Battery Basics, Things you MUST know if you are going to use Batteries! BATTERY MYTHS, 1. Batteries Discharge Faster When Sitting On Concrete. FALSE! This was true when Thomas Edison was making 'Radio' batteries, but they are no longer made in metal cases. Modern batteries will actually benefit by being in contact with a concrete floor, helping to stabilize the temprature better. Batteries WILL discharge if you let the tops collect dust and moisture! Dust and moisture will actually 'Short' the terminals out and discharge the battery! .................. 2. Batteries Work Better When They Are Hot. FALSE! Batteries will give optimum output around 62°F to 68°F. Warmer will shorten the life of the batteries, Colder will reduce effective output of the batteries. ................... 3. Any Water Will Do. FALSE! EVERYTHING in that water will adversly effect your battery! Chlorine will neutralize the acid, Fluoride will build up on plates, Calcium will cause scale on the plates, Metals will cause corrosion and shorting between plates, The list goes on! USE DISTILLED WATER ONLY! Distilled water will NOT adversely effect your battery and will readily mix with the acid in the cell. DO NOT USE 'DRINKING' WATER that might have salts or other things added for 'Taste', just plain old Distilled water! ................. 4. You should add 'Acid' to the cells. FALSE! Your battery comes with all the acid it should ever need! As the water evaporates away, the acid simply concentrates in the cell. You should add DISTILLED WATER to the cell to dilute the acid/water electrolyte mixture back to a proper concentration. IF YOU OVER FILL A CELL... Don't panic! And DO NOT suck the water out because you will be taking acid out with it! Simply skip over that cell until the excess water evaporates naturally, then maintain the proper electrolyte level from that point on. ................. 5. You can check a batteries' health by testing for voltage. FALSE! You can check a batteries' health by one of two methods, A. With a hydrometer. Check the specific gravity of the individual cells to see if they are 'Fully Charged' or not. This is easily accomplished with the battery/cells still hooked up in the battery set or bank. You simply sample the liquid from each cell with a 'Hydrometer'. Hydrometer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia B. By doing a 'Load Test'. Take the battery out of it's battery 'set' and check it's state of charge, Then load that battery over a period of time to see if it will carry the specific load for a designated period of time. .................. REMEMBER! The larger the amperage, the larger the cables have to be to carry that amperage, The farther apart the terminals have to be to keep arcing from happening, and generally the more expensive everything will be to install Parallel battery systems.