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mike_sdak

winter...and batteries

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mike_sdak

Hi everyone.

Went out to blow snow with the allis 917 (with 16 briggs and starter-generator) and she would just barely turn over, 1 would say 30 rpm or so. This was with a charged U1 lawn and garden battery, and about 6 degrees F. It doesn't get much warmer than that, when I need to blow snow around here.

When I jumped it, it started fine. Am I limited to a 51R or 22NF battery if I want it to start in the winter? Just curious as to your experiences.

Thanks,

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MysTiK

Great question, Mike. And very timely.

I haven't run my tractor in winter - so this year is a first for me.

My tractor starts well, no problem there - esp. w choke - within 2-3 seconds. I do basic battery maintenance, have a charger that I use typically in Spring. Also I run the charger long enough for it to fully charge, and (not sure of this) perhaps offset any tendencies towards sulfation. Charger is 10amp max, usually meter show 8-9 and fades to 5amp, then slowly tapers to near and nearer zero, and I let it run a few hours beyond that. (just what I do).

My batts are cheapy Walmart, not the cheapest, one up from that. Been running lately in cooler weather with no problems, no noticeable change except maybe a slightly lower crank speed.

I have changed my oil from usual 30, recently using 15w40 instead of 30 = but for the cold I am using 10w30, and will consider 5w30 if oil feels too thick.

Heavy cold oil can add a lot of load to the equation. That's maybe the most important for actually doing the start.

But charging, clean terminals, and clean other connectors thru the entire starting circuit are all good.

That's my approach.

I also declutch my 716H to release the tranny load on the starter, leaving the battery pushing just the engine.

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Talntedmrgreen

I've had decent luck with U1's in the past, but whe it's time to replace a battery, I've been going with the Excide 51R @ TSC. It's been an excellent battery for me. Plenty of power, despite the additional load of hydro pumps for tranny, lift and loader, even after sitting for long periods of time in the cold. With a core, and the 15% off coupon TSC occasionally mails out, it's under $70. In about 5 years, I've yet to replace one.

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mike_sdak

Good thoughts.

As to oil, I believe I am running rotella synthetic 5w-40, should be good there.

As to the connections, I bet that is the culprit. When I jumped it, it didn't turn over properly, without the other vehicle's engine running.

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huffy

I've not had any problems with the 22NF batteries in winter. Last winter I parked my 2012 in the shed for about 6 mos with no battery tender or anything (this was before the resto, or I wouldn't have done that), and this spring it fired right up with no problem. Didn't even have to jump it or charge it.

Of course, I didn't have any problem with the U1R on my primary snowblowing tractor, either, until it decided to kick the bucket yesterday. It was 7 years old, though, so I guess it did ok.

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midnightpumpkin

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chris87

last winter i used a plow truck to plow my driveway and didnt want to run two batteries so i just used a battery maintainer. i used a 500 cca battery and i should of had two 800 or 900 cca. with it fully charged it worked great only doing a few driveways let me get away with the smaller battery. so im going to use it on my tractor this year it can be let on all the time and has a quick disconnect witch makes it nice dont have to remove hood to hook it up or disconnect it. the one i have i got from meijer for under $20 it is a Stanley 2 Amp Maintainer Battery Charger - BC209.

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mike_sdak

I fixed a few problems today:

1. cleaned the positive terminal and made it nice and tight (was not terribly tight before)

2. freed the sticking idler pivot on the clutch - now I can clutch it while the engine is warming up. Previously, after using the clutch, the hydro belt wouldn't engage.

Result: I can now start it pretty well with the U1 battery. So far, so good. Thanks for the help, everyone.

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MysTiK

My 2 batteries are both the Walmart cheepeez I mentioned - and they are little 300 cca's. Both are good batts. I have been swapping them back and forth, mainly because my Pacer mower, I believe has a BAD GROUND problem.

The Pacer was barely starting, and was barely (trying) to recharge the battery. So I stole the 716H excellent battery, and put it in the Pacer. The Pacer killed it too. Meanwhile, the Pacer battery was restored by the 716's excellent charging system. sm01 Swap them again - same thing.

I don't believe there's a problem using cheap batts, as long as the charging system is working, and the engine in good order, esp. the charging system. These big honking batteries are hiding other problems. (except in severe Arctic cold).

Fixing the Pacer's bad ground is no picnic - simply because of it's location, way underneath - getting at it is like dealing with a bag of hammers. But it seems the only real solution - it's not about the battery, or what model it is.

I've lived in Alberta where -30 (or worse) temperatures bring out the worst. Starting a vehicle sounds like ggggrrrrr=oooooo=nnnnnn, as you get about 18 rpm's - until it kicks and starts, and idles at 100 rpm's on full choke for the first 30 seconds, as you sit freezing your butt in your car thinking "please keep running", and then run in the house for half an hour.

first time you experience that it's like o.m.g. 8)

and big thanks to whoever invented the automatic choke.:D - millions of lives saved.

Anybody ever try a dipstick heater?

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Kenh

If you can find a place the pad heaters that stick on an oil pan are slicker than greased snot on a door handle. :D You do need about 3/16 inch clearance though. I haven't tried it but maybe stick it on the tractor frame. Some heat will be lost to the frame but maybe enough will make it to the bottom of the engine?????

I put one on the Onan NHC in my Mustang skid steer and it works a treat.

Ken

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