If your car battery is going bad, there are usually symptoms before it goes completely dead. Although it is possible for your car battery to go dead with no warning, keeping a close eye on your battery may help you avoid problems. Preventive battery maintenance can prolong your battery life and help keep you from being stranded on the side of the road.
Age of Your Battery
One of the first things to look for when you are determining how well your battery is working is how old your battery is. There is a label on the top of your battery with punch-outs that show you the month and year it was purchased. If your battery is more than four years old, you may want to consider replacing it, even if it is working fine.
Slower Engine Crank
If you have noticed that your engine starts slower than it used to or if you hear a long, whirring sound before you start the engine, this is known as slow engine crank. It can be an indication that your battery is starting to go bad.
Other Bad Battery Symptoms
If you notice corrosion on your battery or the terminals, it is a sign you should replace the battery. You may also notice that your battery fails when the weather is cooler. In most cases, a jump start can get your car running again, but this is a temporary solution. When you start noticing symptoms, it is time to begin searching for a replacement battery.
Totally Dead Battery
There are times when a battery will die with no warning and it may not start even with jumper cables or a battery charger. If a cell in the battery fails, the battery will no longer charge. One way to check is to use a voltage meter to determine if there is voltage in the battery. If there is none, you will need to purchase a new battery.
What if it is Not the Battery?
It is possible that the battery is not the problem at all. A bad alternator can have the same symptoms as a dying battery. One way to determine if it is the alternator is to start your car and run it for a while. Disconnect the positive connection between the alternator and battery. If the alternator is working properly, your battery is unnecessary while the car is running as the alternator is supplying the power you need to operate the vehicle. If the car stops running, that is a sure indication that your alternator is the problem.
If you have been involved in an accident and have noticed problems with your car starting or corrosion on your battery terminals, call today for a no obligation inspection or fill out the simple form online.