Author Topic: Battery Explosion  (Read 209 times)

Offline cappy102

  • Posts: 53
    • CLC Member
      CLC Member #30926
  • Name: Mark Butterworth
Battery Explosion
« on: November 25, 2017, 01:10:29 PM »
At some point, long before I came into possession of my 1957 Coupe de Ville, the battery apparently exploded, splattering acid over much of the right side engine bay. After working a small area with polishing compound, the stain is not quite as bad, but probably goes through the entire paint layer.

Obviously, re-painting is indicated, but, short of that, has anyone successfully used bleach or another chemical to mitigate the visual mess?

In the attached photo one is able to see that the paint on the rear portion of the wheel well is gone, and bare metal is visible, so this will definitely have to be re-painted. My goal, however, is to retain as much of the car's originality as possible, so I'd like to avoid painting the entire compartment at this point. Also, pulling the engine is not a task that I look forward to.

In the interests of avoiding additional paint damage, I have not yet tried using chlorine bleach or any other chemical that might attack the paint layer.

If anyone out there has dealt with this problem I would highly appreciate hearing about your experiences, either positive or negative. Thanks!

(The engine bay is much cleaner now, by the way...but this photo, taken at the time I bought the car, was handy.)
1957 Cadillac Coupe De Ville
1981 Moto Guzzi V50 Monza

Offline Dave Shepherd

  • Posts: 1933
Re: Battery Explosion
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2017, 01:52:32 PM »
Baking soda helps neutral acid and possible damage caused by it, but it sounds like you may be past that.

Offline Mike Josephic CLC #3877

  • Posts: 1508
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      CLC Member #3877
Re: Battery Explosion
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2017, 02:13:30 PM »
I'm afraid it's much to late for any efforts to "restore" the painted
surfaces.  Baking soda would have to be applied within about 10 minutes
or less after coming in contact with the acid.

All you can do now is remove the rust and corrosion (bead blasting it would
be best).  Sanding and wire brushing with an electric grinder would be
my next choice.  Much of the engine compartment would have to be
dissambled to do this right.

You have quite a bit of work ahead and it's "doable" but will need alot of
elbow grease!

Mike

 

1955 Cadillac Eldorado
1973 Cadillac Eldorado
1995 Cadillac Seville
2004 Escalade
1997 GMC Suburban 4X4, 454 engine, 3/4 ton
custom built by Santa Fe in Evansville, IN
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Offline cappy102

  • Posts: 53
    • CLC Member
      CLC Member #30926
  • Name: Mark Butterworth
Re: Battery Explosion
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2017, 04:43:00 PM »
Thanks for the information...I'd hoped that there might be a 'miracle cure' out there. Yes, I still believe in Santa Claus, but finally gave up on the Easter Bunny.

Elbow grease it will be (already is), and pulling the engine/removing fenders seems inevitable. Then, of course, new wiring harnesses (I'm sure the acid didn't do them any good).

Like they say: "To prepare yourself for a restoration project, rub grease in your hair, smack your knuckles with a ball peen, then crawl under the car and tear up $100 bills".

Oh, yeah.
1957 Cadillac Coupe De Ville
1981 Moto Guzzi V50 Monza

Offline cappy102

  • Posts: 53
    • CLC Member
      CLC Member #30926
  • Name: Mark Butterworth
Re: Battery Explosion
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2017, 12:02:08 AM »
If anyone is still following this thread, I thought I'd post a couple of updated photos. After many hours of spot cleaning, the engine bay is finally beginning to show a glimmer of the possibilities. Lots more work ahead, but the minimal corrosion is encouraging.
1957 Cadillac Coupe De Ville
1981 Moto Guzzi V50 Monza

 

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