International Rally Car Racing

8 Simple Tips & Trick To Extend The Life Of Your Car Battery

But lots of people find that they have to modify their car battery every 1 to 2 years.

And what can you do to prolong your car’s battery life?

We’ll show you why car batteries die early…and what you can do to keep this from happening.

We’ll also offer you 8 easy tips and tricks to maximize the lifespan of your car’s 12 volt battery.

The tips we’ll teach you in this guide will be easy to do…and anyone will have the ability to perform these (even if you know nothing about cars or car batteries).

So let’s begin! …

First, You Should Know That Every Car Battery’s Lifespan Has A Limit (but most people kill their battery well before it’s time)

Even if you take care of your car battery perfectly…it will still die 1 day.

This set lifespan is called the battery’s”Calendar Life” and it’s completely independent of how often the battery was charged or discharged.

Once a battery reaches the end of its”Calendar Life” it will become unusable.

However, most car batteries never make it their full”Calendar Life”…

Instead, they die early due to poor maintenance and care…that you can do something about.

A Little Background About Lead Acid Batteries Before Our 8 Battery Tips and Tricks…

Lead acid batteries are the earliest, most dependable, and most widely used form of rechargeable battery in the world.

  • Formatting is when the battery is new and needs to be used gently.

  • Peak is the ideal performance stage, which we seek to maintain for as long as you can.

  • Decline is a slow process, but one that gradually ends in the termination of the battery.

Batteries in decline can nevertheless be used for quite some time, but have to be watched.

Around this time, you can either recondition the battery or keep a close eye on it and try to replace it before a problem arises (like being unable to begin your vehicle for work).

Tip 1: Do a monthly review of the battery terminals to be certain they’re clean and rust free.   One of the initial problems most people have with their car battery is the build-up of rust around the terminals.   Corrosion destroys the connection between the battery and the car and several batteries are replaced because of too much corrosive build up.   But often times, this is easily treated by simply pouring a small quantity of Cola or a DIY anti-corrosion glue (one part water to three parts baking soda) over the corroded areas. 

The acid in the Cola or the alkaline properties at the DIY anti-corrosion paste will eat the rust away.   Be sure to let it dry, then rub some petroleum jelly on the terminals to prevent future corrosion.

Tip 2: Do not operate any car accessories (radio, lights, or electronics) before turning to the vehicle ignition and driving the car.   When the car is on, the car alternator generates electricity and charges the car battery after the battery has a voltage drop.   But if the car isn’t on, and you are using the car’s electronics, you are simply relying on the car battery to power those electronic equipment. 

This is detrimental to the car battery because car batteries are not meant for this sort of use.

Rather, car batteries are supposed to offer a sudden burst of electricity for ignition.  They are not made to provide prolonged power for electronics and other devices (that’s what a deep cycle lead acid battery would be for).   Using your car battery for a battery which powers electronics, rather than a battery that just provides you a burst of power for ignition, will damage the battery and significantly shorten it’s lifespan if it is repeatedly used in this fashion.   So avoid operating any automobile accessories or electronics while the vehicle is off.

Tip 3: Make sure the car battery is safe and has good battery cables.   The battery needs to be secured at all times.  If a battery is jostling around it’ll be impaired and could short circuit.   This will ruin the battery — and even damage your car whilst creating a safety risk.   The same could happen when you have awful battery cables (or they are not connected properly).  So check your cables and be sure they have a secure connection also.

Tip 4: Insulate your car battery from extreme changes in temperature.  Protecting your car battery from big changes in temperature will help maximize the battery’s lifespan.   To do this you can use a car battery insulating material.   Newer model cars already have these kits installed typically.  But if your car doesn’t have one, you can easily install one yourself.   Just make sure it fits your car’s battery compartment.  Generally the companies selling these battery insulation kits will have a form on their site where you can place in your car model and year, and it will tell you if your battery will fit their kit — such as here (top of page).   These protective battery sleeves are typically made from plastic or an acid resistant, thermal resistant material.   These automobile battery insulation kits will insulate your battery and protect it while still allowing proper ventilation.

Tip 5: Fully control your car battery at least once a week (use a car battery charger or shut-off if you have to).   Your car battery drains even when the vehicle is off.  This happens because current is drawn from the battery by car accessories (lights, radio, etc.) or even the car computers.   This is the reason why people come home from long holidays and locate their car battery dead.  

Car battery chargers (regular or solar) will keep the optimum charge level of your car battery when the vehicle is not being used.   They do this by providing enough electricity for your car accessories and car computer, so that they don’t always draw current from the vehicle battery when the car is off.   They’re also useful if you go on plenty of short car trips (like to work and back each day) and never give your battery a opportunity to fully recharge.  Repeatedly doing so will dramatically enhance your battery’s life — unless you use a car battery charger or interchange batteries, leaving you at home to fully charge.   The main thing to remember with this suggestion is…make sure you fully charge your car battery at least once a week because it will greatly increase the life span of your battery.  Do this using a charger, interchanging batteries…or just going on a car ride long enough to recharge the battery.

Tip 6: Check your vehicle battery’s water level.   Most car batteries indicate if there is a demand for water.   So check the car battery water level indicator frequently and if water is needed, refill the battery with distilled water (and that is significant, ONLY use distilled water to refill your vehicle battery).

Tip 7: Do NOT overcharge your car battery.   Never overcharge your car battery. Lead-acid batteries release hydrogen and oxygen gases when they are overcharged.  

  1. It can be volatile.

Tip 8: Assess your car’s alternator.   If you’re doing everything we have recommended in this guide but your car batteries are dying early, you will want to check your car’s alternator (or get a mechanic to check it).   If your alternator is bad it will results in ineffective recharging of your battery and dramatically shorten your battery’s lifespan.