Protecting battery terminals

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Blues Driver

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Apr 4, 2018
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144
I want to protect battery post and cable terminals from corrosion .
I was planning to use dielectric grease but it seems that is not conductive so not the thing to use.
White lithium grease?
Thanks in advance,
Pat
 

donn

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Nov 8, 2009
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Clean the terminals making them shiny bright. Put the together making sure they are tight. Apply some plane grease. That may be old school, but still works just fine.
 

JayArr

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Jun 13, 2020
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Mission British Columbia Canada
My humble advice is to buy a terminal cleaning tool and check your batteries more often.


I think most problems start when a connection comes loose do to vibration from the road. I would recommend against using any goop/grease/paste etc to "protect" the connection, it could give you a false sense of security and lead to problems because you neglect to check the connections.

It takes less than a minute to pull a battery wire off a terminal, clean the terminal and the wire end and reconnect it. Then you know that you have a good connection. Do this twice a year at least, you should be checking your batteries monthly or quarterly for electrolite levels anyway while your there spend an extra 5 minutes and clean and reconnect the terminals. If the connections are clean and tight they will conduct well. They are made from materials that can live outside and don't really need to be "protected".

My 2 cents...
 

Mark_K5LXP

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Agree with above. You start with brushed or reamer cut terminals. Add a moisture barrier which can be dielectric grease but most any grease that repels water will work well. I use whatever happens to be loaded in my chassis grease gun. Just a "smear", a tiny blob rubbed between you fingers and wiped onto the posts and terminals does the trick. When the terminals are tightened the grease will be displaced and you'll get metal to metal contact, and the surrounding grease will help keep out corrosion promoting moisture and electrolyte. For extra credit run a nominal amount of current through the system and measure the voltage drop between the post and terminal which will be just a few millivolts. Going forward one can easily remeasure the drop on connections in the system and service the ones showing increased resistance before they become a problem.

Mark B.
Albuquerque, NM
 

Matt_C

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SE - Mich
Well folks,
I have some news here. With VERY Little exception, all "Greases" are non-conductiove aka di-electric...
What people know as dielectric grease is special in that it is a silicon based grease that has ZERO FILM STRENGTH. So, when you put it on terminals and connectors, it will not prevent contact because the grease allows the break through. But, it is grease, so it stays around and can prevent unwanted stuff from getting into the connecting parts.
For the last several decades, my retirement job has been working on small boats (less that 100 ton). Battery connections are a special headache because people still use lead ACID batteries. But, since I don't get paid to come back. I clean the lead terminals, coat the parts with silicon grease and then spray the rest with a protectant. There are several good ones out there.
Matt
 

Rene T

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Farmington NH
Clean the terminals making them shiny bright. Put the together making sure they are tight. Apply some plane grease. That may be old school, but still works just fine.
Donn is it plane grease as in aircraft grease or is it plain old grease
 

Kirk

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Full-time , Escapee
I was first trained to maintain wet cell batteries in the early 60's while on a submarine where they are considered to be vital. I now use a terminal protectant product as it does make the maintenance easier and less frequent. I use the fiber anticorrosion washers and also a brush on product like NCP2, because of overspray issues.
 

Mark_K5LXP

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I think a lot of folks are looking for the "no touch" solution, something that can be dribbled or sprayed onto a connection that magically resolves the problem without having to disconnect or handle anything that's dirty or corrosive. Problem is that most folks ignore or are oblivious to their batteries and connections until they've become a corroded mess and quit working, then you're way past the point of preventative anything. I remove, clean and reinstall every automotive and storage battery I own once a year. It's simple to do, doesn't take long and there's never any surprises during operation. It keeps the connections fresh and minimizes (nearly eliminates actually) corrosion issues in the trays because there hasn't been enough time for electrolyte to leak and accumulate. Take care of your batteries and they'll take care of you. Geez, I sound so much like my grandfather now...

Mark B.
Albuquerque, NM
 

Lou Schneider

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KIrk.. Ive usually chucked those washers, when a battery came with them... How, exactly do they work?... Maybe I was wrong to not use them..
Butch
The washers fill the space between the bottom of the connector and the battery case so acid fumes can't migrate in via that gap.
 

Mark_K5LXP

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Albuquerque, NM
They also have some "chemical" that neutralizes acid. I've found in practice though that this feature is short lived, especially with batteries exposed to the elements where road spray or engine washdowns rinse out the secret sauce. Then you have a fiber washer that holds moisture next to the terminal which in my view doesn't add value to the process. As a rule I don't think they solve a problem, and have stuck with tried and true terminal greasing.

Mark B.
Albuquerque, NM
 
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