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Segway General Discussion General discussion related to any model of Segways, miniPROs, or Ninebots. Please do not post non-Segway technology posts here; use the technology forum instead.

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Old 06-15-2019, 01:23 PM   #1
fabricGator
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Default Another newb Q... Battery health,

When looking at used segway, is there any way for a consumer (potential purchaser) to gauge the battery health?

Another question:

Is there a de-coder guidance for the Segway unit serial number? Perhaps year of manufacture and the units position on the assembly line.

It is my belief that I read (perhaps on here) that there is a usage meter (mileage) but there is a service like a firmware update that wipes that usage back to zero.

I imagine that a certified service/repair station has a laptop or scanner that can access the 'brain'. Do any of you folks have that ability?

When I buy a system, I fully expect to have full control over my equipment. For example, I have an installers manual for my home alarm system. When my subscription with Brinks runs out, I plan to reprogrammed the dialer to call my cell phone instead of their office. I can better determine if the police should be contacted when I am not home.

Last edited by fabricGator; 06-15-2019 at 01:25 PM.. Reason: to edit turrets induced profanity...
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Old 06-16-2019, 02:57 PM   #2
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Segway has never released any serious maintenance information to the general public. Dealers have never been willing to talk, probably because their contract with Segway will not let them. Some error code definitions have been gleaned only from years of individual experiences. Many error codes are still "undefined" to the general public, and the vast majority of error codes require factory analysis and repair.

Apart from a relatively long ride while monitoring battery status, I do not know of any way to determine battery health before you buy, especially for a non-local purchase. After you buy, you could send the batteries to MTO Battery for evaluation/repair. (search for Jason at MTOBATTERY on this forum) A dealer might be able to assess battery status, but I don't recall anyone mentioning that on this forum. Neither of the above ideas help much before you buy.

Here is a link that will give you year and week of build
http://pt-repair.com/how-old-is-that-segway/

Note that year/week of purchase doesn't tell you much about battery health. Even a brand-new Seg, left uncharged for 2-3 months will drain the rear battery, which powers the always-on radio receiver. (Note that some of those batteries might be recoverable) On the other hand, Segs which have been moderately used and kept properly charged might have relatively good batteries, even after 10+ years.

Good luck!
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Old 06-17-2019, 03:11 AM   #3
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Good stuff, thank you Civicsman,

So I now understand the rear battery has a parasitic drain for the brain and communications for the fob/key (I forget offhand the terminology for the smile/frown watch face thingy)

I believe airdale, or perhaps another member, said that the front and rear battery could be in either position (universal positions)

Is there any advantage to rotating the batteries from time to time?

I am nary a battery 'expert' but i do understand some NiCad and LiPO technology as well as FLA and AGM galvanic cells.

I read a member selling a fleet from the SegSaddle telling how he had a few with good batteries, and I believe I ascertained that was attributed to a float maintainer / charger.

I believe LiPO store best at 50% charge with minimal/none parasitic drain.
If I needed to mothball the future Seg, should i remove/disconnect the batteries?
Any downside to disconnecting the batteries other than inconvenient?
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Old 06-17-2019, 01:12 PM   #4
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Front to rear swapping is ok. Either removing the batteries or putting the Seg on a charge schedule during mothballing is necessary to preserve the batteries.

If they get to low, the Segway or stand alone charger will not attempt a recharge. They might still be recoverable with a device from DGBINT, on this forum.
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Old 06-17-2019, 06:40 PM   #5
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Default battery health

I think the only way to check health is a discharge test...and internal resistance test

both a little tricky unless you can wield a soldering iron and program arduino or picmicro..

if you only check the terminal voltage whilst running a dummy load then there could be undetected fully discharged cells=bad...
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Old 06-17-2019, 07:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Civicsman View Post
Front to rear swapping is ok. Either removing the batteries or putting the Seg on a charge schedule during mothballing is necessary to preserve the batteries.

If they get to low, the Segway or stand alone charger will not attempt a recharge. They might still be recoverable with a device from DGBINT, on this forum.
Again Civicsman, thank you. I do so appreciate any information that I can collect. It is kinda my thing. I am a super curious 53 year old 'kid' always have been.

I have some Odyssey Pure Lead / dry cell marine batteries (think Optima or AGM type) that have fantastic performance, but require a special charge profile to get the most out of them. When deep discharged, you need to parallel a charged battery for a while to get the charger to start working. And of course, it is not ideal to let the get that deep, but it does happen sometimes.

Now, my Odyssey's do not have a diode, capacitor, nor IC chip in them. I do see Lipo4 batteries making their way into the motorcycle, auto and experimental aviation markets. They got brains in them...
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Old 06-17-2019, 07:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dorrington View Post
I think the only way to check health is a discharge test...and internal resistance test

both a little tricky unless you can wield a soldering iron and program arduino or picmicro..

if you only check the terminal voltage whilst running a dummy load then there could be undetected fully discharged cells=bad...
Thank you dorrington, I have been lurking about your thread to glean what I can about the batteries. I am interested in repairing anything that I find expensive and useful, so knowledge of technology and process is always greatly appreciated.

I think you are implying I may be able to fabricate a test device... I am sure I could with a little guidance. And if can not, I have a retired avionics bench technician that set up at his house that owes me a favor or five...

What about a long ride though. How about if I go look at a SegWay and I can manage to ride the unit to exhaustion. What would that tell me about battery health?

I imagine that segway shut down occurs when the weakest battery fall below specifications. (or perhaps overheats)

I dunno, it seems like the big unknown when buying a used pt is going to be the batteries. And without them, you really don't have much more than an expensive coat hanger / hat rack.
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Old 06-18-2019, 11:10 PM   #8
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The best test is a long ride - If you can go 10 miles and the InfoKey shows you've only used about half your battery power, you're all right

I sold a pair of 2007 batteries to a forum member here who was looking to get a Seg he acquired for next to nothing operating without spending a fortune on batteries and he was very happy with them. Most people here would tell you not to bother with batteries more than 10 years old, but his wife rode that Seg more than 20 miles on those old batteries!

If you're not going to plug the machine in at least once a month, remove the batteries - They discharge very slowly when they're not on the machine

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Old 06-19-2019, 06:03 PM   #9
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Thank you Don M,
Great information to hear. I sure do appreciate everybody’s input and willingness to teach me.
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Old 06-19-2019, 07:04 PM   #10
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Good advice From Don...

Just ride local laps of the block...save a long walk..lol
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