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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Car hasn't ran or moved in two days, ignition off, key out. Was doing some work under the hood and noticed the positive terminal of the battery hot to the touch. I can't imagine how any (relatively weak) automotive loads would cause this--there weren't any anyway--so I am guessing it is either a short or chemical reaction (bad battery). Anybody?

steve 77
 

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That’s sounds scary to me.
That can blow up in your face and like a BB Gun it could put your eye out.
Do not try to start your car at all!
Batteries explode if it goes haywire like that.
Have a bucket of water handy because a spark will take place when removing it.
BLAM!
Remove it and check it outside if you like.
Ya see a high concentration of hydrogen gas can build up in one or more chambers and it blows up thousands of batteries each year. BOOM!

If it EXPLODES!!! mix a bunch of boxes of baking soda in a bucket of water and wash the whole engine compartment down to remove all the ACID!!! under the hood.
I would get the **** rid of it fast.
Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Madeline
Hollywood, FL
 

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If the battery is heating when it's not in use, it may have an internal short, which sounds like a problem. I've never seen a battery do this to the point it gets hot, but the lead from the plates can shed into the cell and short it out. My guess is the battery will be dead by the time you read this, but I agree with MM, be careful. I'd put on a face shield and yank it out, and put it in a couple plastic bags in a box for a couple of days. If the bat is over a couple years old, I'd get a new one.
Is it possible that the pos connection is dirty, and you had something on...headlights, starter, etc? a bad pos connection will heat up alot when you try to start the car, or draw alot of current.
 

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I agree also, a HOT terminal on a battery on a vehicle that hasn't run in two days spells out a massive short / drain someplace.

Here's a tip when you're getting the battery out, if you feel it really is going to go (explode).

First loosen both clamps on the terminal BUT before you twist or loosen the connection(s), put some heavy work-gloves, or welding gloves on (you're going for HAND protection), then get a heavy tarp or blanket or even a fender cover and place it between you and the battery. Stick your hands underneath and then remove the connector to the positive. Try to do it in one quick smooth move and you'll probably avoid a spark. The trick here is to AVOID a spark and LIMIT the amount of Hydrogen gas that might be around the top of the battery. This may sound overly dramatic, but when it comes to safety which way would you rather go?

Once you've disconnected the one, just keep it isolated and let the battery cool down (if it isn't an internal short) then disconnect the other cable and remove the battery.

Once you've disconnected the battery, I would check my fuse box and other major connections to see if there is a loose one, or a corroded one. See the other posts here to get an idea.

Oh, and by the way, have you checked the clock on the dash? If it's running properly that's one source of constant drain on the battery, but nowhere near heavy enough to cause a terminal to get hot. But if it isn't running right, and it's still hooked up, it could be the little electric motor inside that's shorted out.
 

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Something that happened to me on one of my Z cars was that the previous owner had replaced the battery with the wrong size, it was to tall and the positive terminal was rubbing the hood when it was closed. I would urge everyone to look at the hood location that hovers right above the positive terminal. Look for dents or burn marks.

M&Ms
Hollywood, FL

Rain Rain Go Away,
Come on back some other day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Clock? Work? Those are mutually exclusive terms. Got rid of the battery--who knows where it came from. Got a new one and pan/pad/top bracket/hold-down rod/terminals from MSA, so everyhting is bloted down and cool. Oh, and Mat, I too have a big 'arc-welded' notch in my access panel from the insulation rubbing off the hot wire.

steve '77
 

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Glad you got it fixed, one thing no one mentioned is eye protection, anytime you work with a battery, especially jump starting, wear eye protection. If they blow you will be glad not to have acid and/or acid covered shrapnel in them.

Always remove the negative first! that way if a wrench hits the frame there is no short to the + terminal. Also with the negative already removed there can be no short to the - terminal if the wrench touches the frame when removing it.

Reverse the order when putting one back in ( + 1st then - ).

.02
 
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