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I wouldn't charge it in the house... We use to take a tarp and put it over the quad and then stick a barrel heater at one end... that melted off all the ice stuck to the frame, and warmed the battery...
Cold weather thickens the oil and makes the engine harder to crank. Normal cranking loads can require 50 to 75 amps or more from the battery depending on engine displacement, compression and temperature. At 0 degrees F, that number can increase 200 to 250 percent depending on the viscosity of the oil in the crankcase.
At the same time, freezing temperatures also sap the battery's ability to supply amps. At 0 degrees F, most batteries can deliver only about 65 percent of their normal cranking amps. At -20 degrees F, battery power is cut in half!
A battery cannot deliver maximum cranking power if it is not maintained at or near full charge - especially when outside temperatures drop and reduce the battery's amp output. So reliable starting also requires a good charging system that can keep the battery fully charged and also supply enough amps to meet all of the other electrical needs.
If the battery is low or getting old, the starter is weak or there is too much resistance in the starting circuit, the combination of increased cranking load and reduced battery capacity may prove to be too much when temperatures drop. The engine may not crank fast enough to start, or it may not crank at all.
START WITH THE BATTERY
The first thing you should always check when diagnosing a no-start complaint is the condition of the battery and state-of-charge. The battery may be run down, but a good battery will accept and hold a charge, and deliver the rated number of amps on demand. A bad battery won't accept a charge and cannot supply its normal supply of amps because the cells are damaged or worn out.
Use a voltmeter to check battery charge, even if it has a built-in charge indicator. Built-in charge indicators only read one cell, not all six cells. If another cell is bad, you cannot tell by looking at the charge indicator.
A fully charged battery should read 12.6 volts. A reading of 12.4 volts equals about a 75 percent charge and is good enough for further testing. But anything less means the battery is low and needs to be recharged.
Lead-acid batteries must be maintained at or near full charge to prevent deterioration of the lead plates inside. If the battery is allowed to sit more than a couple of days in a discharged condition, the plates can become sulfated and may not fully recover when the battery is recharged. This will reduce battery output as well as shorten its service life.
If the battery is run down or dead, you will have to test it to see if it is good or bad. If you have a carbon pile battery tester, you will have to recharge the battery before you test it to get accurate results. Do not attempt to recharge a battery if it is frozen. Let it sit until it thaws, then check the electrolyte level. If the level is okay, then hook up your charger and see if it will accept a charge.
BATTERIES BY THE NUMBERS
CCA - Cold Cranking Amps: The number of amps a fully charged battery can deliver continuously for 30 seconds at 0 degrees F (-17.8 degrees C) while maintaining a minimum of 1.2 volts per cell (7.2 v total). This is a measure of battery cranking power. Replacement batteries should have a CCA rating that is the same or higher than the original battery. The bigger the engine, the more CCAs it takes to crank it during cold weather.
CA - Cranking Amps: The number of amps a battery can deliver continuously for 30 seconds at 32 degrees F (0 degrees C). As a rule, a battery's CA rating will be 10 to 30 percent higher than its CCA rating. It is less meaningful than CCA for cold climate applications, but it looks good on paper.
RC - Reserve Capacity: A measure of how long a battery will continue to provide power should the charging system fail. The higher the amp hour rating, the better - but this number is harder to find and may not even be listed on a battery. What's more, many batteries with high CCA ratings achieve a high initial amp output at the expense of staying power.
Date Codes - Number/letter codes that indicate when a battery was manufactured. The number indicates the year, and the letter corresponds to the month (A = January, B = February, C = March, etc.). Fresher is better.
Group Sizes - Numeric codes that correspond to a battery's height, width, length and post configuration. The most popular size is now Group 75, with Group 24 being second. Replacement battery group size must be compatible with application and OEM group size.
I've probably mentioned it before, but a battery tender is a great investment. I don't leave mind hooked up all the time, but I hook it up every few weeks to keep the battery well charged. It works great.
One thing you DO NOT do..is rev your motor up..when you first start it..i dont care if its 120 or -120 out side...its just plane DUMB...Iv work on so many 4 strokes..that were messed up because of that..when you first start your quad let it warm up for a about 2 mins..if you dont let the oil get to the top of the motor..the rockers and cam....has NO OIL on them...and it will scare the cam and rockers...couse they have no oil on the when you start a cold engine...It just makes me sick to see a DUMB@SS out when im riding..start a cold quad..and just bonch it off the rev limiter..just becouse he thinks its cool..they just dont understand how dumb they look...
So true and the ones the like to rev the motor up to 6 or 7 grand and turn the bike off. All the raw fuel run's down the cyl walls and washes off all the oil and the rings get a real good start the next time they fire that puppy up [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif[/img]
The list is a mile long of do's and don't but that is why we have the forums to help other that don't know about the little things. I know if I lived in cold weather I would keep my bike in the garage or shop and on them real cold night put a light bulb under my bike to keep it warm if I was going to ride the next day. My deisel truck has a plug to keep the motor warm for the few cold days we have. I just run a electric cord out to it and plug it in [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif[/img]
I squirt starter fluid directly in the sparkplug hole, then she fires right up....and if I hold it at about 3/4 throttle for about 4 minutes it is usually warm enough to let off the throttle.....then I shut the choke off and ride on........I just can't figure out why it burns so much oil???
If It's really cold , I'll spray starter fluid in the sparkplug hole and the airbox and a couple shots in the exhaust prolly don't hurt ......