How to Change a Car Battery : How to Avoid Sparking with Car Battery Terminals

How to Change a Car Battery : How to Avoid Sparking with Car Battery Terminals


Hi, I’m Aaron Gregory on behalf of Expert
Village. And, we’re going to talk about what happens when your car battery dies, how to
select a new battery, and how to see what the problem is. So, the first step is we’re
going to see if the terminals are tight. Now, if you wiggle the terminals and they twist,
sometimes that means there’s enough of a gap between the terminal and the clamp that there’s
corrosion in there that you can’t see. So, let’s pull these terminals off and look inside
there and see what it really looks like. So, we’re going to remove these terminals with
a wrench. This car is foreign, Japanese made, so I’m using a metric wrench. It happens to
be a 13mm wrench. Now, the wrench is metal, and it’s a very good conductor. The battery
creates a lot of electricity between these two poles. As you can see, this wrench is
long enough to contact between the two battery terminals which could result in a very powerful
spark, and liquid lead or metal shooting off in those sparks. A good way to avoid causing
sparks at the battery with your wrench is to begin by disconnecting the negative terminal
first. That way, when your touching the terminal with your wrench, if the wrench touches any
other part of the car, there’s not going to be a difference in currant resulting in a
spark. If you start with the positive terminal while the battery is connected and you touch
the body of the car, you’re going to arc twelve volts from the battery to the car because
there’s a difference in voltage. And, you’re electrical system controls all that power.
So, you want to be careful and if you’re not experienced, maybe you should cover your wrench
with electrical tape except for the very tip.

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