Series Land Rover (Australia & NZ)
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Last Updated
8/4/10

 


Batteries and the Series Land Rover:

If you don't want to push start it, take care of the battery! Yes, you can use the starter handle, but when was the last time you tried that? Arms age as well as batteries! Unless you are alone it's actually easier to push a Series Land Rover than turn the engine over on a handle: If it's the other way around then you need a re-bore!
The golden rule is never to fully discharge the battery and leave it in the discharged state; doing that will shorten its life considerably. A discharged battery needs re-charging immediately. Don't even leave it overnight in a discharged state.

Series Land Rover 2.25litre engines upto chassis suffix C had a dynamo and positve earth. Suffix D onwards and all 2.6 litre engines had an alternator and negative earth. The dynamo was never good at charging the battery so if you still have one fitted to your Series Land Rover then you will need to charge your battery via external means occasionally to maintain its health. There are good smart float chargers available now which can be left connected whilst the vehicle is garaged and will not overcharge the battery. Overcharging is also a health hazard for battery life.

Most people are aware that keeping both the battery terminals and top of the battery clean reduces the chance of trickle discharge between terminals; but remember that discharge can also occur between the live terminal and the metal of the battery holder. So clean and dry this area in particular.

The old style lead acid batteries are being phased out now and "maintenance free" varieties (illustrated above) are on the market. If you are still using the lead acid type then you will be experiencing more difficulty producing enough starter current in cold weather, as low temperatures affect this type of battery more. You can check the specific gravity of the acid in the old style batteries with a hydrometer and the relevent figures are:

Ambient temperature below 27C
Fully charged 1.27 to 1.29
Half charged 1.19 to 1.21
Ambient temperature above 27C
Fully charged 1.21 to 1.23
Half charged 1.13 to 1.15


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