The last thing any vehicle owner wants is to hop into their car and turn the key– only for it not to start due to a dead battery.
Everyday life takes its toll on a car’s battery. Vibrations from driving, supporting accessories like GPS and MP3 players, extreme temperatures, short trips or underuse and overcharging all affect the life of a car battery. That’s why car batteries typically last about 4 – 5 years before they need replacement.
Keep in mind: colder climates are conducive to battery longevity, so battery life varies depending on where you live.
How do you make sure you don’t end up stranded with a dead battery? The trick is paying attention to your vehicle to catch a dying battery before your car won’t start.
Here are seven signs your car battery needs to be replaced:
If your battery is 3-4 years old, it may be in jeopardy of dying out even if nothing seems wrong. Have your mechanic or dealership check it out or keep an eye on it yourself for other signs that the battery is on its last leg.
2. Check Engine Light is On:
Your check engine light could be on for a number of reasons. One culprit? Your battery needs replacing.
3. Low Battery Fluid Level:
Look in the translucent part of the battery case. The fluid level should not be below the energy conductors, or lead plates.
4. Swelling Battery Case:
A swollen battery case is usually the result of extreme heat. This can shorten the life of your battery.
You may see some chemical build-up on an old car battery. Corrosion can be removed with a solution of baking soda and water. It should be handled safely; either with gloves and goggles or by your mechanic or dealership.
6. Slow Engine Crank:
If your car takes longer to start than normal when you turn the key, your car battery may be on its way out.
When a car battery is frozen or overcharged, it often emits sulfuric acid. If you smell something like rotten eggs under the hood of the car, get your battery replaced immediately. Sulfuric acid can eat away at other parts of the engine and result in a major problems for your vehicle.
Checking your car battery should be part of routine maintenance for your vehicle. However, everyday life and wear and tear can stir up problems between service appointments. If you experience any of the signs of a dead car battery, make a service appointment here, or call to speak with a service specialist.