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Exposed battery terminals


Raistlin
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Hi all,

 

I've had one or two jobs to do the the boot and I'm a bit concerned about the fact that the battery terminals, especially the positive, are exposed. Possibility of inadvertent short circuit.

 

I was wondering whether there is supposed to be a cap on the positive terminal as standard or, if not, has anybody made anything to suit?

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Hi Paul,

 

My Varta has a cover on the positive terminal, and the negative terminal was without a cover until I used a design from Mr Heath and Mr Robinson using Duct Tape and a suitably sized piece of plastic, which does the trick.

 

Regards,

 

Peter.

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Hi Peter & Paul

 

Not sure I see the point of Peter's Heath Robinson plastic and duct tape on the negative terminal. By the way my '05 S Type has the positive covered. 

 

Back to Peter's 'fix'. The other end of the negative lead is connected to the body so in theory by both your thinkings didn't you ought to cover the whole car in plastic and duct tape??  Sorry not meaning to be rude but any 'live' wire touching the bodywork would cause a short.

 

Anyway happy S Type motoring guys.

 

Colin

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Hi Peter & Paul

 By the way my '05 S Type has the positive covered. 

 

Colin

 

Thanks Colin, mine also has the battery terminal partially covered but still leaves plenty exposed.

 

There is also partial cover provided by the overhanging trim panel.

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Hi Paul

 

I was positive (no pun intended) that the + terminal was covered but have just been and looked. Like yours it is covering half of it and it is under the floor carpet so unless you drop something like a wheel brace across the two it's generally no problem. So Ok, Peter's plastic & duct tape would be useful here but I still don't see the point of covering the negative connection. 

My wife's Corolla only has the positive covered albeit a big red piece of moulded rubber that covers all of it, and that battery is in the engine bay! 

 

Colin

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It would be the norm to expect the positive terminal to be protected by some form of cover, most battery manufacturers supply the battery with such. As for the earth terminal then this would not be the usual expectation. Mentioned earlier was the fact that any live cable touching the bodywork would cause a short with the bodywork being grounded is quite correct however, this is why the circuitry of the vehicle is fitted with fuses. I am an electrical design engineer, no matter what you are designing for 12volt, 24volt, 240volt, 415 or more the fact that you design for fuses within the circuit is to protect the cable. If it does short then it should blow a fuse and NOT sustain any heat by prolonging the short that may cause a fire.

In short, I would investigate purchasing or making a cover for the positive terminal.

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Ken

 

Thanks for that but I think the point being made is if something conductive touches the positive connection and either the body or negative connection no amount of fuses will protect the battery from being short circuted.

 

Colin

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Hi Peter & Paul

 

Not sure I see the point of Peter's Heath Robinson plastic and duct tape on the negative terminal. By the way my '05 S Type has the positive covered. 

 

Back to Peter's 'fix'. The other end of the negative lead is connected to the body so in theory by both your thinkings didn't you ought to cover the whole car in plastic and duct tape??  Sorry not meaning to be rude but any 'live' wire touching the bodywork would cause a short.

 

Anyway happy S Type motoring guys.

 

Colin

A small point, Colin, but a quite important one to me.   The electronic handbrake has become stuck on a few times.  To free it you have to disconnect the battery and putting the leads somewhere where they won't slip back and touch the terminal seems the best way to do it, being as you have to leave it disconnected for about 15 minutes.  I am not an electrician but I do appreciate that electric terminals not being covered up can cause a problem.  

 

I thought about covering the whole car in plastic and duct tape but rejected that idea as it would stop me getting into the car,

 

Peter. 

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Peter 

 

if you carefully go around the door openings with a sharp knife this problem can be easily solved, also as an added bonus if you neglect to carry out this on the other 3 doors you dont have to carry passengers, however i feel it is important to stress that you refrain from covering the windows as this will stop the automatic wipers operating as they should and possibly will also cause the headlights to be on during daylight hours

 

Kindest regards

Richard

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Peter

 

You'd also have one heck of a job seeing where you were going even with the headlights on. Unless you fit a radar system of course!

 

You could always try getting your electric parking brake fixed and save all this trouble.

 

Colin

 

PS This post is going from the ridiculous to the sublime. 

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Batteries normally come with two terminal covers and I fail to see why the battery on my S type did not have both.  I do not like a disconnected lead being left in a situation where it could inadvertently connect and possibly cause something dangerous.

 

The park brake only seems to stick when the temperature is freezing or close to it.

 

I will end the discussion now, as I feel that a polite answer to a serious question has gone somewhat awry, remembering of course ,that I didn't suggest that the car should be covered in duct tape and plastic.

 

Peter.

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as posted above most batteries now have covers for pos / neg sides, there is however a cheaper way of doing things with everything.

I have known people in the past use a plastic top of a spray can as a quick fix and a piece of tape as peter has said.

 

ron

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I believe it is common sense that any live exposed terminal/wire is a potential hazard and therefore, should be addressed. There has been some very good advice posted to this thread from fitting a plastic bottle top to obtaining a battery terminal cover from a breakers yard. Do we really need to prolong the thread?

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