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Can you detect leaking batteries electronically?

Discussion in 'Power Electronics' started by Doug3004, Sep 11, 2016.

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  1. Doug3004


    Sep 5, 2014
    I have a Sony ICF-SW7600GR shortwave radio that had batteries in it and sat for a long time. I very rarely listen to it; it had probably been 6 or 8 months since I'd last turned it on. I don't remember how old the batteries were.


    Over the last few weeks, four different times, it suddenly started beeping odd on its own. It has an alarm clock function, but that is just a 24-hour alarm (if you set it for 3PM for example, it goes off every day at 3 PM). I had not set the alarm at all tho, and the odd beeping did not sound like the alarm beep anyway.

    After the fourth time of this I decided maybe it would be better to just take the batteries out, since I didn't use it often anyway. It was then that I saw that one of the alkaline AA batteries was leaking quite badly.

    The manual does not say anything about having this as a feature; it only notes that there is a low-battery indicator in the LCD, and that the radio sound becomes distorted when the batteries get low. It seems a very unlikely coincidence however.


    I've never had anything else do this--make an odd sound all on its own, when the batteries are failing... Is there any way they could have built this thing to do this on purpose?

    I threw the batteries out a few days ago, and didn't think to check them all with any kind of meter. Do the batteries do anything unusual when they leak, other than put out less volts/current?
  2. Doug3004


    Sep 5, 2014
    Well nuts. I tried to kill those links but it salvaged the amazon one anyway...
    Is there a 'code' tag? Or some other way here to post inactive links?
    I kinda prefer to post dead ones anyway, as it avoids the whole clickbait issue.
  3. Alec_t


    Jul 7, 2015
    I bet your smoke alarm (you do have at least one, don't you? :eek:) or other hazard alarm does that.
  4. Bluejets


    Oct 5, 2014 smokies get the hiccups....... other devices are radio control freezers.
    lost model alarms.....:)
  5. 73's de Edd

    73's de Edd

    Aug 21, 2015
    Sir Doug3004 . . . . .

    Two degrees of leaked battery electrolyte "goo" . . .the wet stage and the dried up dry residue stage.
    If the former . . .a possibility that some got down across PCB solder foil(s) and conductivity caused the effect.
    Being in a one in a 10,419 chance and in being across JUST the right circuitry path.
    Otherwise . . . . . I NEVER-NEVER-NEVER-done-EVER heard of a "low battery" alarm cue on a Sony.

    73's de Edd
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 12, 2016
  6. Rapidrob


    Sep 12, 2016
    I'd got to Harbor Freight and buy NiMH batteries. They are rechargeable and cost the same as "store bought" Alkaline batteries. I have never had one leak on me and I leave them in stuff for a long time too.
    While not an answer to your question,at least they may help the corrosion problem.
  7. frhrwa


    Jun 17, 2012
    If i'm not using something often, I remove the batteries..
  8. Audioguru


    Sep 24, 2016
    Duracell AA alkaline cells leak when discharged. Energizer guarantee no leakage from their AA alkaline cells.
  9. PhilK


    Sep 16, 2009
    My worry would be that the leak got into the electronics which was shorting something out causing the sounds you heard.
  10. Consultant


    Dec 2, 2011
    Yours had the digital display? If so, then I suspect that a partially bad contact at the battery contact is causing digital corruption. I don't think it is an intentional low battery warning, but probably random signs of problems because the digital side of things keeps getting corrupted? It could be the varying resistance of the contact is sometimes causing the voltage to drop below what it needs, or it sometimes is high enough resistance to limit the current to where it can't draw enough current to keep the digital side going properly.

    Look for silver PLATING polish or solution. Amazon do quite a good one for round $15-20. Then sandpaper off all corrosion and use a q-tip or similar to plate the contacts with silver. Hopefully this will make all the problems go away...
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