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no battery charge and corroded wires


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spike131113 
Member - Posts: 31
Member spacespace
Joined: November 09, 2008
Location: Michigan, United States
Posted: May 16, 2010 at 3:58 PM / IP Logged  
I have a system right now where the battery in the back, which is a kinetik 1400 is not getting a charge. After a day its down to 11.3 volts or so where it should be at around 12.6.
Im also having issues with the wire up front attached to my normal battery. I have it ran about a foot to a fuse block, a 250 amp ANL fuse, than out the other side till it gets to the battery in the back. Im noticing the wire got corroded and eaten 80% through in the first side of the fuse block but the other end is fine. And the positive bolt on the battery is corroded, which it is fairly new. Anyone know why this is happening and if this is the reason behind my battery not charging? Thanks....
Brandon Pieniozek
oldspark 
Gold - Posts: 4,913
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Joined: November 03, 2008
Location: Australia
Posted: May 17, 2010 at 7:06 AM / IP Logged  
Not sure of the why's but a Kinetic being an AGM should not show corrosion - at least not as in normal "acid" corrosion unless it is faulty.
Don't worry about its age. It sounds like you have wired two batteries in permanent parallel mode which leads to premature failure. (Although as I just wrote here, jmelton86 wrote here that any batteries can be paralleled.)
I use a relay that is controlled by the charge lamp circuit (as found on older alternators & systems) to connect batteries together.
But your system is lacking a fuse at the 2nd battery end - the inter-battery connection MUST have protection (fuse or circuit breaker) at EACH end as close to the battery as possible.
Make sure you fit one before you find out the hard way as to why it is required.
spike131113 
Member - Posts: 31
Member spacespace
Joined: November 09, 2008
Location: Michigan, United States
Posted: May 17, 2010 at 7:20 AM / IP Logged  
Its not the Kinetik showing corrosion its the battery up front with the fuse block within a foot. Its like it gets heated up and burns through the copper wire But just in the one side of the fuse block> would the corrosion lead to the battery not charging?
Brandon Pieniozek
oldspark 
Gold - Posts: 4,913
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Joined: November 03, 2008
Location: Australia
Posted: May 17, 2010 at 8:09 AM / IP Logged  
Sorry - my bad about which battery.
But if one battery fails, so will the other.
If the Kinetic is 11.3V, that will drag the front battery to 11.3V which will damage it - especially if it is a cranking battery (not deep cycle).
11.3V is usually a full flattery - ie, 100% discharged. Many say that even deep-cycle batteries should not be taken below 50% discharge (for reasonable battery life).
Is the corrosion from overheating?
Or how do you know it is corroded - how do you see under the insulation?
A thinner cable (ie, corroded) means higher resistance and hence a greater voltage drop.
The voltage drop is proportional to the current through it (V=IR).
Hence with no load off the rear battery, it should charge up if the alternator charges long enough - preferably with 14.4V at the front battery, but certainly 13.8V or higher.
Even if the initial rear charging current is high and hence there is a large voltage drop, it should eventually charge thereby reducing the voltage drop.   
Same with the front battery - unless loads are powered from the battery itself and not from the (fuse) block.
As always, the simplest & best solution is to get a voltmeter and see what each point is - the alternator, the block, front battery & rear battery. (Batteries being measured across their terminals; the block maybe to first battery GND and to alternator GND.)
If you have a one-wire alternator with D+ wire, chances are the alternator will output a max of 14.4V.
Other types should cause 14.4V at the battery (hence maybe 15V at the alternator) - it depends on the setup.
If you are powering loads off the rear better - all bets are off.   Maybe it is being charged, but the voltage drops are too high.
But 11.3 sounds like a flattery - not a collapsed cell.
anonymous1 
Copper - Posts: 151
Copper spacespace
Joined: October 25, 2009
Location: Washington, United States
Posted: May 17, 2010 at 9:46 AM / IP Logged  

oldspark wrote:
As always, the simplest & best solution is to get a voltmeter and see what each point is - the alternator, the block, front battery & rear battery. (Batteries being measured across their terminals; the block maybe to first battery GND and to alternator GND.

Spot on as always. If I were going to do this, (get a pen and paper and write down all the measurements)

I would remove the fuses to the second battery, relays and amp so they can present no load at all to your system.

Then I would measure the voltages from the battery (at rest) and then the alt while running with only the primary battery. (if you can't keep the main battery charged you're sank)

Then measure the voltages along the path through the fuse holders (then put in fuses) and to the second battery while running (no amp load - off)

Then measure the voltages as before during normal operation of all equipment.

This is a nice set of data that can shed light on what's really going on from front to back with your system.

My hunch is that, at a minimum, you're going to have to re run your wiring with a heavier and better quality and spend some time ensuring that all your connections are clean and tight.

You may also need to use shrink tubing and anti corrosive gel in your splices. The heat you can deal with by using shielding and loom.

What do the connections of the main battery terminals look like? Can you provide pics?

I know just enough to be dangerous. VERY dangerous.
spike131113 
Member - Posts: 31
Member spacespace
Joined: November 09, 2008
Location: Michigan, United States
Posted: May 17, 2010 at 6:43 PM / IP Logged  
Well im running 4 gauge wire and im guessing the corrosion and it being eatin through is from over heating. MY alternator checked out, and my front battery was at 12.3 volts (via volt meter). I got a 98 gmc jimmy which has a volt display on the dash and it said i was never dropping volts.... thought it might be "broken" it worked last time i checked.
Brandon Pieniozek
oldspark 
Gold - Posts: 4,913
Gold spacespace
Joined: November 03, 2008
Location: Australia
Posted: May 17, 2010 at 8:12 PM / IP Logged  
Find out why it's overheating. Near exhaust? Over-current from paralleling batteries? Heavy loads?
Is your voltmeter across the battery or the ignition etc?
Ignition may be the alternator voltage (or less) and not the battery voltage. They are obviously not the same in your case (and rarely are anyhow)
Do the voltage drop checks.
Then we find out if its a D+ single-wire alternator or whatever and see what can be done.
Without some figures, there is little we can suggest (except the whole gamut).
But you should fit an isolator. Definitely keep the batteries separated for now.
anonymous1 
Copper - Posts: 151
Copper spacespace
Joined: October 25, 2009
Location: Washington, United States
Posted: May 17, 2010 at 9:02 PM / IP Logged  

Yup, for all we know your alternator just can't handle charging 2 batteries while providing current to the lights and amps etc.

Of course, any connections that arent clean could be the weak link.

4g sounds heavy enough, but if there are spade lug terminals that are just crimped on to the wires, and the wire is corroding, you wouldnt get the benifit of having 4g.

This is why I am inferring that barring some other obvious finding, the connections may need to be re done with solder, shrink tube, gel and heat shield etc if it is not already installed that way.

Are you confident you also have good clean ground connections everywhere?

pics?

I know just enough to be dangerous. VERY dangerous.
audiolife 
Member - Posts: 13
Member spacespace
Joined: December 05, 2003
Location: United States
Posted: May 18, 2010 at 5:50 PM / IP Logged  

I would clean up the connections between the 2 batteries and make sure the fuses inbetween the batteries are not blown. I would then charge the kinetik on a good agm charger at about 8 to 10 amps (schumacher or vector are good brands). I would also check your grounds. If the vehicle is  a unibody frame I would run a 0 ga wire from the khc1400 negitive and ground it to the alternator grounding bracket.

You do not want to leave the batteries sitting in a low charge state for very long as they can sulfate and lead to plate damage.

Ack!
audiolife 
Member - Posts: 13
Member spacespace
Joined: December 05, 2003
Location: United States
Posted: May 18, 2010 at 5:53 PM / IP Logged  
I would also get your alt and front battery tested at a local parts store because that much leaking of the front battery is not good. They should also have stuff to put on the battery to slow that down anyway.
Ack!

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