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 Another battery charging question

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Mike from NS
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PostSubject: Another battery charging question   Fri 16 Oct 2015, 20:19

For a 2005 Silverwing with about 17,000kms on it.

Is it a requirement to disconnect the battery connections from the bike when charging the battery? If a Battery Tender jr is left attached and plugged into the house current every so often without disconnect the cables am I risking burning out some electronics? Maybe not wanting to disconnect the cables is a lazy point but I don't want to interrupt the Trip A, Trip B counters or the clock which a disconnection brings.

Some reading this may recall my stalling out at a slow idle problem a couple of months ago. At that time I thought it was sorted out with the suggestions made here --- high test gas and run the bike hard a bit more often. As I pointed out back then these suggestions did help. But there are times I wonder if a weak battery may be part of that problem and want to add the charger. The bike can sit idle (as in not started) for a week but starts and idles well after that "rest". Restarting after 30 minutes, say, it starts, may stall, but idles slowly. Almost like a vapor lock kind of thing. Once running it will level out and runs well -- as the fun bike it is should do.

Anyway, your comments on the risk level of charging without disconnection of cables would be appreciated. I haven't been able to find comments in the manuals regarding this.

Thanks,

Mike
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DerrillW
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Fri 16 Oct 2015, 20:56

IMHO: I think it is ok to charge the battery in place and connected using a trickle or automatic charger and have done it on my Silverwing more than once with no ill effects although I suspect that not everyone will agree with this practice. After all, the SW charges the battery in place and sometimes at a high rate. That's my logic.
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NWSSC
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PostSubject: Another battery charging question   Fri 16 Oct 2015, 23:03

The answer to your first question is leave the battery connected when charging. Yes you can purchase a small pig tale(some small chargers come with them)to attach to the battery permanently.
The positive part of the connector is receded and not exposed to prevent shorting out. Part of this connector is left on the battery and the other part attaches to the charger. The part that is left on the battery will be left out in the open by the battery cover.The positive wiring is covered and not exposed. The negative part is not covered and will not cause a problem if attached to ground by accident. All computer engines have what is called a par- acidic draw and will have a battery drain if left unattended for an extended period of time.The S/W does have a draw but probably would have to set for a year or two to have a affect.
Now for what I have been told by Honda you can relearn the computer's basic parameters (idle)by disconnecting both battery cables holding them together, turning on the key for about ten seconds. According to Honda there is a small battery located in the ECM that will relearn the computer.I am not convinced 100% that this is Gospel. Why would they have a adjusting screw if this is the case.The later S/W have a o2 sensor
and are a more robust system. Howard
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Dale N.
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Fri 16 Oct 2015, 23:29

I have a Battery Tender Jr. and it's OK to leave it hooked up according to Battery Tender. Once it reaches full charge the green led comes on and it quits charging. I also have Battery Tender Lithium Ion batteries in both of my bikes (74 Honda CB750 and 08 SWing). These batteries are lots smaller than lead acid or gel cell and come with dense foam spacers to fill the vacant space. They also weigh 1.75 LBS. And they have 240 CCA which isn't bad. I've had no problems with them. I put them in this spring. Battery Tender says to fully charge them before putting them into service. They come about 70% charged but they recommend to fully charge them. They also said the Battery Tender Jr. will work fine with these. I got mine from eBay for around $100.
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Mike from NS
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Sat 17 Oct 2015, 07:36

Thanks for the replies, gentlemen ... much appreciated !

Interesting "instructions" from Honda in re-learning the computer, Howard.

Canadian Tire has the Battery Tender Jr ( 0.75 amp ) charger listed in their weekly flyer for $34 .... reg $43. Think I should pick up one of these and plug it in!

Thanks

Mike
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Old Limey
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Mon 19 Oct 2015, 15:26

On my previous Silverwing ,which was seven years old when I traded it in for a new Silverwing July 2014,I never had to charge the battery. I think because I used it every other day all year around. Likewise my present bike, ihink if used more or less daily the battery looks after itself.
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Dale N.
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Mon 19 Oct 2015, 16:22

Old Limey wrote:
On my previous  Silverwing ,which was  seven years old when I traded it in for a new Silverwing  July 2014,I never had to charge the battery. I think because I used it  every other day all year around. Likewise my present bike, ihink if used  more or less daily the battery looks after itself.

I agree with Old Limey. If you ride it everyday you shouldn't have to worry about charging it. Even if you ride it once or twice a week it should be good to go. I've left mine sit for a week during crappy weather and it started great. The only time I put the charger on either of my two bikes is during the winter when I'm not riding them at all. Then I put the charger on once a month to bring it up to full charge. I don't leave the charger on it all the time because it gives me something to do during our long cold winter months here in Minnesota. Plus, I get to go into the garage and talk to them and pet them and tell them it's OK. Daddy hasn't forgotten you. It makes them feel better and not so lonesome.

Ya, that's my story... lol!
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JeffR
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Mon 19 Oct 2015, 22:05

Yeah, if you ride daily you shouldn't really need to recharge your battery. I went out one day after 4 years or so and it just was dead. But watch out what Dale N. says, he gets to ride year round in Minnesota but he trys to tell people he parks his bike in the 80 degree winter days. Those MN. people !!!! Cool
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Dale N.
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 03:33

You've got to forgive us JeffR. It's all this cold weather, then warm, then cold and back and forth like that which screws up our brains until we don't really know what the heck temp it is outside. And all that white stuff on the pavement is just glare from the sun.

You are also lucky you made it four years. I had one go dead on me in 3 1/2. That really sucked because I couldn't remember where I put my charger so I had to buy a new one. Then once the battery got charged I took off the charger and put it away and lo and behold there was the charger I couldn't find. So I made a mental note where both chargers are but my mental notes usually only last about 2                      hours. So I assume there will be a new charger in my future.

And now it's been a few days since I charged my dead battery and it's dead again! What the heck is going on? The stupid thing probably doesn't remember what a charge is and how to hold it. I guess I'll have to go and buy a young whippersnapper battery so it can come and teach this old grandpa battery what it learned in battery college about holding a charge. Left hand, Right hand. Positive post or Negative? Now I'm getting confused. I'm going to bed and sleep on it. Well, not on the old battery just on the idea of the new one... Sleep
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Old Limey
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 04:56

I also have a Burgman 400 that is now fifteen years old( I have had it for five). Now this one I only use for journeys of fifty miles or less. I have a spare battery I keep charged, as one battery is newer, I call that my winter battery and ,also use it to power my little compressor that keeps my tyre pressures correct. I swop these batteries around in September and April. Smile
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Tommo
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 05:52

Just got up off the floor after reading Dale M comments.
I can relate to the ( putting things away safely) and then forgetting where.............
Also like the idea of a young (Whippersnapper Battery) to train the old one.
I thought it was us Brits that were eccentric but, it appear we are not alone.
You have given me a good laugh, thanks. Laughing
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oldgwingguy
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 06:28

[quote="Dale N."]I have a Battery Tender Jr. and it's OK to leave it hooked up according to Battery Tender. Once it reaches full charge the green led comes on and it quits charging.<< while that is true something I found is while the green light is on after a day or so it's not > fully < charged, how I found out is I unplugged mine to ride and remembered I had a chore to do, so I plugged it back in and it went to red showing charging. I thought it strange so I waited, a minuet or so went by then back to red green flashing and then after a couple minuets back to steady green. I tried the same on some of my other batteries and they all did the same, the older they were the longer it took to get back to steady green.
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Dale N.
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 09:21

That's interesting oldwingguy. I'll have to check it out and give it a try to see what happens on this end.

You are welcome Tommo! "They" say the mind is the first thing to go. Although, some say my mind went a long time ago. Whippersnapper is a term the "Old Folks" used to use when I was young and now that I am an Old Folk I guess I can use it. LOL
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Cookie
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 09:42

Oldwingguy - All batteries will lose a little bit while standing so it's not surprising that your battery needed topping up slightly after your charger had turned off for a while. A few minutes trickle charging is a negligible amount of current putting in though so for all intents and purposes it was fully charged.

Optimate chargers (or similar brands) are pretty good because, once the battery is fully charged, they stop charging but monitor the battery voltage. If it drops a bit they switch back into charging mode to keep it topped up (that's the gist of it anyway - the instructions seemed more complicated).

There's no substitute for regular use though from both the battery and the riders perspective!
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oldgwingguy
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 13:32

Yes the Battery Tender is supposed to do that, referring to it as a anti sulfation mode. Going further if I take the BT off at > full charge < completed and put my Schumacker 2 / 6 / 10 on at 2 amps it will charge the battery further.
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bikerboy
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 13:54

Cookie is quite correct to say that the Optimate instructions are complicated, I found them to be incomprehensible but the gadget does a good job for me even though I am unable to decode all the little blinking lights !
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Cookie
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 13:59

I'm glad it's not just me regarding the Optimate instructions. I gave up reading them.
Now I just plug it into the scoot and go out to the garage the next day. If it's showing two green lights (one possibly flashing or possibly not) then I'm happy and disconnect it.

Seems to have worked so far. The batteries in both my scoots are 5 years old plus a bit.

Hope I haven't tempted fate by typing this...
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Mike from NS
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 14:56

This past Saturday I bought  and plugged in a Battery Tender Jr.  Earlier Saturday I was going out and the bike started so sluggishly that I parked it and went by car.  I was afraid it may not start when leaving for the return home run.  Anyway after a couple of days of trickle I unplugged it with the green light shining steadily.  After reading oldwingguy's comments on testing the recharge after a time, I did the same --- re-plugged in the tender and had a solid red light that went to flashing green in a few minutes.  But it continued for some time and having to go out I left it flashing.  Upon my return ( a couple of hours later) it was steady green.

Now the disappointing part of the story ..... this is where some comments would be helpful.

I just took the battery off the Jr and installed it in the bike.  It started but certainly not with gusto as I had expected.  Out the driveway and back to the shed and shut her down.  Not running very smoothly so planned to go for a ride to work out the "bugs" (the wet weather recently has limited riding for a week) but re-start was not to be. By the 3rd attempt it refused to even turn over. Headlight was full brightness. So- pulled the battery and found it was reading about 15.25v and put it on a 2amp charger instead of the Tender Jr.

Not being knowledgeable enough about batteries I can conjure all sorts of evil thoughts.  The most evil is that the battery had died.  Not enough cranking amps left?  For just about all the summer, the idle was generally poor and the starting has been hit and miss in terms of a sluggish start or a start with attitude.

I expect the battery is the original that came with the scooter and that makes it 10 years old at least.  The bike is a 2005 with about 17500kms on it. It is a YUASA YTZ12SMF with JL0448 printed on the top and 2012044 6 stamped on the back near the top.

Any thoughts on the likely hood the batter has died or how to determine the cranking amp status would be appreciated.

Mike
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Dale N.
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 15:21

15.25 volts? Or did you mean 5.25 volts? 15.25 volts seems high to me. If the battery is 10 years old it's likely time to replace it. See my comment near the top of this page on my battery solution with the Battery Tender Lithium Ion battery. I love it!


On the starting issue: What you could do is what I did last year when I first brought it home. I was waiting for my battery to arrive and wanted to see if all the lights worked etc. so I hooked up some jumper cables from my pickup to the SWing cables (I had no battery in it then). I didn't start the pickup either. When I turned on the key all the lights and dashboard lit up like they were supposed to. Just for the heck of it I hit the starter to see what would happen. It had been sitting under a tarp for two years before I bought it from my sister in FL. It turned over about three times then popped right off and purred like a kitten. There was no rough idling and no smoke which surprised the heck out of me. Jumping it like I did might determine if it is the SWing battery or something else.
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Mike from NS
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 15:37

Thanks Dale !

I just checked the voltage (it had been on the 2 amp charger for about 1 hr) and it reads 16 volts now.

I called the Honda dealer for a price for a replacement ... the cheap one is $99.95 the good one closer to $200. The good one may last 6 - 7 years and the cheap one about 3. He says if the bike got 10 years out of the present one - then that is remarkable. He thinks the idle is more of a fuel issue than a battery one.

I'll look into a lithium Ion battery as you mentioned. I may try jumping from the car battery as well.

Thanks for your comments.

Mike
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 16:03

Mike, If you are going to replace your battery --and at 10 years you should-- you should go with a YUASA YTZ14... It's physically the same dimensions as the YTZ12 but has more available amps. It's the same battery as in the ST1300, and probably other models as well. Probably the same price as well.

Tim
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Mike from NS
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Tue 20 Oct 2015, 19:03

Thanks Tim,

Battery buying for the Silverwing is a new and learning experience for me. So all suggestions welcome and appreciated.

Mike
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cotetoi
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Thu 22 Oct 2015, 09:26

Mike, Sorry to hear about your trials and tribulations. My 2005 came with 3500 km. I have put over 15000 myself, and never had battery issues. I suspect it is the original battery. I have the pigtail charger connections, and hook it up when it is on a long layover. In the fall, I remove it and keep it on the kneewall in the basement, and hook up the charger periodically. When I get solid green, I take the alligator clips off. I do this with all the batteries.
It's probably time for a new one: as with everything else they have a limited working life. I have heard that Walmart batteries are better than CT ( no shares at either place). If you do go to CT, make sure you get all the details about their warranty. They have a graduated replacement policy that expires in 6 months, and if you buy it now, you won't know the issues until the next riding season, and by then the replacement clause will have run out.
I don't have enough technical knowledge about electrics to give any more insight. My idle problems are not fully resolved; but the baby is already tucked in for its beauty sleep, so will have to wait till next year.
A few good days of riding left: I am enjoying the Helix. Good luck.
Jay
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Mike from NS
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Thu 22 Oct 2015, 10:46

Hi Jay,

I too bring in the battery for the winter and put a charger on it now and then. Last winter I may have waited a bit too long to bring it in and possibly this has something to do with its demise. It has worked pretty well all summer but with all our rain lately it had to have been a couple of weeks that the bike sat in the shed. The guy at ProCycle in Dartmouth felt I did really well to get 10 years out of the battery. I didn't check CTC nor Wallmart. ((The oil filter that fits the Silverwing is a CTC item and listed to fit a Civic (if memory serves me correctly) at a fraction of the dealer cost.)) I was wondering if you had replaced your battery yet.

This is the first motorcycle battery I've ever replaced and was surprised at their costs. Dale's suggestion for the lithium ion is a good one but you pay the price. I've followed Tim's suggestion for going to a YUASA YTZ14 rather than a 12 and found a generic at Saskbattery in Regina for $79.50 +tax but with "free" shipping. It is in transit by Canada Post now. May see it by spring ...

My idle smoothed out really well after I followed the suggestion here to use some premium gas and take the bike for a hard run. After that (and the new spark plugs) I was amazed at how well it ran and at how quiet it had become. Only recently had the idle become an issue again. I was going to take it for another hard run when the battery died. I asked ProCycle about any connection to poor battery and idle issue and reply was that I likely have a fuel issue and they doubt a connection to the poor battery.

Too early to tuck the bike away just yet Jay ! Still the odd great riding day ahead --- at least I hope; but then you have the Helix to help with the riding craving. Did you purchase that new bike you were looking at?

All the best,
Mike
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cotetoi
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PostSubject: Re: Another battery charging question   Thu 22 Oct 2015, 10:56

I wasn't getting the right trade-in for mine, so I did not get the CTX 700. But I saw the Helix on Kijiji and the price was a steal. It just needed a paint job, and the oil drain hole fixed. Works like a charm, and it zips right along to 100 km/h. It leaves just about everything behind at the lights. Getting two new tires as we speak.
Take care, Mike.
Jay.
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