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My battery loses water whether I drive the bike or if it is in the garage and on the maintainer. Has anyone else had this problem. I am thinking of buying a new battery and have thought about a gel battery but am concerned if there is a problem with the bike causing the battery to go dry that the gel battery may just blow up. Any ideas or suggestions? Thanks.
 

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Your charging system on the bike could be cooking the battery. I would check the out put of the charging system on the bike across the battery first. If it is putting out more than 14.5 then you may have a regulator going bad or gone bad. If you fine the charging system over charging I would replace the reg. and battery both. Abattery that has been over charged can cause problem with the bikes charging system. It did with mine.



Check your stator while your at it, just to make sure things are Ok. If it is over charging I'm pretty sure you stator is fine....but your reg. has gone bad.



Batteriers do go bad after a point in time, but most have a reason and that would be the bike.



If the bike is over charging the battery and you put it on a battery tender it is holding the high charge in the battery and this could cause it to sweat also when not running.



Don't get me wrong the battery it's self could be bad. It's just safe to rule out the charging system so you knowwhere the problem may lay. That and it's easy enough to check.



Kurt
 

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1985 GL1200 Limited Edition
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Kurt's got it covered except for one thing that alot of people aren't aware of... The owner's manual and the shop manual both call for a monthly inspection of the battery fluid level and a corrosion check...
 

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I think twelves just do that. You can get a low maintenance battery if you're not up to doing the work. I had a sealed battery but it didn't last very long. About half the life of a Yuasa and twice the cost.
 

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Lead acid wet battery types whether automotive or bike must be looked at for electrolyte levels at a constant pace because the act of charging that battery means putting amps into it and the removing amps as it is being used. Amps in/out create heat whether at full voltage or partial voltage and only full voltage will operate the regulator.

Being a wet lead acid battery means the wet part consists of H2SO4, sulfuric acid which is made up of H20 and SO3. Heat from charging and discharging turns the H20, liquid water part into water vapor, boiling as the electrolyte level simply falls as the water component evaporates.

A bigger physical battery can use plugs to capture that water vapor, cool it then return to the battery the water liquid, but motorcycle batteries are small, vibration prone and often in hot/cold locations and operate in a hostile environment for battery life.

Make the conditions the best you can for your battery.
Stop excessive shaking and vibration, secure the battery to the bike, yes the bike still vibrates but at least excessive banging around within the bike will be stopped.

Keep cables and connections well connected with clean large areas of joints. 100 A through a wide large joint connection is better than through a narrow metal to metal contact. Smaller joints create more heat, more voltage drop, higher surrounding areas of magnetic radiation to cause dirt contamination, that green stuff that forms with that grey matter a sort of fluff.

Although battery cables and terminals must be large clean terminations so must the grounds at the frame. And since the connections at the grounds are between different metals, steel, aluminum copper, lead, the difference in the metals does create electronic imbalances at the joint creating a mess. This mess interferes with conductivity. So keep the mess less, by tearing apart the joints, cleaning reconnecting and doing this cleaning on a regular basis.

Wet lead acid types by their nature lose water, so keep a close eye on the level of electrolyte because with exposed lead plates the battery loses capacity.

Wet lead acid really dislike a constant trickle charge because with time they will become a less of a battery and more of a dead weight. They need to be kicked hard every once and a while with an overcharge that stirs up things and changes their electrolyte from an insulator from constant low charging, back to a conductor. The becoming of an insulator is done over time and at a little bit at a time until the battery at 20Ah becomes a battery at 10 Ah. Eventually noticed when the starting amps won't do as the battery seems low and barely starts the engine.

A kick in the rear end charge is an equalizing charge which is a controlled over charge. A process used in deep cell battery technology but beneficial for automotive batteries if done safely, timely and with caution.

Keep the battery clean, secure, charged and test for state of charge, electrolyte levels add only pure water, no tap water.

Motorcycle batteries are by nature small because of the size of bikes, but they could be larger if there is a place to put them on the bike. Batteries are storage devices, they take a charge and hold that charge, then deliver that stored charge when needed. No matter the size of the alternator the battery is a fixed tank. Fixed by the design of the vessel holding the liquid electrolyte, fixed by the amount of surface area of the lead plate and fixed by the environment holding the battery. Change any of these to better the battery and you better the things the batter can do and that is deliver more stored energy wnen needed.
 

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I've had a few do that over the years. Wasn't long before they were replaced after the charging system was checked out.

LOL
 

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A wet lead acid battery is very much like us. The condition of our surroundings are similar; we like it not too hot, not too cold, not too dry not too wet and there, batteries work best in the same conditions. They also work in extreme conditions but with added attention from us they will continue to do so.
 

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Just going on my own experience I've probably owned 20 or more bikes and several



riding mowers and ATV's over the past 40 years and I have noticed that if you're



using afloat charger and the battery is going bad it will never get to a full charge



and when that happens it causes the battery to get warm and the water inside



evaporates quickly due to the constant charging. If you have a good battery the



float charger will shut down when battery is fully charged and the water evaporates



pretty slow. I have always just bought the cheapie float/trickle chargers from



walmart and have gotten a minimum of 5 years out of my new batteries. I have



a Sears riding mower the smallest one they sell and that battery goes on the charger



in a couple weeks and has made 6 years.
 

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I installed a Yuasa AGM last spring. It is a sealed unit. I keep it on a maintainer. So far it is doeing well. It should because it is pricey.
Bobby
 

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That GM, may be expensive and it is but the glass mat has a bit of technical stuff like a check valve to prohibit excess pressure internally because the boiling away of H2O is not allowed to escape the battery and the battery must be built strong enough to withstand pressures and the check valve when open allows pressure to equalize without water loss.

My next battery WILL NOT be a Chinese knockoff.

I have a Chinese knockoff with a Johnson Control name and this is #2 because #1 failed within 24 hrs and this one failed within a year. I have had to rework the terminations that were crap.

The battery spec is at 50Ah ans it does seem to output lots of current but the terminals can't withstand any torquing. The cell holes are too small, the cell caps are a strip of plastic, the writing on the battery case is bleeding and I have not cut it throat. Over all the battery tests very well, but physically it is junk. A Wal Mart special, in my opinion pure sh*t.

The problem as I've written before retailers are jumping all over to buy this cheap stuff and make high margins...once from me and maybe others. Once bitten twice shy. Like most things that must be reliable, a lot of off shore stuff may look good but it ends there. I will never buy another.

When trying to buy non Chinese and specifically asking where the product is made, the answer is very hard to get US, Canada, England, our manufacturers have made the choice to use off shore builders, to the peril of any of us who try to rely on that product.

And I say this not from bias or a form of ism but from experiences and a lot of let down because the market place around here is full of knock offs and imitations.

If this statement offends others I am sorry, but crap is crap and I am doing my best to buy products from N.A. and it is not easy.
 

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I haven't had any Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) battery on any Wing from my '75 to my '84 last more than 14 months... Last AGM lasted a grand total of 11 months (got all of $12.65 on the pro rated warranty). I am now back to full a "full wet" battery and will stay that way. I've never had a "wet" battery last less than 2 years and a couple went 4+ years. Like stated above the manual says to check the battery every month and only use distilled water in you need to fill it... Good advice to heed.

Ken
 

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I have an Odyssey battery on for the past 3 years, my garden tractor is using an Odyssey that was cast off a gl1200 after 8 years.. 12 years and still doing it's job.
Nice thing about them is during a winter layover make sure it's charged and disconnect it... it will keep it's charge for up to two years, the colder the better. no need for a battery tender.
 
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