Before a car battery dies, some telltale signs may let you know that the battery is on borrowed time. Signs such as “check engine” light usually indicate that the battery is dying slowly. You should also keenly watch the vehicle’s reaction each time you start the engine.
Here are several other symptoms that indicate your vehicle’s battery is due for replacement.
1. Unused Battery
If you leave your battery sitting for too long, the chances of the battery dying are pretty high. Driving your vehicle frequently positively impacts your battery’s health. Your vehicle’s battery recharges as you drive, and the charge depletes if the car is not used for a long time.
If you know you will be away for a long time, have your friend or a family member drive your car around the block once in a while to keep the battery intact.
2. Slow Starts
If your engine takes more time to start, that can be a sign that the battery is failing. Perhaps you hear some weird noises every time you turn the key, or the lights begin to flicker. These are signs of a dying battery. You should have a professional check the starting system or have the battery replaced.
3. Endless Jumpstarts
Is your battery new and already needs to be jumpstarted? Frequent jumpstarts are a sign that the battery is prematurely wearing out. At this point, you might want to check your warranty and get another battery. Although a rare occurrence, an electronic part that draws power when you shut off the vehicle can drain the battery.
If you accidentally leave the lights on, the battery will likely die. Therefore, it’s essential to have an expert inspect the vehicle to establish the causes of the frequent jumpstarts before you spend money on a new battery.
4. Intolerance to Seasonal Changes
Sometimes when temperatures soar, your car battery can react to the changes. Extreme heat usually evaporates the water in the battery’s internal fluids and causes the internal parts to corrode. During cold weather conditions, the chemical reaction in the battery goes down and causes the engine oil to move slowly. As a result, the vehicle needs more power to start, which drains the battery’s life.
These issues are common in old batteries, so it’s advisable you get a new battery altogether. Moreover, a new battery can easily combat seasonal changes. Exposure to heat and cold can also lead to swelling or cracking of the battery case. Such an issue decreases the battery life, and you should invest in a new unit as soon as possible before the battery completely dies.
5. Heavy Corrosion
How often do you look at your battery? Check regularly for corrosion in the positive terminal. Corrosion means that the battery is emitting acidic fumes. This scenario can affect the voltage and lower the battery’s efficiency. Even if you clean the battery, the corrosion will still come back, so it’s best to get a new battery entirely.
6. Awful Smell
If you notice a rotten egg smell every time you open the hood, it might be due to a leaking battery. A battery leaks gas when an internal short occurs. You need to have it checked immediately or get a replacement.
7. Old Battery
A battery that’s older than 3 years is an old-timer. However, the battery can serve you for longer, up to 5 years, if you inspect it annually after hitting the 3-year mark. Factors that affect a battery’s life include battery brand, driving habits, electronic demands, vehicle type, and the weather.
Nevertheless, you are better off with a new battery after 3 years to avoid issues associated with an old battery.
If your vehicle has any of these battery issues and you are unsure what to do, contact the automotive experts at Evans Tire & Service Centers. We are ready to work with you to ensure your vehicle’s battery is in good shape so you can enjoy a smooth driving experience every time.