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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been driving my Integra ('97) far too seldomly, so sometimes the battery runs low. I finally decided to get a charger for it (Deltran Battery Tender Plus).

I had a look at my Integra's owner's manual; it covers jump starting but there isn't much about using a charger. The only potentially useful points I was able to glean are:

  • "If you need to connect the battery to a charger, disconnect both cables to prevent damage to the car's electric system."
  • When Jump Starting (note: I'm using a charger so this might not apply), connect the negative terminal of the booster battery to the Integra's grounding strap.
  • Battery specs: 12v 36AH/5R -- I currently have an Interstate Battery I-51R installed.

Among other things, the charger's user manual says:
  • "Add distilled water in each cell until battery acid reaches level specified by battery manufacturer. Do not overfill. For a battery without removable cell caps, such as valve regulated lead acid batteries, carefully follow manufacturer’s recharging instructions."
  • "Study all battery manufacturer’s specific precautions such as removing or not removing cell caps while charging and recommended rates of charge."
  • "For negative-grounded vehicle, connect POSITIVE (RED) clip from battery charger to POSITIVE (POS, P, +) ungrounded post of battery. Connect NEGATIVE (BLACK) clip to vehicle chassis or engine block away from battery."

Now on to the questions...

Does anyone have experience charging a battery for an Integra?
  1. Do I really have to remove the cables from the terminals per the Integra's Owner's manual? Can I get away with just disconnecting one of the terminals?
  2. Do I connect the charger's negative clamp directly to the battery's negative terminal or to the grounding strap?
  3. Do I have to worry about taking off the vent caps of my battery (it appears that my battery does have (two long-ish) battery caps); given the way the battery is held in the Integra, this essentially means I have to uninstall it (just short of lifting it out...).
  4. Since my car is parked outside right next to the garage, can I just route the cables so that they won't get crushed/damaged and close the hood while charging, or would that be a fire hazard, due to buildup of gases underneath the hood?

I found the YouTube video "How to Use a Portable Car Battery Charger" (by Howcast) useful, I'm just not sure if it applies to my situation.

Any (constructive) advice is appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
At 1.25 amps, I wouldn't worry too much.
Yeah, you are probably right. It's just when you read the safety precautions in the charger's manual (they mention explosive gases, acid and, in extreme situations, even getting one's jewelry welded to another surface) and all the things you should check before you start, you can't help but feel a bit intimidated.
 

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Yeah, you are probably right. It's just when you read the safety precautions in the charger's manual (they mention explosive gases, acid and, in extreme situations, even getting one's jewelry welded to another surface) and all the things you should check before you start, you can't help but feel a bit intimidated.
Look at it this way:

It's pretty simple. The whole thing of explosion is because when most batteries get charged (especially in a rapid fashion), it outgasses hydrogen gas. Hydrogen gas is very flammable if the Hindenburg taught us anything. For the most part, there's not much you can do to avoid it if it goes off, but like everything that's combustable, you need 3 things: O2 (readily available in the air), fuel (hydrogen), and ignition source (which you would have to provide some way). As long as you're not creating an electrical arc or anything, you should be fine at 1.25 amps.

If you end up zapping yourself, welding your watch to the car or battery or whatever, or in any way hurting yourself because you're being dumb about it, it was probably your fault and you deserved it. The pain? I'll chalk it up to the cost of being dumb.

And remember, safety 3rd! LOL
 
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