Battery Care and Confusion
by Pat Goss
Electrical problems are always frustrating, but when you’re checking them, make sure you start with the basics, namely the fuses. Now if you’re in the habit of checking fuses using a test light, be very, very careful if you have a late model car. Make sure your test light is computer safe because some of these fuses will be hooked directly to electronic components, and the wrong test light will cost you a bundle. All right, there’s an easier way.
This is a Smart Glow Fuse, and you see this little bump on the top of it? Well, if the fuse blows, and we’ll hook it to this 9-volt battery, you can see that the little bump is actually a bulb and it glows. So all you have to do is look for glowing fuses and replace them. Actually I’d replace all of the fuses in my car with these Smart Glow Fuses because they’re so easy to check.
Of course with anything electrical you need a good power source, and that means the battery. Your battery cables have to be kept clean and tight. That means coating them with a protective coating and cleaning them. Also use felt pads that go between the battery cables and the battery. They’re treated with a chemical that helps reduce the formation of corrosion. But even so, sooner or later you may have to replace a battery cable.
Now, you can go out and buy the entire cable. Well, that’s going to be good, but on some cars it’s going to be very expensive. Now, here’s a mistake that a lot of people make. This is a temporary battery cable end. It goes on to the end of the battery cable. You cut the old one off and then tighten it on there, and a lot of people leave it on there. Bad idea. It is emergency use only.
But here’s something that isn’t. This is Centerpin Technology. These are permanent replacements that are actually an upgrade above and beyond what comes with the cable originally. What this does is it has a pin, a sharp pin that goes into the end of the cable. Then it has these teeth and a collar. You tighten down the collar. It presses these teeth into the cable, making a good, strong, waterproof, fume-proof, electrical connection. Extremely good.
Take care of the battery, take care of the fuses, you won’t have problems with the electronics on your car.
Centerpin replacement battery cable ends
Centerpin Technology, Inc.
1101 Gulf Breeze Pkwy., Suite 315
Gulf Breeze, FL 32561
Smartglow Fuses, have LED that lights when fuse blows
Catalina Performance Accessories, Inc.
9222 N. Hwy 71
Mountainburg, AR 72946
If you have a question or comment, write to me.
The address is MotorWeek, Owings Mills, MD, 21117.