If your car won’t start the first thing you should try is to jump start it. To perform a Jump Start you will need a pair of jump leads and a car that will start, attach the leads to the battery in each car, start the car that works and then try to start the care that isn’t starting. If the car starts then you know you have a problem with either your battery or the alternator.
One of the functions of the alternator is charge your battery. If this isn’t working properly then the battery will not be recharged as you drive and it may even be being used to power the electrical components of your car as you drive depleting its power supply.
The Truth about Car Batteries
Just like any battery you have in your house, car batteries run out of power. Even though your Car Battery is constantly being recharged it will eventually wear out, on average a battery will last around 4 years. You used to be able to revive an ageing battery but adding a mixture of distilled water and acid to it but these days most batteries are sealed cell units so this is no longer possible. You can buy home charging units you plug into your electric and connect to the battery like you would connect jumper cables but this is only a temporary solution.
There are a few actions you can take to extend the life of your battery though;
Keeping your battery clean will extend its life as a dirty battery gets hotter during operation which reduces its life span. Look for grease or dirt on the battery and around the connectors, this can be cleaned off. Also look for signs of corrosion (rust) on the connectors, if you see this bring your vehicle in and we can remove it, we will also inspect the cables to make sure that the corrosion has not gotten into those as well and replace them if they have started to corrode as well.
Give it a full charge
If most of your driving is running errands in and around Huntington Beach, then the chances are you are not getting a fully charged battery and you are gradually shortening its life. The solution is to either connect a plug-in charger or simply go for a long drive! The amount of time you need to drive to charge the battery varies between cars and batteries but on average 30 mins or so should get you fully charged again, if the battery was dead you should drive without lights or radio for about an hour to get it fully charged.
Limit electrical use when not driving
When your car is not running all electrical components are powered by the battery. We have all seen the scenario where someone leaves their lights on all night and then the car won’t start in the morning. A lot of modern cars now automatically turn the lights off to avoid situations like this but there are still plenty of ways to drain your battery. Sitting in the car and listening to the radio or using the cigarette lighter to charge your phone, common things we have all done from time to time but if the engine isn’t running, you’re draining the battery.
Repair or Replace?
If you are having problems with your battery, while it is possible to get it charged up again you are only delaying the inevitable and sooner or later you will need to replace it. When you do need to replace it here at Expertec Automotive we have batteries for all makes and models and will quickly get your new battery installed and you back on the road. Call us today at (714) 848-9222 to schedule an appointment.