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Topic: Recommend action to take (Inhaling car battery gases for around 2-3 hours)  (Read 5127 times)

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Offline WatermellonMan

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Hey,
I drove my car for two to three hours at night thinking that I had something rotten in my car that I threw away. However, I have figured out that there was a leaking car battery inside my car (at the very back seat) that has been leaking since the morning.

I am worried what gases I have been inhaling, and what actions I should be taking now regarding my health. Would that incident be enough to cause me some sort of injury in the long run?

I would also mention that when I notice this today, I found that the liquid was fuzzing like a soda and the plastic floor of my car turned to pink and bulged.

Thank you,

Offline Borek

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If you are OK now (several hours later) chances of any health problems are very small. I would not care, most likely your chances of getting hit by a car in the next week are much higher than the chances you will get ill because of tonight events.

To be 100% sure you can always consult your GP, but I would be surprised if he will say anything else.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2013, 09:00:00 AM by Borek »
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Offline Arkcon

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You might also want to take your car to a mechanic.  Usually, cars have a number of engineering controls to prevent them from dissolving away while driving.  So if its failed in this regard, this means its really screwed up.  Or your observations are wrong.  Anyway -- time for professionals who can see your problems for themselves.
Hey, I'm not judging.  I just like to shoot straight.  I'm a man of science.

Offline curiouscat

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 the plastic floor of my car turned to pink and bulged.


Your car floor's plastic? What car.

Offline NobleMetalWorks

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What type of battery are you using?

If it's the traditional lead/acid battery, then the liquid is dilute sulfuric acid.  If that were to dissolve organic materials such as plastic, cloth, etc, or even metals for that matter, it could give off offensive smelling gases.  The fact that you were smelling the gases might not be so bad, not only did it alert you to the problem, but it should also mean that whatever the sulfuric acid dissolved, used the sulfuric acid up and you were not breathing the actual acid into your lungs.  That would be very bad indeed.

As was suggested, you would probably be smart to consult with a GP, but before doing so try to find out what the sulfuric acid was reacting with, and try to look up the resulting gas MSDS online so you can express what exactly it was you were breathing, to the GP.  Otherwise they are just going to check your lungs, ask you a few questions and not really be able to do anything else.

Scott

Offline Borek

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If it's the traditional lead/acid battery, then the liquid is dilute sulfuric acid.

Concentrated, not diluted.
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Offline NobleMetalWorks

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If it's the traditional lead/acid battery, then the liquid is dilute sulfuric acid.

Concentrated, not diluted.

Respectfully, I beg to differ.  Sulfuric acid used in the traditional lead/acid car battery is 35% sulfuric acid and 65% water.  I use concentrated sulfuric in my refining processes which is 98% sulfuric.  I would call sulfuric acid in acid/lead car batteries dilute.

Scott

Offline Borek

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Sulfuric acid used in the traditional lead/acid car battery is 35% sulfuric acid and 65% water.

Actually 17%-35%, depending on the battery level.

Quote
I use concentrated sulfuric in my refining processes which is 98% sulfuric.  I would call sulfuric acid in acid/lead car batteries dilute.

Dilute/concentrated don't have an exact meaning. I see where you are coming from, and I agree it is kind of a gray area.

For me in the context of strong acids dilute means "reasonably safe". 35% is quite strong and I wouldn't consider it dilute, way too dangerous for that.
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Offline Babcock_Hall

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If the liquid leaked, clean up the area while wearing gloves.  Sulfuric acid is corrosive.

Offline NobleMetalWorks

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Sulfuric acid used in the traditional lead/acid car battery is 35% sulfuric acid and 65% water.

Actually 17%-35%, depending on the battery level.

Quote
I use concentrated sulfuric in my refining processes which is 98% sulfuric.  I would call sulfuric acid in acid/lead car batteries dilute.

Dilute/concentrated don't have an exact meaning. I see where you are coming from, and I agree it is kind of a gray area.

For me in the context of strong acids dilute means "reasonably safe". 35% is quite strong and I wouldn't consider it dilute, way too dangerous for that.

I understand what you are saying, oddly a 35% solution will more readily attack some things than will highly concentrated 98%.  Many acids are the same.  They are even more aggressive when you make them into a solution by adding them to water.

Scott


Offline Borek

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Passivation being the key word :)
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