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Thread: Charging car battery reverse polarity

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    3

    Question Charging car battery reverse polarity

    This is the first I have ever heard anything like this. My brother's friend charged an old battery and tried to install it in his truck. When he connected the terminals there was a bang and he didn't know why. When he tested voltage at the terminals it read reverse polarity. If the battery is dead, is it possible to charge the battery backwards ?
    red - black +
    Will it take and hold a charge ?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Portland, OR
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    2,325
    Take a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lead_acid_battery

    Lead-acid batteries work with a lead anode and a lead-oxide cathode, with sulfuric acid reacting on both sides. A lead-acid battery can be reverse charged.

    -Jon

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    1,535

    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by winnie
    Take a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lead_acid_battery

    Lead-acid batteries work with a lead anode and a lead-oxide cathode, with sulfuric acid reacting on both sides. A lead-acid battery can be reverse charged.

    -Jon
    That's a new one on me....never thought about it.
    Something new to investigate.
    steve

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Portland, OR
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    2,325
    I should add that by "Can be reverse charged", I mean "Are capable of taking some amount of charge with reverse polarity, though not necessarily efficiently, with high capacity, nor with long useful life."

    NiCd batteries will 'reverse charge' to some extent, however this is know to cause significant damage to the cell, for example.

    -Jon

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Leesburg, VA
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    6,932
    We have had cells reverse polairty in a battery string, WHAT a mess acid blew everywhere.
    Brian John
    Leesburg, VA

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    PA, Business' in NJ/PA
    Posts
    145

    Battery

    Hi all,
    My son did me a favor once bought me a new garden tractor battery for my wheelhorse tractor. The only problem was, he installed it backwards when he put it in. I didn't notice it for a while till the tractor sat and had to recharge it. I recharged it the way the teminals were attached and it lasted for over two years that way till finially dying.I wasn't about to correct it midstream due i thought it would explode if i did.I finally bought a new one and all is fine now.
    Just my 2 cents.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    close to greenville sc
    Posts
    1,013
    My Dad has a 54 ish A-C tractor with a positive ground. After it sits all winter he pulls it out and charges it. Since he can't see very good sometimes he puts it back in backwards. The generator keeps it charged, the starter turns the right way, amazing to me! The battery is about 8 years old now and still kicking it over like new!
    Military wives deserve the Purple Heart Medal. They are wounded every time their Soldier goes off to protect our freedom!

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