Q:

How do you clean corroded battery cables?

A:

Quick Answer

Clean corroded battery cables by disconnecting them and scrubbing with a mixture of baking soda and water. Gloves and safety glasses are advised in addition to a wire brush or toothbrush for scrubbing. The entire process should take under 30 minutes.

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Full Answer

  1. Disconnect the battery cables

    Disconnect the cable from the negative post first. Failure to do so increases the risk of electric shock. Remove the plastic shield, and disconnect the cable from the positive post. Place the cables to the side, securing them if necessary so they will not be in the way.

  2. Apply the baking soda

    Mix 1 teaspoon of baking soda with 1 cup of water. Apply a small amount of the baking soda on the wire brush or toothbrush, and scrub the corrosion on the battery cables. Once the cables are clean, scrub the posts as well. Reattaching the cables without cleaning the posts transfers the corrosion back to the cables. Wipe away any remaining baking soda.

  3. Replace the battery cables

    Rub high-temperature grease around the posts to prevent future corrosion. Reconnect the positive terminal first followed by the negative terminal. Place the plastic shield back on top of the positive terminal when the job is complete.

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