HydroCaps

ComputerGrampaComputerGrampa Registered Users Posts: 5
Does anyone know how to test Hydrocaps?

These are the red caps that go on the batteries,
that conserve the water & H2 in the battery.

Is there some way to tell if my caps are no longer any good?

Any comments are appreciated.

Comments

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,698 admin
    Re: HydroCaps

    Working Hydro caps are supposed to get warm/hot when equalizing the battery (recombining H2 and O2 releases heat).

    So, as you recharge the battery and approach 100% charge and get into equalization (bubbling the electrolyte)--the caps should begin to get noticeably warm/hot (depending on how "hard" the cell is bubbling).

    If one or more do not, then I believe the catalyst has failed (eroded?).

    If you need new caps, you may look at:

    Water Miser Battery Caps

    They are just "mist filters" rather than recombining H2O. However, because they do not heat up when recombining the gasses, you can leave these caps on when equalizing.... Also, I believe they are less expensive and do not wear out.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,466 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HydroCaps
    Does anyone know how to test Hydrocaps?

    These are the red caps that go on the batteries,
    that conserve the water & H2 in the battery.

    Is there some way to tell if my caps are no longer any good?

    Any comments are appreciated.


    There are 2 types,

    1) has a catalyst re re-combine O & H, as the cells gass, the cap gets warm, and drips water back down. Must be removed prior to the monthly EQ cycle. eventually acid mist gets up into the catalyst and poisons it.


    2) has filler material to intercept water drops, and drip them back to the battery, they never wear out.
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • ComputerGrampaComputerGrampa Registered Users Posts: 5
    Re: HydroCaps

    Here's some pics of the caps I'm asking about.
    6.jpg 58.6K
    5.jpg 51.6K
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 4,838 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: HydroCaps

    The easiest way to test a cap is by direct comparison. A normal cap that comes with good battery will need water topped off every 2 months. The aftermarket and the ones that are options will extend that period to 3 to 5 months.

    Unless you are in a situation where you have to cycle the batteries unattended I would just spend 10 minutes a month on maintenance. Most people who use too much water are overcharging their batteries. This does not really harm them but it is making more maintenance time. Set your SG at the equinoxes by adjusting absorb time and or voltage. A sudden change in water consumption is not a good sign!
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail [email protected]

  • Ralph DayRalph Day Solar Expert Posts: 890 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: HydroCaps

    Grandpa,

    If your caps are cool, they're done. Mine lasted about 4 years. There are only so many amp hours of charging that they'll work for. Once a few start to feel cool during charging the rest will follow over the next 6 months (in my experience). Mine are now big battery caps, easy to get on and off, but with no catalysing ability. Total water checking and addition...30 minutes per month. My time isn't worth 24x $17 each to replace the set.

    Ralph
  • ComputerGrampaComputerGrampa Registered Users Posts: 5
    Re: HydroCaps

    Thank you folks, for the nice input.

    I think mine are "cooked" !!
Sign In or Register to comment.