[TR] Battery charging

DAVID MASSEY dave1massey at cs.com
Mon Dec 28 08:40:44 MST 2020

 After all this talk about charging I thought it was time to top up my batteries.  The TR6 has a constant drain from a radio with electronic tuning and a digital clock and a display that is always active.  About 5 mA.  The smart charger spent a few minutes in absorption mode and then to float.  But then I've driven the car fairly recently.
The TR3, which hadn't been driven since August or September, went straight to float. After 4 months of inactivity there was no appreciable battery discharge on the TR3.
I once parked my TR6 in a barn for 11 months (it was supposed to be 4 months but life gets in the way).  When I went to get it I came prepared for the worst but all I had to do was hook up the batter, start the car and drive home.
My experience tells me that batteries have a pretty good shelf life.  If the battery is disconnected or in a car such as my TR3 with no static load when switched off, it can go for four to six months easily.  Putting the charger on it once a month is plenty.  If you have a car with a static load (like most modern cars or cars with modern radios) once a week is probably a good idea.  If you want to set-and-forget get a timer and run it occasionally as Rob does with his airplane - though I'll bet 15 minutes a day would be plenty.

-----Original Message-----
From: Robert Rochlin <rrochlin at comcast.net>
Cc: list Triumph <triumphs at autox.team.net>
Sent: Mon, Dec 28, 2020 7:23 am
Subject: Re: [TR] Battery charging

Several years ago we started using a battery maintenance device on our airplane battery during the winter.  The battery maintenance device is on a timer so it’s on about an hour a day .  Since we started using it we have we have not had a battery failure.  A great improvement over previous battery life. Aviation batteries are very expensive.
    I also have a Battery Minder in the garage that I move between cars in the cold weather.  I’ve got a older BMW that generates  random (  it seems) trouble codes if I attempt to start it and the battery voltage is low.
Sent from my iPhone

On Dec 25, 2020, at 8:52 PM, Jim Henningsen <trguy75 at gmail.com> wrote:

Merry Christmas!  I took my TR3a out today top down with Santa hat in 50 degree weather.  Brrrr.  But the heater is working well.  Cheers,Jim Henningsen Ocala fl 

On Dec 25, 2020, at 8:28 PM, Alex & Janet Thomson <aljlthomson at charter.net> wrote:

#yiv0724164122 #yiv0724164122 -- _filtered {} _filtered {} _filtered {} _filtered {}#yiv0724164122 #yiv0724164122 p.yiv0724164122MsoNormal, #yiv0724164122 li.yiv0724164122MsoNormal, #yiv0724164122 div.yiv0724164122MsoNormal {margin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt;font-size:12.0pt;font-family:New;}#yiv0724164122 a:link, #yiv0724164122 span.yiv0724164122MsoHyperlink {color:blue;text-decoration:underline;}#yiv0724164122 a:visited, #yiv0724164122 span.yiv0724164122MsoHyperlinkFollowed {color:purple;text-decoration:underline;}#yiv0724164122 span.yiv0724164122apple-converted-space {}#yiv0724164122 span.yiv0724164122EmailStyle18 {color:#1F497D;}#yiv0724164122 .yiv0724164122MsoChpDefault {font-size:10.0pt;} _filtered {}#yiv0724164122 div.yiv0724164122WordSection1 {}#yiv0724164122 I forgot to mention – here it is Christmas night and there are a bunch of us chatting about the relative merits of battery chargers, and we are doing it from each end of the country. This is why I enjoy this crew so much. There is just so much genuine help and assistance. We need to always give Mark Bradakis a big thank-you for keeping the mechanics of this process up and running. Where would we be without his efforts?  Have a great Christmas, everyone , as well as a good new year. It’s now 8:30 in Connecticut and to all, a good night.  Alex Thomson  From: Rye Livingston [mailto:ryel at mac.com] 
Sent: Friday, December 25, 2020 6:58 PM
To: Alex & Janet Thomson
Cc: David Friedlander; TR3 Triumphs; list Triumph
Subject: Re: [TR] Battery charging  For what it’s worth, here is an opinion from to experts I was surprised to hear.  One is a Porsche mechanic who’s been in the business for 30+ years.  The Interstate battery had died and even pumped out some white power at the end, out a breather tube from the battery.  I cleaned it all up well, worried about battery acid in the front truck.  I went to the shop, he’s an Interstate distributor as well, and bought a new battery and told him what happened, and that I’d had the battery connected to a Battery Tender Jr.  He told me that even that brand, which is good, is really not good to leave on all the time, and it will cook the battery.  He recommends putting it on for a week or two, then disconnecting for a week or two, and repeat.  Well that’s a pain.  Then in my Airstream trailer which has two 12 volt deep cycle batteries, I’ve read that the power converter that comes with the trailer also isn’t designed to leave plugged in all the time and it will cook the batteries, which did happen.  I tried using a Battery Tender Jr on that but it couldn’t deal with 2 batteries.  I was then told about an upgrade for the Airsteam power converter on Amazon, about $200 or so, which I installed and it does manage the float and it can be left plugged in for months and months no problem.  So be careful with Battery Tenders.  I have two Battery Tender Jrs and four Die Hard battery tenders for multiple cars, Kubota tractor and a boat.  Just be careful how long you leave them plugged in and check the water level if it’s not a gel battery.  I have an Optima in my Triumph and Kubota.  Good luck,  Rye

On Dec 25, 2020, at 2:21 PM, Alex & Janet Thomson <aljlthomson at charter.net> wrote:  Are the batteries still connected to their cars? Maybe there is a slight draw on the TR6. Our TR6 took the whole summer off because it needs a new wiring harness. There were some wires that had let the smoke out! After I drove it into winter storage, I disconnected the ground cable and noticed that there was a tiny spark! Something is leaking current. Another project to do! Alex Thomson From: Triumphs [mailto:triumphs-bounces at autox.team.net] On Behalf Of David Friedlander
Sent: Friday, December 25, 2020 3:18 PM
To: New England Triumphs; TR3 Triumphs
Subject: [TR] Battery charging Hey all ~ Merry Christmas ...! I have one float charger that serves both my TR3 that has an Optima red top battery and my TR6 that has a Sears Die Hard. Seems like even though each battery is only 2 -3 years old, the Die Hard seems to need more frequent “topping up” than the Optima.... Interesting.... Dave** triumphs at autox.team.net **

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