CTEK possibly cooking batteries?

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Felixgogo
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CTEK possibly cooking batteries?

A strange one.

As the weather is improving - it's time to dig out the toys - both my Porsche and Seven live on CTEK trickle chargers, and whilst in HK, they have been in this state on and off for a number of years. All good and no issues.

Last week I tried to start the Porsche - just got clicking and warning messages - checked battery - holding 10v or so. Did a deep charge from the NOCO charger - back to 13.8v, but fell away immediately I tried to start the car. Got a new battery from Halfords (off the shelf, and rigged a temp supply whilst changing to keep memories etc).  Car started ok, and is fine now. Checked the details - battery was the original, and at 11 years old I didn't mind having to change it. Car is now out of warranty, so didn't go down the Porsche OEM battery route as this would have been 4-500 pounds.

Yesterday, in preparation to go to the Midlands meet - I tried to start the Seven, exactly the same issue - battery at around 9.8v, and recovered via a deep charge, but wouldn't start the car and fell back immediately.

The cars were on trickle from two different CTEK chargers, a Polar 5.3, and a standard 5.3. Both for a number of months - the seven had not been started since last October.

The Seven Banner battery is around 6 years old, and the second one, the first having lasted over 10 years. 

Is this just age (the batteries - not me) - or are the CTEK tricklers cooking the batteries here? 

Felixgogo
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Oh - I have no idea why that has posted my topic 6 times!!!

ScottR400D
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Unlikely that both CTEK would fail together. Fair chance at 11 and 6 years old the batteries have just had enough. 

My first Banner failed at 3 years, left over winter on an Optimate. It's replacement going strong now after 4 winters but I disconnect it over winter and give it a quick boost part way through. 

I used to have a 997 which I left on a CTEK over winter, its battery lasted 7 years.  

L7C
Jonathan Kay
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Yes, I'd bet on both batteries shuffling off their mortal coils.

But... I spent a lot of time trying to work out what was failing before discovering that a CTEK charger could light up its lights in the appropriate conditioning/ charging sequence without actually trying to charge the battery. The UK agent replaced it.

Jonathan

PS:

"Oh - I have no idea why that has posted my topic 6 times!!!"

It's a known problem and happens to lots of posters.

Andrew 21 Edney
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Duplicate posts removed - just be patient if the post seems to be taking a whle, and editing the post can also trigger duplicates (as can trying to delete a duplicate).

Club IT Lead, former Seven and 21 owner

gileshudson
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Having cooked three batteries previously on it, I now use a simple B&Q timer switch to just turn on my Optimate 4 once a day for an hour to topup/monitor the Caterham's powervamp odyssey battery as necessary.

Giles Hudson

AR, Bear 7s

ScottR400D
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#6 I used to do that (well, on a weekly charger, charging for 3-4 hours at a time) but was advised against doing it that way. 

According to Optimate

 "during the charging state, the OptiMate 3 will deliver a constant current of 0.6 Amps to the battery whose progressively rising impedance will cause the charging Voltage to increase (to) 14.3V, when the OptiMate 3 will start the absorption and verification stage.

The unit is programmed to check for Voltage drops and other indicators to make sure that the battery becomes fully charged and can be maintained.

During the maintenance, or “float” stage, the OptiMate 3 checks the battery Voltage every 30 minutes to make sure everything is OK."

I was told that having the charger on a timer will cause it to go through the charging, absorption and verification stages repeatedly and that's not necessarily good for the battery or its acid levels. 

So now, if I'm using the car regularly I just leave it on the Optimate and if it's being left for a long period I let it charge to the maintenance stage then disconnect the battery, giving it a charge every two or three months. 

Others may have more precise advice. 

L7C
Amos91
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I agree with you Scott, reading the CTEK manual, the charger goes into pulse mode after a week. So it pulses charge between 95-100%. Having it on a timer goes through the full process of building it up to over 14v volts etc over and over. 

Olly Amos - 2008 Caterham Superlight Sigma 150

StevehS3
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I am not convinced that adding a timer is a good thing. The designers will have taken a lot of care to program the charger in the best way possible and adding a timer interferes with that. 

Ian28
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Did you check the electrolyte levels in all the cells? Should be covering the plates in each.

My Banner requires frequent top ups of distilled water when left charging for long periods on the CTEK. Once the levels drop the battery performance suffers.

 

ScottR400D
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#10 that was my perception when I used a timer. Doesn't seem half as bad now. 

L7C