why does my car battery have so much corrosion
Corrosion on the terminals is due to hydrogen gas being released from the acid in the battery. It mixes with other things in the atmosphere under the hood and produces the corrosion you see on the terminals. Generally, if the corrosion is occurring on the negative terminal, your system is probably undercharging. If on the positive side, it is probably overcharging. Most often it will be seen on the negative side because the battery is usually in an undercharged situation. This is just the nature of the beast, I'm afraid. You will need to thoroughly clean the corrosion from off the posts. You can use baking soda and water solution to help in this endeavor. Ensure you have eye protection, clothes which you don't care if it possibly gets ruined (acid can do nasty things), and some type of gloves (nitrile gloves work great).
Clean the area using the solution and a brush. It doesn't have to be a steel bristle one, just one which is stiff enough to remove the gunk. You will have to remove the battery cables to get them completely clean (sorry about the radio channel presets! ). Finish your clean up with a good dose of water to flush the area of any residual corrosion. If you don't, it can eat away the paint in the nearby areas. When done cleaning, to help slow down the corrosion process, coat the terminals with grease (high pressure grease or wheel bearing grease works as good as anything). It doesn't have to be a lot, but ensure total coverage of the metal at the terminals. Cover the outside of the terminals
after you have put the cables back onto your battery.
You can also purchase a aerosol spray coating which you can purchase from your local parts store. Your main objective is to keep the lead, escaped hydrogen gas, and oxygen from mixing which forms the corrosion you see after a period of time. Over time the grease will break down and corrosion may start, so regular cleaning and reapplication is a must. If you do this about every six months, you should be in good shape. 1. Electrolyte Leaking Out to the Terminals When the electrolyte in the car battery escapes out through leakages or damage, and reaches the battery terminals, corrosion occurs. This would be the case in the sealed lead acid batteries, but in the case of the flooded lead acid batteries, the batteries have much more chances to corrode, as the electrolyte can just kind of jump out of the battery while youвre too careless putting water into the battery. 2.
Overfilling the Battery We know that the electrolyte can damage the terminals when it comes in contact with them. If you put too much water in there, the chances of the electrolyte coming out of the vents and coming into contact with the terminals increase, thus this can also result in the corrosion of the battery. 3. Overcharging of the Battery When a battery is overcharged, it heats up. The electrolyte inside the battery gets all jumpy, high on kinetic energy, and its volume increases. Thus, in both the cases, either if itвs a sealed lead acid battery or flooded lead acid battery, the electrolyte would either overflow out of the vents or sneak out of the leakages and cracks. 4.
The Hydrogen Gas The acid present in your battery produces hydrogen gas, which we inhale everyday and looks to be seemingly harmless. However, it can corrode the battery, as it mixes with other substances in the atmosphere to form the corrosion on the battery. When formed on the left terminal, it can be an indication of undercharging, while on the positive one, it indicates overcharging. 5. The Copper Clamps Sometimes, the copper clamps that are normally used to connect the battery with the wires corrode. When it comes to Copper, it is not really reactive on itself, but the electricity passing through this makes it corrode, and Copper Sulfate is also formed. The bluish substance/precipitate you see around the battery terminals is probably this, and it can prove dangerous for the battery.
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