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How to Charge Batteries for Hydraulics on Lowriders

by Russell Wood

A hydraulic suspension system uses hydraulic pumps that lift the suspension up and down. The pumps are powered by multiple batteries, because the more batteries in the system, the faster the car will lift. These setups are typically found in lowrider vehicles, and the batteries have no way to charge other than using a battery charger. If you've never done this before, it can seem daunting, but it's not a very complicated process.

Pop the trunk of the car and locate the batteries for the hydraulic setup. Count the number of batteries in the system and multiply that number by 12. This is the amount of voltage available in the hydraulic system.

Disconnect the wiring between the batteries by either removing the wingnuts on the terminals or using a 3/8-inch ratchet and socket. Pull the battery cables to the side.

Connect the positive terminal from the first battery in the chain to the negative terminal on the second battery using the ratchet or a wingnut. Do this again for the next battery in the chain until you have three batteries connected.

Connect the negative clamp on the battery charger to the negative post on the first battery, then the positive clamp on the charger on the positive post on the third battery. Adjust the knobs on the battery charger to read 36 volts, then turn it on to automatically charge the batteries. Repeat this process for every bank of three batteries that you have. If you have less than three, adjust for either 12 or 24 volts on the charger if you have one or two batteries.

Tip

  • If you can't find or don't have access to 24- or 36-volt chargers, then you can charge each battery individually with a 12-volt battery charger. Disconnect the connections on all the batteries as Step 2 says, then connect each battery to the charger one at a time.

Items you will need

About the Author

Russell Wood is a writer and photographer who attended Arizona State University. He has been building custom cars and trucks since 1994, including several cover vehicles. In 2000 Wood started a career as a writer, and since then he has dedicated his business to writing and photographing cars and trucks, as well as helping people learn more about how vehicles work.

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