Owners of Anton/Bauer battery systems should run a standard 6-12-hr test on their batteries every couple of months in order to ensure optimal performance. Conducting such tests help the batteries learn their true capacity. By running them manually every couple of months you’ll never find a battery in the process of an auto test where it is discharging at an inconvenient time.
To do this you’ll need a digital charger that can provide you with the necessary data on its LCD screen. You can download the results via HyperTerminal if you have an older charger but it might be just as easy to use this MS Excel spreadsheet that I created as a way to log and track my own battery performance.
All a user must do is download it and then enter the values displayed by their charger. The difference between the learned capacity and the actual capacity will automatically be calculated based on the values entered into the spreadsheet.
You’ll want to first swap the identifying placeholder text out with your own battery’s model and serial numbers. Then replace the date and dashes with your own data (special thanks to my friend who suggested I enter zeros and format each cell for accounting in order to display a dash instead of just a blank field). Each cell has been customized. If you don’t have Microsoft Office, you can upload the file by importing it into Google Sheets for free. It is 100% compatible.
If the Ah differs by more than 0.5, try running the test again. The new results will help adjust the battery’s learned capacity to reflect a more accurate number (the last 5 are used to determine its learned capacity).
If the learned capacity is higher than the available capacity you’ll find the battery shuts off early. This is why it’s important to calibrate the batteries.
Likewise, if a battery is showing a learned capacity that is less than the available capacity you’ll find it to unexpectedly run longer than it should. This is usually the result of corrupted data; 5 new tests should correct the data.
Vitec Videocom, Inc. suggests that you run these tests sparingly, as they do use up one lifecycle each time they complete. The typical recommendation in the past has been to initiate such tests no more than once every 90 days during a battery’s first two years and then every 60 days in the time after.
To perform these tests and collect their readings consult both your battery and charger manuals.