How Battery Work & Its Precautions

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There are Four stages in the discharging-charging cycle:

1. Fully Charged:

* Positive plate covered with lead oxide (PbO2).

* Negative plate covered with sponge lead (Pb).

* Electrolyte contains water (H2O) and sulfuric acid (H2SO4).

2. Discharging:

* Current flows in the cell from the negative to the positive plates.

* Electrolyte separate into hydrogen (H2) and Sulfate (SO4).

* The free sulfate combines with the lead (both lead oxide and sponge lead) and becomes lead sulfate (PbSO4).

* The free hydrogen and oxygen combine to form more water, diluting the electrolyte.

3. Fully Discharged:

* Both plates are fully sulfated.

* Electrolyte is diluted to mostly water.

4. Charging:

* Reverses the chemical reaction that took place during discharging.

* Sulfate (SO4) leaves the positive and negative plates and combines with hydrogen (H2) to become sulfuric acid (H2SO4).

* Hydrogen bubbles form at the negative plates; oxygen appears at the positive plates.

* Free oxygen(O2) combines with lead (Pb) at the positive plate to become lead oxide (PbO2).

Precautions for Battery: Take the following precautions when working with automotive batteries:

# Wear gloves and safety glasses.

# Never use spark-producing tools near the battery.

# Never lay any tools on the battery.

# If it necessary to remove the battery cables, always remove the ground first.

# When connecting battery cables, always connect the ground cable last.

# Do not use the battery ground terminal when checking for ignition spark.

# Take care not to spill electrolyte into your eyes, onto your skin, and onto any part of the vehicle.

# If you mix electrolyte, pour the acid into the water (not the water into the acid).

# Always follow the recommended procedure for battery testing, charging, and for connecting jumper cables between two batteries.

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