Golf cart batteries normally use the lead acid battery chemistry mainly due to price and how easy they are to maintain. Golf cart batteries normally need very little maintenance and can work for relatively long periods of time. Golf cart batteries can however get damaged leading to the leaking out of the battery acid. This often happens if the battery is physically damaged or left out in the open for a very long time where it deteriorates due to degrading environmental conditions. Environmental conditions such as excessive heat and cold, coupled with seasonal rainfall can severely damage the golf cart battery covering, leading to the leaking out of battery acid. This can be detrimental especially if the battery acid comes into contact with a concrete surface. The battery acid can react with substances in the concrete floor or pavement producing a terrible whitish or brown and rust like discoloration. The reaction of the golf cart battery acid and the concrete can severely damage the concrete surface and affect its structural integrity. Acid can also corrode the surface finish of the concrete surface. It is good therefore to know how to remove the golf cart battery acid from the concrete surface before it ruins the concrete.
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Negative Effects Of Golf Cart Battery Acid On a Concrete Surface
The most obvious negative effect golf cart battery acid has on concrete is the red brownish discoloration that develops on the concrete surface. This rust like discoloration can be detrimental particularly on a pavement or a concrete wall that is at the front of the house. Due to the fact that most concrete surfaces are not protected by sealing with a masonry sealer removing battery acid stains can be very difficult. Although it is common place that most golf cart battery acid spills occur when the battery is damaged, battery leaks can also occur when the golf cart battery is being charged, especially if the battery is now very old. Concrete is normally very durable and hard as such difficult to damage, however golf cart batteries consist of a mixture of sulfuric acid and water. Since sulfuric acid is a very strong acid, it can attack components of the concrete. When this happens, the acid can go beyond just leaving stains and go on to physically damage the surface as well.
Golf cart battery acid can be dangerous and a serious health hazard as such when exposed to it or any other acid it is advisable to wash with soap and water and monitor the area. If the situation worsens, the next step is to seek medical attention as quickly as possible. When cleaning a battery acid stain on concrete surfaces, it is advisable to wear long sleeves and pants, protective gloves and proper eye googles that will protect the eyes. Good ventilation is also a must to ensure one is not affected by any harmful fumes.
Steps In Removing The Golf Cart Battery Acid Concrete Stain
Golf cart battery acid stains stick very hard to concrete surfaces and can be extremely hard to remove. As such before attempting to brush of the battery acid stain from the concrete surface, it is advisable to firstly clean the surface with another acid such as muriatic acid. This acid will however need to be diluted using a 3:1 dilution mixture, the 3 in the mixture being water. Muriatic acid is a chemically strong acid and can cause serious health risks, as such extreme care is needed to ensure it does not come it to contact with the skin or any other part of the body. Once the diluted muriatic acid mixture is applied on to the golf cart battery acid stain, it will start to bubble as it reacts with the battery acid on the concrete surface. Depending on how strong the battery acid has stuck on to the concrete surface, they may be need to add the muriatic acid diluted mixture on the concrete stain several times before the golf cart acid battery stain comes of completely. It is a good idea therefore to have a water hose nearby in order to flush out the muriatic acid mixture before adding a new one and brushing, if need be.
Using Oxalic Acid To Remove a Golf Cart Battery Acid Stain On Concrete
If one cannot get their hands on muriatic acid, there are other alternatives that are very effective and work just as well as the muriatic acid. One of these alternatives which is very good in removing a golf cart battery acid stain from a concrete surface is Oxalic acid. Just like when using muriatic acid to remove a golf cart battery acid stain, Oxalic acid will also need to be diluted before it is used since it a very strong acid. After creating the Oxalic acid diluted mixture and applying it on the golf cart battery acid stain on the concrete surface, the Oxalic acid needs to be left to settle for about 15 to 20 minutes so that it can effectively react with the battery acid stain. It is important to ensure that the stain is keep wet and is not allowed to dry up as it becomes significantly more difficult to remove if it dries up. For the best results and to ensure a clean concrete surface is left after removing the battery acid stain, it is advisable to keep the stain wet for the designated time only of about 15 to 20 minutes. After the 15 to 20 minutes has passed, the next step is to scrub the acid stain with a nylon bristle brush. This ensures one does not damage the concrete surface but leaves it as clean as possible. Lastly the concrete surface needs to be rinsed with water in order to ensure it is clear of the acid stain. One should never use a wire brush to remove a golf cart battery acid stain on a concrete surface. This is because a wire brush can change the texture of the concrete leaving a rough and chipped surface which can be unpleasant to look at especially on the drive way.
Other Golf Cart Battery Acid Stain Removal Methods
Other methods can be used to remove a golf cart battery acid stain from a concrete surface and these include a baking soda and water mixture since it reacts with the battery acid to create a harmless salt. This is particularly effective immediately after the golf cart battery acid stain is introduced to the concrete surface. The baking soda solution will neutralize the battery acid and avoid pitting and unevenness on the concrete surface since acids can normally eat away at the concrete surface. Chlorine bleach can also be applied and left for 10 minutes before being scrubbed using a bristle brush till the golf cart battery stain is all removed. The concrete rust remover can also be used as an effective solution.
In conclusion golf cart battery acid stains can be very detrimental on concrete surfaces as they create rust like stains and even eat way at the concrete leaving pitting and unevenness. As such they need to be removed using neutralizing solutions such as Chlorine bleach and muriatic acid or Oxalic acid in order to ensure a clean and even concrete surface.