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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

I have a MY17 Cee'd 4 1.6 Diesel with Start-Stop and it has been sitting around quite a lot recently due to working from home.

I have been taking it out for a run every couple of weeks for about 30 mins just to rotate the tyres and charge the battery a bit.

But I wanted to charge the battery using a battery charger. The charger I have is one of Lidl's finest :) The charger is a Ultimate Speed Car Battery Charger ULGD 3.8 A1 and the box says it is "For all 6v or 12v Car and Motorcycle batteries" and it always appeared to work well on my previous car (an old 53 plate Almera). I bought it 2015.

In the Cee'd Manual it states to remove the battery from the car before charging. Is this really necessary because if so I won't bother.

It is also recommended to remove the negative battery connection before charging. Again, is this really necessary - what would happen if I don't and charge the battery? I ask because I am sure that I never used to remove this when I charged the Almera's battery but it was few years ago so i can't remember 100%.

Am I right in think that the battery in the Cee'd is of the AGM variety? This charger has a mode that the manual states:

"Program 4 - 12v 14.7v / 3.8A is for charging 12v batteries with a capacity between 14aH - 120aH under cold conditions or for charging AGM batteries" (my emphasis) so I would imagine that the charger is safe for this type of battery. Would you agree?

Any advice, guidance, experience or "gotchas" that anyone can offer would be greatly appreciated. I just don't want to kill my battery or my car :)

Thanks in advance and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Moley
 

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There is no need to remove or disconnect the battery when using this type of charger provided care is taken when connecting the charger. Recommend connect charger first and then turn it on. Recommend turn the charger off and leave for 10 mins before disconnecting.

Does the charger show voltage or current when in use?

What other programmes does it have?

Dunno what type of battery you have fitted but the charger is clearly good for either type on P4.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi Turnup,

Thanks for the reply.

IIRC it does display voltage whilst charging.

Program 1 is 6v (7.3v / 0.8A).
Program 2 is Motorcycles 12v (14.4v / 0.8A).
Program 3 is 12v (14.4v / 3.8A) but this doesn't mention anything about AGM.
Program 4 is 12v (14.7v / 3.8A) for cold conditions or AGM batteries.

When I was using this charger for my Almera I used to:

Connect Red, Connect Black, Connect Mains and power on.

Disconnect Mains, Disconnect Black, Disconnect Red.

So, hopefully I am good to go?

Thanks again,

Moley
 

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Hi Turnup,

Thanks for the reply.

IIRC it does display voltage whilst charging.

Program 1 is 6v (7.3v / 0.8A).
Program 2 is Motorcycles 12v (14.4v / 0.8A).
Program 3 is 12v (14.4v / 3.8A) but this doesn't mention anything about AGM.
Program 4 is 12v (14.7v / 3.8A) for cold conditions or AGM batteries.

When I was using this charger for my Almera I used to:

Connect Red, Connect Black, Connect Mains and power on.

Disconnect Mains, Disconnect Black, Disconnect Red.

So, hopefully I am good to go?

Thanks again,

Moley
OK so AGM batteries can be charged harder than flooded cell batteries and in cold conditions flooded cell batteries can be charged harder too so that explains P4. TBH at only 3.8 A charging there would only be a problem if leaving it on a flooded cell battery P4 for a very long time.

The battery you have should state if it is AGM, or look in the manual but this is only reliable if you have had the car from new - previous owner might have fitted the wrong battery as flooded cell types are cheaper than AGM. Generally AGM batteries are fitted to cars with ISG but they are creeping in more because they are lighter.

Either P3 or P4 (it is cold at present) will be fine. If you want to be super careful then use P3 but this will not quite fully charge an AGM battery - difference is not great though.

Good to go!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Turnup,

Is that the only difference between P3 and P4 then do you think is this "finished" voltage of 14.4v vs 14.7v?

I've just been and looked at the battery and it does say that it is AGM type. Plus I've had the car from new and it is still its original battery.

The - post is exposed but the + post is under a flap which I've opened up.

Now this is the (next) stupid question bit regarding the + pole - I take it that the + pole is the bit that looks similar to the - pole and covered in white grease? I ask because under the + plastic cover is another "set of things" that are NOT covered in grease that I've never seen on a battery before (but this is my first AGM battery).

For both the - and + pole there doesn't look like a whole lot of pole to connect to, though.

Thanks again, Turnup!

All the best,

Moley
 

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FWIW I've had my Cee'd from new (pre-registered) for almost eight years. When I took it for a test drive the battery was flat as you like and the dealer needed to use a starter battery to get it going. Eight years on the car still has the original battery, with no signs so far of diminished performance.

My driving pattern of mostly short journeys mean that the battery is seldom at a high state of charge and ISG basically never works as a result. A couple of times a year I do treat the battery to a full charge (a couple of days on the charger) using this charger, which has a dedicated AGM mode.....


Once charged the ISG will work again for a few days until the battery is again below the required threshold. But, the point is that after eight years the battery is still going strong. I do not remove or disconnect the battery for charging. It clearly has had no negative effect to charge in this fashion.
 

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I haven't tried it on my Sportage yet, but during Lockdown 1 I bought a solar panel trickle charger for my previous car with ISG. Worked a treat, no need to disconnect or remove the battery, and turns itself off when battery fully charged.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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You will probably find that the "set of things" is attached to the battery cable clamp.
Any robust, available part of that clamp will be good if it gives a decent contact and grip for the charger crocodile clip.

If you intend to use the charger frequently, then it can be worthwhile getting a quick connect plug installed on the battery and charger. Then any family member can use the charger if required. Ctek website will display such a connection., cheap and simple.
 

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Thanks Turnup,

Is that the only difference between P3 and P4 then do you think is this "finished" voltage of 14.4v vs 14.7v?

I've just been and looked at the battery and it does say that it is AGM type. Plus I've had the car from new and it is still its original battery.

The - post is exposed but the + post is under a flap which I've opened up.

Now this is the (next) stupid question bit regarding the + pole - I take it that the + pole is the bit that looks similar to the - pole and covered in white grease? I ask because under the + plastic cover is another "set of things" that are NOT covered in grease that I've never seen on a battery before (but this is my first AGM battery).

For both the - and + pole there doesn't look like a whole lot of pole to connect to, though.

Thanks again, Turnup!

All the best,

Moley
Yes the fully charged voltage is a little higher for AGM batteries

KIA tend to fit a large fuse to feed everything but the starter motor (that is a chunky cable) and the alternator charging wire. Anything metallic under that flap will be good to connect the charger, including the battery pole clamp itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks everyone,

I have hooked the charger up and nothing exploded and I didn't die so so far, so good.

8441


The charger indicated the battery was at about 11.7v and is now charging away.

Will probably have to stop when it gets dark and start again in the morning.

Thanks again, everyone!

All the best,

Moley
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi again everyone,

So, I put the battery on charge on Sunday for a few hours - maybe 5 or 6 or so.

I then put it on Monday for about 12 hours where it got up to 3 out of 4 bars on the battery charger display and also displayed about 14.1 or 14.2 volts. When I took the charger off the battery I stuck my multimeter on and got a reading of 12.76v. I stuck the multimeter on this morning out of curiosty and got 12.18v.

So I put the battery charger on again for about another 13 hours and still only got up to 3 out of 4 bars on the battery charger display but it displayed up to 14.6v (i think the most it would have got to is 14.7v according to the charger manual). Interestingly though, I did notice the voltage changed on the charger display a couple of times to a lower voltage but then it climbed back up again. In fact, just before I disconnected it tonight it had dropped from 14.6v to 13.9v and whilst I stood there watching it climbed back up to 14.5v over the course of 30 seconds or so. When I took the charger off and put the multimeter straight on it displayed 12.98v. I will check again in the morning to see what the resting voltage is.

I would have thought though a total of around 35 hours at 3.8A would have been enough to fully charge a 70A battery, so maybe the battery is on its way out? Or is it worth putting the back on again tomorrow for another 12 hours to see if it finally "fills up"?

Thanks again,

Moley.
 

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The various voltages you have measured are normal. The charger will have a sequence that it goes thru.

Monday night: 12.76
Tuesday morning : 12.18v
Is not necessarily bad for a battery connected to the car, various things can cause load, there may have been a load on the battery when you read 12.18v.
However 12.18 is a bit low.

Around 13v when the charger is disconnected is typical.
Turning the lights on should drop it to about 12.5v.
After 12 hrs with no use, 12.75 is typical.

All these values are for a lead acid battery.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Hi again,

OK, so I tested my resting voltage at just before 8am this morning and it was 12.28v (up from the prvious day's 12.18v).

I have just gone out now and retested it 4 hours later and the resting voltage is now 12.32v.

Would it be worth putting the charger back on as it does seem to increase voltage levels each time I have done so so far?

But I am worried about over-charging/over-cooking the battery and also in case I cause any problems to the car electronics/ECU.

Or should I be grateful for what I have acheived and let sleeping dogs lie?

Thanks again, everyone,

Moley.
 

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I believe you have had the charger on over 27 hrs now.
More charging probably won't achieve an increase in resting voltage.

If it starts fine, then it should be ok.
Leaving that type of charger on for days should be safe, emergency vehicles often have such a solution.

An overnight charge every month should be enough.
 

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It is normal for a battery to "relax" somewhat after charging. Additionaly there will anyway be a small drain on it when the car is idle from such things as the alarm system and remote locking receiver. The charger is unlikely to have delivered the full 3.8A the whole time, particularly as the battery charging voltage rises. I would say that you have done as much as needed for the time being and I see no cause for alarm regarding the battery's present condition.

If you really want to tip top it then a conditioning charger will, over time, improve the condition of the battery and there have been good reports on here of the Ctek chargers. In conditining mode the charger will charge/discharge the battery in cycles and gradually the charged voltage will increase. I have never felt the need to go to this length but perhaps the benefits are greater if a battery has been abused by deep discharge. Set the cost of a conditioning charger and the faff of using it against the price of a new battery (from a battery specialist not a dealer). Your battery is in better condition that it was and speaking personally, I would leave it at that unless I was experiencing any problems.
 

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Further thoughts regarding the observed charging behaviour.

It would seem that the charger is charging to a target voltage and then stopping. As the battery relaxes or is discharged by the residual load it kicks in again and resumes charging. This would suggest that it can be left connected indefinitely. What dos the manual say?

Old fashioned chargers would just carry on trying to charge a battery come what may and this can dry out the cells over time. There is no risk of "boiling" as such because that would take far more power than your charger can supply, but persistent overcharging does cause the release of Hydrogen and Oxygen (chemical products of Water) so the water content gradually falls.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Hi,

Well I just went and took the car out for a quick ride around the block to make sure everything was OK :)
It started with a much more "confident" turnover, if you know what I mean.

When I got back I just stuck the multimeter on it whilst the engine was running and the alternator seems to be giving it around 14.17v.

As everything seems to be OK at the moment, I will leave as-is.

Thanks again, everyone.

All the best,

Moley
 
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