Golf Cart battery corrosion

HortonHorton Posts: 25,050 Administrator
edited May 9 in Other Stuff
A lot of us that live on ski Lakes have golf carts. This is my first electric cart. How screwed am I with these corroded terminals?


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Comments

  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 2,084 Mega Baller
    edited May 9
    Don’t know about golf carts, but I’ve cleaned car battery terminals with some baking soda mixed in water.

    (Edited: used a toothbrush to apply and scour).
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
    oldjeep
  • oldjeepoldjeep Posts: 2,980 Mega Baller
    What century were those batteries made in? Best bet is to disconnect everything, clean all the terminals and lugs and then coat everything in a liberal coat of dielectric grease before putting it all back together.
    Chuck P
    Not a mechanic but I play one at home
    Gar
  • LeonLLeonL Posts: 2,190 Crazy Baller
    edited May 9
    @MISkier had a good suggestion. Clean all that stuff as he described (it will foam like crazy) and flush with water. (Assuming no electronics reside below the batteries. ). Let it dry, then disassemble and clean contact areas with wire brush or sand paper. Clean again by wiping or air pressure. Then follow the @oldjeep instructions. An occasional squirt with PB Blaster will help.
    Leon Leonard Stillwater Lake KY - SR Driver SR Judge
  • LakeOneSkierLakeOneSkier Posts: 235 Baller
    Just don't clean the batteries on any concrete surface you want to keep nice and clean. Did that once and I was never able to remove the stains.
    Baller Index: -31.67
    Horton
  • MarcoMarco Posts: 1,394 Crazy Baller
    I have lived off the grid for 25 years, and rely heavily on batteries, especially in the winter. Clean terminals are extremely important for optimal performance. When I clean the terminals, if I don't have terminal cleaner around, baking soda or even Coke works. Then as @LeonL suggests, sand/wire brush the contact locations to expose and roughen the bare metal. Once reconnected, I cover all the connection areas with a liberal coat of Vasoline. It will help keep corrosion from returning for several years.

    Additionally, the batteries should be equalized every 3 months or so. This keeps deposits from building up on the fins of the core and improves the performance and extends the life of the batteries. My charging system equalizes the batteries automatically, but you could do it yourself with a regular battery charger. My system is 24 volt, and to equalize them I charge them up to about 30 volts and hold it there for several hours. The batteries will boil, which helps remove the deposits. Be sure to check the water level after equalizing, as the off-gassing during the equalizing period will reduce the water level.

    It wouldn't hurt to change the battery cables either. Old ones can be deteriorated inside the jacket and you would never know by looking at them.

    These batteries are 2 years old and have no corrosion yet, although they are about due for another coat of Vasoline.


    MuskokaKysunvalleylaw
  • shyskiershyskier Posts: 37 Baller
    Looks like some cables need replaced. If corroded under cable insulation replace cable. Most parts stores can make cables. Cover any exposed cable ends, batt. terminals with dielectric grease or vasoline (cheaper ).
  • KelvinKelvin Posts: 1,026 Crazy Baller
    Last time I changed the batteries and wires, I put these felt rings on the terminals. Don't know how they work, but I don't have any corrosion any more.

    Link Here
    Kelvin Kelm, Lakes of Katy, Katy Texas
  • skiinxsskiinxs Posts: 420 Crazy Baller
    All good advice above. One thing to add is to try to use distilled water when topping off the batteries. You are right about lakes and golf carts. I never had a golf cart until I bought into a ski lake, now I don't know what I would do without it. Fortunately for me, one of the local sheriff deputies works on golf carts as a side job. He is a great guy who drops off a loaner when he picks mine up to fix and always cleans up the cables and re-coats them for me while he has it.
  • LeonLLeonL Posts: 2,190 Crazy Baller
    Oh, be sure to draw yourself a nice diagram with notes to go along with your picture, or disconnect one at a time when cleaning.
    Leon Leonard Stillwater Lake KY - SR Driver SR Judge
    skibrain
  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 2,490 Mega Baller
    @Marco something I've always wondered, baking soda is basic. Coke is acidic. Is it better to use something acidic like coke or vinegar to break down the corrosion or something basic to react with the acidic contents? Or just loads of water and scrub it.
  • skihackerskihacker Posts: 217 Baller
    If you can submerge the cable end in water and soak it 15 minutes or so the corrosion will fall right off, no chemicals needed.
  • LeonLLeonL Posts: 2,190 Crazy Baller
    If you would call baking soda a chemical.
    Leon Leonard Stillwater Lake KY - SR Driver SR Judge
  • MarcoMarco Posts: 1,394 Crazy Baller
    @BraceMaker Something basic like baking soda helps neutralize the acidic corrosion, and probably works better than Coke. You are right that the Coke is acidic wouldn't neutralize the corrosion, but it does a good job of disintegrating the corrosion. Maybe something to do with the carbonation acting like scrubbing bubbles? I only used the Coke method once, and only on the cable ends I could soak in a jar of Coke. I typically use the spray terminal cleaner that I try to keep on hand.
  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 2,490 Mega Baller
    I only ask because reacting the acid and base often forms byproducts, salts and such. So I would usually clean and rinse well and passivate the water not the battery
    teammalibu
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