Figuring Out The Real Problem
Remember, unless you know the reason your battery died even though your vehicle starts and runs after you recharge the battery, something in your electrical system may be causing the problem. Expect your battery to run down again . If your battery soon weakens or gives out, consider removing it and hauling it down to an auto-parts store. Many will test the battery for you, and you can pick up a new one while you’re there. Alternatively, jump-start your vehicle and get it down to a repair shop. You either have a bad battery or an electrical-system issue you’ll need the help of a technician to solve the problem.
How Does A Car Battery Die
The are several things that can shorten the life of a car battery, and most of them are preventable. Now, were not talking about that dead battery that you get when the dome light was left on or the car hasnt been driven in a month. Usually, a jump start, booster pack, or battery charger is all thats necessary to revive the car battery and get the car back on the road, but the damage has already been done. Its the accumulation of damage that leads to the untimely death of the car battery, at which point it simply will not start the car. Car battery death, for the purposes of this article, refers to the batterys inability to hold a charge, usually caused by sulfation.
At its most basic, a car battery is constructed of alternating plates of dissimilar metals, usually lead and lead oxide , in an electrolyte bath, usually sulfuric acid in water. When discharging, the battery acid facilitates the flow of electrons, from the Pb plate to the PbO2 plate, generating an electric current, which can be used to start the engine or illuminate the headlights, for example. Because of this chemical reaction, both plates become more chemically-similar and converting fully-discharged car battery plates to lead sulfate , wherein lies the problem.
Important Points To Consider
Dont always automatically assume that your vehicle problem is due to a dud battery. Your underlying problem may be something else: a faulty alternator or starter motor, for example. A professional diagnostic test can sort out the true cause of the issue.
Todays cars are more technologically complex than ever before and all the modern on-board computers and electrics are susceptible to shorting out.
One of the most important steps that professionals take when replacing your battery is to ensure a second power source is available so you dont lose computer settings and the security code you need to operate the radio.
Your radio security code may be written down somewhere in your car manual but if you have no record of it, youll usually have to contact your car dealer to get the code again so you can use the radio. Some dealers will charge a fee for this.
Why Did It Worked
This is actually an old trick to revive a dead car battery and service mechanics are using it on a regular basis. If you are wondering why this is working and how the aspirin is helping your battery, the answer is quite simple. The acetylsalicylic acid in the aspirin combines with the sulfuric acid in the battery. This creates a chemical reaction and allows one more charge. This is enough to start the car and drive to a service station. The water is also needed because it helps restore the electrolyte in the battery.
Adjusting The Fluid Levels
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How To Check Car Battery Water Levels
This article was co-authored by Rocco Lovetere. Rocco Lovetere is the Owner and a Master Mechanic at Rocco’s Mobile Auto Repair in California. With over 20 years of experience, he specializes in Honda, Acura, Toyota, Nissan, Infiniti, and Volvo cars. He is an ASE Certified Automotive technician and has worked in automotive repair since 1999.There are 9 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 21 testimonials and 88% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 1,095,074 times.
Learning how to safely check the electrolyte levels in your car battery is an important aspect of car maintenance that should be performed a few times each year. Checking is important for two reasons: first, because electrolyte naturally evaporates and second, because a small amount electrolyzes into hydrogen and oxygen every time the battery charges.
Signs Of A Low Battery
Fortunately, when a car battery is running down, there are usually a few clear indicators before it completely runs down and you are left stranded. You might notice sluggishness when the car starts. This provides a simple indication that your battery might be on its last leg.
Interior lights may also appear to be dimmer than usual. Its incredibly beneficial for anyone who has a battery for three or four years to monitor for all of these telltale signs.
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How To Fill Water In Battery
If you like to make your car to run on the road and function properly then you must know all the important things that are required. The most important thing is the car battery water that you should always maintain. It is the battery that has the life of your car and for that you must take the proper way to take care of it. You need to check the water level of the battery and topping it. The battery of a car has the mixture of sulfuric acid and water. This battery is electrolyte that allows the ions moves between the negative and positive plates that are in the plates of the batters cells during the battery getting charged or it is getting discharged. The acid that your battery in car has is the sulfuric acid and it is very dangerous acid. It is better to have the safety. You need to protect yourself before making any close to the battery of a car. You need to have apron, goggles, and gloves for your protection.
Here are the important feature of taking the proper method of adding water in the battery and when it should be added:
Can You Charge A Marine Battery With Jumper Cables
Charging a marine battery with jumper cables is possible, but it is not recommended. The reason being is that a marine battery is designed to withstand a certain amount of voltage and amperage, which a jumper cable cannot provide. When attempting to charge a marine battery with jumper cables, there is a risk of damaging the battery.
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What Happens When You Put On Battery Cables Wrong
Attaching the jumper cables incorrectly could lead to serious problems. Some of the most common issues with putting on jumper cables include:
- Putting the black and red jumper cables in the wrong positions: If you connect the jumper cables to the wrong sides of the battery, you won’t be able to start the dead vehicle. Always make sure that the red cables connect to the side of the battery that features a plus sign.
- Attaching one of the black jumper cables to the dead battery: When you try to turn on the vehicle, sparks can appear, potentially reacting with or igniting flammable substances. Always connect the second black cable to a grounded metal part instead.
- Neglecting to attach one of the jumper cables: If one of the jumper cables isn’t in place, the process won’t work correctly. If the dead battery still won’t start, double-check that you’ve attached all four ends of the jumper cables correctly.
Can You Add Water To A Maintenance Free Car Battery
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Subsequently, one may also ask, is it OK to add water to a car battery?
Use only distilled water to fill the cells.Distilled water can be purchased at most grocery stores. If the electrolyte levels in the cells are low , fill each cell to just cover the plates. Then use a battery charger to recharge the battery, or just drive the car for a few days in normal service.
Furthermore, are car batteries maintenance free? Today’s automobiles are typically equipped with maintenance–free batteries, but that doesn’t mean they don’t require a bit of tender loving care. Such batteries usually come with vent caps that are sealed, which means you no longer should check water levels a requirement of some earlier batteries.
Simply so, how do you fill a maintenance free battery?
For maintenance free car battery, usually there is only one cover to pour the distilled water into the battery. Loosen up the maintenance free battery cover. Pour the distilled water into the maintenance free battery. Close and tighten back the cover and you are done.
Do sealed car batteries need water?
Most car batteries are sealed for life – apart from a small vent hole which allows gas to escape. They never need topping up. Never top up with tap water, which contains minerals which may damage the battery. Use distilled or otherwise purified water, or a proprietary topping-up fluid.
How To Make Distilled Water For A Car Battery
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How Many Amps Should I Charge My Car Battery At
Using a 4-6 amp smart charger with a float or maintenance mode is ideal for charging nearly all sizes and types of car batteries. This will ensure a gentle and thorough charge that wont harm your battery internally and will still have it fully charged overnight.
How To Use A Trickle Charger On Your Car Battery
If you own a car, its likely your lifeline to getting to and from work. The battery is constantly being charged. Other vehicles, however, are more accustomed to hobby work. They sit in a garage for most of the year. Keeping these batteries charged is more of a challenge. Your power solution resides with the trickle charger. Learn how to use a trickle charger for your car so that its always ready to go when you are.
Determine The Battery Size You Need
There are many factors to consider when choosing a battery. The first step is to determine the power needs of the device. This can be done by looking at the devices specifications or consulting the manufacturer. Once the power needs are known, the next step is to find a battery that meets those requirements. There are many different battery sizes and types, so it is important to find the right one.
The batterys voltage and amp-hour rating are also important factors to consider. The voltage should match the devices requirements, and the amp-hour rating should be greater than the devices power needs.
How To Attach The Terminals To The Battery
- Connect the positive terminal first. Attach the red terminal to the positive battery post. Tighten the terminal with a wrench.
- Repeat the process with the black terminal.
- Try to move the battery around to ensure that the connections on both ends are secure.
- If the battery shifts, check all the clamps and the tightness of the cables.
- If the battery was originally covered, reinstall its cover the way it was removed.
- Close the hood and start the car.
- If the car still doesn’t start after changing the battery, have it checked by a certified auto service technician.
Car batteries have very specific disposal requirements. Follow local laws and bring the dead battery to the appropriate location for recycling. Download The Home Depot Mobile App for a selection of all the tools you need to replace a car battery without delay.
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How To Hook Up Jumper Cables On Your Car
When your car won’t start, jumper cables can help your vehicle get up and running in just a few minutes. To hook up jumper cables, you typically need two cars. Pop both hoods, and then connect the red and black clamps to the battery in the car that won’t start. Then do the same to the other vehicle. Start the working car, and let it idle for a minute. Turn on the dead car, disconnect the cables from both vehicles, and you’re good to go!
Before you get started, however, you’ll need to know the right order to hook up the cables and what to do if you get it wrong. Find out how to hook up jumper cables and learn how to troubleshoot the process.
Here’s How To Recharge Your Battery
First, find your vehicle’s battery and locate the positive and negative terminals. Most cars have their battery under the hood. The positive terminal is marked with a “+,” and the negative terminal is marked with a “-.” Sometimes the terminals are protected by plastic covers that need to be flipped out of the way, so you can charge the battery.
Next, make sure your battery charger is unplugged from the wall socketit uses household current to charge the batteryand that it’s switched off, just to be doubly sure there’s no current flowing through it. Read the instructions that come with the battery charger, as each charger operates a little differently.
Attach the charger’s red clamp to the battery’s positive terminal and the black clamp to the negative terminal. Give the clamps a little wiggle to ensure that they have a good connection to the terminals. For the greatest safety, keep the charger as far away from the battery as the cables allow.
When the battery is fully charged, shut off the charger and unplug it. Then remove the cables, unhooking the negative clamp first.
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How To Buy The Right Battery For Your Car
The video above from Roadshow gives several key elements to examine for buying your own car battery. For instance, almost all car batteries will be 12 volts. Youll also need to make sure the size of the battery and the positive and negative terminal locations will match up with how your car is configured. You might also want to consider the batterys ability to perform in cold temperatures, depending on your location.
Youll want to look for a battery thats no more than six months old, if possible. You might also want to consider the quality of lead in the battery and the quality of the battery case itself.
Determine The Battery Cell Type
Most car batteries in use are known as a conventional lead-acid battery. They have cells inside the battery made of positive and negative lead plates in battery acid in a case. They are reliable and have been around a very long time, and are the least expensive type of battery. Most cars will operate without a problem with a conventional lead-acid battery.
Enhanced flooded batteries, or EFB batteries, are a step up from a standard conventional lead-acid design. They are built more sturdy inside and provide double the cyclical stability of the standard battery. They can withstand severe discharges better and can even be used for one of the most demanding technologies now available, stop-start technology. EFB batteries are more expensive than a conventional car battery but you should expect it to last longer on average.
Absorbent glass mat batteries, or AGM batteries, are among the highest quality batteries on the market. They can withstand the most aggressive on and off-road use you can throw at them without skipping a beat including stop-start technology. They can withstand the rigors of high-demand electrical components like DVD players and custom audio systems, and can recover the best from severe battery discharges. AGM batteries are among the most expensive batteries and are used in high-performance, luxury, and exotic cars primarily.
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How To Find A Parasitic Draw
Parasitic draw is an electrical component in your car thats drawing on the battery when the car is shut off, and there really shouldnt be much of a draw. The only things that should really draw on a battery when the cars off is your security system, maybe the clock on the radio, and maybe your computer a little bit, but it shouldnt be more than 50 milliamps. If you have more than that, your battery could drain overnight. It could drain in a couple days, it could drain in a week, depending on how big that draw is. So let me show you how to identify if you do have a parasitic draw, and then where that drop might be coming from.
The first thing youre going to do is make sure everything in the car is off, theres no interior lights on, theres no headlights on. And if your hood is propped open, make sure your car doesnt know the hood is open. Some cars have a hood ajar switch, if it does, press it down, tape it up, whatever you need to do, make it think that the hoods closed. You basically want the car to go to sleep. If you have a key fob, especially a keyless entry fob, or your car starts with a push button, make sure you move this far away from the car so it could go to sleep.
We need to take the positive cable from the regular spot on the multimeter and put it into the DC amp spot . Then were going to turn the multimeter to DC amps. You can see there are 10 amps .