You know how annoying it is when your TV remote’s battery goes flat? Well, it’s a hundred times worse if your car battery dies, and it will almost inevitably be on a day that you’re running late. So, how do you avoid this type of car catastrophe? Here’s our quick guide to maintaining a healthy car battery.
What does my car battery do?
Your car battery is an integral part of your vehicle. You’re not going to get very far without it. The battery provides the electricity that brings all electrical components of your vehicle to life. Without your car battery, your car won’t start. End of. On average, a car battery will last three to five years but driving habits can severely shorten that lifespan. The RAC states that it attends more than 500,000 battery-related breakdowns each year and is the most common cause of breakdowns in the UK. This is most likely to happen in the winter. In some instances, the battery might just need a little boost to get it moving again, in others it might need to be fully replaced. However, if you give your car battery a little bit of love and attention, you can stave off investing in a new one for a little bit longer.
Top 10 causes of a flat battery:
1. Accidentally leaving your exterior/interior lights, radio or any other electrical devices on 2. Not using your car for several days 3. Defective charging system (e.g. alternator), which can cause over or under-charging 4. Severe weather (hot or cold) can damage the battery or reduce the amount of energy it generates 5. The car is fitted with the wrong battery 6. Old age – even a well maintained battery may not last more than five years 7. Going on lots of short-distance journeys which don’t fully recharge the battery 8. Corrosion (especially around the terminals) can interfere with the car battery’s ability to function properly 9. Poor maintenance – check the battery as part of your regular vehicle checks 10. Loose cables or brackets interrupting the electrical current or causing damage
What can I do to help my battery go that extra mile?
So there are lots of things that can affect your battery, but what can you do to help it? Start by investing in a good quality battery from the outset. Make sure that it’s the correct battery for your vehicle by checking your owner’s manual. Park in the shade whenever possible as prolonged periods in the sun can damage your battery. It can also suffer in the cold, so try storing your car in a garage during the winter months. Before you turn off your engine, make sure you have turned all the car’s electrical devices off – this includes your wipers, lights and any other electronic gadget you may have. This will also protect your electrical system from failing. If you don’t drive regularly, make sure to take it out on a weekly basis to keep the battery charged and make sure that the engine and brakes are running smoothly. If you’re really worried about your battery failing, but you’re not quite ready to invest in a new one, purchase a portable car battery charger to give you peace of mind wherever you go. It’s not difficult to maintain a car battery. Make the most out of yours by trying out these tips! If you’re interested in any of our new cars, get in touch with your local Perrys dealer today.