Tips for Maintaining Your Car Battery's Longevity

Date: June 16, 2023

A car battery is one of the most important parts of a car. To make sure that it stays put for the long run, one needs to maintain it thoroughly. The battery is that component that gets your vehicle to move without any hiccups, and hence it is very necessary to make sure that the car battery is maintained well for the long run. 

Here are some tips that can help maintain the car battery in the best possible way:

1. Driving the car at least once per week

Keeping the car idle for long periods of time affects the longevity and health of the battery. The best way to enhance the car battery will be to take it out at least once per week. If you are going on a long vacation and the chances are that you won’t be able to take it out once a week, then the ideal way to deal with such a situation is to remove the battery and place it back once you are back from the vacation.

2. Turning off all electricals while idling

The best way to ensure that your car battery is up and running is to make sure that the infotainment system in your car is off when the car is not running. Switching off the air conditioner while the car is not on the move is also an ideal way to save the car battery’s life. When the engine is switched off, the alternator also gets turned off, and if the said systems are running, then the chances are that the battery gets drained easily. To make sure that you take good care of the battery, the first thing you can do is turn off all the electronic systems that are running in it when you step out of it.  Locking your car will turn off everything so locking comes with security and longevity of the car and its battery.

3. Not turning on electricals/lights without starting the engine

When electrical components such as lights are used in a car without starting the engine, it can put a strain on the battery. The battery is responsible for providing power to these electrical systems and using them without the engine running can drain the battery's charge. As a result, the battery may not have enough power to start the engine when needed. It is advisable to minimize the use of electricals when the engine is off to preserve the battery's charge.

4. Cleaning battery terminals 

Cleaning the corroded battery terminals is essential for saving the battery. Corrosion-infected terminals and lead clamps can actually affect the flow of electricity. To ensure the good functioning of the car battery, cleaning those terminals can extend its life. When the terminals are corroded, it can lead to possible damage to the overall working of the vehicle. The cleaning can be done while taking it for routine maintenance. 

5. Keeping a car on shade

Parking the cars under shade is an ideal way to keep up with the maintenance of the battery. This is extremely necessary during hot weather like summer. This hot weather can cause the battery to drain. If the acid evaporates, then it will not be sufficient to perform at its full capacity. Parking shades can be installed anywhere outside the home to keep the car and battery safe from hot summer weather.

6. Avoid Short Drives

It's not ideal to start and turn off the alternator for short periods, and doing the practice at frequent intervals is not the right way, and it causes the battery to run down. Long drives on the other hand give enough time for the alternator to recharge and thereby the battery's longevity.

7. Checking car battery voltage regularly

It is essential to check the battery’s strength during routine maintenance checks, and this will help the car not run out of battery while on the run. Battery tests are done by professionals who can use a digital voltmeter. You can also check whether the battery is drained of its acid. 

Conclusion

In short, properly maintaining your car battery is crucial for its longevity and ensuring smooth vehicle operation. By following these 7 essential car battery maintenance tips such as driving the car regularly, turning off electricals when the engine is not running, avoiding unnecessary use of lights, cleaning battery terminals, parking in the shade, avoiding short drives, and checking battery voltage regularly, you can maximize the lifespan and performance of your car battery. Remember, a well-maintained battery means a reliable and hassle-free driving experience.

 

 

 

FAQs

1. How often do you need to change a car battery?

The frequency of car battery replacement varies depending on factors such as usage, weather conditions, and battery quality. On average, car batteries typically last 3 to 5 years. However, regular maintenance, including checking the battery's health and charging system, can help extend its lifespan.

2. How long should I run my car to maintain its battery life?

To maintain a car's battery life, it's recommended to drive the vehicle for at least 20-30 minutes every few weeks. This allows the alternator to recharge the battery fully. Shorter trips or prolonged inactivity can lead to battery drainage, so regular driving can help keep the battery in good condition.

3. Do batteries charge while sitting idle?

No, batteries do not charge while sitting idle. In fact, if a battery is not being used or is disconnected, it may slowly discharge over time due to internal processes. To maintain a battery's charge, it needs to be connected to a charging source or driven in a vehicle with a functional charging system.

4. What is the voltage of a charged battery?

The voltage of a fully charged battery depends on the type and size of the battery. For example, a typical lead-acid car battery, when fully charged, has a voltage of around 12.6 to 12.8 volts. Other battery types, such as lithium-ion, can have different voltage ranges when fully charged.

5. What are the signs of a dead battery?

Signs of a dead battery include the engine not starting or struggling to start, dim headlights, electronics not functioning correctly, a clicking sound when turning the key, and a battery warning light on the dashboard. These symptoms indicate a depleted or faulty battery that may need replacement.