How To Charge A Car Battery.

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Why charge a car Battery?

The battery of a car is one of the most important elements when it comes to starting and powering equipment.
It’s the power source for the entire vehicle. So it's good to know How To Charge A Car Battery.

Your car uses the energy stored in the rechargeable battery to operate the starter motor, ignition system, fuel injection system and other electrical devices for the engine during engine cranking and starting. It supplies all the electrical power for a car whenever the engine is not running and it helps the charging system provide electricity when current demands are above the output limit of the charging system.
Until the time the battery is older and doesn't keep the full charge or you might have left your lights on for too long. You will have to use a Battery Charger to bring the power back to your battery.
Generally if the you can check your battery with a voltmeter if it's below 12.5 Volts the battery need to be recharged.
Thankfully, your car battery can be recharged without too much effort.

1. You need to check which type of battery you have, you can check the battery for part numbers and manufacturer.The different types of battery include:
  • SLA sealed Lead Acid
  • Flooded lead acid battery
  • AGM (absorbed glass mat)
  • Gel Cell battery
  • VRLA battery
  • Calcium battery

2. Preparing to charge
Remove battery cell caps. Some batteries have caps, on top of the battery strip, that should be removed to allow gasses created during charging to escape.
If the battery doesn’t have caps, refer to the manufacturer’s instruction regarding charging and charging rates.Checking the water level in your battery is the first thing to do.
Watering is the single most important step in maintaining a flooded lead acid battery, a requirement that is often neglected.If low on electrolyte, immediately fill the battery with distilled or de-ionized water.
Do not fill to the correct level before charging as this could cause an overflow during charging.
Always top up to the desired level after charging.Charge in a well-ventilated area.

Battery charger
Most chargers will work for all types of batteries. There are Smart chargers that provide a slow but longer lasting charge. 
Modern digital charger have a microprocessor to monitor how much the battery is charged and stop the process automatically when the battery is fully charged. They are more efficient as they also adapt the charge according to your battery condition.
To calculate your total charge time, a good rule of thumb is to take the amp hour rating of the battery and divide by the charger rating (amps) and then add about 10% for the extra time to totally top off the battery. 

As an example:
- A typical full size auto battery is about 50 amp hours, and it would take a 10 amp charger approximately 6 hours to recharge it if the battery were completely dead. Another example, a Marine Deep Cycle Battery may be rated at 100 amp hours, so it would take a 10 amp charger about 11 hours to recharge a dead battery to near 100% full charge, from a completely discharged condition. -
Older, simpler chargers must be stopped manually to prevent dangerous overcharging.
Read the charger's instruction manual to make sure you are using your particular unit correctly.

If necessary, remove the battery from your vehicle. Most of the time you will be able to charge the battery without taking it out. If not be sure to turn off all accessories on your car and always remove the grounded terminal first.
Clean the battery terminals. Use baking soda and a wet cloth or a sandpaper pad to wipe away any grime or rust. You want them clean and clear so nothing gets in the way of the cable clamps.

Connecting the battery charger to the battery :Connect the DC clamps to the battery clamp in the following orders:
  • Connect the positive charging lead (RED) to the Positive terminal of the battery marked with a plus sign (+).
  • Connect the negative lead (Black) to the Negative terminal of the battery marked with a Minus sign (-).
  • Make sure the clamps are making good contact with respective terminal pole and that they don't touch each other or any other loose metal on the battery or in the area.
  • Setting up your battery charger generally the charging rate (Amps).
  • Plug in the main power supply (220-240 Volts AC).
Leave the battery long enough to charge, possibly overnight. Some chargers can do it in a much shorter time, but to ensure a stable, long-lasting charge use a trickle charger and leave it on for a while.
  • Disconnect the charger from the power outlet first, then remove the clamps.
  • Check the water level in your battery, always top up to the desired level after charging.
  • Replace any caps and return your battery to your vehicle if necessary.
Time is a factor for battery charging- As with many things, the amount of time that you have had a car battery will affect it's functioning, for example, a brand new battery will nearly always run much smoother and better than one that is a couple of years old and has been used a lot, so it's a good idea to keep a note of when you started using the battery and after three or four years, it's probably a good idea to replace it.

Alternative solutions:
A faster solution would be to use a Jumpstarter or cables to restart your car and let the alternator do it's job.
These are just some of the things you can do to help maintain your car battery at a good standard, remember that the battery is a very important part of the vehicle, without it you won't get anywhere, so take good care of it.

Safety around Battery charging:
Avoid getting electrolyte on your skin or clothes.  It is acidic and can cause burns.
If it occurs, rinse the affected area with water immediately. 

The information provided in this post are basic operations around your car battery.

Now If you are interested to discover more advanced techniques from our Expert on,

How to make the most out of your battery including: 

-Best Practices and techniques that will save you money !!
-Make the most of your car Battery and charging system.

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