8 Simple Tips & Trick To Extend The Life Of Your Car Battery
But many men and women find that they need to change their car battery every 1 to 2 years.
Why is this?
And what can you do to prolong your car’s battery life?
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 simple tips and techniques to maximize the life span of your car’s 12 volt battery.
The tips we will teach you in this guide will be simple to do…and anyone will be able to perform these (even if you know nothing about cars or car batteries).
So let’s get started! …
First, You Ought to Know That Every Car Battery 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’s completely independent of how many times the battery was charged or discharged.
Once a battery reaches the end of its”Calendar Life” it will become unusable.
However, most car batteries never make it their full”Calendar Life”…
Rather, they die early due to poor maintenance and care…that you can do something about.
Lead acid batteries are the oldest, most dependable, and most widely used type of rechargeable battery in the world.
Lead Acid Batteries have three life phases — formatting, peak, and decline.
Formatting is when the battery is new and needs to be used lightly.
Peak is the ideal performance phase, which we attempt to maintain for as long as possible.
Decline is a slow process, but one which gradually ends in the termination of the battery.
Batteries in decline can still be used for quite some time, but have to be watched.
Around this time, you can 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 start your car for work).
Tip 1: Do a monthly inspection of the battery terminals to be certain they are clean and corrosion free. One of the first problems most people have with their car battery is the build-up of corrosion around the terminals. Corrosion destroys the connection between the battery and the vehicle and many batteries are replaced due to a lot of corrosive build up. But often times, this is readily treated by simply pouring a small amount of Cola or a DIY anti-corrosion glue (one part water to three parts baking soda) over the corroded areas.
The acid in the Cola or the alkaline properties in the DIY anti-corrosion paste will eat the corrosion away. Make certain to let it dry, then rub some petroleum jelly on the terminals to prevent future corrosion.
Tip 2: Don’t run any car accessories (lights, radio, or electronics) before turning to the car ignition and driving the car. When the vehicle is on, the car alternator generates electricity and charges the car battery after the battery has a voltage drop. But if the car isn’t on, and you are using the car’s electronics, you are simply relying on the car battery to power those electronics.
This is damaging to the car battery because automobile batteries aren’t meant for this sort of use.
Rather, car batteries are meant to provide a sudden burst of power for ignition. They are not made to offer prolonged power for electronics and other devices (that’s 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 utilized in this fashion. So avoid operating any car accessories or electronics while the car is off.
Tip 3: Make sure the car battery is safe and has good battery cables. The battery needs to be secured at all times. If a battery is jostling around it will be impaired and could short circuit. This will ruin the battery and even damage your car while creating a security risk. The same could happen if you have awful battery cables (or they’re not connected correctly ). So check your cables and make sure they have a secure connection as well.
Tip 4: Insulate your car battery from extreme changes in temperature. Protecting your vehicle battery from big changes in temperature will help optimize the battery’s lifespan. To do this you can use a car battery insulation kit. Newer model cars currently have these kits installed typically. But if your car doesn’t have one, you can easily install one yourself. Just be certain 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 match their kit — like here (top of page). These protective battery sleeves are usually made of plastic or an acid resistant, thermal resistant material. These automobile 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 shut-off if you have to). Your car battery drains even when the vehicle is off. That happens because current is drawn from the battery by car accessories (lights, radio, etc.) or the automobile computers. This is why people come home from long vacations and locate their car battery dead.
Car battery chargers (regular or solar) will keep the optimum charge level of your car battery when the vehicle is not in use. They do this by providing enough power for your car accessories and car computer, so they do not continuously draw current from the vehicle battery when the vehicle is off. As you can imagine, these chargers are very useful…especially if you go on a trip or leave your car unused for some time. They’re also useful if you go on plenty of short car trips (like to work and back each day) and never give your battery a opportunity to fully recharge. Repeatedly doing so can dramatically shorten your battery’s life — unless you use a car battery charger or interchange batteries, leaving one at home to fully charge. The most important thing to remember with this tip is…be 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 car battery’s water level. Most car batteries indicate if there is a need for water. So check the car battery water level indicator regularly and when water is required, refill the battery with distilled water (and that is important, ONLY use distilled water to refill your vehicle battery).
Lead-acid batteries release oxygen and hydrogen gases when they’re overcharged.
It can be volatile.
Tip 8: Assess your car’s alternator. If you are doing everything we have recommended in this guide but your automobile batteries are still dying early, you will want to look at your car’s alternator (or find a mechanic to check it). If your alternator is bad it will results in ineffective recharging of your battery and dramatically shorten your battery’s lifespan.