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

But lots of men and women find that they need to change their car battery every 1 to 2 years.

Why is this?

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

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

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

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

So let’s get started! …

First, You Ought to Know That Every Car Battery 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.

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

Instead, they die early because of 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.

Lead Acid Batteries have three life phases — formatting, peak, and decline.

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

  • Peak is the perfect performance phase, which we seek to maintain for as long as possible.

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

Batteries in decline can still be used for quite a while, 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 until a problem arises (like being unable to begin your car for work).

Tip 1: Do a monthly inspection of the battery terminals to make sure they’re clean and corrosion free.   One of the initial problems most people have with their car battery is the build-up of corrosion around the terminals.   Corrosion destroys the connection between the battery and the vehicle and several batteries are replaced because of a lot of 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 acidity in the Cola or the alkaline properties in the DIY anti-corrosion paste will consume the rust away.   After the rust is eliminated, use a clean damp rag or sponge to clean up the remaining residue and moisture.  Make certain to allow it to 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 vehicle is on, the car alternator generates electricity and charges the vehicle battery after the battery has a voltage drop.   But if the car is not on, and you are using the car’s electronics, you are simply relying on the car battery to power those electronic equipment. 

This is damaging to the car battery because automobile batteries are not meant for this type of use.

Instead, car batteries are meant to provide a sudden burst of power for ignition.  They’re not made to provide prolonged power for electronics and other devices (that is what a deep cycle lead acid battery would be for).   Using your car battery as a battery which powers electronics, instead of 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 car is off.

Tip 3: Make sure the car battery is secure and has great battery wires.   The battery has to be secured at all times.  If a battery is jostling around it will be impaired and might short circuit.   This will ruin the battery and even cause damage to your car while creating a safety risk.   The same could happen if you have bad battery cables (or they are not connected correctly ).  So check your cables and be sure they have a secure connection also.

Protecting your vehicle battery from large changes in temperature will help maximize the battery’s lifespan.   To do this you can use a car battery insulation kit.   Newer model cars already have these kits installed typically.  But if your car doesn’t have one, you can easily install one yourself.   Just be certain it matches your car’s battery compartment.  Generally the companies selling these battery insulation kits will have a form on their site where you can put in your car model and year, and it will tell you if your battery will fit their kit — like here (top of page).   These protective battery sleeves are usually 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 appropriate ventilation.

Tip 5: Fully charge your car battery at least once a week (use a car battery charger or interchange batteries if you have to).   Your car battery drains even when the vehicle is off.  That 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 vacations and locate their car battery dead.  

Car battery chargers (regular or solar) will maintain the optimum charge level of your car battery when the vehicle is not in use.   They do it by providing enough electricity for the car accessories and car computer, so that they don’t continuously draw current from the car 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 this 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 tip is…make sure you fully charge your car battery at least once a week because it’ll 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: Assess your vehicle battery’s water level.   Most car batteries indicate if there’s a demand for water.   So check the car battery water level indicator regularly and when water is required, 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.   Lead-acid batteries release hydrogen and oxygen gases when they’re overcharged.   This causes two problems:

  1. It can be explosive.

Tip 8: Assess your vehicle’s alternator.   If you’re doing everything we have recommended in this article but your car batteries are still dying early, you’ll want to check your vehicle’s alternator (or get a mechanic to check it).