: Trickle charging XTS Battery



kipsts
12-18-12, 04:38 PM
I have used "smart chargers" on my cars for years to maintain the batteries during periods of low or no driving. A nice byproduct is that it also extends the life of the battery in my experience. The unit I use on all of my cars is the CTEK Multi 3300 Smart Battery Charger which disulphates, charges, conditions and maintains. [No affiliation with them, just decided on their product after extensive research and talking with others in several of the car clubs I belong to.] Normally I just plug in the cigarette lighter adapter and it does its job. However in the XTS I did not find any 'live' outlet when the car is off, so I will be using the direct alligator clamps that comes with the CTEK to the battery in SilverFox. Anyone else doing this? :cool2:

rebelduke
12-23-12, 07:37 PM
I have used "smart chargers" on my cars for years to maintain the batteries during periods of low or no driving. A nice byproduct is that it also extends the life of the battery in my experience. The unit I use on all of my cars is the CTEK Multi 3300 Smart Battery Charger which disulphates, charges, conditions and maintains. [No affiliation with them, just decided on their product after extensive research and talking with others in several of the car clubs I belong to.] Normally I just plug in the cigarette lighter adapter and it does its job. However in the XTS I did not find any 'live' outlet when the car is off, so I will be using the direct alligator clamps that comes with the CTEK to the battery in SilverFox. Anyone else doing this? :cool2:
I will as soon as it gets here. I traded in my '08 CTS with 12,000 miles on it so we didn't drive it that much. With all of the gadgetry on the XTS, coupled with the few miles we do drive, it makes a lot of sense to me although the CTS had the original battery when we traded. $52.00 seems to me to be a pretty inexpensive insurance policy(plus I can use it on my lawn mower!).

kipsts
12-23-12, 07:49 PM
An update: What I have done on SilverFox (again since there does not appear to be a 'live' cigarette plug when the XTS is shut down) is to remove the cover over the battery and clamped the CTEK's mini alligator clamps to the appropriate terminals. The power line going to the CTEK unit comes out on the left side of the front of the engine compartment (near the headlight unit) and then I carefully close the hood. The CTEK unit is kept external to the car. All works well though less convenient than simply using the CTEK cigarette adapter. :cool2:

rebelduke
12-24-12, 08:10 AM
Did you connect using the battery remote connections as defined on page 10-72 of the XTS Owner's Manual?

kipsts
12-24-12, 09:06 AM
Did you connect using the battery remote connections as defined on page 10-72 of the XTS Owner's Manual? No @rebelduke. Those are designed for jump starting. The CTEK unit is designed to either be used through a 'live' accessory outlet (which the XTS does not have) or directly at the battery per their manual. :cool2:

kipsts
12-24-12, 05:38 PM
An update: What I have done on SilverFox (again since there does not appear to be a 'live' cigarette plug when the XTS is shut down) is to remove the cover over the battery and clamped the CTEK's mini alligator clamps to the appropriate terminals. The power line going to the CTEK unit comes out on the left side of the front of the engine compartment (near the headlight unit) and then I carefully close the hood. The CTEK unit is kept external to the car. All works well though less convenient than simply using the CTEK cigarette adapter. :cool2: I made one additional change today in terms of how I hook up the CTEK to the XTS battery. They have an accessory called the CTEK Comfort Connect which has insulated ring tongue eyelets, along with a protective fuse, that are 'permanently' attached to the respective battery terminals using the existing studs and nuts. The opposite end of the eyelets and cable is a quick connector with an attached seal. When you want to charge/maintain the battery you just attach the CTEK power line (with the unit off) to the quick connector. This ended up being a pretty neat solution. I don't have to remove the battery 'over cover housing' as I did when I used the mini-alligator clamps, and the CTEK Comfort Connect runs along side the battery to the front of the engine compartment, neatly tucked out of the way until needed. Then you just pop the engine bay hood, open the seal, connect the CTEK and close the hood. Turn on the unit (again, kept outside of the car) and you are done. Works like a charm. :cool2:

rebelduke
12-27-12, 09:12 AM
No @rebelduke. Those are designed for jump starting. The CTEK unit is designed to either be used through a 'live' accessory outlet (which the XTS does not have) or directly at the battery per their manual. :cool2:I really don't want to belabor this point but aren't these "jump starting" terminals electrically identical to the actual battery terminals? If they are, is there some other reason why they can't be used?

kipsts
12-27-12, 09:21 AM
I really don't want to belabor this point but aren't these "jump starting" terminals electrically identical to the actual battery terminals? If they are, is there some other reason why they can't be used? I believe the primary reason is that batteries can explode if you don't attach jumper cables correctly and by using the secondary terminal and body ground, if that were to happen at least your face would not be over the battery when it happened. :cool2:

kimbo1
12-30-12, 01:13 AM
Yes, I just got a new XTS last week and will be using my trusty BMW "Advanced Charging System" by connected the leads to the battery jump terminals in the engine compartment. Having just gotten rid of a BMW 535xi which probably made similar demands on the battery just sitting in the garage, I agree with you that using a trickle charger several times a week will prolong the life of hte XTS battery. BTW, serveral years ago I read where BMW NA told at least one owner that the car needed to be driven at least 50 miles to fully recharge the battery.

CAPT Mike
12-30-12, 04:04 PM
Yes, I just got a new XTS last week and will be using my trusty BMW "Advanced Charging System" by connected the leads to the battery jump terminals in the engine compartment. Having just gotten rid of a BMW 535xi which probably made similar demands on the battery just sitting in the garage, I agree with you that using a trickle charger several times a week will prolong the life of hte XTS battery. BTW, serveral years ago I read where BMW NA told at least one owner that the car needed to be driven at least 50 miles to fully recharge the battery.

My '06 530xi had battery problems and the same bull$hit about the car needing to be driven no less than 50 miles per day to keep the battery up to full charge. Nonsense! First, the battery was one of those humongous types, that cost 300 to replace and another 50-100 for BMW to "program" the computer for a new battery. It seems that BMW charging is dependent on the age of the battery and when a new one is installed, the computer cannot recognize it as new and will overcharge the new one. Now go back to the needing 50 miles driven to keep the battery up and what I just told you and the end result is an oxymoron. There is supposed to be a "sleeper" cycle for when the BMW is not driven; I would think that there would be something similar in the XTS. Unless you only take the XTS out once every other month, there really is no reason to need to put the battery on a trickle charger. This is not to say that I don't use trickle chargers because I do for my Corvette and my Harley; here in Central PA we have the infamous salt and "anti-skid material" aka pea gravel. Too dangerous to ride and I'm too anal to take out the Vette with its huge rear tires spitting those stones on the body and everywhere.

kipsts
12-30-12, 07:03 PM
@ CAPT Mike, I don't use the CTEK because I think the XTS needs it in the short run, but rather to increase the longevity of the battery life. My experience here in the desert is that it typically adds a couple of years to the usefulness of the car batteries. :cool2:

CAPT Mike
12-31-12, 08:17 AM
That is interesting kipsts. When I was stationed in NAS Lemoore CA in the late 80's, weather was similar to Las Vegas - hot as hell but with Tule Fog in the early winter. Had several vehicles - van, truck, motorcycle and two classic muscle cars. They all came with me from Newport RI and the batteries were 1-3 years old. 3 years in Lemoore and only had to replace the Harley's battery (not unusual for the old "keep them filled with distilled water" batteries)which was 4 1/2 years old. No trickle charging ever. The other batteries were replaced at normal intervals.