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My battery terminals have some corrosion and general filth. Somebody suggested that my engine issues may be due to this, so I figure cleaning them sure can't hurt.
What's the best way to clean them? I've heard 2 schools of thought...baking soda & a wire brush and coke (as is cola) and a wire brush... Thoughts?


Modified by duandcc at 2:37 PM 1-12-2004
 

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Re: Cleaning battery terminals (duandcc)

I know wal mart sells a handy little cleaning tool. It was fairly cheap if i remember right. They also have a nifty little kit that included some anit corrosion spray and some other helpful items. Of course im sure the wire brush trick will work if your looking for the free solution.
 

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Re: Cleaning battery terminals (duandcc)

Personally I just use a wire brush and clean water to rinse them, and when they have dried, I put some battery terminal grease, or if in a pinch, regular vaseline on them to prevent further corrotion.
 

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Re: Cleaning battery terminals (PerL)

Both the coke and baking soda work to neutralize the acid but the coke leaves a very sticky residue thats tough to get off. I use baking soda and a tooth brush to clean up the outside but that's just cosmetics. If the outside is corroded it's a fair bet the post to terminal insides have the same issue. Pull off both terminals (negative first) and get one of those battery brushes that have both male (cable terminal) and female (battery post) bristles. After scubbing I then dip the cable ends in a cup of baking soda/water solution and then rinse it all with lots of water. Put those anti-corrosion felt mats (that you got when you got the terminal brush) on the battery posts an you are off to the races. Also, if you have any auxilliary cables on the positive terminals for relay'd lights, amps etc. make sure you pull those apart and clean the contacting surfaces as well. Then
 

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Re: Cleaning battery terminals (Phatbastard)

Coke doesn't neutralize the acid but it makes it easier to dissolve the acidy corrosion. Ancient rule of chemisty is "Like dissolves like" and Coke is pH between 2 and 3 IIRC. (Its been many years since chem). The point is that it is acidic. Coke to clean it, baking soda to neutralize acid, dielectric grease to prevent corrosion. Also, if there is a battery cover, make sure the vents are working correctly. The gasses a battery vents contribute to the corrosion a lot!!


Modified by Haiku Master at 9:30 PM 1-12-2004
 
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