Just like all aviation components, aircraft battery maintenance and inspection must be regular and undergo strict checks to ensure optimal functionality, airworthiness, and safety of flight. An easy way to ensure that your battery is always well maintained is to follow the instructions and procedures as set out by the manufacturer. Accounting for the battery’s age, integrity, and general charge ability can also help you understand its performance.
One very important procedure is to always keep a record of the battery’s life and installation date for means of aircraft battery inspection. Inability to charge well, leakage, and physical damage to any part of the battery is indicative that it is time to replace or repair the battery. The two most common battery types for aircraft are lead-acid and NiCd, and understanding their differences and features is important for proper maintenance.
Lead-acid batteries consist of a series of cells and transform chemical energy into electrical energy as they discharge. When charging, the adverse effect takes place. They can be used and charged many times, though there are various factors that may shorten their lifespan. These include over discharging, letting the battery stay discharged for a longer period of time, or not replacing water loss for vented batteries.
NiCd batteries have cells that are contained within a metallic casing and are connected through conductive links. NiCd batteries are typically vented, and this allows for gasses and fumes to escape during rapid discharging. It is important to keep in mind that NiCd batteries have safe operating temperatures, as any operating temperature that is too high can have detrimental effects. As compared to other battery types, NiCd batteries are popular for their low maintenance and high reliability.
To optimally maintain batteries, a number of checks including checking plugs, drains, and having them undergo general inspections can help spot damage or problems early. As ventilation systems help to regulate the battery’s temperature and escape of generated fumes, maintaining and ensuring that those systems operate efficiently and are not blocked is important as well. With most batteries, following manufacture set instructions can help you to move in the right direction for aircraft battery maintenance.
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