slowly self-discharge.
While a battery is in storage or not being used, the discharge is a result of parasitic load or natural self-discharge. Parasitic load is the constant electrical load present on a battery while it is installed in a vehicle even when the ignition key is turned off. The load is from the continuous operation of electrical appliances, such as an emissions computer, clock, security system, maintenance of radio station presets, etc. While disconnecting the negative battery cable will eliminate the parasitic load, it has no affect on the natural self-discharge of the battery. Thus, permanent sulfation can be a huge problem for lead-acid batteries while sitting for long periods on a dealer's shelf, in a basement, cellar, barn or garage, or in a parked vehicle, especially in hot temperatures.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 10:54 PM
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Cut and paste from Batterytender
http://batterytender.com/why_batterytender.php

Why Battery Tender?


All Battery Tender battery chargers are designed to fully charge and maintain a wide range of styles of lead acid batteries in ways that avoid the potential damaging effects that can be caused by most trickle chargers. All Battery Tender battery chargers have the five following characteristics:
Fully Automatic: At the end of the regular charger cycle, every Battery Tender battery charger automatically switches its output voltage to a safe, storage or float level that eliminates the need to constantly check on the conditions of the battery.


Full Output Power at Low AC Line Conditions: Battery Tender battery chargers will deliver full output power with input AC line voltages as low as 90 VAC. (Excluding chargers with output current of 2 amps or less).


Zero to Minimal Current Draw from Batteries: When the AC power is disconnected, most Battery Tender battery chargers draw zero current from the battery. A few of the higher power models draw less than 1 milliamp from the battery.


Compact, Lightweight Construction: At any given power level, Battery Tender battery chargers offer some of the highest charging power density in the industry.


Visual Indication of Charge State: Every Battery Tender battery charger has some combination of colored lights to indicate the progress of charging.

Battery Tender battery chargers offer a variety of power levels: 7.5, 15, 70, 300 & 600 watts, maximum charge currents: 0.75, 1.25, 2, 3, 4, 6, 10, 15 & 20 amps, and nominal battery voltages: 6, 12, 24, 36 & 48 volts. Various charging algorithms are available to acommodate the wide range of lead acid battery styles: Flooded, Sealed, VRLA, GEL & AGM. Check with the factory for the combination of power, current, voltage and battery style that best meets your needs. Battery Tender battery chargers are equipped with a variety of safety and interconnect options, not available on all models. Safety options include: spark free operation, reverse polarity protection and continuous short circuit protection. Interconnection options include: alligator clips, fused ring terminals and quick disconnect DC output cable harness. A variety of AC input power options is available.

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