Dead Simple Trick Brings Any Battery Back To Life
The process of regenerating batteries. Due to technological evolution, lead batteries can today be regenerated by safe methods, extending their lifetime more than twice before being recycled, with outstanding economic results and a major positive environmental impact.
By regenerating batteries we understand the process of returning used batteries that are faulty to their original state of operation, with strict reference to lead-acid batteries and accumulators.
Battery faults are due to several causes:
overload – leads to plaque corrosion, water loss, gel or drying of separators
derating – leads to sulphation and corrosion
improper storage – leads to sulphation, corrosion, hydration
over discharge – leads to failure of the anode plates
overuse – leads to breaks, cracks, destroyed cells, and other mechanical failures
Only faulty batteries due to sulphation can be regenerated by an inverse electrochemical process called desulphation which is subject to recycling. It is estimated that over 87% of the batteries are defective by sulphation, so they are “renewable” which is a very important factor.
Desulphation is a commercially available process, although the electrochemical process has been known for a long time. It is a green, state-of-the-art technology that allows the regeneration of lead batteries and a substantial prolongation of their lifetime.
Basically, the batteries are made up of two electrodes (the lead oxide lead PbO2 and lead Pb cathode) immersed in an electrolyte H2SO4 sulfuric acid.
Sulfation is the (slow) chemical process by which the SO2 group is deposited on the surface of the two electrodes, transforming that surface into lead sulfate PbSO4 followed by crystallization of these sulphates. As a result of the sulfuric acid, water H2O remains and the battery can be considered “dead”
Battery sufation process
Good battery Sulfated battery
Desulphation is done by means of high frequencies, variable frequency and variable amplitude which are applied on the two electrodes in short sequences (to avoid electrode damage by overheating) by certain algorithms that generally depend on the type and model of the battery .
Regeneration is a process that includes besides desulphation, previous stages of loading, unloading, testing, analysis and identification, and a subsequent recharge.
Sulfated battery plate
The desulphurisation and charging time is between 15 and 100 hours (to avoid thermal overload) to which the necessary time for analysis, sorting, etc. (a few hours) can be added.
Sometimes it is necessary to repeat the process and sometimes, when cells are unevenly affected, a process of equalization of capacity before desulphation is required. The length of the process depends mainly on the type of batteries and the degree of sulphation.
For example, it takes 15-17 hours to desulphate a car battery while a deep cycle storage battery may require 90-96 hours.
Regeneration can return the battery (battery) to 80-92% of the initial condition depending on the initial battery status (how deep the sulfation is) and the model of the battery regeneration device used.
Of the total batteries rated “renewable” after initial testing, a percentage of over 97% (thus very high) is finally successfully regenerated. Extending the life span also depends on the battery's initial state and the battery model used to regenerate batteries.
Battery plate after desulphurization
The battery regeneration process works mainly on the following parameters from battery operation:
– concentration of sulfuric acid (density)
– Internal battery resistance
– the tension on each cell
Depending on the construction features, some types of battery regeneration devices can remove sulfur, rust and other impurities.
All types of lead batteries – starter, traction and storage batteries can be regenerated: SUL (Start, Lighting & Ignition), Flooded Deep-Cycle and SLA (Sealed Lead Acid ) respectively GEL (Electrolyte), AGM (Absorbed Electrolyte) and VRLA (Valve Regulated Lead Acid)
A battery (a known brand) of 100 Ah abandoned for 2 years after 2.5 years of use
A. Before the process starts – Sulfate in solid, crystalline form on the surface of the electrode
B. Several hours after the start of the process – Sulfate blooms on the surface that looks like cotton
C. Several hours before the process is complete – Sulfate dissolves in the electrolyte
D. At the end of the process – Sulfate dissolved almost completely