New Battery

Hi everyone, I was wondering how you guys treat your new batteries when you get them? What are the actions you do?

You should label them with the date acquired, an ID number and track it’s usage with a spreadsheet of some kind. You want to be able to evenly use your batteries, or be able to identify a problem battery in a hurry to remove it from use.

Vex many years ago included Battery Number stickers in the kit of parts for exactly that purpose. Andymark has a “First Used on X date” sticker as well in their Battery Cable Hardware Kit

Whenever you change your batteries log it so you know in the future how much usage you get out of your batteries before they are no longer useful.

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Do a good job on wiring them is job 1!

  • Grasshopper nuts
  • #4 AWG wire
  • Anderson
  • Consider a handle too!
  • glue lined heat shrink in red and black
  • Red and black electrical tape as needed
  • Panduit clips and zip ties for the cables

After that I would consider a bit of break in and conditioning if the kiddos weren’t champing at the bit to run robots… This is apparently useful for balancing the 6 cells inside the battery and for some kind of chemical effect that I don’t really understand.

2-3 gentle cycles at say 2 to 10 Amps down to no lower than 10.5 Volts is probably a good balance between using up cycles and formatting.

Somewhat useful:

Annoyingly little information:

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We get our batteries every pre-season and go through our little battery prep phase so they’re ready for build and comp season.

The first thing we do is date and label every battery. You can label them however you want, as long as you can differentiate between them. We have numerical labels so we can track data in a spreadsheet but we also name them for fun. Also, make sure to tape the terminals of the battery. If both terminals ever end up connecting and form a circuit, you’ll get a short circuit which will make sparks and eventually an explosion.

The second thing would be to get leads onto your batteries. We crimp our leads but you can also find pre-made ones with everything ready to screw onto your batteries. Most Anderson battery leads have red housings but we prefer thicker, gray housings that prevent damage from excessive current draw. We also recommend applying kopr shield onto any contact points between the crimps and the battery terminals. This protects and enhances the connection of the crimps. Also, make sure that at least one of the battery’s terminals is always covered so you can’t short the battery while tightening the grasshopper nuts.

The last thing would be the break-in and testing phase. We break in our batteries with some cycles to help improve things such as internal resistance. I’m not too familiar with the exact process of breaking-in a battery but as long as you’re using them often they should improve. We also test our batteries using Computerized Battery Analyzers which draw power from a battery to test things such as the batteries Ampere Hours. We take this data to figure out which batteries are most optimal for competition.

If there’s any part of this process that you’re confused about or wanna know more about, feel free to ask

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This is basically it.

Most manufactures do not suggest specific formatting, but to just put the batteries in service. We run 1 cycle/year to test batteries and otherwise just run them.

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