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post #1 of 19 Old 02-23-2007 Thread Starter
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battery acid problem, acid resistant epoxie

I have a 37 morgan (1976), The area for the house batteries has had some boil over of the batteries and it was wearing away paint of the bulkhead and making the wood wet. I removed the batteries, washed it with baking soda and now am thinking of what to do. The area is very tight and there is no room for a battery box. I was going to put resin on the walls and sole of the battery compartment and then paint with an expoxie. Does anyone know of an epoxie that will resist battery acid or are there any other ideas. I am looking to prevent damage to sole and bulkhead from acid\jason
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post #2 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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Ouch! Hard luck. Acid in the wood work would be my main worry, it will eventually break down and the acid will creep a long way. I think epoxy is resistant itself, but the wood underneath it is in deep trouble. I fear surgery will be required to replace all the affected wood.
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post #3 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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The acid will erode epoxy almost as quickly as the underlying wood. There are some materials which you can use to line the area where you want to put the battery but it won't be cheap. Good quality neoprene sheets will cost significantly more than good quality plastic, the latter will work better than epoxy but more likely to abrade if you are not careful.
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post #4 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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You can dissolve sodium bicaronate in water (use a baking soda with a minimum or no additives) and really soak the wood through. I mean for several days, if possible. If the areas isn't watertight to just pour in the neutralizing solution, at least use some soaked clothes to give the neutralizer time to penetrate (after all, the acid had time as well...)

Using too much sodium bicarbonate solution is no problem, leaving acidity in the wood is! You can also buy some litmus strips to see if any acidity is left after treatment.

Plastics marked wtih FEP, PFA or PTFE are resistant to sulfuric acid, although you can order sheets of them to mould your own, I would look around Home Depot for something moulded from PTFE that fits your requirements. The thick black plastic sheets used in gardening are made of HDLPE, which is resistant to sulfuric acid. You could seal your battery area with an epoxy and cover that with a layer or three of sheeting.


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post #5 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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Jason-
http://www.corrosion-engineering.com...ng%2007-03.pdf

One of many web references on sulfuric acid resistant epoxy. I would suggest that you contact a couple of epoxy makers to ask specifically about their products being suitable for this, apparently some are very resistant and others are not. If you get the right product, acid resistance should be no problem.

I might go a little further though, and when you are done epoxying the space, lay some ordinary felt (from a craft store or fabric store) under/around the batteries and saturate it with baking soda. That way, if any acid spills it is soaked up and neutralized and the inexpensive felt can be changed from time to time as needed. You'll also see where there has been any acid spilling so it is easy to keep an eye on.

Acid spilling out of the batteries at all means they are being overcharged--an expensive way to cut their lives. Or, overfilled and sloshing out, also not good. So once you've gotten the battery space cleaned up again, think about how and why the batteries are being cooked, ideally you should be able to stop the acid from overflowing at all.
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post #6 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor
... lay some ordinary felt (from a craft store or fabric store) under/around the batteries and saturate it with baking soda. ...
Thanks for the tip. My batteries are coming out shortly, they will go back in with a baking soda towel.
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post #7 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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I recently made the move to AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) batteries. They are completely sealed and even if they were to rupture, there's nothing to leak. They have an extremely low self dichcharge rate, so they're still readt to go, even after long periods of storage. Solved a lot of problems for me, including the leakage ones you're experiencing.
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post #8 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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Hellosailor
I am always skeptical of these reports unless i also know what the relationship is, in this case, between Henkel and the resin manufacturer.
Also, is there a report summarizing the results of any long-term study implied in the link you attached?
thanks
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post #9 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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I don't know them from Adam, much less vouch for them. I only cited it as one of many similar internet links that can be found by searching the terms. I know some firms that have used epoxy-lined tanks for acid resistance, so there are at least some epoxies that aren't bothered by some acids.
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post #10 of 19 Old 02-23-2007
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I think it was a good point brought up to look into the root cause of the issue and fix that to prevent another incident.

You might try the wooden boat forums for experience on acid leaks and what you can do to limit future damage.

A note to the West System people and other epoxy manufacturers will provide info on what you can do to protect the area should another incident happen.

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