Most Common Problems of Your Car Battery
Even though it is the most important part of your vehicle, a car battery can cause you some serious headaches if you aren’t too mindful. Almost all vehicle owners will surely deal with flat battery problems or a car that doesn’t start at one point or another in their lives. These issues can make them late for work at best or stranded in the middle of nowhere at worst.
Your car will never work without its battery. Car batteries provide the much-needed power for running the electrical systems of your vehicle. They also offer the power necessary for getting your car to start in the first place. It is the reason why it is actually surprising how most people often neglect or even forget about the battery of their vehicle.
With some TLC and battery maintenance, you will be able to prolong the battery’s life and ensure that it stays in tiptop condition. Doing so can help you save time and money in the long run.
To help you make sure that your battery gets the attention and care it deserves, you need to be more familiar with some of the most common problems that car batteries may suffer from. There are also a few tips you should know to prevent these issues from happening again in the future.
Problems with the Alternator
The alternator is responsible for charging your battery while the engine runs. If you think that there is an issue with the alternator, it is probably something you will be able to solve on your own at home. That is, unless you are a trained mechanic or experienced enthusiast. You can head to your local mechanic and they will be happy enough to check if the issues are due to the alternator.
Car batteries and freezing temperatures will never be best friends at all. Cold weather can have a detrimental effect on that chemical reaction happening inside the batteries. This can slow down the charging process and may also impact the initial reaction required for starting the engine.
When this happens, it can come in handy to always have a car battery charger. All you have to do is connect the battery to the charger and to the wall to ensure that your battery will always be ready to go no matter what the weather is. You might want to refer to the guide for your battery to get more advice and help. It will also help if you park your vehicle in a garage or someplace warm.
If the battery of your car ends up completely discharging, you will have to borrow another car then perform a jump start. The process might be a bit tricky if you haven’t tried doing it before.
Electrical Equipment Left On with the Engine Switched Off
If the headlights of a vehicle don’t switch off automatically once the engine stops, be ready to join the long list of people suffering from the most common flat battery issue and that is none other than forgetfulness.
Just leaving the indicators, headlights, or interior light turned on may soon run the battery totally flat to the extent that there is no longer enough juice for turning over the engine.
Before leaving your car, make sure that the dashboard has been completely cleared of all the warning lights to be sure that the lights have been turned off. You can also give the headlight switch or indicators a simple turn on and off to ensure that you have really switched off everything completely.
In case the 12v power supply of your car is constantly used or you always run things such as your mini-fridge or travel DVD player from your vehicle during your weekend getaways, this may put too much strain on your battery.
Getting a powerful battery such as a Silux car battery means that you can still use your vehicle as a portable charging point. In addition to this, you will also have more available power for those instant starts during those cold mornings.
Loose Connections or Corrosion
If the battery of your vehicle is improperly connected, there is the risk that you will damage not only the battery but worse, even your vehicle itself. A loose connector can lead to sparks and this can be very risky in engine bays. Be sure that you give everything a good tug and twist every now and then to ensure that everything is in all the right places where it should be.
An important note for safety is to make sure that you wait until the engine has already cooled down before you start doing anything. You also need to wear your safety goggles and gloves before you touch anything in the engine bay of your car. Don’t forget to touch only those insulated parts of connecting leads and never touch anything metal or the rest of the connecting lead when checking for tightness.
Stop-Start Driving or Frequent Short Journeys
Turning off your engine on a constant basis and starting it again is a very easy way of reducing its effectiveness after some time. The additional strain when power is drawn up for turning the engine over several times in a short span of time may shorten the lifespan of your car battery.
This means that once the engine is turned on, try to leave this running for the longest time possible. Never switch off your engine at traffic lights. However, doing this will give you minimal fuel savings.
The Bottom Line
It is never a fun thing to wake up only to find out that your car battery is dead. But, since batteries can do things without you looking, you should do things to help your battery go the distance. Turn off exterior and interior lights before you leave your car. Don’t forget to unplug the power adapters. Always keep a watchful eye on your battery and you can be sure that it will be of service to you for a long time.