Reconditioning Batteries – Is it Worth It?
Reconditioning batteries is not a new profession. It has been around for a reasonable amount of time in the “lead acid” (auto batteries) business.
In it’s infancy lead acid batteries were relatively cheap and our concern for the possible pollution from them was not as predominate as it is today. So when your dad or grandfather had a dead car or tractor battery, they just threw the old one away and got a new one. Good for pops, not so good for mother nature!
These days all that has changed, our eye on the environment is wide open, and there are all types of batteries in today’s world.
- Alkaline – non rechargeable, must be disposed of when charge runs out some components can be recycled.
- Lithium Ion – rechargeable, usually used in high end electronics and now some cars.
- Nickel Cadmium – rechargeable, the most common and oldest type of common rechargeable battery, used in everything from tools to toys.
- Nickel Metal Hydride – rechargeable, long life battery used in detectors and hearing aids, etc.
- Lead Acid – rechargeable, used in automotive, marine, and solar and wind industries (deep cycle for the latter).
With the exception of alkaline batteries, all these can be reconditioned and used again, instead of finding their way to the landfill.
If you have a battery bank for solar, wind, or magnetic energy generator, you can acquire used batteries (deepcycle) like golf cart batteries (car batteries won’t work for long in a solar or wind battery bank) for your system except you really don’t know that battery’s “rate of charge”,or how many charging cycles that battery has been through, 2 or 22.
When you size a battery bank for load you need to know this information. The rest is pretty technical so I won’t bore you with the details, but if you could recondition those used batteries back to their original state now you have good batteries for your battery back up.
With new 6 and 12 volt deep cycle batteries going for $300 up to $1500 EACH, that is some significant savings. And probably a reasonable profit to the individual or company that performs this valuable service.
Now, armed with that knowledge, can you see where reconditioning batteries could be a great peripheral business to the popular renewables industry?, not to mention all the other things that need to run on batteries!
OK back to the title “Is it Worth It” – Absolutely!
Overall the greatest savings will be to the environment. The thousands of batteries that end up in our landfills and overseas as waste could be reconditioned and used over and over. If only one person started a business doing this it could save literally hundreds, maybe thousands of batteries from being dumped.
This is a battery operated world. There is a high demand for batteries for mp3s, cellphones, laptops and digital cameras. One thing is for sure that as technologies advance, 12v batteries advance too. They must be smaller, have more power and of course, last longer.
I remember the time that I had to throw away my batteries just because they did not work anymore. No more though! The demands have changed the way we think and thanks to professionals, there is a way. It is called recondition. Reconditioning can give your 12v battery, or any battery more life.
Let me lay down for you a 4 tips on 12V battery tips:
1. Reconditioning is required when crystals develop(sulfation) inside the battery causing loss of power. The best process is by slowing discharging them. That means, to slowly “throw away” any energy left inside.
2. If storing your batteries, then make it properly. Before storing it just fully charge the battery. Avoid humidity, and make sure nothing get in contact with the poles, which might get the power to “slip away” I use special caps to protect them – if you don’t have or can’t find, use normal plastic foil.
3. If the battery has crystals inside, the so called sulfation, you can remove it by infusing some additives specially for batteries and allowing the battery to rest.
4. If you don’t already know, keep the battery in a refrigerator overnight and recharge it next morning. Repeating two to three times in this way it can actually make the battery work for another three to four hours.
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