So you will have determined so as to add a major HID/LED gentle to your gear bag. There’s a important funding to buy major lights. They do not come low cost. A great high quality major gentle can value as much as $2,000 USD, much more for top powered video lights. It is advisable ensure that your funding will final so long as doable. One of many preventative upkeep procedures for checking the well being of your major gentle is to burn take a look at the battery. Burn testing the battery is an easy process, however does require a while. This will provide you with an correct measurement for the way lengthy your battery will maintain a cost.
Earlier than we go into the procedures about the best way to carry out this take a look at, let’s check out why you ought to be doing this take a look at. The burn take a look at will provide you with a reasonably correct studying for the way lengthy your gentle will final on a full cost. For divers who’re diving in overhead or darkish environments, that is vital as nothing will destroy a cave/wreck dive greater than a light-weight failure. For leisure divers, who don’t enterprise into overhead environments, the burn take a look at will inform you the well being of your battery. If the consecutive burn take a look at outcomes present that the battery is holding much less and fewer of a cost over time, then you could be buying a brand new battery quickly. Batteries aren’t low cost both.
How typically do you have to burn take a look at your battery? That relies upon. If you’re a leisure diver, staying out of overhead environments, performing the burn take a look at a few times a 12 months is prudent. For cave and wreck divers, a extremely dependable major gentle is essential. These divers ought to burn take a look at their batteries extra often. I’ve discovered myself burn testing mine two to a few occasions a 12 months. Now that I will likely be doing extra cave diving within the winter, I will in all probability find yourself burn testing mine 4 or 5 occasions a 12 months.
There are some easy instruments you have to with the intention to carry out a burn take a look at:
- Your gentle head and battery
- Volt meter or multimeter
- Timing system
- Bucket of water (in your gentle head)
- Uninterrupted free time
Burn Check Procedures
Earlier than performing the burn take a look at, you should ensure that your battery is on a full cost. I’ll cost mine until full, then let it sit on a upkeep cost for about an hour after the total cost. Then I hook up my gentle head to the battery and depart the sunshine turned on for about ten minutes, with the sunshine head in a bucket of water. Then I put a remaining cost on the battery. As soon as full, you’ll be prepared to begin the take a look at.
- Place the sunshine head right into a bucket of water. HID lights particularly want a solution to take away the warmth buildup from the bulb in order that no injury happens to the bulb. A bucket or sink of luke heat water is ample sufficient to maintain the bulb cool. Simply ensure that water stays within the sink or bucket.
- Join the battery to the sunshine head. Go away the battery out of the canister. This may make it simpler to attach the volt meter to take readings.
- Join your volt meter to the battery. Most volt meters have easy metallic probes. Just remember to stick the probes far sufficient into the Anderson connector to get an correct studying. In case your gentle head connects to the battery with another type of connector, then be sure to can connect the probes to the wire. As soon as the probes are related, take your studying from the volt meter and document the studying. If this studying is at 10 volts or under, your battery is most certainly dangerous.
- Flip in your gentle head. Take one other studying with the battery underneath a load. This will likely be your beginning voltage. Set your timing system to alarm after 10 minutes.
- At each 10 minute interval, take one other studying along with your volt meter and document the studying. Cease taking readings when the battery’s volt studying is at or under 10 volts. Don’t depart the battery unattended. As soon as the battery drops under 10 volts, it’s going to begin to drop extra quickly. You do not need the battery to drop under 10 volts.
- The full period of time it took to get right down to 10 volts will likely be how lengthy your battery will final. I document this time and the date of the burn take a look at on a chunk of duct tape on the battery. This fashion I understand how lengthy the battery will final so I do not get it confused with different batteries I could have laying round.
- Recharge the battery instantly
You do not need your battery to drop under 10 volts or fully discharge. Doing so can injury the cells contained in the battery pack. For that reason, if you don’t use your gentle for a protracted time period (like over the winter), you must place the battery on a cost sometimes.
It also needs to be famous that the minimal discharge voltage could differ for battery packs from totally different producers. For instance, some producers for lithium ion battery packs suggest the batteries to not go under 8 volts. Nonetheless, by no means taking a battery under 10 volts is an effective guideline. See the producers suggestions previous to conducting the burn take a look at in your battery.
The burn time in your battery will differ relying on the sunshine head used within the take a look at. My major gentle is an 18 watt gentle head. This gentle head will eat extra battery energy than a light-weight head with a 10w score. Whereas a 10w gentle head could give a burn time of six hours or extra, my 18w gentle head offers me a burn time round 4 hours. A lightweight head with the next output, will eat extra battery life and provides a shorter burn time.
There are gadgets you could hook as much as your pc that may analyze the battery. These analyzer can management the burn take a look at course of such that the battery does not change into full drained and stopping injury to it. Definitely a pleasant software to personal. I’ve seen a few of these promoting for about $200. If I had extra lights, this would definitely be well worth the funding.