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Thread: Battery theory/boil-over question

  1. #1
    Member Marty's Avatar
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    Battery theory/boil-over question

    I've got a problem with a 12v lead-acid car battery, but not the D. Nevertheless, the battery (now 5 years old) is boiling over very badly and destroying my lovely engine bay. I know this will sound hard to believe, but tis true: My car is U.S.-spec and the Canadian dealers here cannot order me a battery with the positive terminal in the proper spot (my family works at the dealer and have done everything in their power, but they can't order one for me).

    The battery sits in an aluminum enclosure whose size is very specific, and the tie down strap is actually molded to the exact size/shape of the battery, so I can't just throw any old battery in there.

    I have spoken with numerous commercial and industrial battery suppliers and they too were unable to find me a battery. Everyone I've spoken to, including a retired chemist friend, is unwilling to rebuild the battery for me.

    I have a charger which states that it has the ability to save and restore even heavily sulphated batteries with its pulse technology, but the battery continues to boil over. It still holds a good charge, it just won't stop boiling over.

    As much as I'd love to, I don't really have any spare time to drive to the States to pick up a battery. Anybody out there know how I can save this one? Any ideas at all?
    1981 DeLorean VIN 1250
    1991 Eagle Talon TSI AWD
    2006 Honda Insight (imported)

  2. #2
    Quietly enjoying ownership Cory W's Avatar
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    Is it for the Insight?

  3. #3
    Member Marty's Avatar
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    Yup. The car won't run without it. It completes a circuit and possible has another function (aside from starting the car in -20C weather)
    1981 DeLorean VIN 1250
    1991 Eagle Talon TSI AWD
    2006 Honda Insight (imported)

  4. #4
    Admn Retired Ron's Avatar
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    There are two reasons I can think of that will cause a battery to "boil", shorted plates and overcharge.
    Shorted plates will cause it to boil while there is a heavy load (eg cranking), and especially when the charge is on the low side. Battery replacement is only solution.
    Check for overcharge after allowing the alternator to replenish the power used to crank the engine with a voltmeter, 14.2V is common cutout voltage- if it goes to 15V, the voltage regulator or alternator is bad.
    Most autoparts will check these for free.


    EDIT: just came across this battery on ebay...says it will fit Insight, $183.00
    Last edited by Ron; 11-10-2011 at 12:48 AM.

  5. #5
    Delorean Guru
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    What Ron said. Can also happen if the battery was ever frozen. Since the batter is over 5 years old it is "done" anyway. There are places that can custom fab a battery for you or maybe you can modify the battery box to take a more common battery size.
    David Teitelbaum

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    Member Marty's Avatar
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    Only problem is, there is no alternator. It's my Insight (hybrid). I've called all the commercial/industrial battery builders in the Toronto area, and none are willing to build me a battery. It's just too expensive.

    GEEZ $183 for a battery? Up here a brand new one, the correct size with the terminal in the wrong spot is $50. Ouch. Looks like the cheapest solution is to have my pos/neg cables lengthened to accomodate the Reverse-post battery from the dealer. Thanks guys.
    Last edited by Marty; 11-10-2011 at 02:44 PM.
    1981 DeLorean VIN 1250
    1991 Eagle Talon TSI AWD
    2006 Honda Insight (imported)

  7. #7
    Admn Retired Ron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marty View Post
    Only problem is, there is no alternator. It's my Insight (hybrid).
    Thing is, if it boils when cranking you have a choice. But if it boils while you drive, whatever is charging it will ruin it (or a new battery) in no time.....

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