• Active Material

    Active Material is the chemically active compound in a cell or battery that converts from one composition to another while producing current (electrical energy) or accepting current from an external circuit.
  • Battery Polarity

    A battery has two poles or posts. The positive battery post is usually marked POS, P, or + and is larger than the negative post, which is usually marked NEG, N, or -. The polarity of the charger and the battery must always match to avoid damage to the battery and the charger.
  • Cell

    Cells are the basic electrochemical current-producing units in a battery consisting of a set of positive plates, negative plates, electrolyte, separators, and casing. There are six cells in a 12-volt lead-acid battery.
  • Cold Cranking Amps

    Cold Cranking Amps is a rating used in the battery industry to define a battery's ability to start an engine in cold temperatures. The rating is the number of amps a new, fully charged battery can deliver at 0° F for 30 seconds, while maintaining a voltage of at least 7.2 volts, for a 12-volt battery. The higher the CCA rating, the higher the starting power of the battery.
  • Container

    A container is a polypropylene or hard rubber case which holds the plates, straps, and electrolyte.
  • Cover

    The lid for the case/container of the battery.
  • Electrolyte

    A solution of sulfuric acid and water which conducts current through the movement of ions (charged particles in the electrolyte solution) between the positive and negative plates. It supplies sulfate ions for reaction with the active material of the plates.
  • Grids

    Grids are the lead-alloy framework that supports the active material of the battery plate and conducts current.
  • Ground

    Ground is the reference potential of a circuit. In automotive use, grounding is done by attaching one battery cable to the body or the frame, which is used as a path for completing a circuit instead of a direct wire from a component. Today, over 99% of autos use the negative terminal of the battery as ground.
  • Intercell connections

    Intercell connections are the connections between the straps of two cells, positive of one cell to the negative of the next.
  • Open Circuit Voltage (O.C.V.)

    O.C.V. is the voltage of a battery when it is not delivering or receiving power. It is 2.11 volts for a fully-charged battery cell.
  • Plates

    Plates are typically flat rectangular components that contain the active material and a mechanical support structure called a grid, which also has an electrical function, carrying electrons to and from the active material. Plates are either positive or negative, depending on the active material they hold.
  • Reserve Capacity (RC)

    Reserve Capacity (RC) is a battery industry rating defining a battery's ability to power a vehicle with an inoperative alternator or fan belt. The rating is the number of minutes a battery at 80° F can be discharged at 25 amps and maintain a voltage of 10.5 volts for a 12-volt battery. The higher the reserve rating, the longer your vehicle can operate should your alternator or fan belt fail.
  • Separators

    Separators are porous plastic, electrically-insulating sheets which allow the transfer of ions between plates and prevent physical contact between the plates and the resulting electronic conduction.

    Use this chart to determine the State of Charge for a Deep Cycle Battery

    State of Charge Specific Gravity Voltage - 12 Volt Battery
    100% 1.265 12.7
    75% 1.25 12.4
    50% 1.19 12.2
    25% 1.155 12.1
  • Straps

    Straps are lead-alloy castings that connect a number of same polarity plates together in a cell and carry current.
  • Terminals

    Terminals are the electrical connection from the battery to the external circuit. Each terminal is connected to either the first (positive) or last strap (negative) in the series connection of cells in a battery.
  • Vents

    Vents are components that allow gases to exit the battery while retaining the electrolyte within the case.