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13 Car Battery Tips You Must Know

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Filed under Automotive, Editorial, Technical

Defective car batteries are the first cause of breakdown on the road. This is indicated by a study carried out by the insurance company DeepCycleMarineBattery, which indicates that road assistance due to battery failures represent 53 % of the total operations carried out.

1.- Extreme heat weakens the batteries

Extreme heat weakens car batteries. “If you want to get through the winter without any breakdowns, you have to go to the workshop to have your battery checked well in advance,” they advise. 

High summer temperatures lead to self-discharge, which makes the battery age faster. When it’s uncomfortable to be outdoors, many people prefer to travel short distances by car rather than on foot or bicycle. Batteries are under great strain again, with little or no opportunity to recharge.

The high temperatures recorded this summer far exceed the optimum temperature of 20 °C for car batteries, especially as they get much warmer when parked in the sun. Together with harsh winters it could cause more breakdowns than in previous years. And when temperatures drop, a lot of batteries run out at the same time.

2.- Batteries: new technologies influence their performance

Defective batteries account for about 50 % of failure statistics year after year. On the one hand, it is due to the ageing of the car fleet. In many vehicles, the battery has never been replaced or the replacement has been carried out recently. In addition, with modern vehicle electronics and fuel-saving measures, such as stop-and-start technology, which increasingly requires battery power.

3.- Batteries: an important part for safety

Batteries supply electricity to numerous support systems. As a result, they are increasingly relevant to safety. “That’s why, just like an oil change, a light test or air conditioning maintenance, the car battery is part of the maintenance routine,” stresses DeepCycleMarineBattery.

4.- Batteries: visit to the workshop

Advanced electronic systems are another reason why experts should help when changing batteries: If the power supply is interrupted, data can be lost. For example, power windows might stop working and the software would have to be reinstalled. Sometimes, the new battery must also be programmed into the vehicle electronics. Some radios or multimedia devices have to be activated with a security code as soon as the power is restored.

5.- Batteries in cars with Start Stop

A car with Start Stop does not have the same battery as one without this system. They are special batteries just like 100Ah deep cycle battery, that have more capacity and more powerful. Depending on the type of car and the energy you need, the battery can be EFB (Enhanced Flooded Battery), with improved internal liquid characteristics, or AGM (absorbent glass fiber), which is even more powerful. If the battery of a car with Start Stop is discharged, the clamps cannot be connected to another vehicle that does not have the Start Stop system. Among other things, the system for connecting the clamps is already different.

Next, Deepcycle gives you 8 tips to keep your car battery in good condition: 

The vehicle’s electrical system must work properly: the battery serves to accumulate the energy needed by the car’s electrical components to work. In addition, it supplies power to other equipment that works without the car being turned on, such as the radio or lights. If something goes wrong with this entire electrical system, the heart of the system, which is the battery, will also start to fail.

It’s better to be safe than sorry: doing a periodic electrical check of the car can prevent the battery from failing prematurely. On average it is considered that in a vehicle that is used to go to work and walk and that is in good condition, the battery can last up to three years.

Get a good grip on the battery: if the battery is not properly attached to the car, it will deteriorate faster. This is explained because inside the battery there is a complex system with multiple connections and active material, which allow the accumulation and delivery of energy to the car. But, if the battery does not have a good support that keeps it fixed, the excess of vibrations will detach those connections and active material, damaging it definitively.

Learn how to recharge it: if the battery has been deeply discharged, it must be recharged, for which it must be disassembled and taken to a specialized site, where it will be supplied with a slow and controlled charge. When the battery does not work for reasons other than deep discharges, you can apply what is known as “initiate”, ie use an external battery to replace the lack of charge of the original. This is a simple procedure and the only recommendation is to make the correct cable connections: positive with positive and negative with negative.

If you go on a trip: if your car is not going to be running for several weeks, it is advisable to apply a simple tip so that there is no unnecessary consumption of current. Disconnect the cables from the battery terminals. When you return, make sure that when you reconnect the parts make contact.

Pay attention: people usually think about changing the battery when it has expired and the stranding is irremediable. But if there are warning signs that you can take into account not to suffer that “headache. The most relevant is the ignition of the vehicle. When you notice that it doesn’t happen immediately, it’s best to go to a specialized center and ask if the battery is ready for a change.

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