The soul of a vehicle might be the design, but the battery is its life. The better the battery, the smoother is the functioning of your car. It is essential to keep the battery in a good condition to avoid buying a new one. From the point of starting the car for early morning commute to listening to your favorite music, the battery is an important part of your vehicle. It is advised by experts to take care of the battery and keep on checking for any faults. Imagine going on a deserted road at night and the battery dies suddenly. It would leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere. To avoid such kind of a situation, it is advisable to keep on checking your car battery on a regular basis. In today’s advisory, we will help the vehicle owners in how to check their cars battery life. Plus, we will tell you some useful tips on how to prolong the life of the car’s battery.
To begin, let us first see how to check the battery life in a matter of just 10 minutes by simply following these steps.
Headlights test: The basic and easiest way to check the battery life is by switching on headlights of your vehicle. Turn them on and if the ray of light is darker, this means that the battery is low. There could also be another scenario where the headlights automatically brighten up and this indicates that the alternator is working fine but is failing to supply optimum current to the battery. In the event of no noticeable change in brightness, one can be happy knowing that the battery is working fine and does not any attention or replacing. Battery health indicator: This is a new feature coming to the new modern cars. On the instrument display cluster, one can notice the functionality. After switching on the car, one can observe the arrow moving either to the red or green point. If the indicator shows red, it means that the battery’s voltage is low. In the event of green, it indicates that the battery is in good condition. If the battery is not working, the indicator depicts black colour.
Physical inspection: On a regular basis, vehicle owners should look at battery for physical inspection. One must disconnect the battery terminals and then remove the battery. Place the battery on a flat platform and check for any bulge on its surface. This is primarily because overcharging at time causes the battery to inflate. Also, check the terminals for insulation if it is proper or not. In the event of cracks in the battery, replace it immediately. Before putting the battery in the carrier, make sure that it is adequately cleaned.
Checking for battery water: The liquid floating in the car battery is a combination of water and sulfuric acid. If the car battery has removable vent caps, one must check the level in each cell. As per the experts, the level of liquid should be above the top of the battery’s plates. In case, it is low, one must add distilled water but not overflow the cells.
Cleaning the battery: One can clean the battery using baking soda, a soft brush and water. You need to simply pour the ingredients into a container and shake it. Use it to wash the battery’s top and bottom part with the brush. Wipe the excess fluid with a soft and dry cloth. Use the same process for the battery’s connectors as well.
Load test: One requires a car battery tester for this test. Test the battery with a CCA rating of one and a half, you need to check if the battery can hold 9.6 volts for 15 seconds. Before starting the test, one needs to make sure that the battery is completely charged.
Ammeter: One can use the ammeter to check the battery’s incoming and outgoing charging capacity. Vehicle owners can use the ammeter to find out whether the battery is getting fully charged by the alternator. In case the incoming charge is showing full on the ammeter, it means the battery is okay to use. A good battery should give out a reading of 12.5 volts. In case the reading is less than 11.8 volts, the battery is in weak condition. One need to recharge it or get a replacement.
Now that we have discussed the various methods to check your car battery, let us now throw some light on tips for increasing its life. Below are some simple steps to follow:
Reduce short trips: Experts at Droom often advise buyers to reduce taking short rides in their vehicles. The reason is that quick rides prevent the car battery from getting fully charged. You can extend the battery’s life by driving the car frequently and for a longer period. If you use the car infrequently, it is time to invest some money in a portable car battery charger. It can also help you jumpstart your vehicle in case the battery dies.
Do not use lights unnecessarily: Keeping the headlights, taillights or door lights switched on unnecessarily is a major cause behind declining battery life. It can drain the car battery. Switch off the lights the moment you exit the vehicle.
Do not use the electronic equipment on board unless the car is switched on. This will avoid wear and tear on the battery. To keep the battery charged, one must drive the vehicle once a week for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Clean the battery’s terminals: With regular use of the vehicle, the battery terminals tend to accumulate dust and corrosion which can subsequently affect its performance and life. One can easily clean the terminals with a dry cloth regularly. This will ensure constant power flow through them while increasing the battery life too.
Conclusion: The battery is an integral component of the vehicle for all things related to electrical. It not only powers electrical components but keeps a steady flow of electric current in the car. If poorly maintained, you are looking at additional charges of repairing it. In a nutshell, one must take proper precautions and care to increase the battery life.
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