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Fixing Bike Flashlight

Company, fire, backyard chilling and some impromptu parmigiana by my WIF-i led to pretty late night. Tim had shown up with his bike and wanted to go home, without lights.

a year ago

Latest Post Simply put. by Mario Esposito public

A few nights ago the Filini team was at our place for strategizing about our next two MTB challenges:

Company, fire, backyard chilling and some impromptu parmigiana by my WIF-i led to pretty late night. Tim had shown up with his bike and wanted to go home, without lights.

I remembered I had bought lights for night rides with my WIF-i (Vickie). After grabbing I realized the batteries exploded for sitting for too long in the hot bike shed.

How to Clean After Corroded Batteries – Eastern Massachusetts ARRL

A new set of batteries didn't resolve the issue since the corrosion was all over the contacts. Several random advice from the crew were tested, one of them was "scratch the contact with a car key"... yah that didn't work either.

Tim went home and bravely survived the low light sidewalks. Such a big boy our over 50s team player!

Today I decided to look into this issue and this is the story of how I got it back on track. Don't throw away corroded electronics, this recipe will work for the vast majority of exploded battery compartments.

I disassembled the bike flashlight and quickly realized that the corrosion was way far beyond the battery compartment, it had reached the PCB all the way through the wires.

I put some white vinegar inside an ultrasonic cleaner with some water. Distilled water would have been better to avoid rusting after the process but I didn't have it readily available and with this pandemic going around I wasn't going to mask venture for a corroded plate... so I figured I will deal with rust with a small metal brush if it happens once it dries and oxygen will take its course (the day after did...)

The liquid almost immediately got murky and it was frizzing like a tarantula on steroids over its web.

The vibrations reduced as the corrosion was coming off the contacts.

Mario Esposito

Published a year ago