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Way off topic...but I saved some $$ today.

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I have had a Ryobi 18 volt rechargeable tool kit for 5 or 6 years now and the batteries simply quit charging. This is the kit you could buy at Home Depot with the drill, small circular saw, flashlight and reciprocating saw.

I was about to shell out $40 for a new set of batteries and thought I would check out the 'net for any possiblities of reconditioning. I saw one method that I thought was totally NUTS (but free)....so of course I tried that one first. biggrin.gif

The poster said to put the battery in a freezer for a couple of days and then recharge it. Run it down, refreeze it and recharge it once again.

After the first freeze/charge cycle I did get some response from the battery but I really did not have any hope. The drill ran very slowly for 60 to 90 seconds and stopped. I put it back in the freezer for a couple of days and then back on the charger. The battery was probably on the charger for 3 or 4 days as I had forgotten about it. I saw it today and thought "what the heck".

WELL!!! I popped the battery in the drill...pulled the switch and danged if it did not run better than new. You better not hold the chuck end and pull the trigger...it will blister your hand. I put it in the circular saw to see just how quickly it would run the battery down and after 3 minutes of continuous run it was still going strong. Same way with the reciprocating saw.

I have no idea the physics behind how/why this worked but as most of us on the SMF are DIY'ers and probably have these types of tools I thought I would share.

I did put the batteries in a plastic box for the freeze cycle just in case of rupture. I would cry for months if I ruined my meat supply.

As always...your mileage may vary...what works for me may not work for you...but this really did work. I had tried charging the "old fashioned way" a month or so ago with no luck.
post #2 of 20
Thanks for the tip. One of the spares on my craftsman set is no good. I think I will try the freezer method out.
post #3 of 20
Great info!!! Got same problem w/ 1 of my bats. Gonna give it a shot when I get home.
post #4 of 20
Very interesting! I'd be curious to know how/why that works?!? If it works for that kind of rechargeable battery...ya think it'd work for others?
post #5 of 20
That is great to know. Sure wish it would work for my four wheeler battery. $130 bucks isn't what I want to spend right now.
post #6 of 20
thats great, thanks... have the same set with a couple batteries that seem to be bad... ill have to try it also... thanks
post #7 of 20
Thread Starter 
I will be real interested to see if anyone else has the success I did. I had one battery come to full charge and the other did nothing. I have dropped in back in the freezer for a redo just to see.

As far as other types of batteries...no clue. I really did not expect it to work on mine. Way to simple and free.

And as to WHY it worked...again no clue. The only thing I can think of is that the heat of the charging process created a chemical reaction with the frozen NiCad.
post #8 of 20
that sounds like something i need to try on all my batteries! sticky this!
post #9 of 20
OK...this is for Scrapiron and everyone else............

A few months back, a friend of mine gave me a golfcart in shambles (but it was free). Of course, all 6-6volt batteries were wayyyyyyyy
beyond dead. They even had the acid evaporated out of them about 1/3 of the way. I started searching on the web for cheap batteries.
No such luck. I went to eBay. No such luck. What I did find on eBay was a seller selling a pdf. file (for 10 bucks) on how to refurb your lead/acid batteries. So.... I went back to the web and could not find any "free" infomation on how to do this. Went back to eBay and paid 10 bucks for the instructions. This is what the instructions told me to do:

1. Drain about a quart of liquid from each battery. This is equivalent to the acid being level with the tops of the plates in the battery.
2. Melt 12 tablespoons of epsom salts in a quart of heated (about 155 degrees, not boiling) water. Mix till it's dissolved. (about 1 minute)
3. Distrubute the warm solution into the cells of the battery.
4. Recharge your battery fully. Sometimes you need to re-charge your battery twice. That's it.

Over the years, your batteries plates get corroded from the sulfates.
What the epsom salts do is break down the sulfates allowing your battery to fully (or almost fully) recharge itself.

My batteries were in HORRIBLE condition. They would not take a charge at all. I was able to get my batteries to charge maybe to half capacity. (I'm talking about 6 golfcart batteries) This fix allowed me to run the cart for a couple days at a time just around my property before needing to be recharged. So... it worked for me.

This fix will work on MOST lead-acid batteries.
Wear gloves and eye protection when playing around with acid.
Remember, it's 12 Table spoons of epsom salts PER QUART OF 155 degree DISTILLED WATER.
My friend tried this on his motorcycle battery and it worked.

Something to think about:
When you go buy your new battery, they ALWAYS want your old one (the core).... I wonder why that is?!?!

DISCLAIMER: I'm NOT a mechanic. Hell , I'm not even a PitMaster......YET! I just wanted to share this with my fellow forum buddies knowing that they probably all have lead acid batteries. This is just something I found on eBay and it seems to work. At least it did for me. Epsom salt is CHEAP. Give it a try before you go invest a 100 plus bucks for a new battery.
Good Luck.
post #10 of 20
Luv, I will try this. I have a dead dewalt battery ( 2 of them actually) around I will try this one. (I already bought a new craftsman drill for $90 - more power - instead of replacing the dewalt batt for $60)
post #11 of 20
Thanks for the tips guys...................Will have to try them out.............
post #12 of 20
Thanks for the tip......but, I am always a day late and a dollar short. Last month I paid $170 for battery on my HD.icon_sad.gif
post #13 of 20
If I remember right from my R/C days, freezing and charging the Ni-Cad batteries breaks up the crystals that form inside the cells and restore the capacity to near what it was when they were new. Don't take this as gospel truth. I've been wrong before and likely will again (probably before I go to sleep.)
post #14 of 20
Has anyone tried the freezing with the Ni-MH ( Nickel- metal hydride ) batteries ? Or see any problems trying it with them ? I've got 4 dead makita 18 volt batteries ( the black and grey ones) I was really disapointed with thier short life span icon_evil.gif .
post #15 of 20
Thread Starter 
I would give it a try. You will not be out anything if it does not work. I would suggest putting the batteries in a sturdy container just in case they burst during the freeze process.

I called my FIL last night and was telling him about it. He had just dropped 4 of the Black & Decker cartridge type batteries in the trash. He was going to dig them out and try it as well. If it works it will save him $100.

I finally got the recharged battery to drain. I finally just strapped the trigger on the drill to the ON position. It probably ran for 20 minutes.
post #16 of 20
I'll give one a shot , a quick google puts the current price at $71 - $89 each plus shipping wink.gif
post #17 of 20
when you bring them out of the fridge, do you put them in the charger right away or do you wait a few minutes or longer?
post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 
I did it right out of the freezer. Not sure if it made a difference...but it worked that way for me.
post #19 of 20
Thanks for the tip, l2c35, I bought a set of cordless tools (circular saw, recepicating saw and drill) at a swap meet last weekend. Needed a cordless circualr saw that was small for a flooring project that Ma had on my "honey-do now" list. The kit came with two batteries-one would last a couple of hours on a charge and the other didn't even last 15 minutes. Ended up having to use the chop saw and table saw.

I'll give this trick a try before a spend the green for new batteries.

Thanks again!
post #20 of 20
Thanks Nick. I will give that a try this weekend. That beats paying out the big bucks for a new battery.
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