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Old 11-04-2013, 05:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lead Acid Battery - 0.0V. Dead?

I just bought a car that has been sitting for a long time. It had a new lead-acid battery installed in 2011 and was promptly parked and not touched until I purchased a week ago.

Battery was drained to 0.0V according to my multimeter. Is there any chance of resuscitating the battery, or is it a goner?

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Old 11-04-2013, 07:04 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If you have one, try S-L-O-W-L-Y recharging it on a "trickle charger," but ONLY do so AFTER you've checked the density of the electrolytic (battery acid) fluid. All the water MAY have evaporated away, leaving only concentrated sulphuric acid.
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Old 11-04-2013, 08:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
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if a brand new battery is allowed to fully drain once, it can usually be recovered if the sulphates havn't punctured the separator.

I use a lightbulb battery charger or a dumb trickle charger to do the job.
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Old 11-04-2013, 08:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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you MAY have luck bringing it back to life, but i would ALWAYS be wary of how long it might last. i've "recovered" batteries that have been drained down to nothing before, some lasted hours, some lasted until i got rid of the car(3+ years), just don't be surprised if you're left stranded due to a dead battery. make sure you have jumper cables and are in a friendly area or get a jumper pack(and keep it charged) and be able to do it yourself.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Most of the time the clock, radio and other things in the car will drain it to dead in 6 months... so your battery hast been sitting dead for a year to a year and a half, first off make sure that it did not freeze and crack, letting the acid out.
like has been said, even if you bring it back, it will not last, if you drained it dead last week, then you might be ok, but a year ago on a car that sat for two years? good luck.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'd buy a new one, peace of mind is worth it. Plus if it does start to fail you won't be wasting fuel to charge a half charged battery every morning.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:25 PM   #7 (permalink)
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for some anecdotal experience: my wife's car had a new battery near the end of 2006. walmart, bottom-dollar battery. it got used regularly for a while, but near march or so of 2008, had sat with no use of the car. someone wired in a radio incorrectly and it drained within about 2 weeks at most. it sat unused from march to.... july, i think. so, a solid 4 months with a completely dead battery that was new in let's say november of 2006. so a year and 4 months after new, sat dead.

that one came back to life and some significant prodding and lasted until it was replaced by the new owner in september of 2012. i don't know how much longer it would have lasted, but it wasn't showing any classic battery failure signs in our posession.
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Old 12-13-2013, 12:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the advice.

I let the trickle charger run for about two weeks and it seems to be fine for now. Actually, during our recent cold spell (it got down to about 15F overnight) the car that this battery was in was the only one that would start reliably even though I rarely start it up.*
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Old 12-30-2013, 12:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
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my saturn came with a cheap battery that was 5 years old.. it started having issues.. like. if you let the dome light on for 20 minutes it won't start. it was rated at 710 amps i think.. advanced auto tested it at 256 amps at a full charge. and it wouldn't hold that charge with anything on. starting it would kill it if it didn't start in 3 trys.. sometimes on 1st start it would just barely turn over. i have now replaced it. i don't know if it sat at all for extended periods.. but it was from 2007 battery i have now is 2009 i think so we will see how long it lasts
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by codyas View Post
my saturn came with a cheap battery that was 5 years old.. it started having issues.. like. if you let the dome light on for 20 minutes it won't start. it was rated at 710 amps i think.. advanced auto tested it at 256 amps at a full charge. and it wouldn't hold that charge with anything on. starting it would kill it if it didn't start in 3 trys.. sometimes on 1st start it would just barely turn over. i have now replaced it. i don't know if it sat at all for extended periods.. but it was from 2007 battery i have now is 2009 i think so we will see how long it lasts
A lead battery wears out each time you use it, yours likely was missing plate material from being used not sitting.

Only way to know would be to desulphate it and see what happens, more than likely toast.

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