May 29, 2023

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What are the Criteria for Good and Durable Battery Cables

As with a battery, the battery cable has an equally important role in matters of electric current in the vehicle. The battery cable has the task of transferring electric current from the battery to the starter motor and then distributing it to other electrical components. In a car there are two types of battery cables in the car. The first is the cable that connects from the positive terminal to the starter motor and the second is the cable that connects from the negative terminal to the chassis or mass. In order for electricity to run normally, the battery cable must be able to flow electricity smoothly from the battery terminal to the starter and to the mass. In electricity there is a term called resistance. Resistance is how difficult it is for electrical energy to flow in a material. Factors that cause high resistance to battery cables depend on the cable material, cable length and cable cross-sectional area. Now is the time for us to examine the problems that can arise in battery cables and how to choose a good battery cable. Here’s an explanation. PROBLEMS WITH THE BATTERY CABLES “The quality of the battery cables can also be determined by the material used. Some battery cable manufacturers often make savings by replacing some of the materials in the battery cables with iron,” said Donovan Aditya Yahya, PhD, Operational Director of Wakasa Auto Parts.

Even though iron material has a high resistance compared to aluminum, gold, silver, copper and steel. “Therefore, battery cable manufacturers who want to make big profits use iron coated with copper to make it look like copper,” said Donovan. Even though the use of iron material in the battery cable has drawbacks, namely it is easy to get rust. In a long time iron (Fe) can react with air (O2), the result of that reaction causes rust (Fe2O3). When iron is seized by rust, resistance (barriers) will increase. This makes it more difficult for electricity to flow to car components that need it. One of the things that often happens, car owners will have difficulty starting the engine. This is because the starter dynamo cannot work to start the engine because not enough electric current is flowing. “Another consequence that can arise from rust on battery cables is that electrical energy is wasted and becomes heat energy,” explained Donovan. One indication of this is a battery cable that gets hot to the touch. Another problem that can be caused by battery cables is loose copper wires. The battery cable is made of thin copper fibers that are combined into thick ones to provide a large cross-section to make it easier for electricity to flow. “It’s like a highway.

The wider the toll road, the smoother the flow of electric traffic will be, said Donovan. If the copper fiber is loose and allows air to enter between the cable fibers, electrical energy will be difficult to move around. Of course this makes the resistance value high, because electrical energy is difficult to flow through the air. The effect of an electric current with high resistance is that electrical energy is wasted as heat energy. The heat energy can melt the cable and break the copper strands. Burning cables can of course trigger a car fire. In addition, note also the negative cable / mass. Often people think that the important thing is the positive cable, even though the negative cable has an important role. The negative/mass cable must be shorter or the same length as the positive cable. It is also necessary to ensure that the terminal mass attaches tightly to the car body without being hindered by paint, grease or other impurities

Tips and tricks for choosing a good battery cable

1. High-quality battery cables are made of full copper, not copper-coated iron. The way to test cable copper purity is very easy, namely by attaching a magnet to the cable. if it sticks you can be sure the cable is not pure copper because the magnet does not stick to the copper.

2. Make sure the cable insulator (cable skin) has sufficient thickness. A good thickness of cable insulation is about 1 mm. Cable insulators that are too thin will melt more easily when the temperature rises. But cable insulators that are too thick can be a trick to cover up the low copper content.

3. Make sure the copper fiber on the cable is thick and dense enough, so that the electric current can flow properly through the cable. In addition, the cable must also be flexible so that it is easy to install in a car.

4. Make sure the wires are crimped and soldered to the terminals. Without soldering, this area will become an area of ​​high resistance, causing the temperature to rise and if left long can cause melting of the terminals.

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