Keep your battery ready for hard winter weather
Keep your battery ready for hard winter weather
8:20

Keep your battery ready for hard winter weather

Cars
Speaker 1: Well, if you think summer's hell on batteries, try winter. These things hate real cold, makes it harder for the battery to get a charge when you're driving or harder for it to deliver juice to your starter. For example, when you're starting up on a cold morning, so give your battery a boost for the winter. The easiest way. I know how a quick tune up. Here's how you do it. Speaker 1: [00:00:30] Now. I'm assuming you've got a good battery. If your battery's crap, you gotta replace it. But even if you do, this is good behavior, no matter how old or healthy your battery is, or isn't now first off, I always work on, on batteries with some gloves. I do that because batteries, first of all, tend to attract a lot of real nasty greasy dirt on top of them. And they can also have other sorts of corrosive chemicals that build up on the top, depending on how poorly maintained yours is, once we're in that shape, you want to grab a wrench. And the first thing you want to know about using [00:01:00] wrenches around batteries is don't lay them on the battery. This is basically a metal conductive bar. If it's long enough, this one isn't quite, but if it is it'll arc this terminal to this terminal or this one to body metal, and then you're gonna see some fireworks. Speaker 1: Your household outlets have what, 15 or 20 amps coming out of them. This thing has hundreds of amps available from it yet don't don't wanna arc this to anything. So keep tools off it. Start by loosening up the black or negative terminal. Whenever you work on a battery, it's just [00:01:30] the nature of these things. And then put that aside. So it's not gonna flop back over and reconnect itself through cable memory. Then you undo the positive side. Notice it doesn't take a lot of force because it should out of taking a lot of force to tighten these things. And I'm gonna secure that over there. Now my terminals are available. I put my wrench away from the battery, lift off. What should be there. These little felt protectors that also help prevent corrosion. Now minor in good shape. I'm gonna reuse these, but if yours are all full of acid [00:02:00] or that crusty stuff that grows, or maybe not there at all of you, either obviously need a new set or need to replace the ones you've got. Now that I'm in there, I'm gonna take this little thing called a battery terminal brush. Speaker 1: You've got this part of it here, which goes over the terminal on the battery to clean the outside of it. And then you unscrew it. And you got this funny little brush in here, which goes inside table. That goes to that and cleans the inside. So do one part at a time note. I'm keeping all my tools away from the battery, [00:02:30] resisting the temptation to rest them here. So first I'll take my internal brush and now I'm just gonna get in there. You can hear it doing its thing and just give it a few twists. And now I can see a nice clean, brighter finish inside my terminal under the same thing to the negative. Then I will take the other side of my brush flip side in this case of the same part. And I'll go over the terminal and I'll turn this. I tend to go one way on these, cuz if [00:03:00] you try to go back and forth, the Bristols kind of bind up. Speaker 1: It doesn't really matter. As long as you just take off a surface there, look how nice and clean that terminal is. So that's nice and shiny. The inside of this one is nice and shiny and I'm gonna get a very good connection. I don't need to put anything on here now, Juste the us right the way it came off. And by the way, the cable's gonna have its set the way it was. Just put it back the same way. Don't worry about hammering this thing on or anything [00:03:30] like that. Just nice and snug the way it was and then carefully get your wrench in there. Staying away from the other terminal and just snug this. You don't crank on and battery terminals, cuz this is soft metal here. That's it? This has a really good contact. Now. Now what did I forget? I forgot to put down one of these. Speaker 1: It happens all the time. So undo it. And you put your felt pad back down, whether you're using a good one like I've got, or if you have to go by new ones, if that one's like really full of gun or it's [00:04:00] maybe corroded by battery acid, that's built up here, but this one's not. I do that again. Just a little bit of a snug. That's not going anywhere. And your last step now is to seal up the outside of this thing against the elements in corrosion with this battery terminal protection spray, you can get in any auto parts store. Stuff's not expensive. Now this stuff you, you just kind of spray on top of the whole assembly there where the connection happens. Doesn't take a lot. It's a nice red color usually. So you can see where it's gone and that's it [00:04:30] do that for the other terminal as well. And now you've got a nice clean connection that you know is gonna do the best at making all of this power flow efficient. Speaker 1: Now, in some cases you can pad the bottom of the terminal and you can also protect the top of it with a single felt that they're designing now that are kind of long and locked together. Let's see how these work. You open these up and they obviously have red for the positive side, black for the negative. I'll take out my red one. And the way this works [00:05:00] is once you undo your terminal, you take off the traditional red disc like cell and you replace it with this elongated one. Then I'll place my red terminal back on in the right place. Speaker 1: Now, supposedly, now I've got some accessory wires here that make this a little tricky, but with a clean terminal, you can come along here and supposedly [00:05:30] just sort of cinch this together. It's just barely long enough. Oh, I see how that works. Yeah. Okay. It's not bad. It gives you a little bit of protection against shorts at the top here. Uh, as well as making sure you don't get a lot of corrosion around the terminal and the post connection. Not bad. Not sure I'm totally convinced, but you can try these now. How do you keep the charge in here now that it can flow back and forth? So well, [00:06:00] one way is to make sure you drive your car rule a thumb at least once a week. And if you take a lot of trips that are under 10 minutes, those are hard on batteries, especially in the winter. Speaker 1: It's not really enough time for the cars alternator to recharge the battery push for drives of 10 or 15 minutes on the short or at least have a number of those along with any shorter drives you may do. But give this thing a chance to get a charge take on the freeway. Once in a while. Now, of course, a lot of folks are aware of these battery tenders, chargers, maintainers, trickle, chargers, whatever you want to call [00:06:30] them. Uh, these are very handy. I'll talk about why I don't use one anymore in just a moment. Although I do still have a pigtail a on this car that I use for easy connection of one, this is a little bit of a Relic for me, but it makes it very easy using an industry standard connector to plug this thing in and start trickle charging your car. Speaker 1: And this can run all winter long. If it's a car you don't drive when the weather's nasty. Why don't I use one of these anymore? I did for many years and I know two people out who burned down their house and someone else's [00:07:00] house where they were storing their car because they had one of these things running and so said the fire department. So there is a risk of having a permanently connected charger. I am now convinced it's a little higher than I'm going to accept. So what I do instead of running one of these, and this is an acquired taste is I have a disconnect here, a quick disconnect on my battery. This is only good for cars. You drive rarely. This is on the negative side. And what you do is you turn this knob and when you do that, it breaks the connection in there electronically. Speaker 1: [00:07:30] This is no longer connected. Even if I put it back on the battery, this car currently has no battery connection until I take that knob. It'll be down in there. I'm just gonna show you here. And I turn that again and that makes my ground connection again. Now the circuit is live and the car has juice. Again, again, you don't do this for a car you drive frequently because you lose things like radio settings, clock settings on an older vintage car though, rarely driven car, specialized, exotic. Maybe it's an auto cross car. You don't use all winter. This is actually a great way to, to go. And there's nothing to [00:08:00] worry about in terms of having some charger out there, doing whatever it's doing. 24 7. Okay. Simple tips. Get in the habit. They're like flossing. No one does it, but everyone should. And these are particularly important during the winter with a capital w.

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