Diagnosing Battery Charger Problems

Undercharging is one of the most common reasons for reduced operating time and overall poor performance of golf cars and other types of electric vehicles that use deep cycle flooded lead-acid batteries. While many golf car operators blame the batteries, the problem can also result from a poorly performing charging system. Keep in mind that battery chargers are subjected to temperature extremes and corrosive environments that can affect their performance over time. So before you replace another set of batteries, try these diagnostic procedures to ensure your charger and charging methods are working properly. 1. Connect the charger and make sure it is on and charging. Test the voltage at the battery pack positive and negative terminals. On-charge voltage will normally continue to increase until the charger terminates the charge automatically. It is important to determine the maximum on-charge voltage and charge current (on the charge meter if available) observed near the end of the charge cycle just before the charge terminates. 2. Once the charger has completed a charge cycle and has automatically turned off, unplug the power to the charger. Wait one to two minutes and reconnect it. The charger should resume charging normally. Note the charge current and the time at the beginning of charge. This is usually described as an ‘equalization charge’ and should continue for at least 30 minutes before checking the charger’s performance. With many chargers, this step can also be performed by unplugging the DC power cord from the charger to the battery pack. If this method is used, confirm that the charger restarts and continues to charge for at least 30 minutes. 3. It’s at this point that you can begin to check the charger’s performance. Check the on-charge voltage at the battery pack’s positive and negative terminals. The voltage will normally continue to increase to the range of 2.50-2.60 volts per cell, until the charge terminates automatically. See Table I to determine the minimum and maximum on-charge voltages for the battery pack based on nominal pack voltage. If the voltage does not increase or initially increases and then decreases, record the following information. a) The maximum and final on-charge voltages. b) Charge current (if available). d) The charging time from the start until it terminates automatically.

 

Graph Battery On Charge Voltage

4. The next step is to check the on-charge voltage of each battery and compare it to Table II to determine the acceptable Charge Voltage Variation for each battery’s nominal voltage. If the voltage varies beyond the values stated in Table II (either variation from pack average or variation from highest to lowest), replace the lowest voltage battery and repeat the diagnostic test. Test the failed battery separately to determine mode of failure.

 

 

Graph Battery On Charge Volt Variation

Armed with this information, you may be able to determine that the charger is not working properly if:

a) Both the on-charge voltage for the battery pack or on-charge voltage for each battery fail to reach the equivalent of 2.5 volts per cell times the number of cells connected in series.

b) The on-charge voltage increases and then decreases (with charger still charging), and if the on-charge voltage of each battery does not vary by more than the values shown in Table II for 6, 8, or 12 volt batteries; either variation from pack average or variation from highest to lowest. c) If the battery pack on-charge voltage reaches the equivalent of 2.60 volts per cell ( the maximum in Table-I), and the charger does not terminate the charge after 1-3 hours. If you found that your charger is not working properly, keep in mind that your batteries may still be good. Flooded lead-acid batteries can be brought back to full capacity with a full charge.

If you decide to purchase a new charger, look for a programmable charger with a selection of multiple charge algorithms. Deep cycle batteries from various battery manufacturers require different charge characteristics to deliver optimum performance and life. Most charger manufacturers provide programmable chargers with selectable charge algorithms designed for each battery manufacturer’s products. Using the battery manufacturer’s recommended charging procedure will optimize battery performance and life of your battery pack.

After you fully charge the batteries with your new charger, you can always take specific gravity readings for each battery with a hydrometer to determine if the battery is at a full state of charge. Several cycles of charging and discharging with the new charger may be required to return the battery pack to peak capacity. For a more detailed version of this charger diagnostic procedure or more information on flooded lead acid batteries or specific gravity readings for batteries, visit www.usbattery.com.

U.S. Battery Products Receive Bold New Labeling That Also Provides Product Information At-A-Glance

U.S. Battery Manufacturing has updated all of its products with bold, new labels that provide information customers need to easily pick the right battery for their application. “Our new battery labels were designed to be larger, bolder, and allow people to easily see the battery’s performance data and the specific applications they are designed for,” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery CMO/Executive Vice President. “We asked many of our global distributors to provide some input into the label design. So in response, we have included a QR code for quick access to information on our website as well as application icons that are easy to see and recognize when the batteries are displayed on retailer product shelves. These changes will also address the new labeling standards that will be required in 2016.” The switch to the new battery labels will be a rolling change that will begin February 1, 2015. In a short amount of time, all U.S. Battery products will be shipped with the new labels, and will feature all the same internal components that provide the efficient battery design U.S. Battery customers have come to depend on. Manufactured in the U.S.A., U.S. Battery products feature XC2™ Diamond Plate Technology® to provide the highest initial capacity, highest rated capacity, and the ability to reach peak capacity in fewer cycles than any other battery in their class. For more information contact U.S. Battery Manufacturing, 1675 Sampson Ave. Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Visit www.usbattery.com.

Inside U.S. Battery’s US2200-XC2 Deep Cycle 6-Volt Battery

Because of its proven performance, higher capacity and longer service life, U.S. Battery’s US2200-XC2 has become the company’s most popular six volt, deep-cycle, flooded lead-acid battery used in a variety of applications. This deep-cycle battery has the highest rated capacity and the ability to reach peak capacity in fewer cycles than any other battery in its class. The reason behind this, is U.S. Battery’s exclusive XC2™ formulation and Diamond Plate Technology®.  XC2 stands for extreme capacity, which exemplifies the high percentage of tetrabasic lead sulfate (TTBLS) used in each battery cell. The more uniformly controlled TTBLS crystal size results in a stronger crystal network within the formed positive plate active material. Diamond Plate Technology® holds it all together, providing a much more efficient battery cell. This efficiency translates to improved performance, longer battery life, and a more cost effective way to operate golf cars, aerial platforms, commercial cleaning equipment, and much more.

“Our US2200-XC2 is widely used by fleets with vehicles that rely on deep-cycle battery power, because they’ve experienced its balance between cost, high-capacity performance and extended battery life,” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery CMO/Executive Vice President. “With independent testing that proves the US2200-XC2 provides the most initial peak capacity and fastest cycle-up to rated capacity, it’s no wonder it’s the most popular battery we manufacture.”

Aside from its performance, the US2200-XC2 batteries also feature heavy-duty connector lugs, a tough polypropylene exterior case, and the company’s positive locking SpeedCap® venting system for easy maintenance and durability in a variety of conditions. U.S. battery products are manufactured in the U.S.A. and distributed worldwide. For more information, contact U.S. Battery Manufacturing, 1675 Sampson Ave. Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Visit www.usbattery.com.

Benefits Of Using A Single Point Watering System

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Dan Grigsby of U.S. Battery Manufacturing, demonstrates the benefits and procedures of using a single point watering system, and how a group of six flooded lead-acid batteries can be watered in less than a minute.  In addition to simplifying battery maintenance, Grigsby explains how proper watering can help extend the life and performance of flooded lead-acid batteries.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

How To Install A Battery Watering Technologies System 

U.S. Battery Recommended Single Point Watering Systems

Battery Specialists Inc. Honored by U.S. Battery And Awarded With A New EZGO Golf Car

Larry Hall, Founder of Battery Specialists with his new EZGO golf car provided by U.S. Battery.

Battery Specialists Inc. was one of several distributors who were awarded a new EZGO golf car by U.S. Battery Manufacturing, for meeting or exceeding sales goals set by the battery manufacturer in 2013. Founded in 1973, Battery Specialists Inc. offers an extensive battery inventory with both an on-line and retail show-room presence, making it one of the largest independently owned battery distributors in Greenville, South Carolina. The company offers thousands of replacement batteries ranging from automotive, industrial, marine, golf car, and more. “Our valued relationship and the full line of U.S. Battery products, in conjunction with other premier manufacturers, enables us to provide the most comprehensive product line with next-day delivery and unrivaled service and expertise throughout the Carolinas,” says Larry Hall, founder of Battery Specialists Inc.

“We’re proud to be partnered with a premiere distributor like Battery Specialists and glad they were able to step up to our challenge,” says Don Wallace, CMO, Executive VP U.S. Battery Manufacturing. “It is a huge challenge to manage the extensive types and technology of batteries in today’s market. Despite the challenge, Battery Specialists is continually training and providing advanced education to both its staff and customers, creating a very extensive knowledgebase on the U.S. Battery product range, thus providing their customers the highest quality service.” For more information on U.S. Battery products, visit www.usbattery.com.

Electric Vehicles Powered By U.S. Battery Finish A Cross-Country Trip To Raise Money For Veterans

U.S. Battery Manufacturing joins Drive for Veterans in celebrating the end of a successful cross-country trip that raised money for wounded veterans. Drive for Veterans consisted of volunteers that took turns driving four Columbia ParCar electric vehicles across the United States, all powered by U.S. Battery products. “We were very happy to provide Drive for Veterans with batteries that allowed them to maintain a constant speed and level of reliability in conditions that most electric vehicles will never experience,” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery CMO/Executive Vice President. “Each of the low-speed electric vehicles made the entire trip using a single set of our batteries.” Three of the vehicles were equipped with U.S. Battery US2200 6-volt deep-cycle batteries, while one was outfitted with U.S. Battery AGM2224 batteries.

The Drive for Veterans began October 19, 2013 in San Diego, California and ended December 2, 2013 at the American Legion Post 347 in Lady Lake, Florida. Participants stopped at various cities and events across the country, in an effort to raise a total of $500,000 for the Fisher House Foundation and Semper Fi Fund. Although the cross-country trip is over, Drive for Veterans will still accept donations thru December 31st.

One of the vehicles used in the fund raiser will also be on display in U.S. Battery’s booth during the PGA Trade Show in Orlando, Florida, January 22-24th booth #2525, and at the GIS Trade Show also in Orlando, February 5-6th booth #1353. For more information on Drive For Veterans, visit www.driveforveterans.com. For additional information on U.S. Battery products, contact U.S. Battery 1675 Sampson Ave. Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Or visit them online at www.USBattery.com.

Vantage Vehicle International Selects U.S. Battery Manufacturing As OEM Battery Supplier

U.S. Battery Manufacturing was selected by electric vehicle manufacturer, Vantage Vehicle International, as the OEM supplier for lead-acid batteries in their products. “Vantage’s utility vehicles are known world-wide for their dependability, reliability, and versatility,” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery Manufacturing CMO/Executive VP Sales and Marketing. “We’re happy Vantage Vehicle recognizes that we share the same core values to provide reliability, performance, and savings to our mutual customers.”

Both companies believe electric vehicles are a growing market, and manufacturers like Vantage Vehicle International, are striving to provide higher quality products to exceed customer expectations. “Partnering with U.S. Battery fits the core benefits of our company,” says Joshua Kim, Vice President at Vantage Vehicle International. “U.S. Battery is established as the leading manufacturer of deep cycle lead acid batteries with proven performance and lifespan over the competition. Working together, Vantage will be able to provide a product our customers and dealers have been requesting.”

Each Vantage electric vehicle uses 12, 6-volt deep cycle lead-acid batteries, and has a range of up to 40 miles with a maximum speed of 25 mph. “Vantage Vehicle owners will appreciate that U.S. Battery lead-acid batteries feature the XC2 formulation which reaches higher peak capacity in as few as 25 cycles,” says Wallace. “With proper maintenance, our batteries will also provide Vantage customers with longer service life and reliability.” Because care and maintenance are extremely important to the longevity and performance of flooded lead acid batteries, Vantage includes a watering system with the batteries, to ensure optimum performance and cost savings over the long-term. “U.S. Battery products, paired with a watering system, bring convenience and reliability to the flooded battery package we offer,” says Kim. “Customers can take comfort in knowing their battery system is properly maintained and easy to check. This gives our customers a more cost effective battery pack while maintaining reliability and performance that saves our customers money. Minimizing warranty failures and production defects also saves Vantage money.”

U.S. Battery manufactures a variety of deep-cycle batteries that are all manufactured in the U.S.A. and are distributed worldwide. For more information, on Vantage Vehicle International, visit www.vantagevehicle.com. For more information on U.S. Battery products, contact U.S. Battery Manufacturing, 1675 Sampson Ave. Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Visit www.usbattery.com.

Genikos Technologies Inc. Grows Its Market Share In The Philippines With U.S. Battery Manufacturing

Paul Harchick, Director of Business-Asia for U.S. Battery Manufacturing (right), with Ervin Fernandez General Manager for Genikos Technologies, Inc.

Genikos Technologies Inc. (GTI), recently became one of the newest distributors for U.S. Battery Manufacturing products in the Philippines. According to Ervin Fernandez, general manager for GTI, the company has seen a significant increase in the market for high-quality U.S. manufactured batteries from their local and multi-national client bases. According to Fernandez, many of their current clients are demanding higher quality products for power generation and distribution. “Fernandez has been in the battery business for 20 years and chose to work with U.S. Battery due to the brand’s exceptional reputation in the local market,” says Bradford Dwan, U.S. Battery Director of Sales Asia/Pacific. “Fernandez says he plans to promote U.S. Battery products to GTI’s existing clients, as well as search for new business in other industries such as golf courses and industrial equipment rental yards.”

GTI is a family owned and operated company headquartered in Manila. Established in March of 2002, GTI has become a respected provider of stored electrical energy solutions and innovative technologies throughout the Philippines. “We’re very pleased and excited to work with GTI and help the company extend its reach in the Asia/Pacific market,” says Dwan. “We’ve been in this market for quite some time. The rapid expansion for U.S. Battery products comes from the many distributors and companies realizing that a higher-quality battery translates to lower operating costs, making our products a more efficient energy solution.”

U.S. Battery manufactures a variety of deep-cycle batteries that are all manufactured in the U.S.A. and distributed world-wide. For more information, contact U.S. Battery 1675 Sampson Ave. Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Visit www.usbattery.com.

U.S. Battery Manufacturing Now Offers Improved UTL-Style Battery Terminals

U.S. Battery Manufacturing now features an improved UTL terminal design, which provides greater resistance to torque failure caused by over tightening and constant re-tightening of leads to the battery. “These new terminals have a unique design in which a stainless steel hex head stud fits loosely in the terminal housing,” says Fred Wehmeyer, Senior VP Engineering for U.S. Battery Manufacturing. “The bottom of the terminal is swaged to capture the bolt and hold it firmly in place within the terminal. The result is a tremendous improvement in its longevity, while reducing the need to constantly re-tighten connecting leads to the battery.”  According to Wehmeyer, the new terminals operate much the same as bolt-thru designs like the offset ‘S’ or ‘L’ terminals that are completely loose until the hardware is installed and tightened to the proper torque value.

Manufactured from pressure die-cast lead alloy, U.S. Battery’s new UTL terminals are more rugged and less prone to failure. They’re installed on all U.S. Battery US12VXC products and average 350 inch-pounds of torque, versus 240 inch-pounds for standard terminals found on most competitive batteries. “Since the recommended torque to tighten UTL terminals is 100+5 inch-pounds, there should never be a torque failure with our unique, pressure die-cast terminals,” says Wehmeyer.
“Many of our competitors are claiming these new terminals are inferior because they appear loose, prior to installation” says Don Wallace, U.S. Battery CMO/ Executive VP, Sales and Marketing. “The facts are that it does not matter if the bolt is loose prior to tightening. What matters is that when the proper torque applied, the hex head nut, in combination with the supplied split ring washer, make a superior connection!“

U.S. Battery manufactures a variety of deep-cycle batteries that are all manufactured in the U.S.A. and are distributed worldwide. For more information, contact U.S. Battery Manufacturing, 1675 Sampson Ave., Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Visit https://www.usbattery.com.

 

U.S. Battery Golf-Car Batteries Provide The Most Useable Run-Time And Reach Rated Capacity Faster

U.S. Battery Manufacturing Deep-Cycle batteries allow golf car owners and fleets significant money-saving advantages.  U.S. Battery Manufacturing’s 6-volt and 12-volt deep-cycle golf car batteries incorporate the company’s exclusive XC2™ formulation and Diamond Plate Technology®. This combination of extremely efficient synthetic tetrabasic lead sulfate crystal structures (TTBLS), allow U.S. Battery’s products to reach peak capacity in fewer cycles, to provide higher total energy delivery, and to extend battery life.  “Our batteries with XC2™ formulation reach higher peak capacity in as little as 25 cycles, while also extending the service life of the battery,” explains Don Wallace, U.S. Battery CMO/Executive Vice President. “This gives golf car fleets and individual owners a longer-lasting, more efficient battery that saves time, money, and never leaves anyone stranded on the golf course.”

U.S. Battery Manufacturing’s exceptional battery performance was proven when a team of retired and off-duty U.S. Coast Guard members (Carting For A Cause), drove a golf car across the United States to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project. The golf car powered by eight U.S. Battery Manufacturing US145 XC2™ batteries averaged 25 miles per hour and 200 miles per day.  “With daily recharging, using Delta-Q, QuiQTM industrial battery chargers, the team had no problem completing their fund raising trip,” said Wallace.

U.S. Battery’s deep-cycle batteries are available in a variety of sizes and amp-hour capacity ratings. They also feature extra heavy-duty connector lugs and a tough polypropylene exterior case. The company’s SpeedCap® Venting positive locking system, for easy maintenance, is also available for specific applications.

U.S. Battery manufactures a variety of deep-cycle batteries that are all manufactured in the U.S.A. and are distributed worldwide. For more information, contact U.S. Battery Manufacturing, 1675 Sampson Ave. Corona, CA 92879. (800) 695-0945. Visit https://www.usbattery.com.