Have you ever turned the ignition to find a car spluttering and powerless? Maintaining car batteries can help you avoid this annoying and embarrassing situation. Also, it is one of the easiest jobs you can do on your automobile.
All you need is an adjustable wrench, some distilled water, baking soda, and a brush. Then you can be an expert at car battery maintenance with our handy 5 step guide.
1. Car Battery Maintenance Cleaning
Cleaning the battery is essential, and you will want to do this to get rid of any dirt and corrosion. Clean the terminals and the wires, to ensure no connections or signals become impeded. You can do this using a mix of 1 part baking soda to 1 part water.
Start on the top and cables using a non-metallic brush and the solution. Then remove the negative terminal, followed by the positive, making sure the cables do not touch any metallic surfaces. After this, use a hard bristle brush with the solution, cleaning off any rust or corrosion, and finish by wiping with a wet cloth.
2. Use Terminal Spray
A terminal spray can be purchased from any auto shop and is cheap. It will prevent corrosion on the battery, ensuring longevity in your car battery lifespan. It should be applied after you have cleaned the battery.
Hold the spray around 10cm from the terminal and apply liberally. Spray again after you reconnect the battery.
3. Keep Fluid Levels Topped Up
You should see vent caps on top of the battery, which reveal a series of cells when removed. The fluid should go over any battery plates and is why this type of battery is known as a flooded battery. Remember to replace the vent caps securely when finished.
If the fluid is low top it up with distilled water. Tap water will damage the battery due to its mineral content. Check the fluid levels every time you change the oil.
4. Unplug Appliances
To make a car battery last longer, ensure that all appliances are unplugged when the car is not in use. These can include GPS systems, mobile phone chargers, and entertainment devices. This prevents unnecessary charges from going to appliances that do not require it, thus draining your battery.
When you purchase a battery, it is also advisable to buy one that is under a month old. Every battery should have a manufacture date stamped on the side. Batteries will deteriorate over time and each time they are recharged, so get the best value for money by purchasing a fresh one.
5. Keep It Charged to 12.6 Volts
12.6 volts is the recommended charge level for optimum battery maintenance. Below this will result in a decrease in performance and the battery will get flatter, quicker. You will need a voltmeter to check it.
Attach the voltmeter cables to the battery, ensuring you get the positive and negative wires correct. After a few seconds, you should get a reading. If you need to, charge the battery up to the recommended voltage.
Keep on Running
The car battery lifespan will always increase if you run the car regularly. By combining this with our 5 car battery maintenance tips, you should get the most out of your purchase.
If you need more help and hacks with any aspects of car maintenance, then visit our informative website. We update regularly and have tips on everything from automotive advice to health, finance, and business.
Bookmark us today and let us keep your batteries charged and operating at full power every day of the week!