By a battery post cleaner at your local auto parts store for a couple of
bucks. Spend an additional dollar and get a pair of the washers to put
underneath the connectors, to inhibit future corrosion.
Loosen and remove the cables, wet the battery (water hose) and then
apply baking soda. Scrub gingerly with a tooth brush or such.
Clean the terminals and the cable ends, apply some grease and then
tighten the cables back on. Rise all the acid below the battery,
rinsing any acid under the battery and off the metal frame, etc.
In the olden days a copper penny was placed on top of a car battery.
The copper attracted the "crud". Back then you could just change the
penny out. Seriously!
Yea clean them good, dont forget the inside of the cable terminal, I
used to clean mine every few years they corroded so bad, then I wore
down the terminals so they would not tighten, and my car would not
start often, I had to make shims, so dont over clean and wear them
down like I did. You also need to clean the battery casing real well
with soap and baking soda, a battery self drains from dirt on the
casing. On my newer car mine dont corrode, they have spraayed a
coating to keep the terminals sealed and i have a battery cover to
keep off dirt. Corrosion may be in part from a bad connection, maybe
grease works as well as a spray sealer I dont really know but get rid
of it, seal the terminals and keep it clean. www.batteryuniversity.com
has good charge and technical data.
Yes, I think it's a good idea to clean. I've seen top post
and side post terminals. Most cars, the red / positive is
the "hot" terminal. So, it's common advice to remove the
black terminal first. Less likely to throw sparks when your
wrench bumps some other metal. As to cleaning, a wire brush
is the common way. Rinse with water, let it dry or dab it
dry with the paper napkins you get from the drive up food
place. Put a bunch of axle grease on, and put the terminals
back on (red first, black second). Now, rest your radio
clock and station presets.
And sometimes the car won't run as well for a while after
disconnecting the battery.
Not many people center post.
For me, that's about 5 seconds, but the
manual makes it sound like it could take an hour to get back
Yeah, that's called a battery post brush. It usually or often comes
with a battery terminal brush (which is sort of the opposite of what
you describe) as part of it, but not always.
It's also good if you are a giant and need to do some sewing.
I remember seeing a short/small brush, so that could be part of the set.
I wonder if a giant doing sewing would get stabbed. LOL.
Years ago, my first car was a VW beetle. It would never start and I had to
keep push starting it. Well, duh, it was the dirty battery post. I never
thought of it cuz I was a young kid and the battery was under the rear
My BF and I drove from Buffalo to Newark, NJ while it was on the fritz.
I had a big decal on the side of the car that said 'Cuda. I thought that
was so funny. I had the rear bumper tied up with clothesline, up at the
We saw the Statue of Liberty from NJ in a real bad section of the city.
It was near docks, i think. We didn't want to turn off the car. Geesh, we
were lucky to get out of there, alive. Everyone was staring at us. og!
The fastest/easiest way is not the best. Any soda pop can be drizzled on
there, and it will cause some of the corrosion to be dissolved. But it does
not get down into the terminals.
To clean terminals, you need a battery brush.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
You must remove the terminals, and you must use two wrenches, one on each
end of the bolt to keep from cracking off the whole terminal. Also, if it
is severely corroded, you might break off the bolt. Once the cable is off,
it can be cleaned with a battery brush until it is shiny. Special grease
can be put on the terminals to keep corrosion down. Treated felt pads can
then be put on the terminals before reinstalling the cables.
If you have green corrosion on your terminals, you are not far away from
hearing the click click rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!
Pouring Coca Cola on there might buy you a little time, but they need to be
And be very sure to remove the ground terminal (black wire) first! If
you work on the positive terminal first, you run the risk of shorting
out if the wrench which is in contact with the terminal hits the
engine block or body or some other grounded piece of metal.
Sure is. It will keep building up until it literally severs the battery
cables and destroys the hold-down clamp..
Replace the battery, quickly.
That corrosion happens because the battery-to-post seal is broken, either
through age or (far more common) mishandling. You can clean it off and even
install those neutralizing-felt washers, but it /will/ come back again.
Clean off the existing corrosion on the cables using a thick paste of
baking soda and water. Do this before installing the new battery. And when
you tighten the cables onto the new battery, be GENTLE. The terminals only
need to be tight enough that you can't rotate them by hand AND NO MORE.
Counter your tightening force with opposite force applied to the other side
from the tightening nut.
Yes. Use a wire brush. Cover the vent holes and cover the entire
battery case and terminals with a baking soda paste using a
toothbrush. Rinse. Cover both terminals with a thin layer of
Vaseline. Repeat yearly. Check the water level and make sure the
terminal clamps are tight.
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