Today I’m going to give you five ways you can make your car battery last as long as it possibly can.
Now car batteries get more and more expensive these days, sometimes the average battery will be 140 dollars.
You want to make sure your battery lasts as long as possible.
First Trick: Use Battery All the Time
Now the first trick to making your battery lasts as long as possible is, use it all the time. Now I know that sounds counterintuitive but it’s not.
But car batteries aren’t like cell phone batteries. You use your cell phone the battery drains, eventually it runs out of electricity, but car batteries aren’t that way.
They start your car up but once they start your car, then your alternator kicks in and the alternator recharge the battery and runs the engine. Car batteries are made so that they discharge a little, start the car then recharge as the alternator recharges them.
If you just let a car battery sit you don’t use it, they actually go bad just sitting.
Now if you don’t use your car much, it’s a good idea to get one of these battery tender type things. What it does is, you hook it up to the battery.
It does a little trickle charge then every once in a while, it takes a little energy out of the battery, so it’s like exercising the battery so it stays strong.
Let’s say you’re not using your car much, it’s a good idea to use one of those or just take the battery out of the car when you’re not using it.
If it’s sitting for weeks or months at a time leave it on one of those machines and then put it back in the car when you’re gonna use it.
I personally use one all the time because, I live in downtown Houston, got three cars. I don’t drive any of them all that much, so whenever I check it with my battery checking machine, it almost always says good battery but needs recharge,
I just put them on the charger for a while. If you don’t use your car much, every once in a while it’s a good idea to put a little charge into the battery because it will get weak just sitting there.
Second Trick: Keep the Terminals Clean
Now the next trick to making your battery lasts as long as possible, is to keep the terminals clean and remove any corrosion and nice and tight.
Because corrosion or loose terminals create more resistance and the more resistance in an electrical circuit the harder the battery has to work to send electricity to it. It will have a tendency of getting hot spots, that will eventually wear the battery out faster.
All you need is one of these cleaning them off, just scrape all the corrosion off of terminals.
Then get some spray electrical cleaner, I’m using mass airflow sensor cleaner. It’s the same thing it actually costs more, but I’ve got cases of this stuff. So I use that to clean off any electrical problems.
Then get rid of any residue that might be lying around.
Then once it dries get some of this battery spray terminal protector and spray it on the terminals. That seals the battery acid vapor from getting and eating it up.
Spray both of terminal that way the corrosion won’t come back.
You won’t have any problems with those areas getting too hot from a weak connection and then making the battery work too hard and burn itself out early.
Third Trick: Set Correct Battery in Your Car
Now the next thing to ensure that your battery lasts as long as it can, is make sure you have the correct battery in your car in the first place.
Now batteries have ratings on them, some battery has a cold cranking amps rating of 700 cold cranking amps.
Now that’s rather large for the Celica and there’s a reason for that.
Originally it came with a 500 cold cranking amp battery, but since I don’t put that many miles on it. I kept having to replace the stupid batteries every couple of years.
But when I switched to the 700 cold cranking amp battery.I haven’t had to replace this one for 5 years so far.
A lot of times you’re actually better putting a better battery in. Than the one that it came with.
The main purpose of the battery is to start the car it needs a lot of power once it’s started, the alternator kicks in and charges everything up. So the main focus of the battery is to actually start the car up.
Lot of guys say, hey scotty well when they make the cars they put a small battery and isn’t it the way it’s supposed to be, no that’s just because it’s cheaper to make a car that way.
Of course they weigh a little bit less the cheaper batteries and you got like 1/1000 of better gas mileage for the few pounds you save.
But it’s mainly because it’s cheaper to make them that way.
Fourth Trick: Check Alternator
Now the next way to make your battery last as long as possible, is every once in a while have your alternator checked? Because the alternator works in tandem with the battery, If one of the other is weak it can harm the other one.
If you have a weak alternator, it’s going to make the battery work harder and wear it out faster.
Especially if you have an alternator let’s say the diodes are going bad in it and it overcharges. It will actually burn out your battery by giving it too much electricity and destroying it.
An alternator is called an alternator, because it actually creates alternating electricity.
Then the diodes and the internals of the alternator transform that into direct electricity and when things break sometimes the alternator will actually put out alternating electricity of way too high voltage and that will destroy the battery.
It doesn’t take a mechanic three minutes to check your alternator, you can even buy one of Topdon checkers yourselves. Topdon checker are easily available for 50 bucks and they do good job of checking your battery and your alternator.
You want to have them tested every once in a while, because when they are going out it’s better to change them sooner than later.
Because on modern a cars and my own customers cars, I have had more cars come over here with weird problems, check engine lights on, they’re running bad, and they start up but they don’t run right.
The root problem is either a weak battery, or a weak alternator.
So that’s something to always check when you have a problem in a car right off the bat these days. Because everything’s computer run and computers are very sensitive about their voltage, that’s being supplied to them.
If it’s incorrect all kinds of wacky things can happen to your car that you don’t want.
Fifth Trick: Check the Battery Acid Level
Now the last trick to making your battery last as long as possible is to check the battery acid level, that’s inside the battery every once in a while.
You just pop the top off and look inside, if you can see the water level like in these it’s perfectly fine.
Plates need to be covered with the battery acid if you see them that means it’s low. Just get some distilled water and pour it in until they’re covered up again.
Now years ago they were pushing sealed batteries, where you couldn’t add water. Now it wasn’t that the battery acid inside some of it didn’t evaporate.
It still had vents but those are made that it would evaporate much slower. Still when it evaporated you couldn’t add anymore and you had to buy a new battery.
So the best batteries for a long life are really the ones where you can take the top off and check them.
Unless you’re someone who never checks anything, and if you or your wife never checks in anything, you’re better off with the sealed battery.
Because even though it evaporates some, it evaporates slower and a sealed battery that you do no maintenance at all. Sealed batteries will last longer than a battery that has tops that come off.
If you do have one with tops and come off use distilled water because local water usually has a lot of minerals in it. Then the minerals will settle to the bottom of the plates of the battery and short the thing out.
So now you know five ways that you can let your car battery last as long as possible.
So you won’t get stranded somewhere or even worse, have a car that has damage done to it electronically, because of a problem in the battery or the wiring.