To help prolong the life of your car battery, follow these tips to help utilize the most out of it.
1. Frequently Test the Battery
The more you test your car battery, the more you will understand it better. It can also reduce the risk of getting stranded with a dead battery. You can check on the condition of your battery with a car battery tester or have it checked by a certified mechanic. The average lifespan of a car battery is between three to five years. If your battery is within that time range, have it checked out before cold temperatures arrive.
2. Keep it Clean
To help preserve the life of your car battery, you can clean the battery terminals. Look for any signs of dirt and grime. Also, help prevent corrosion buildup by cleaning it with an old or spare toothbrush dipped in baking soda and water. Rinse it off with cold water and dry it with a clean cloth afterwards.
3. Keep it Secure
Make sure the car battery is tightly fastened before starting the car to prevent it from vibrating and moving around too much, which can internally damage the battery. This is especially important if you tend to drive on bumpy and uneven roads. Check the battery terminal connections as well to make they are secure enough.
4. Prevent Draining the Battery
Using electronic accessories like the radio, interior lights and navigation systems in your vehicle while it’s off can drain the battery. This is because they require the power from your battery to run. Idling for a long period can also shorten battery life.
5. Limit the Amount of Short Drives
A car ride around the block can take a toll on the battery because it stops it from being fully charged. The constant starting the engine and stopping after a minute or two can put wear and tear on the battery. To help prevent this, you can either walk or bike to the close location you need to get to or drive longer distances between the short drives.
6. Extreme Temperatures
Cold and hot temperatures can affect the performance of your car battery. In winter when the temperature drops, vehicles require more battery power to run efficiently and in summer the heat can increase the battery’s chemical operation. Be patient and considerate of your car battery during these weather conditions.
Along with frequently checking on the condition of your car battery, review your auto insurance policy to ensure you have the accurate type of coverage for you and your lifestyle.