The car battery usually lasts for as many as 5 years but there are reasons why car batteries die. Well, to be honest, there is a possibility that most reasons do not have anything to do with a manufacturer’s fault. But that does not disqualify a manufacturer’s fault as a cause for the car battery dying.
A battery’s functionality is pretty simple in terms of how it works within the vehicle. The chemical and acid reaction within the battery’s components generates electric charge. Most cars use the 12 volt battery to perform various functions. For example, to start, power the clock, lights and the AC when the engine is off.
On the other hand, the battery charges when the engine is running. The battery connections pass electricity across to the battery from the alternator. Hence, as you buy a new car battery you need to check the location of the +ve and -ve terminals. Because one of the terminals is usually taller than the other. This might be a problem when considering the design of the car’s body.
Why Car Batteries Die.
When the battery dies once in a lot of mileage, there is a probability that it is not a big deal. But if this is a repeated occurrence, just get a professional to rule out other causes. In fact, try performing an assessment of your own to rule out the following things.
1. Corroded and Loose Battery Connections.
There are external elements that invade the engine cavity. These particles are filtered by the different installations meant to keep them out. For example, oil filter and air filter. But unfortunately for the battery terminals, there is no filter to protect it. The particles accumulate there and mix with moisture to form corrosion. This prevents the transfer of charge to and from the battery. Ensure that you clean the battery terminals to clear the corrosion.
On the other hand, there is a possibility that the connections may become loose as time passes by. This may be caused by the engine’s vibrations as the car travels over uneven ground. As you conduct the routine car maintenance, make sure that you check whether the battery connections are fitted well.
2. Parasitic drain.
This is the most common reason why car batteries die. Because the car battery is usually charging some installments when the car is off. For example, cameras, clocks, door lights, or the dome light. Often times the parasitic drain could be coming from a car electric system problem. This is where you should get a professional’s advice. So that you do not mess up the fuse box.
When accessories are draining your power ensure that they’re turned off when the engine is off. This will save you the headache of having to jumpstart the car. Additionally, ensure that the door, glove-box and all the interior lights are turned off before leaving.
3. The alternator.
The car engine is totally dependent on the battery to start. But once combustion starts in the combustion chamber, the engine alternator starts running. At this point, the battery needs the engine to recharge. But if the engine alternator isn’t working, the battery gets no charge. This is one of the reasons that car batteries die. Conduct an assessment of the alternator belt when doing routine maintenance. Ensure that the belt is free from tear and that it is not loose.
4. Old battery.
When it comes to battery life, some last for more than 12 months. Just check the expiry date of the battery. If you have been using your battery for up to 5 years, it’s probably running out of juice. The car battery lasts for long only when they’re not subjected to extreme temperatures. An old car battery is one of the reasons why a car won’t start. So you will keep on jump starting it which is a sign that it’s time for a new one.
5. Extreme Weather conditions.
Lastly, we will check how the extreme temperatures of heat or cold can be bad for the battery. Extreme conditions usually alter the chemical and acidic components of the car battery. This lowers the battery’s performance to the level of diminished capacity. Then you will notice that the car suddenly cranks for longer periods without starting.
If you notice this and you drive in an area where there is extreme weather, that could be the issue. Unfortunately, the only recommendation would be to get a new car battery. Because the new car battery is usually resistant to the extreme weather. But you will have to replace it again after a reasonable time. Well, this all depends on the weather conditions and how you use the car’s battery.