24v system short circuited - battery question

thentrothentro Registered Users Posts: 9
Thankfully no one was hurt, but a helper of mine dropped the breaker onto the negative inverter cable in a freak accident, which created a short circuit situation. Unfortunately it hit on the hot side of the breaker, so things certainly got exciting after that. Battery A was older, and battery B was new. Battery A had the positive end of the 24 setup. It caught fire quickly as we ran away, and lasted about 5 seconds before the pressure cap exploded off A along with the inverter cable that was welded to its battery termiinal and the negative inverter cable. This ended the short. Thankfully besides no one getting hurt, all the other breakers in the system snapped off so no other damage occurred.

So battery A is clearly a destroyed smoking heap. But the new battery B look fine on the outside, and it's voltage tests out OK. My question is, what kind of damage do you think battery B endured? Do I need two new batteries, or one? Is there anyway to know what kind of state it is in? My theory is that the older battery had a higher level of resistance due to its age, and thus took the brunt of the damage and failed quickly and dramatically.

Also, I would like to endorse wearing safety equipment while working with batteries. The splatter of liquid metal and acid is not anything you want to be tasting, and crazier things have happend.


  • vtmapsvtmaps Solar Expert Posts: 3,738 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: 24v system short circuited - battery question

    I am so glad that you are OK. Obviously, a lesson to learn is to wear protective clothing and gear. What else can we learn? What would you do different so that this couldn't happen?
    4 X 235watt Samsung, Midnite ePanel, Outback VFX3524 FM60 & mate, 4 Interstate L16, trimetric, Honda eu2000i
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,311 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: 24v system short circuited - battery question

    i feel for you on this as i'm sure you feel bad about it even though everybody is fine.

    it's hard to say if the 2nd battery sustained damage or not. quick deep discharges can super heat things and even warp plates. hopefully it only took a tad off of the cycle life and it will be up to you to make that call. inspect it thoroughly and be sure it gets fully charged. use it if you can just to see if it seems ok.

    if in doubt you can replace both or take a chance on the one. not much help i know, but this kind of thing is sometimes hard to determine.
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