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My Mazda 3 '08 battery died a few weeks ago. Being on leave with a new kid, I let it sit until I had time to deal with it. But yesterday I open the hood and find this massive corrosion (see pictures).

I'm wondering if some kind of mounting bracket or bolt for the battery is shot and needs replacing, or if this can be cleaned. I bought the car used in 2016 and this is the battery it came with, so I have no experience with replacement on this car.

Any tips?
 

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That's standard battery post corrosion. It cleans up fine and you'll be good to go. Grab a post cleaning brush device mentioned above, photo attached, if you can. You want to grind off the corroded layer from the post and connector to ensure good contact for conduction. A green scrubber pad will work somewhat if you scrub hard.
 

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Your battery terminals don't look too bad at all, so that's a plus. Once you have the battery and bracket removed, make up a solution of baking soda and water. If you are wondering how much baking soda, just mix in as much as the cup of water will dissolve. Stir vigorously. If any of your battery terminals have removable ends, remove those and soak in the cup of water+soda. If you can't remove anything, then take the cleaning solution over to your engine compartment and dip the end of the battery terminal in the cleaning solution.

If I can't rinse off the corrosion (like the build-up on the clamp) then I vacuum it off with a shop vac, but only if the shop vac has an internal bag so that the corrosion crystals/powder isn't coming into contact with a metal vacuum body. Or you can put something below the battery and battery tray and just carefully chip away at the buildup until you can see the nut and bolt.

I would take the battery hold-down bracket to the sink and scrub with a toothbrush, frequently dipping the toothbrush into the cleaning solution. You'll know when it is neutralizing battery acid because it'll foam nicely. When the foaming stops you're basically done.

I no longer like traditional batteries. I get the AGM type (gel) like Duracell Platinum AGM. Expensive! But very good batteries.
 

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I just wash the deposits off with hot water. You'll be surprised at how much metal is still left. Covering the terminals with battery gel or grease will help prevent this.
 
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