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#2546865 - 02/24/12 10:19 AM Battery Desulfators- Do they work?
chad8 Offline


Registered: 08/26/09
Posts: 1251
Loc: michigan
I just wanted to get everyone's opinion on battery desulfators.
I recently purchased a Battery Life saver . I bought it from someone else who used it on a solar battery. It is a 12 volt model.
I have a deka intimidater agm that was pretty much dead . It would not take a charge beyond 11.5 volts and drained rapidly.
I put the bls on it and charged it up. After a few tries at varying amperage , it has held a charge. I have continued to keep the bls on it for about a month with some removal time to use in on my weak truck battery. The battery will now hold at 12-13 volts unless I leave the desulfator on and the voltage will drop over a 2 week period to 10. I have not load tested it.
My truck battery would not hold a charge beyond a couple weeks because it sits here a lot. It is 4 years old. After desulfating , It seems much stronger and the resting charge is back up to 12.6. Before it was 12.2.
Am I nuts to think that these devices actually work or is it the placebo effect? I see lots of companies selling these devices or chargers with them built in.
Fraud or find?

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#2546872 - 02/24/12 10:25 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
Chris142 Offline


Registered: 06/05/03
Posts: 11452
Loc: apple valley, ca
I don't think a desulfater is going to work on an AGM battery. With a sulfated battery when the sulfates fall off the plates.They fall into the liquid acid and settle on the bottom of the battery. They can't fall off and down in an AGM battery.
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#2546890 - 02/24/12 10:39 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: Chris142]
chad8 Offline


Registered: 08/26/09
Posts: 1251
Loc: michigan
From my reading, the best use of a bls IS for agm batteries . The lead sulfate crystals dissolve back into the electrolite .

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#2546893 - 02/24/12 10:41 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
45ACP Offline


Registered: 04/03/11
Posts: 1271
Loc: Dallas Texas
Short answer: No. (Lead-acid batteries, AFAIK. They SAY they do.. but, they dont. According to people that have used and shared reviews...)

Long answer: They can cost a LOT of money. Why, more than several batteries!

Get a this and never have battery issues again. http://www.amazon.com/CTEK-Multi-12-Volt...1652&sr=8-1



Use in conjunction with good ol' slow-charge 2 Amp for a day, .. if you want.. but this one is good as well.

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#2546898 - 02/24/12 10:46 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
wrcsixeight Offline


Registered: 10/15/10
Posts: 1034
Loc: california
It depends on how much the sulfate crystals hardened on the plates. This is usually determined by how long it sat deeply discharged.

I have used a friend's batteryminder on some aged batteries, and they seemed to perform slightly better afterward for a few days anyway. My friend bought it because he abused some batteries into an early grave and thought the desulfator was some magical battery reviver.

I think a lot of people think the same way.

If the sulfate has gotten so hard a normal charge does nothing, then high amps and high current stand the best chance of dissolving them back into the electrolyte. Just make sure the battery does not go above 110 degrees F.

You can use multiple charging sources if you start them together. Then the magical pulse frequency desulfating conditioner might in theory help the high current charger dissolve the sulfate.
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#2546904 - 02/24/12 10:49 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
Quest Offline


Registered: 12/19/04
Posts: 6402
Loc: beaver land EH?
+1 with 45ACP on this said subject.

Been involved in testing various "wet" storage battery revival schemes that's been out in the market since the 70s, including various "desulfators" circuitrys, and none of them works to my satisfaction so far.

The only way is the new CTek type where it's based on PWM technology (switching power supply), which has a means to "pulse" charge the plates and is somewhat beneficial to the restoration some of the battery conditions that otherwise cannot be fully restored.

Even with CTek or similar technologies, the outcome is still "limited" at best.

Q.
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#2546910 - 02/24/12 10:55 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
3311 Offline


Registered: 07/24/10
Posts: 1027
Loc: Fl
No they don't work. Electrical snake oil. They pop up in my industry(industrial motive batteries) every 5 years or so. when unscrupulous companies try convince people these miracle devices when retrofitted on there charging equipment will save their $2-5k battery.

Simply put, you effectively desulfate a battery every time you recharge it. Batteries sulfate when you discharge them. the sulfation or essentially an oxidation of the active material is what produces electrical current. You reverse this process when recharge the battery.

Doesn't matter if the AGM, Gel or Flooded. The recharging process is the same.

Now if this is a trickle charger with a fancy name, that would work well, as others have said. Trickle charging, if you have the time is better because can avoid damaging a battery over gassing caused by high voltage and heat.





Edited by 3311 (02/24/12 10:59 AM)
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#2546912 - 02/24/12 10:58 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: Quest]
3311 Offline


Registered: 07/24/10
Posts: 1027
Loc: Fl
Originally Posted By: Quest
+1 with 45ACP on this said subject.

Been involved in testing various "wet" storage battery revival schemes that's been out in the market since the 70s, including various "desulfators" circuitrys, and none of them works to my satisfaction so far.

The only way is the new CTek type where it's based on PWM technology (switching power supply), which has a means to "pulse" charge the plates and is somewhat beneficial to the restoration some of the battery conditions that otherwise cannot be fully restored.

Even with CTek or similar technologies, the outcome is still "limited" at best.

Q.

Marketing gimmickry. PWM is no more effective than SCR or Ferroresonat technologies. Just something new and more expensive to sell.
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#2547038 - 02/24/12 01:12 PM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
meep Offline


Registered: 02/20/07
Posts: 2496
Loc: Southeast
yes and no.

I spent much time a few years ago researching renewable energy use and built a small wind/solar setup in my basement. battery care is paramount.

I built a buck-boost inverter type desulfator for under $30 in parts which I put to use on a number of scrap batteries I found at the recycle center.

I measured the battery capacities before, during and after applying the desulfator over several months. done properly, it can work. I never achieved full rated capacity but I was able to take cells that had ~20% remaining capacity and reach about 60-70%. Some cells... no joy. BUT... it took months, 24x7, with some cycling in the middle.

"Desulfation" techniques vary and in storebought products is subject to clear marketing [censored]. The very act of overcharging a lead acid battery can be a form of desulfation... and it can damage the battery...

The one's I've built that worked would apply a very short spike of up to 6A or 60V back into the cell at a 1khz frequency. Needless to say, if other sensitive electronics were connected, they might not survive. ie., I ran an automated charger at the same time, and the spikes eventually killed it. So... something like that would not be suitable for in-car use, but that's what it took to work.

so in short.... in consumer products I wouldn't get too excited. If batteries become a hobby and you want something to care and feed, a diy desulfator can work in some circumstances.
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#2547078 - 02/24/12 02:07 PM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: 3311]
sayjac Offline


Registered: 10/13/08
Posts: 8212
Loc: The Old North State
Originally Posted By: 3311
No they don't work. Electrical snake oil. They pop up in my industry(industrial motive batteries) every 5 years or so. when unscrupulous companies try convince people these miracle devices when retrofitted on there charging equipment will save their $2-5k battery.

Simply put, you effectively desulfate a battery every time you recharge it. Batteries sulfate when you discharge them. the sulfation or essentially an oxidation of the active material is what produces electrical current. You reverse this process when recharge the battery.

Doesn't matter if the AGM, Gel or Flooded. The recharging process is the same.

Now if this is a trickle charger with a fancy name, that would work well, as others have said. Trickle charging, if you have the time is better because can avoid damaging a battery over gassing caused by high voltage and heat.

Your post makes me glad I didn't spend more when I got my Battery Tender Jr. for ~$23 at Amazon. I was already very satisfied with the purchase and price, and rotate it around on my vehicles and cycle. Seems like an even more solid purchase after reading your post.

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#2553421 - 03/01/12 12:57 PM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
97 GTP Offline


Registered: 03/17/05
Posts: 844
Loc: LI, NY
I always wonder this same question myself.

My OEM tractor battery lasted 2 years. Then I bought a new one, which I desulfate and the end of the year. So far the batter just completed it's 6th year.

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#2553667 - 03/01/12 05:50 PM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
berniedd Offline


Registered: 03/24/08
Posts: 366
Loc: A Warm place to live in
There are a few good desulfators out there, and there are many that don't deliver the promised goods. But as with everything else, there's always a limit. Even the good ones can't restore a desulfated battery to 100%. Nor can shorted cells be restored by such technology. And remember, nothing lasts forever. However, for everyone's scrutiny, here's a link to learn from:

http://leadacidbatterydesulfation.yuku.com/forums/1


Edited by berniedd (03/01/12 05:53 PM)

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#2916913 - 02/23/13 07:46 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
ImpactBattery Offline


Registered: 02/22/13
Posts: 9
Loc: KY
Hey, I know your question was originally posted several years ago, but thought it was worth jumping into the fray and answering anyway. We like to think we have extensive first-hand knowledge on the subject of desulfation and have become believers many times over.

There are definitely some interesting answers already, but none seem to validate the science behind the technology. My impression of some of the answers thus far was that they seemed to be based on opinion and hearsay. What we have to offer is from extensive, “Joe the Plumber” style any-one-can-do-it testing of product. We have left batteries sit for several years to monitor self discharge and then place various chargers on the batteries to see how effective each charger was at reviving or maintaining a certain state of charge. We will blog about some of our results, but mostly it is to add the personal touch when communicating with customers.

Rather than writing a novel here I wrote a blog response titled: Answer To "Do Battery Desulfators Work?" and would like to hear everyone’s thoughts via this forum to better address or more specifically address any deeper questions. If you guys want us to test a certain product, ask and we will certainly try and post results. Sorry user 3311 we think battery desulfators work and feel we have the evidence to prove it. No electrical snake oil here.

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#2917034 - 02/23/13 09:23 AM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: chad8]
Errtt Offline


Registered: 11/14/10
Posts: 2143
Loc: California
I had thought they were to slow the rate of sulfation. i.e. better than nothing at all.

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#2922457 - 02/27/13 04:47 PM Re: Battery Desulfators- Do they work? [Re: Errtt]
ImpactBattery Offline


Registered: 02/22/13
Posts: 9
Loc: KY
Well, yes and no...Generally speaking leaving a battery connected to a good smart--sometimes still called a trickle--charger will definitely slow the rate of sulfation, but it will not prevent sulfation from occurring altogether. A desulphating charger will do a better job at preventing the crystals from forming and if they do form can remove them.

I like to use on-board desulfators on new batteries as a preventive tool as the pulse frequency is often slower/lighter than the charger versions. They could take 2-6 weeks before you see a noticeable result on heavily sulfated batteries. The charger desulfators will pulse over 1,300,000 times per minute (22-28 KHz) and "attack" existing sulfate crystals. Noticeable improvement can be seen in as little as 24-48 hours.

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