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Old 03-17-2015, 08:52 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Have YOU deep discharged your pack yet?

Thought it might be useful to try to keep a running 'score' of full pack deep discharges around here. Seems like there's a few more people trying it here and there, and so far I've only read positive-sounding results. So let me be the first and hopefully not the last person to add my name to this list.

I've done 3 deep discharges to a single pack, 1 to 22V and the last 2 to near zero volts. I imagine that will be the extent of my deep discharging for a while... I also did one on some other dude's pack and haven't heard anything from him since - so I imagine his pack is still holding up, it's been maybe 1/2 a year...

I didn't see great gains until the first discharge down to near zero. The pack seems to be holding up very well. It's old, yes, and doesn't sparkle and zip and sizzle like a new pack would. But it can typically put out about 5kW, no lights or neg recals...

So, hopefully the rest of you can at least add your post when you've done a deep discharge or report that you have in the past, perhaps add a few details, such as how low did you go, and let us know how the pack has held up since?...
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Old 03-17-2015, 09:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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i'm new to this and have a very basic understanding of wiring.

It would so helpful if there was a detailed handholding write up on how to construct a basic bulb discharger and how to use it.

I know there are links to pictures etc but it seems they do little more to say "here is what I built"

An out lined procedure of grid charging and discharging would be greatly appreciated by us newbies

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Old 03-17-2015, 09:24 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I'd like to try to keep this thread devoid of any instructions, theory, and general ramblings. I'll see if I can find some good links for you, alsalp. But keep in mind that few people want to do any 'hand-holding' when it comes to this stuff because there are dangers involved working with high voltage electricity. They generally believe that if someone can't figure a few things out from the material they provide, then that one probably shouldn't be messing with the stuff...

From here on out, let's see if we can keep things on point: Tell us that you've deep discharged, the outcome so far, and any pertinent details, such as How low did you go...
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Old 03-17-2015, 09:57 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I hooked my light bulb discharger, that I usually use for my grid charge procedure, and I plugged it in and left it run all night. I came out next morning, bulb was off. I don't know how much voltage it takes to keep a 120 volt light bulb illuminated, I didn't measure anything. My patience was thin at the time. I grid charged back up.
Batteries working better than ever. I will do it again, maybe in the next month, and take a lot more measurements.
I've worked a lot of construction and used different types of cordless batteries. I know all batteries are different, but I feel that a DEEP discharge isn't hard on our battery packs. Repeated FAST discharges are what heats up and kills batteries.
I feel that a long slow sustained slow discharge helped bring back some balance to my pack.
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Old 03-17-2015, 10:47 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I have done half a dozen, including three of my own, mostly using the Simple Cycler set to discharge to 0V for the whole pack.
All showed good increases increases in capacity and reduction in recals etc.
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Old 03-17-2015, 10:57 AM   #6 (permalink)
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3X HCH2 packs and 1X HCH1 pack

Process:
grid charge for 24 hr or peak V + 8 hr (shortest was 20 hr). Accessible cells reported temps around 90 deg F via IR thermometer.
1 hr rest
Discharge to 120V w/500W Halogen (1-2 hr)
Discharge to 1.8V w/40W Tungsten (5-7 hr)
grid charge for 24 hr
1 hr rest
500W Halogen discharge to 120V

All four packs demonstrated a 25-33% improvement in the second discharge

Voltages and currents were recorded at 20-30 intervals during the process, and capacity values were computed at 132V for HCH2 and 120V for HCH1.

In-car performance was only assessed on one HCH2 pack. It lasted 6 weeks with very good performance before recals because excessive (1-2 per trip) and 8 weeks before IMA light returned. Further stick level testing identified two stick-pairs that had excessive self-discharge rates.
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Old 03-17-2015, 11:12 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I've only grid-charged it, not yet figured out the discharging part of it. Maybe I'll do that on my April vacation when I have more time.
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Old 03-17-2015, 11:56 AM   #8 (permalink)
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My battery was replaced under Honda warranty in March 2011. I live in an area with many hills and drive less than most. 18 mile total commute (3 days a week) and annual mileage of 4,300. The vehicle may not be driven enough to maintain adequate charging.

On 1/19/15 the IMA light came on with code 1449. I performed the descending discharge (120V/100V/50V) using a Hybrid Automotive discharger followed up with a recharge cycle and thought things were fixed; only to find the fix was temporary (lasting perhaps 3-5 days).

I then discharged down to .20V and grid charged for 8000mAh based on eq1's advice. The Insight has been running very strong for the last two months. I plan to repeat the process when needed.

I have one of the original low voltage (350mA) 99MPG chargers and needed to modify the default settings to achieve a full charge charge. The default time was increased to 24 hours, and the cut-back voltage had a default of 167V which I increased to 179V.

The default settings on the charger likely hampered the success of the previous descending discharge.

I was ready to pull the trigger on a new battery so I really appreciate the advice provided by eq1 back in January to give the deep discharging a shot. I had overlooked my charger default settings and eq1 was quick to point out that I was not getting an adequate charge and needed to change the defaults settings.

I am a believer of the deep discharge.
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Old 03-17-2015, 01:16 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I've discharged (not deeply) both batteries on each of my 2 insights and have seen very good improvement. Used a typical bulb discharge on both, took one down to 130 VDC and the other only down to 139 VDC as time allowed. Even with this small discharge, my batteries are doing much better. Holds charges longer and recharges faster. Long uphills use less bars.

I will continue to do discharges as this seems to have been the most impressive of the battery maintenance tasks that I have did.

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Old 03-17-2015, 03:31 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Interesting new thread. I've thought for a while that some reporting on the subject was in order.

I tried Mike's initial recommendation of 125V, 100V, and 75V discharges on one battery. I then measured the improvement of discharge time on that battery and saw no improvement. By "no improvement" I am measuring this against the discharge time reported by the Genesis equipment - I wanted a definitive measurement. I must note that this method may hide any improvement, because on recheck the Genesis equipment stops discharging when it detects the first cell dropout. If there is some sort of average improvement in the entire pack, that improvement would be hidden unless the bad cell is healed. I can envision an "average" improvement while a bad cell is repeatedly driven into undetected reversal. I don't see how we could know from observations at the pack level, with any measure short of voltage graphing, but such a circumstance would explain the widely reported pack improvements.

On a second pack of my friend Truck, deep discharge also did not result in improvement as measured by discharge time on the Genesis equipment. Because of the widely reported improvements from very deep discharges, it seems to me that my explanation in para 1 above is a likely explanation. Does the explanation matter? I suppose not so long as battery life is extended by some months.
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