The specific gravity of the electrolyte in each
battery cell is an excellent indication of that
cell's condition. A fully charged cell will read
1.275-1.280. while a cell in good condition
reads from 1 .225- 1 . Z O and anything below
1.225 is practically dead.
Specific gravity varies with temperature. For
electrolyte temperature exceeds
add 0.004 to the reading indicated on the
hydrometer. Subtract 0.004 for each
Repeat this measurement for each battery
cell. If there is more than 0.050 difference
If the cells test in the poor range, the battery
requires recharging. The hydrometer is useful
for checking the progress of the charging
operation. Figure 7 shows the approximate
state of charge.
It is most important to keep the battery fully
charged during cold weather. A fully charged
battery freezes at a much lower temperature
than one which is partially discharged.
Do not smoke or permit any open flame
in any area where batteries are being
charged or immediately after charging.
Hlghly explosive hydrogen and oxygen
gases are formed during the charging
process. Be sure to reread Safety
at the beginning of this
Always disconnect the battery cables
before connecting charging equipment
or you may damage part of the bike's
charging system. It is preferable to
remove the battery from the motorcycle.
Motorcycle batteries are not designed for
high charge or discharge rates. A motorcycle
battery should be charged at a rate not
exceeding 10 percent of its ampere-hour
capacity. That is, d o not exceed 0.5 ampere
charging rate for a 5 ampere-hour battery or 1.5
amperes for a 15 ampere-hour battery. This
charge rate should continue for about 10 hours
if the battery is completely discharged or until
the specific gravity of each cell is up to
1.260- 1.280. corrected for temperature.
Some temperature rise is normal as a battery
is being charged. Do not allow the electrolyte
temperature to exceed 1 10".
temperature reach that figure. discontinue
charging until the battery cools. then resume
charging at a lower rate.
I . Remove the battery from the motorcycle or
disconnect the negative
ground cable, then
2. Before you switch on or plug in the charger.
connect the positive charger lead to the
positive battery terminal and the negative
charger lead to the negative battery terminal.
3. Remove all vent caps from the battery. set
the charger at 12 volts and switch it on. If the
output of the charger is variable, it is best to
State of charge
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