Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Top 5 questions
The "Europa type" Power Bulls (total height 175 or 190mm) have their central degassing vent on either the left-hand side (- terminal) or on the right-hand side (+ terminal). The other side is sealed with a removable plug.
If, as in your case, the degassing vent is on the unsuitable side, the plug can be removed. Warning! The plug must then be inserted into the degassing vent on the other side.
Please use a wooden screw with a 5mm diameter for removal of the plug. Insert the screw manually into the small hole in the plug, turn and then pull out both the screw and the plug. There is no need to worry, as the plug cannot be screwed into the battery.
The currents and capacities of the batteries combine and during charging, the current is distributed in line with the internal resistance of the batteries!
The voltages of the batteries combine and during charging the voltage is distributed in line with the charging status of the battery!
- Before charging a wet battery, check the electrolyte level and top up if necessary with de-ionised or distilled water to the maximum acid level mark, or 15mm above the upper edge of the plates.
Should the battery be removed prior to recharging in order to prevent damage to the vehicle?
Please note the charger type. The operating instructions of the vehicle or the charger manufacturer frequently contain valuable tips regarding battery charging in the vehicle.
In general, a fully automatic charger (charging voltage limitation of 14.8V) is well suited to the charging of a battery installed in a vehicle.
Should your charger have an automatic mode with voltages >15.9V, it is vital that the battery be separated from the in-board electronics and removed from the vehicle.
In a worst case scenario it is possible that the installed control devices can be destroyed due to overvoltage and the resulting damage would be enormous.
Warning! Follow the vehicle manufacturer’s instructions when disconnecting the terminals.
- Batteries may only be charged with direct current. Connect the positive (+) battery terminal to the positive (+) terminal of the charger, and the negative (-) battery terminal to the negative (-) terminal of the charger.
- Do not switch on the charger until the battery has been disconnected. When charging is completed, switch off the charger before disconnecting the battery.
- It is recommended that the charging current be equal to one tenth of the capacity (e.g. 44Ah divided by 10 = 4.4A charging current).
- The temperature of the acid may not exceed 55°C during charging. If the temperature rises above 55°C, the charging process must be discontinued.
- Charging is finished when the current drops to 0 or stops falling, or if the automatic charger switches off.
- Charging must be performed in a well-ventilated room.
Warning! Oxyhydrogen gas is formed during charging! It is essential that fires, sparks, open flames and smoking be prevented!
Extreme AGM/BackUp: only recharge with a voltage controlled charger (max. 14.8V)! The use of standard, non-voltage controlled chargers will destroy the battery through overloading and cause the electrolyte to escape!
Warning! Always follow the instructions (operating or maintenance) of the vehicle manufacturer!
- Before fitting or removing the battery, switch off the engine and all power users.
- Avoid short circuits due to tools.
- When removing the battery, first disconnect the negative (-) terminal and then the positive (+) terminal.
- Prior to fitting the battery, clean the battery compartment.
- Ensure that the battery is secured tightly.
- Clean terminals and battery clips and lubricate lightly with acid-free grease.
- When fitting the battery, first connect the positive (+) terminal and then the negative (-) terminal. Ensure that the clips are secured.
Enclosed, please find the instructions of the safe handling of lead-acid accumulatores, valid for all Duracell batteries (AGM...).
The REACH-regulation (1907/2006/EC) has replaced the directive on safety data sheets (91/155/EC). REACH describes the setting up and updating of safety data sheets for substances and preparations. For articles - like lead-acid batteries - safety data sheets are not required. Ths leaflet addresses manufacturers of batteries and is meant to apply voluntarily. The notes are meant to help to comply with legal requirements but do not replace them.
A fully charged Duracell battery can be stored for around 12 months (at 20°C) without recharging. At 20°C, monthly self-discharge of approx. 3 per cent must be expected and the cooler the storage, the smaller the self-discharge.
In order to be rather safe than sorry, it is advisable to check the off-load voltage of the battery after roughly three months. If this is < 12.50V, the battery should be recharged, while with < 12.60V another check after about a month is to be recommended.
When recharging outdoors, care should be taken that the battery temperature must rise to over 0°C in order that it will accept a charge.
If recharging is required, the battery can be removed and left to “thaw” in a room with >0°C. Alternatively, the charger can be connected to the battery for several days, as the charge energy is employed initially to heat up the battery.
There is no need for concern, as a fully charged lead-acid battery only freezes at approx. minus 70°C. However, a discharged battery (off-load voltage = 12.0V) freezes at just a few degrees below zero.
A few tips to note:
- Prior to recharging top up missing electrolyte with distilled or demineralized water to the maximum level.
- Before winter decommissioning, recharge the battery (separately) until the charger gauge shows that it is fully charged.
- Ensure that surfaces of the battery are dry and remain so.
- If the battery is removed from the vehicle, it should be stored in a dry place that is as cool as possible (fully charged).
- When storing the battery, provide it with short circuit protection.
- Fully charge the battery prior to installation in the vehicle and contact with its electrical system.
- Last, and most importantly, always use protective eyewear when handling lead-acid batteries.
Suitable chargers are available for automatic charge retention (all CTEK devices). Such chargers can remain connected to the battery throughout the winter without causing it any damage.
The physical age of a battery has only very limited significance with regard to its service life and health. For this reason, the coding stamp on Duracell batteries does not provide any self-explanatory conclusions regarding their age.
Decisive is not the date of manufacture, but rather that of vehicle start-up, as only then does the starter battery become subject to loads and the electrochemical wear process begin.
As long as it is maintained in a charged condition, which is the certainly the case of Duracell and its contracted retailers, a battery does not “age” in the period between production and sale. Battery life is determined to a far greater extent by the number of charging and discharging cycles than it is by physical age. Therefore, the only documentation for a warranty and guarantee is the dated battery purchase receipt.
P.S. A dot marking with a sequence of numbers, as in the case of tyres, etc., which evidences the production date (dot= Department of Transportation, USA) is unnecessary in the case of batteries.
In principle, the AGM battery is not foreseen for use on its side. However, owing to the battery’s design it is nonetheless possible to employ it in this position. In spite of this fact, a degassing hose should be fitted (for safety reasons). In an unfortunate situation (damage to the charger or the battery), acid can escape more easily when the battery is in a lateral position. Moreover, depending upon the application (living area, starter,...) this installation position may lead to slight limitations on service life.
In order to ensure maximum battery life, the following instructions should be followed:
- Keep the surfaces of the battery clean and dry.
- Check the acid levels regularly and if necessary top up with desalinated or distilled water. Never top up with acid. If a substantial water loss occurs, an expert should check the voltage regulator.
- Do not put so-called additives into the battery acid.
- The level of charge of the battery can be checked by means of acid density measurement. If the density of the acid is below 1.21 kg/l (or 1.18 kg/l, 1.23kg/l in the case of acid filling) the battery must be recharged (see Note 4). With this density the battery is protected against freezing down to -15°C (with 1.28 kg/l down to -70°C).
Extreme AGM/BackUp: the charge status can only be determined via the off-load voltage. The battery is to be recharged in the case of off-load voltage of ≤12.50V (see Note 4). Acid density measurement, or topping up with distilled water, is not possible.
- Empty batteries do not need maintenance. Store in a dry and cool environment (frost-free).
- Recharge filled starter batteries when acid density is below 1.23 kg/l (off-load voltage < 12.42V).
- Filled batteries must be transported and stored in an upright position to avoid acid spillage.
- During transportation secure the battery in order to prevent it from falling over.
Extreme AGM/BackUp: leak-proof even when upside down and in the case of damage to the casing. At the latest, recharge in the case of off-load voltage ≤ 12.50V. Acid density measurement and topping up with distilled water are not possible.
Charging gases are highly explosive!
- Avoid ignition, do not smoke or use open flames and prevent sparking during the handling of cables and electrical appliances.
- All electrical devices with switches should be turned off prior to battery installation or removal, in order to prevent accidental sparking.
- When releasing the connections, first detach the mass cable (link with the vehicle frame). During connection this is the last cable to be attached (avoid short circuits due to tools).
- During charging, first attach the battery to the charger and then switch on the charger.
- Ensure good ventilation during charging in closed rooms.
Battery acid is extremely caustic!
- In the case of contact with the eyes rinse them out thoroughly with water and consult a physician.
- Acid splashes. Treat with a neutralon spray or suds, rinse with plenty of water and wipe dry.
- Acid or batteries with an acid filling should not get into the hands of children.
- Batteries containing residual acid should be brought to a hazardous waste collection centre. Acid residues may not enter the sewerage system. Empty acid containers should be disposed of as domestic plastic waste.
We prescribe the use of a degassing hose whenever a lead-acid battery is installed inside the vehicle.
Should a degassing hose connection (central degassing) be unavailable, the battery must be insulated from the interior using the appropriate means. In addition, the appropriate air intake and exhaust vents are to be installed.
Oxyhydrogen is a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen.
When exposed to an ignition source (open flame, hot surface, electrostatic discharge,...) the gas causes an explosion-like reaction. The detonation speed amounts to approx. 2,800 m/s (black powder 400-1000 m/s).
As a consequence of the minimal lower explosion limit of 4 Vol% a detonation caused by battery gas emissions is entirely possible. Therefore, for your own safety always use protective eyewear when handling lead-acid batteries!
Please note the following:
- Both batteries must have roughly the same age!
- Both batteries should have the same off-load voltage.
- Both batteries must bear an identical type designation!
- The connecting cables should be as short as possible.
- Care should be taken that the connecting cables have sufficient dimensions.
As a result of our experience, we know that sufficient charging of the battery when driving is unfortunately only possible to a very limited extent. Particularly in summer (air conditioning running at high power, lights on, radio playing, refrigerator running,...) there is very little residual current for the complete recharging of a battery. In some cases, the living area battery must even support the on-board supply ...
The use of a B2B charger represents a sensible approach. At the very least, these devices serve to raise the charged voltage to a reasonable level.
If, for example, your batteries are approximately 50% discharged (95A are missing) some 105 Ah have to be recharged in order to bring the battery up to full power.
At best, 15A (on average) remain for the living area battery and this means that you would have to drive your vehicle for at least 7h in order to achieve full charging!
In order to obtain the maximum service life from your battery, please ensure complete separation from the on-board supply when the vehicle is not in use (>7 days).
--> Appropriate full charging of the battery should take place beforehand ...
What values should I use when setting an external charger (solar regulator, B2B charger,...)? How high should the charging and float charge voltage be?
Please employ the AGM setting, which means that the charge voltage should be set at 14.7V and the float charge voltage at 13.5V. Best of all, use an IUoU characteristic with temperature compensation (should you have this setting available).
In order to obtain the maximum service life from your battery, please ensure complete separation from the on-board supply (switch on the EBL) when the vehicle is not in use (>7 days).
--> Appropriate full charging of the battery should take place beforehand ...
The battery discharge is probably the result of a high off-load current requirement (>20mA) on the part of the vehicle.
Fully charge the battery with an external charger (voltage limit of approx. 14.8V) and measure the battery voltage after a standing period of at least five hours.
The voltage measured should be in the 12.7 – 12.8V range.
If the voltage exceeds this level, switch on the dipped beam of your vehicle’s headlights for around 10 seconds and measure the off-load voltage again after a wait of around a minute. If the voltage is below approx. 12.6V you must repeat the charging process.
Should your charger have a “reactivation mode”, it is imperative that the battery be removed from the vehicle prior to charging! Otherwise is it possible that irreparable damage will be caused to the vehicle’s electronics owing to high on-board supply voltage.
Depending upon the ambient temperature, lead-acid batteries can be stored for up to a year without suffering any negative effects.
Please note that when a battery is stored, it must be fully charged (off-load voltage should amount to approx. 12.7V) and the storage environment should be cool (cellar...). To be on the safe side, the off-load voltage should be checked at 3-month intervals. Please recharge the battery should the 12.50V limit be undercut.
I use several identical batteries in a sequential or parallel combination. What do I have to look out for during a battery exchange?
Please always exchange all the linked batteries.
This is essential because with cumulative use, batteries demonstrate a change in their internal resistance (increase). Accordingly, a new, fully charged battery has very low internal resistance, while an “old” battery has a very high one.
Should an “old” and a “new” battery be connected, the flows (with parallel connection) and voltages (with sequential connection) spread in a different manner, which creates asymmetric loading during charging and discharging.
If the batteries are not discharged or charged, parallel connection results in flows of very high compensation current between the batteries.
--> The “new” battery attempts to recharge the “old” one (potential compensation)
This compensation current can result in an early failure of the “new” battery.
At a maximum, an AGM battery may be discharged to a level of 10.5V (with a load of approx. 5A), or 11.5V (off-load voltage).
Basically, it can be said that the deeper the discharge, the shorter the battery life expectancy. With a discharge depth of 50% (approx. 12.3V off-load voltage) an AGM battery manages roughly 400 cycles.
Please ensure that immediate recharging takes place as soon as an off-load voltage limit of around 12.45V is undercut.
In order to be able to measure off-load voltage, a period of around five hours should elapse following charging, or no discharge should have taken place for at least an hour.
- In view of the sensitive electronic components in the vehicle, as a rule starting assistance should only be provided by means of a Banner Booster.
- Starting assistance from vehicle to vehicle can lead to voltage peaks during disconnection, which can damage or even destroy vehicle electronic systems.
- Therefore, it is essential that the following procedure be strictly observed when using starter cables!
- Standardised starter cables (e.g. in accordance with DIN 72 553) should always be used for giving starting assistance.
- Observe the instructions for use of the starter cables.
- Only connect batteries with the same nominal voltage.
- When connecting the terminals, both vehicle engines must be switched off!
First connect the two positive terminals 1 with 2. Then connect the negative terminal of the assisting vehicle 3 with 4, the blank metallic point on the vehicle needing assistance, away from the battery. (Observe the instructions of the vehicle manufacturer.)
- Now start the vehicle needing assistance for a maximum of 15 seconds. Do not start the assisting vehicle.
- When disconnecting the terminals, remove the cables in the reverse sequence to the above.