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Discussion Starter #1
It looks like the water level in one cell of my OE 12V battery is low. I can see the fluid in the other 5 cells, but not in one of them There are lines on the side for low and high level and the indicator explanation makes it sound like you can add water (blue for good, red for add water, black for dead) - something like that. But it looks like a Maintenance Free battery. I tried a little bit to unscrew a cap but it didn't move and I didn't get serious with it. I haven't load tested it but the voltage was 12.42 Volts over the weekend, so the cell isn't totally shot if the water is, in fact, low.

Has anyone ever added water to the original equipment battery?
 

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FB Hi Dash 12v battery

Hi JTMCO,

If you have a Furukawa Hi Dash 12v (that's what mine came with), there's a thin plastic film with some printing on it that covers the cell caps. If you carefully cut around the edge of the cap (you can feel it through the film with your fingernail) with a sharp implement (razor blade, x-acto knife, utility knife) you can then use a slotted screwdriver to remove the cap - it unscrews and lifts out.

If I were going to add water, I would add only distilled, filtered water. Usually a cell that is very much lower than the others indicates a problem with that cell.

I don't think you can hurt the battery by adding water - don't overfill.

Regards,
 

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The high level is where it's supposed to be at, low is about the top of the plates. Your best bet is to remove the battery and put it on a bench to work with, it will be much easier. Rather than cutting the sticker thats over the caps you can simply carefully peel it off (you can reapply it easily after your done), then you can easily unscrew the caps. I've done this once to add some distilled water. Unfortunately a water using cell generally means a problem cell, and since yours is a 01 it's most likely getting towards the end of it's life. Insight's tend to burn up 12 volt's because the batteries never really get cycled. Keep an eye on it, you don't want to end up stranded with a dead 12 volt. The particular battery I filled in a 2000 Insight I briefly had failed just a few months later.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ricky-

How is the Hawker holding up?

Jim
 

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So far so good. I did check it the other day and it was only showing 12.5 volts after sitting overnight. I think the one I got may be really old stock. Next time I get a chance I'll load test it and see what the results are. I suppose a forced starter motor start would give a pass/fail grade to it as well. I'll let you guys know. So far it's been just fine. If this one dies I'm probably going to go buy a brand new warrantied one because now I know it works.

On a slight side note my grandpa has a first year Miata and it was in need of a new battery. Well if you know anything about Miata's they have a special dealer only battery that they charge a pretty $140 for! So I had him look at some info on the Hawkers... Some slight mounting modifications later he's got a new big Hawker Genesis battery in the car and he says it's never started better in the 11 years he's had the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Has anyone actually tried the Odyssey?
 

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I replaced my Hawker last month. It was at 11.9 Volts and was impacting my mpg. Mine may have been old stock but I did get a good price. I went with a standard civic size as the Hawker was only in the car about 18 months. Have fun, RIck
 

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Do you still have your old Hawker Rick? I'd be curious to pry the top off of a used one and see just how it looks inside.

BTW, I might also mention this, when I had origonally gotten mine I put the charger on the non automatic setting while trying to get it back up to voltage and ended up getting it to a boil too so that deffinitely can't be helping the life of mine.
 

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Yes, I have an Odyssey 545 in my airplane. It is dry cell, and has worked perfectly for 3 years. I weighs 11 lbs compared to the 22 pound Gill it replaced. Billy...
 

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Rick,
I still have the hawker (believe it was a 26GP but I could check). I didn't have to charge mine but I did let it drain down so that I had to jump start the car. Have fun, RIck
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Just an update:

When I got the battery out, the cell that I thought was low looked fine. The battery has been reading 12.42 V. I had already bought a new battery from Honda (a friend gets a discount and I chickened out on the Hawkers), so I put it in. I figured it is good insurance. The good news is that everything seems to be working fine.

Thanks to everyone for the input.

Jim
 

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So you got a big black civic battery then right?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I did get the big black "Civic" battery. Except, when my buddy picked it up, he asked the parts guy if it was the same and the parts guy said, "No, the poles are reversed". My new ones are same as the original - negative on the back left. I'm not certain how the poles on the Civic are arranged - didn't look at my buddy's hybrid when he was here. So I don't know if the parts man was really smart or really lucky.

I figure I'll drop a couple lbs and make up for the extra weight. The good news is that it fits in the battery box like it belongs there. Even the plastic tray was just the right size.

Jim
 
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