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Author Topic: shorted battery in parallel set  (Read 3370 times)
junkman42
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« on: December 16, 2008, 02:04:56 PM »

As might be expected just before getting ready for Arcaidia I noticed a smell in the bus!  On inspection found the smell coming from the battery bank.  One battery smoking hot and seven stone cold?  The one hot battery I am assuming has shorted out and boiled its self to death.  Am waiting for cool down to isolate it tommorrow and see if the rest will take a charge.  Has anyone run into this problem before?  In all of the different battery sets I have owned this is a new one.  Any help or suggestions?  John
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gus
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« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2008, 02:19:37 PM »

John,

This is one of the reaasons I always charge my batteries individually which also allows me to get a better idea of the condition of each battery.

Hopefully the others will still be good.
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PD4107-152
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« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2008, 03:02:08 PM »

I have 4 start batteries in a parallel/series arrangement to achieve 24 volts and lots of amps.
One of the original matched set of batteries shorted internally, and 'killed' the other 3 stone dead.

It was replaced under warranty with one that has a different manufacture date, but I havent
noticed any problems whatsoever with the batteries following their discharge.

Mark
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Mark Morgan    near Brandon, Manitoba, Canada
1972 MCI-7     'PapaBus'  8v-71N MT654 Automatic
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« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2008, 03:29:29 PM »

  Several years ago, I purchased 2 new 12 volt batteries and installed them, connected in series, for my 24 volt bus engine system.  About 1 year later, one of them went bad and was replaced under warranty with a battery of the same brand but slightly lower CCA. So far, we have had no problems. This has been our experience and may not be typical.  Jack
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« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2008, 08:03:03 PM »

John,
that's what happened with my house batteries. Fortunately, only the one that shorted internally is screwed, the other 3 survived. I will be replacing just the bad one for now and see how it reacts with the others. Hope you have the same luck and only have the one bad one. Keep us posted, especially if you only replace the one. Good luck, Will
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HB of CJ
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« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2008, 01:39:56 PM »

Sorry about your batt blowing up.  Put that man in a dry cell.  He he he.  Years ago we also had a bat let go....a Nicad ED240 in a string of 10.  Quite a show let me tell you.  Also dead shorted out the entire string, but being nicads they actually enjoyed the experience and recharged fine.  Too bad Nicads are WAY TOO HEAVY to be used in Bus Conversions.  Happy Hollidays.  HB of CJ Smiley Smiley Smiley
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gus
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« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2008, 03:16:09 PM »

I wouldn't go near a large NiCad, they have a bad reputation for running away and creating havoc all around. Newer ones may be better but they aren't worth the extra cost and risk.

Believe it or not most of those were installed on small turboprop airplanes, mostly because of their very high starting capacity. However, the explosions may have canceled that advantage!!
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PD4107-152
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« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2008, 03:54:39 PM »

I never had a battery blow up till two years ago. That year I had two blow. One in my bobcat while cleaning snow out of driveway and street. This battery split the case wide open. The second happend while flying from Townsend MT to Elko NV. My wife and I had just crossed the boarder in NV and started to hit some mild turbulence. If you have flown in NV you know what I mean. Just as we crossed some mountains north of Wells I felt the plane shudder. I thought to myself what it felt like to have your plane hit during WWII. All gauges read normal and we continued on to Elko about 50 miles away. When we landed the wife thought the smell was me so she didn't say anything. I didn't know what it was. When we parked I saw some fluid drip from the battery vent. The case didn't split but it blew acid out the caps. What a mess. I spent the next couple hours cleaning. Thin aluminum doesn't react well with battery acid. I did lose some paint from battery vent to the tail cone. I didn't think about acid running back there while flying. This may be somewhat off topic but be careful when dealing with batteries. I for one would not want one to go off in my face.
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junkman42
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« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2008, 03:40:27 PM »

Waited two days for the battery bank to cool down.  Removed the boiled dry battery and turned on the heart  and it appears that the remaining batterys are charged.  I suppose that I will find out on the way to arcadia as to the state of the batteries!  I will replace all eight after taxes and the new year gets stabilized.  Thanks for all of the  comments.  Regards ,John
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chazwood
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« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2008, 05:33:17 PM »

Let me hijack in here for a second and ask a question. I have two start batteries doing 24 volts..... does that mean each battery is 12 volts and can be charged with a normal car battery charger if I charge them separately?

Thanks.

Chazwood.
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« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2008, 05:49:41 PM »

Let me hijack in here for a second and ask a question. I have two start batteries doing 24 volts..... does that mean each battery is 12 volts and can be charged with a normal car battery charger if I charge them separately?

Thanks.

Chazwood.

Yes! Grin  BK  Grin we do it all the time!
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« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2008, 06:04:00 AM »

Let me hijack in here for a second and ask a question. I have two start batteries doing 24 volts..... does that mean each battery is 12 volts and can be charged with a normal car battery charger if I charge them separately?

Thanks.

Chazwood.

Yes! Grin  BK  Grin we do it all the time!
Are you yankin me? (it can't be that easy)
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« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2008, 06:06:51 AM »

He's not......and it is.

I do it also....charge 24 volt start battery bank (comprised of 12 volt batteries) with a 12 volt charger.
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Mark Morgan    near Brandon, Manitoba, Canada
1972 MCI-7     'PapaBus'  8v-71N MT654 Automatic
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« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2008, 07:40:52 AM »

SWEET  Grin Thanks! I'm on it!

Merry Christmas!
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1992 MCI 102c3
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« Reply #14 on: December 24, 2008, 03:44:53 AM »

What is the best manner to install a disconnect switch when the batteries are wired in parallel.   I was looking at putting a switch between my house batteries to keep them seperate when not in use, and to disconnect to avoid drain issues.  My current setup is simply 2 8d whiled parallel.  I assume I would just need to run the positive from each battery to the switch.  Looking at a disconnect that would allow me to run either batter or both or disconnect both.   Seems like it would help maintain the batteries, make it easy to independantly charge the batteries etc. 
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JackConrad
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« Reply #15 on: December 24, 2008, 05:26:32 AM »

Cole-Hersee makes a heavy duty battery switch that we used on our Fire apparatus.  It has a separate connection for each battey positve cable as well as an "power out" connection.  Switch can be set for BATT 1, BATT 2, ALL, or OFF.  Jack
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junkman42
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« Reply #16 on: December 24, 2008, 06:26:05 AM »

Just a note on My batteries.  When I get back from arcadia I will have a method of disconnecting each battery in My house battery bank for sure.  Waiting for a meltdown to cease is beyond dangerous.  When I discovered the fumes from a shorted boiling battery there was no way to disconnect the other seven batteries for fear of an explosion.  Not sure just how I am going to accomplish this yet.  John
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« Reply #17 on: December 24, 2008, 06:37:48 AM »

Just a note on My batteries.  When I get back from arcadia I will have a method of disconnecting each battery in My house battery bank for sure.  Waiting for a meltdown to cease is beyond dangerous.  When I discovered the fumes from a shorted boiling battery there was no way to disconnect the other seven batteries for fear of an explosion.  Not sure just how I am going to accomplish this yet.  John

Trust me while your at Arcadia you will have many example to look at! Once you find the one you like ask the owner questions and where to get this and that and you'll have it made!  FWIW Grin  BK  Grin
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« Reply #18 on: December 24, 2008, 12:10:27 PM »

John,
    look me up at Arcadia and I show you my battery disconnect switch.  Jack
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« Reply #19 on: December 24, 2008, 03:45:26 PM »

Junkman,

I agree, separate disconnects are the only really safe way to go.

I use "green knob" disconnects from WM, JCW or your local farm store for aroung $5-7 which clamp onto a battery post.

The only problem I ever had is with the knobs sometimes vibrating closed when I had them off. The solution to this is heavy rubber bands!

Also, don't put a lot of down pressure on the battery cable at the clamp when the disconnects are off because they are a bit weak when open.

I always carry a spare or two just in case but have never had one fail on the bus.
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PD4107-152
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« Reply #20 on: December 24, 2008, 06:36:16 PM »

Be sure you get hardware that is properly rated...

How much amperage is passing through each of these, and is the hardware sufficient?

You may find there is an economic reason why there are not numerous battery cut-off switches employed in other set-ups.

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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