Locate The Battery And Gather The Necessary Tools
Before you can replace your cars battery, you must know where to find it. If you dont already know, consult your vehicles owners manual to determine the exact location.
On many vehicles, it is at the top and front of the engine. After locating your vehicles battery, gather the necessary tools for the job. An adjustable wrench, socket, screwdriver, and pliers should be more than enough. Still, you may want to invest in a terminal puller to make the project a breeze.
Fitting A New Car Battery
This should be the easy part just make sure you dont connect the wrong lead to the wrong terminal.
Put the new battery into the battery bay. Most come with plastic caps on top of the terminals remove these.
Connect the positive terminal first. Push the red, positive lead onto the positive battery terminal and tighten the securing nut on the clamp.
Next, put the black, negative lead onto the batterys negative terminal and tighten the clamp.
Finally, replace the battery retaining bracket and the plastic cover if it has one, securing the bracket with the nuts you carefully set aside earlier.
Disconnecting The Old Battery
Provided your cars battery is in an easy-to-reach location such as the engine bay or the trunk, removing it is a fairly painless process.
Disconnect the negative terminal first and then disconnect the positive terminal, Hines tells us. The reason it should be done in that order, he says, is to mitigate the risk of electrocuting yourself. Lets say you have the battery connected in the vehicle and the battery still has voltage, and you put a wrench or a ratchet on the positive terminal and then touch the body of the car. Then youre welding, he says, laughing.
After youve successfully disconnected the battery from both terminals and moved the connection points to places where they wont accidentally reconnect themselves, you can disconnect any tie-downs and remove the battery from its tray. Some batteries may also have a small vent tube for expelling gases attached to their frame simply pull it off before taking the battery out of the car.
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Remove The Battery Holder
To keep the battery from vibrating, your vehicles manufacturer likely installed a clamp or other type of stabilizer. You must remove this piece to access the battery. Generally, a couple of screws hold the clamp in place. Remember, dont touch the positive post of either the old or new battery when you are removing the anchor or clamp. Also, because you must reuse the clamp, store it and its screws where you arent apt to lose them.
Two: Disconnect Battery Cables
There should be two cables connected from each terminal post one to the ground and one to power. Its important that these connections are removed first because if there is no connection, you can work on the dead battery with ease. You also get the owners manual for help. It would help if you secured the battery while disconnecting car cables. Sometimes you also may need to, lift the battery. For this, you must wear gloves.
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What Safety Equipment Do I Need To Change The Battery
The car battery contains acid which is corrosive and may cause acid burns. In this case, you need to have protective gloves that are acid resistant to protect your hands.
The gloves will also protect you from shock from a residue power surge in the battery. Have protective eyeglasses to protect your eyes. From acid spills and have an overcoat to protect your clothing from battery acid.
How To Replace Your Car Battery
Car batteries need to be replaced for a number of reasons, whether it’s run its course or unexpectedly died, you’ll always want to be prepared to replace it and get back on the road in the event of an emergency. Here at Ira Subaru we know how important it is to have a properly functioning battery in order to avoid unexpected breakdowns. To keep you on the road as you commute around Wakefield, Reading, and Danvers, MA, check out our rundown on how to replace a car battery, how often you should, and what tools you’ll need to do so.
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Our Guide To Changing A Car Battery With Everything You Need To Know
Most of us have had that awful moment when you turn the key and nothing happens. A click instead of the engine jumping into life can be a scary moment, but most of the time it’s something to do with your car battery – whether it’s simply run too low or needs replacing completely.
Since the car battery runs all the car’s electric items such as the headlights and radio, you need it to be in top condition to have a good experience with your car. They last on average for about seven years, so many will need replacing at some point.
On older cars, changing the car battery is a simple task that just requires a spanner and a few minutes, but on more modern car’s it can be quite difficult. Many higher-end cars have so many electrical systems that rely on the battery that you may need to have an expert do it for you, especially if you don’t actually own your car, for example if you’re paying for it with finance payments.
If you’re unsure about doing it yourself it’s usually a good idea to get a trained mechanic to do it for you – but in this guide we’ll look at how to diagnose a failing battery, how to make it last longer and how to change it if you do decide to go down that route yourself.
I Cant Find My Car Battery
The vast majority of car batteries reside in the engine bay, but if you cant find yours there, dont be embarrassed. For packaging and weight-distribution reasons, some car batteries are kept in the boot although theyll usually be hidden behind a cover in this case. If in doubt, check the cars manual.
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Four: Remove The Old Battery And Inspect The Terminals
Now, youre ready to pull the battery out. Its relatively heavy, it can weigh 20 pounds or more depending on its size, so be prepared. Look at the terminal ends before you reinstall the new one. If you see a build-up of green-ish, gray-ish, or white-ish powder youll need to clean them with either emery cloth or sandpaper to keep your charging system in tip-top shape. Dont use anything too coarse 100-grit works fine. Sand the inner part of the terminal ends until theyre nice and shiny. Battery acid is corrosive so wear gloves and try not to get any on your clothes.
Flat Car Battery Our Guide To Replacing It Installing A Replacement And Using A Battery Charger Should Help
If you Google How to change a car battery, the results will bring up an extensive range of convoluted and sometimes utterly useless articles on how to replace a dud set of cells. It goes without saying that care should be taken whenever you decide to work on electrical components, especially the high current circuits which are found in car electronics. That being said, all the information required for you to install a new car battery safely is fairly basic and easy to follow.
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How Long Do Car Batteries Last
Sadly, the life of a car battery is a finite thing, even though modern variants last much longer than they did back in the black and white times. As the amount of technology we all use in the average car increases, so too does the demand on batteries, hence the need for capacity to increase.
Your modern day battery not only has to crank the engine and create a spark but there are a host of complicated on-board computers and ECUs to power, too. Add to this features like high-power speakers, electric windows and heated seats and the drain on your battery is huge, and thats before you put your phone on charge!
Modern automated stop-start systems might be good for fuel economy and the environment, but they help to give your battery a proper pasting too. You wont be surprised to hear then, that flat or dead batteries are one of the most popular callouts for breakdown services.
You dont have to wait for the inevitable emergency though, because if you keep an eye on your batterys condition its possible to spot the early signs of a potential failure. Look out for easy to spot clues like dim interior lights or an engine thats reluctant to start. If these signs are showing then it may be a good idea to get your battery tested.
Can I Change My Car Battery
Anyone who has moderate mechanical skills can change a car battery. It is a very straight-forward project that is easily completed in 1 hour or less.
In most cases, the battery will be located in the engine compartment. If you do not see it there, you will need to refer to your user manual to find the exact location.
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How To Change A Car Battery Without Losing Settings
Start by opening the hood of your car.
Open the hood and locate the cables coming out from beneath it. Locate an empty space to place your old battery, then remove all cells in this area with a screwdriver or wrench.
Next, find which cable is connected to each end on the terminals.
This can be both a positive pole and a negative pole. The positive terminal normally has a red cover on top that needs to be removed with pliers if theres any corrosion present whereas, the negative terminal typically needs its insulation strip-cut back so you can see whats going on inside.
Remove both cables
Remove it from their respective ends at once using wire strippers for extra safety when doingnext, wrench to loosen the cable of the car batteries. Replacing the car battery is quite tricky. You can contact the mechanics at a local garage/ shop.
How To Check If Car Battery Is Good
Do you know how to check if car battery is good? Here are some things to consider:
- Pay attention to how your car responds when you start the ignition. If it starts without difficulty, thats a good sign.
- If the dashboard lights are dim, it could mean that your battery is not good. Check to make sure your lights, radio, and automatic windows are turned off then start the car again.
- Jumpstart your car. If it works, but then you are unable to start your engine again after driving for a while, then you probably have a dead battery and should replace it immediately.
- Highly-trained mechanics know how to check if car battery is good. Take your car to the nearest auto repair shop and let them perform a battery performance test for you.
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Some Batteries Are Not Located In The Hood
Instead of the hood, some vehicles have their batteries install in the trunk. This is the case with most BMWs. To locate this battery, open your trunk and locate the battery compartment near right side of trunk. Open and lift to reveal the battery. You may now follow steps three through eight above to remove and change the battery.
Rather than under the hood or in the trunk, some vehicles come equipped with their battery under the back seat. An example is Cadillacs. To locate this battery, look for and push in the side clips of the vehicles back seat, which will release entire back seat for removal. You can then remove the entire back seat from the car and once removed, the battery will be in sight and you can begin the replacement. You may now follow steps three through eight above to remove and change the battery.
You have successfully changed you own battery! It is important to remember that your old battery needs to be recycled properly. In some states, like California, a core fee is charged when you purchase a new battery if your old one was not returned at the time. You will receive this core fee back once the old battery is returned and properly recycled.
If you do not have time or wish to have a professional change your battery for you, feel free to contact YourMechanic to have a certified mobile mechanic replace your battery for you.
Make Sure The Car Battery Needs Replacement
Before you set out to get yourself a new car battery, it would be better to make sure that your battery does indeed needs a replacement. You can do this by: Looking for any type of sulfate build-up around the terminals it will be generally whitish or blue residue. If found, remove it and it might help with your faulty battery. However, do not touch any residue with bare hands as it may contain dried out sulfuric acid. Check the battery with the help of an alternator or the battery meter that some cars arrive with. Ideally a battery should have 12.4 12.8 volts without engine being on and no extra accessories being added.
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Which Battery Terminal Do You Take Off First
Disconnect the negative terminal of the dead battery first. A minus sign on the batterys surface marks this terminal. The negative terminal wire is also often colored black.
Most battery clamps tighten around the battery terminal and are held fast by a nut and a bolt. Use your tools to loosen this nut and bolt until you can slide the clamp off the negative terminal.
Once you have disconnected your negative terminal, begin on the positive terminal. A plus sign marks the positive terminal. The wire connecting to the positive terminal is often colored red. While disconnecting the positive terminal, be cautious of bridging a metal tool between the battery clamp and any metal in the engine compartment. If you do, you will create some sparks but will probably not feel a shock.
Once you have disconnected the fasteners holding the batter in place, lift it out of the engine compartment. If you have battery cleaning solution, now is the time to clean any corrosion off the battery clamps or the battery tray.
Be careful to line the new batterys positive and negative terminals up with the correct wires. Reconnect the positive wire first, then connect the negative wire. This is the same connection order as jumpstarting a dead battery. Once your battery is fastened in place, you are ready to roll.
How To Remove A Car Battery
Before proceeding with the car battery replacement activity, you must be aware of how to remove the battery. Let us find out the process as under:
- Make sure the car is off and key out of the ignition. Secure the position of the battery and proceed with the wrench to loosen with the help of tools.
- Locate a metal strap that goes between battery and frame on the side of the vehicle . You can also call the experts with tools.
- Using a wrench, loosen two bolts holding the bracket to hold the old battery in place. Then use your hands to pull upwards to remove the battery that has become old from the compartment. If you are unsure how it should be oriented, look for the plus sign on the positive cable terminal or the + label next to the positive terminal marked with a red dot marker.
Newer cars may also have a connector at the top of the battery, which will need to be disconnected before removing a car battery by unplugging wire clamps using pliers.
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Clean Your Cables And Terminals
Take a wire brush and scrub the battery cable ends as well as the battery terminals to remove any corrosion or dirt. Wear a mask to avoid breathing dust during this step.
After youve removed your car battery, its time to install the replacement. Apply terminal grease before attaching the positive cable first, and then connecting the negative cable. The exact installation method will vary depending on whether you are installing a top-post or side-post battery. You can find articles describing the steps for and videos of each installation procedure below.
How to Install a Car Battery
Where To Buy A Car Battery Replacement
Several online retailers sell car battery replacements, including:
- Amazon shop here
Please note: all cars are different so if it is time to change your battery, you may want to look up instructions for your specific car at Haynes OnDemand. There may even be a video tutorial.
This article features products that have been chosen independently by Driving.co.uk journalists, and our reviews are unbiased. We may earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to affect our opinions.
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