My Tractor Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have a Wheel Horse with 14 horse engine. Not too big, right? So, I buys myself an Interstate Battery in early July. All indications that it was just manufactured in May 2019. CCA amps on the sticker are 230. So, the other day I ran the tractor for 3 hours or so, and put 'er back in the barn. Two days later, I put the voltage meter on the 5 month old battery, and it reads 12.85 volts.

My question -- is this battery doomed for failure? I would think a battery this new should be metering more than 13 V. What do you guys think? Has Interstate gone down the toilet? If it craps out within one year, free battery time. Anymore than one year, too bad. Only paid 32 bucks at Costco.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
225 Posts
No expert here... 12.8 sounds good to me. If you seen 12.5 and under I'd be a bit concerned. No battery going to hold 13 volt that long after being used. JMO....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
No expert here... 12.8 sounds good to me. If you seen 12.5 and under I'd be a bit concerned. No battery going to hold 13 volt that long after being used. JMO....
Where in PA? Bucks County here.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
2,064 Posts
Bring it in to Advanced or Auto Zone and have them do a load test on it .....I am surprised that you got a 1 year warranty on it....usually only 90 day
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
346 Posts
There is nothing wrong with your battery. 12.85 v after sitting 2 days is normal, actually very good. As a battery ages it is not un common to see 12.5- 12.7 volts The only time you will see 13v or more is right after it comes off a charger or the tractor has been running charging it. This is actually a false reading as to charge a 12v battery the charger or alternator has to put in a higher value than the battery, usually high 13’s to high 14’s. To get a true voltage reading of a battery right after charging, one must get rid of the surface charge by either putting a load on it for a few minutes, or waiting a number of hrs for the battery to settle down.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
7,239 Posts
12.6V is the normal voltage for a fully charged battery.
Just after charging, you'll have a surface charge which will be noticeably higher.

Take a 1.5V pen light battery and measure to see how far off your meter is.
My Free/$5 HF meter reads 8% high. That means about 1 volt high on a 12V battery.
Pretty meaningless measurement when you think about it.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
929 Posts
Where in PA? Bucks County here.
LOL, I just got a flyer of some sort that had Bucks County Pennsylvania in it, cover bridges, castle built by a tile maker. Looks like nice countryside there.

As for the battery, 12.85 sounds pretty good to me after setting a couple days.

CCMoe
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
1,741 Posts
You're good... 12.8v on a two-day rested battery is gold. Charging voltage is of course necessarily higher but not normal at the terminals when the engine isn't running.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Northampton county. You know where Jacktown, Blue Mt Antique gas and steam show is.? Well I'm about 1/2 mile from there.
Don't quite know where Jacktown is, but I def know Blue Mountain. Some good deer counts up there.
 

·
15,000 +posts!
Joined
·
19,601 Posts
In my experience the voltage reading isn't what really matters--it is whether it has enough cranking amps to crank over a cold engine long enough to start it..

I've had batteries that had good voltage readings,and measured "good" when I tested the specific gravity with a hydrometer---but as soon as you apply a load to them,like the starter,the voltage dropped drastically and you could only get a few revolutions out of the starter at full speed before it started slowing way down rapidly..that means they had a dead or dying or shorted cell and they were ready for the core pile..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
LOL, I just got a flyer of some sort that had Bucks County Pennsylvania in it, cover bridges, castle built by a tile maker. Looks like nice countryside there.

As for the battery, 12.85 sounds pretty good to me after setting a couple days.

CCMoe
CCMoe: That's funny. Why would Bucks County promote themselves to people in the midwest? Anyway, that castle that's made by a tile maker looks like a house the The Adams Family would live in. It's just plain weird. I'd expect to see Uncle Fester walking around outside it.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
929 Posts
CCMoe: That's funny. Why would Bucks County promote themselves to people in the midwest? Anyway, that castle that's made by a tile maker looks like a house the The Adams Family would live in. It's just plain weird. I'd expect to see Uncle Fester walking around outside it.
hotajax,

The article was in http://www.50plusnewsandviews.com/ but I did not find much there.

Premier Edition so not sure what it is about.

CCMoe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
803 Posts
Discussion Starter #14

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
I'll add my two cents here. That battery seems to be fine. If it were 12.5 or lower, then I'd be getting ready for a new battery. The best way to test a battery, those little syringe things you stick in that has the floating balls. It has a name but can't recall it. It can certainly tell you if you have a bad cell. Without that, just turn your engine over. If it spins good, battery is OK. If it sounds bogged down or slow, either the battery is weak from sitting to long without charging or it isn't holding a good charge. Test again in a couple days after running the equipment a bit to charge it up good. I can tell by how my car engine sounds when my car battery is getting weak. Strange thing is, when they put it on the machine, it reads on the low end of normal. Thing is, a low or weak battery is bad on starters.

Another trick I've used. In the winter, I run my mower once a month for about 15 minutes or so. It keeps the battery charged and lets it sling some oil around too. Even those cheap crappy Walmart mower batteries give me several years of good service by doing that. I know people who don't run theirs during the winter and they can't get two years out of one of those batteries. One friend of mine buys a new one each spring before even trying to start his.
 

·
Cub Cadet Beta Tester
Joined
·
27 Posts
Fully charged while charging = 14.2-14.4V
Fully charged immediately after stopping charging = 13.5V
At Rest Voltage = 12.5V for a fully charged battery
50% charge which you should never go below = 11V

Depending on your meter you may be a few tenths above or below these values unless you have a quality calibrated meter like a Fluke.

Hope this helps!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
I found this. I used to have a better one but can't find it at the moment. A lot of this depends on temp too.

Battery Voltage and State of Charge:

12.66v . . . . . . . . . . 100%
12.45v . . . . . . . . . . 75%
12.24v . . . . . . . . . . 50%
12.06v . . . . . . . . . . 25%
11.89v . . . . . . . . . . 0%

(NOTE: these readings are at 80 degrees F. Battery voltage readings will drop with temperature roughly 0.01 volts for every 10 degrees F.)
(At 30 degrees F. a fully charged battery will measure about 12.588 volts, and at zero degrees F it will measure about 12.516 volts.)
 

·
Cub Cadet Beta Tester
Joined
·
27 Posts
I found this. I used to have a better one but can't find it at the moment. A lot of this depends on temp too.
I think both what you and I said are generalizations for the average person. It certainly gets a lot more complex with different battery types such as AGM and Li-ion plus their planned use. My business was sailing yachts and the 11V 50% state was what was stated/published for the minimum voltage (Max AH) for AGM.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
I think both what you and I said are generalizations for the average person. It certainly gets a lot more complex with different battery types such as AGM and Li-ion plus their planned use. My business was sailing yachts and the 11V 50% state was what was stated/published for the minimum voltage (Max AH) for AGM.
What I posted was for a lead acid battery, like goes in a car. I found listings for sealed, AGM and other types but the OP wasn't needing that info so I didn't post it.

I still think the best way to test a battery is the sound a engine makes when turning it over. That puts a load on the battery that is what it will be seeing in the real world. When my car for example starts turning slower, especially in the winter, I get a new battery. It's already hard enough for the starter to turn the engine in the cold, having a weak battery that's going bad doesn't help. If ones pays a little attention, the sound will be different. Of course, when I swap batteries, I keep the old one to run small 12v transfer pumps with that don't pull much current. I just return a older battery that has no power left in it. I've got a couple old batteries around that are completely dead for that purpose. The little floating ball works well too. Still can't recall what that thing is called. It measures the specific gravity of the acid.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top