Battery Reconditioning Equipment In South Africa

8 Simple Tips & Trick To Extend The Life Of Your Car Battery

Your car battery should last about 3 to 5 years…

But lots of men and women find that they have to modify their car battery every 1 to 2 years.

And what can you do to prolong your vehicle’s battery life?

Well… That’s what we’ll discuss in this article.

We’ll show you why car batteries die early…and what you can do to keep this from happening.

We’ll also give you 8 easy tips and tricks to maximize the lifespan of your car’s 12 volt battery.

The tips we’ll teach you in this article will be simple to do…and anyone will be able to do these (even if you know nothing about cars or car batteries).

So let’s get started! …

First, You Should Know That Every Car Battery’s Lifespan Has A Limit (however most people kill their battery well before it’s time)

Even if you take care of your car battery perfectly…it will still die 1 day.

This set lifespan is known as the battery’s”Calendar Life” and it is completely independent of how many times the battery was charged or discharged.

However, most car batteries never make it their full”Calendar Life”…

Instead, they die early due to poor maintenance and care…which you can do something about.

Lead acid batteries are the oldest, most reliable, and most widely used type of rechargeable battery in the world.

  • Formatting is when the battery is new and has to be used lightly.

  • Peak is the ideal performance phase, which we seek to maintain for as long as you can.

  • Decline is a slow process, but one that slowly ends in the termination of the battery.

Batteries in decline can still be used for quite some time, but must be watched.

Around this time, you may either recondition the battery or keep a close eye on it and try to replace it before a problem arises (like being not able to begin your car for work).

Tip 1: Do a monthly inspection of the battery terminals to make sure they’re clean and rust free.   One of the initial problems most people have with their car battery is the build-up of rust around the terminals.   Corrosion destroys the connection between the battery and the car and several batteries are replaced due to too much corrosive build up.   But often times, this can be readily treated simply by pouring a small amount of Cola or a DIY anti-corrosion paste (one part water to three parts baking soda) within the corroded areas. 

The acidity in the Cola or the alkaline properties in the DIY anti-corrosion paste will consume the rust away.   Be sure to allow it to dry, then rub some petroleum jelly on the terminals to prevent future corrosion.

Tip 2: Do not run any car accessories (radio, lights, or electronics) before turning on the car ignition and driving the car.   When the car is on, the car alternator generates electricity and charges the vehicle battery after the battery has a voltage drop.   But if the car isn’t on, and you’re using the car’s electronics, you’re simply relying on the car battery to power those electronics. 

This is damaging to the car battery because car batteries aren’t meant for this sort of use.

Instead, car batteries are meant to provide a sudden burst of power for ignition.  They are not made to provide prolonged power for electronics and other devices (that is what a deep cycle lead acid battery could be for).   Using your car battery as a battery which powers electronics, instead of a battery that just provides you a burst of electricity for ignition, will damage the battery and greatly shorten it’s lifespan if it is repeatedly used in this fashion.   So avoid operating any automobile accessories or electronics while the vehicle is off.

Tip 3: Make sure the car battery is secure and has great battery cables.   The battery has to be secured at all times.  If a battery is jostling around it’ll be impaired and could short circuit.   This will ruin the battery and even cause damage to your car while creating a security risk.   The same could happen when you have awful battery cables (or they are not connected correctly ).  So check your cables and be sure they have a secure connection as well.

Tip 4: Insulate your car battery from extreme changes in temperature.  Protecting your vehicle battery from large changes in temperature will help maximize the battery’s lifespan.   To do this you can use a car battery insulating material.   Newer model cars already have these kits installed typically.  But if your car doesn’t have one, you can easily install one yourself.   Just make sure it fits your car’s battery compartment.  Generally the companies selling these battery insulation kits will have a form on their site where you can place in your car model and year, and it’ll tell you if your battery will fit their kit — such as here (top of page).   These protective battery sleeves are usually made of plastic or an acid resistant, thermal resistant material.   These car battery insulation kits will insulate your battery and protect it while still allowing appropriate ventilation.

Tip 5: Fully charge your car battery at least once a week (use a car battery charger or interchange batteries if you have to).   Your car battery drains even when the car is off.  This happens because current is drawn from the battery by car accessories (lights, radio, etc.) or the car computers.   This is the reason why folks come home from long holidays and find their car battery dead.  

Car battery chargers (solar or regular ) will keep the optimum charge level of your car battery when the vehicle is not in use.   They do this by providing enough electricity for the car accessories and car computer, so that they do not continuously draw current from the vehicle battery when the vehicle is off.   They’re also helpful if you go on plenty of short car trips (like to work and back daily ) and never give your battery a opportunity to fully recharge.  Repeatedly doing this can dramatically enhance your battery’s life — unless you use a car battery charger or interchange batteries, leaving you at home to fully control.   The most important thing to remember with this suggestion is…make sure you fully charge your car battery at least once a week because it will greatly increase the life of your battery.  Do this using a charger, interchanging batteries…or just going on a car ride long enough to recharge the battery.

Tip 6: Assess your vehicle battery’s water level.   Most car batteries indicate whether there is a need for water.   So check the vehicle battery water level indicator frequently and if water is required, refill the battery with distilled water (and that’s significant, ONLY use distilled water to refill your car battery).

Never overcharge your car battery. Lead-acid batteries release hydrogen and oxygen gases when they are overcharged.  

  1. It can be volatile.

  2. It also breaks down the composition of the water in the battery — which shortens its lifespan

Tip 8: Check your vehicle’s alternator.   If you’re doing everything we have recommended in this guide but your car batteries are dying early, you will want to check your car’s alternator (or find a mechanic to check it).