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Thread: Skipper Batteries - Revisited

  1. #11
    Mike,
    That really surprises me. Maybe the A&P’s amongst us can weigh in on their experience with (or without) testing.

    Here, I would expect any shop that services your airplane, and presumably supplies or even just charges a battery, would have one of the many types of load testers. I know my shop does.

    The old types were a bit like a toaster. They threw a huge resistance across the battery to see if it could take it. They are pretty crude and they are very hard on the battery.

    The modern type use a digital processor to analyse the state of the cells. They give a far more detailed picture of the battery health.
    This is one (of many) brands available;
    https://www.amazon.com.au/ANCEL-BST5...52216419&psc=1

    If you don’t know the health of your battery, and aren’t proactive, then sooner or later you will get caught out. It’s only a question of when.
    Mark
    In Oz


    Where I have landed a Beech

    (Plus, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom)

  2. #12
    I agree with you Mark that waiting until I get a sign that it is dying is a poor choice. That's why I was asking questions lately. Thanks for the comments about the load tester. Seems if I want it tested, I will have to do it myslef. Thanks.
    Mike Nielsen
    McCook, NE
    Sierra N9164S

  3. #13
    Orbiting Earth Touring the Galaxy
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Jacksons Gap, Alabama
    Posts
    7,846
    I have access to a toaster/tester. I'll do the test if the owner wants it, most don't. The vast majority of my owners are 100% pleasure/local flyers, an so a failure is likely to happen at KALX. Just push it bac into the hangar until the new battery arrives. For the serious xc types, they tend to replace batteries every 5-6 years. The batteries I remove, I give to the first group.

    Rap

    Rap McBurney
    N-ONE

  4. #14
    I have ordered one of Bill Manhein's ground power plugs. Would it be possible to load test the battery through this ground power plug or should the battery be removed from the plane for testing? My Siserra is 12V.
    Mike Nielsen
    McCook, NE
    Sierra N9164S

  5. #15
    Orbiting Earth Touring the Galaxy
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Jacksons Gap, Alabama
    Posts
    7,846
    14v you can go thru the aux plug. You can also carry one of these if worried about battery dependability.

    https://www.walmart.com/ip/STANLEY-6...-J309/14560015

    Rap McBurney
    N-ONE

  6. #16
    The battery I have in my airplane is about 4.5 years old. I check batt voltage before every flight not for battery health per se' but for charging system in general. Ammeter is good for charging and with the batt voltage out I get a feel good when the the alternator is up at 14.0 volts. I know its working. Lately my Batt voltage is down to 12.2 or so, it starts okay an all but I also started looking at Aircraft Spruce for replacements. Jeepers the prices are around 200 bucks plus nowadays.....
    When It is down at under 12V charge wise I am buying a new one, then I know its finished. It still will start but the prop moves slower and the starter is under big load trying to start with barely sufficient voltage/amperage. So better 200+ for new Batt or a bunch of money on a starter + starter solenoid and Battery, and lots of time working under the hood so to speak.


    They say that if under 12.5 V at rest, it needs to be charged up.

    http://batterymanagement.aircraft-ba...-rg-manual.pdf

    (Concord Battery)

  7. #17
    I use a load tester to check my batteries. Resting voltage will give you state of charge but is very limited in showing you the current state of capacity. And the battery is more than just a starting item. It provides a buffer in the charging system and gives you some options for when you have a charging system failure. Batteries are expensive but really about a tank of gas value. And when you need a half hour of battery juice after your alternator quits in bad weather it is priceless. Replacing a battery, I believe, is owner maintenance which saves an A&P cost. Worth considering a real battery test and making sure you have decent performance.

    Paul Werbin
    Mid-Atlantic Regional Director

  8. #18
    I read in the Concorde manual that Max provided, that the battery should be removed from the aircraft for load testing.
    Mike Nielsen
    McCook, NE
    Sierra N9164S

  9. #19
    Quick battery test:

    Hopefully by now you have a EMS or something that gives a digital readout of your battery voltage!

    After a flight, assume the battery is fully charged. Engine not running, master on, note voltage. Should be something above 12V.

    Now turn on pitot heat, landing light and anything else you have that draws a lot of power. Note the reading on your voltmeter. It should probably hold above 11 volts.

    Write down this number.

    Repeat this test every month or so and you will start to see a trend if you battery is failing. The voltage under load will start to drop precipitously.

    Chris Kilgus
    19A

  10. #20
    Thanks Chris. That sounds like a great idea. I did have a JPI900 installed last year and so now I do have digital voltage. I have been paying more attention to it now that I have it.
    Mike Nielsen
    McCook, NE
    Sierra N9164S

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