How to take care of your car’s battery

How to take care of your car’s battery

Car batteries could have an average lifespan of 3 to 4 years - that is, if you’re maintaining them correctly. With that, here are tips on how you can take care of your brand new batteries.

Water level

You need to regularly check the water level of your battery (every 2 to 3 months). Car batteries need sufficient acid-water ratio to work. However, if you’re using maintenance free batteries which are the one that doesn’t need electrolyte refill, you can skip this part.

To inspect, remove the the fill caps of the batteries and check the amount of fluid inside. The fluid level should just touch the bottom of the refill hole.

If needed, refill the battery with distilled water. Take note that you should only use distilled water as the contaminants in tap water can compromise your battery’s performance.

Charge/Voltage level

Overcharging of phones, lights accidentally left turned on, or a problem with the alternator are just few of the factors that could drain your battery. A healthy one will have a charge of 12.5 to 12.6 volts, while a battery that can still start an engine will have a voltage close to 12.0 volts.

Have a professional check its voltage level. You can include that on your regular maintenance checkup or your next oil change. 

Clean the terminals

Battery terminals that are free from rust and dried acid build up are good conductors of electricity. Have them cleaned regularly.

First, remove the connectors on your battery terminals. You may need to untighten them with a wrench and wiggle from side to side. Using a wire brush, scrape off visible rust from the terminals. Bring them to a shine by dipping your wire brush into paste of baking soda mixed with distilled water. Lastly, coat the terminals with a multi-purpose grease to protect them from rust and corrosion.

Check the insulator

Some cars are equipped by an insulator by default to protect it from high temperatures that can evaporate the water from the batteries. You need to check if they are correctly in place to maximize its effectivity.

If your car doesn’t have battery insulation by default, you can invest in buying one soon. 

Secure its position

Make sure that the car battery is secured when in place. It shouldn’t have any wiggle room. This is true with the connectors and terminals as well. A loose connection will decrease the efficiency of the battery.

Maintaining your batteries should be on your regular car maintenance checklist. If you can increase the battery’s lifespan, then it will definitely decrease your cost on car maintenance.