Replace car battery? I’m sure most of us recall the feeling of the mighty starting power of a new battery. Over time, the ability diminishes with the heavy demands of peak city stop-start driving conditions, cold-weather starting, auxiliary car accessory power draws and heat degradation. Remember, a battery is not a “Fit and Forget” item; it still requires maintenance and cleaning in the surroundings it lives.
Most of us have the mindset that car batteries primary function are to start your vehicle. It can’t be further from the truth because in “this day and age”, modern cars’ sophisticated electronic and computer management systems place heavy loads on a battery. However, to withstand these extra heavy demands, battery technology has advanced with the ever-changing automotive technology.
Regular inspection should be a monthly habit of checking and cleaning the battery terminals, casing and tray areas. You should also inspect the Built-In State of Charge Indicator to give you a quick diagnosis of the batteries condition, whether it is healthy, needs charging or replacing.
Telltale Signs when it’s time to replace a car battery
Modern-day automotive batteries are manufactured with Sealed Maintenance Free Technology. They are engineered with advanced internal design and engineering to withstand modern vehicles’ heavy demands and the ever-increasing peak traffic conditions. With these improvements, the batteries life has also increased to an average of about 3.5 to 4.5 years, as opposed to 1 to 2 years for the old technology.
Despite this, even advanced batteries are still perishable items. As their internal components break down, their starting and auxiliary power will diminish as time advances. As soon as you detect some hesitation in the starting power, we advise you to take it to your preferred mechanic or battery outlet to get it analysed and decide whether you need a new car battery replacement.
As a general “Rule of Thumb”, when it reaches about three years of age, get it checked. At this stage, it reaches about 50 to 60% of its original capacity from when it was new. A Midtronics Digital test will identify if it needs replacing, “Better To Be Safe Than Sorry”.
One important factor to consider that affects a battery’s longevity is whether you drive your car often enough. The most common and least known about in the general public is the effect of battery acid stratification. The longer you leave your car parked or drive short distances, the more rapid the battery becomes discharged as the alternator has insufficient time to keep it fully charged.
It promotes plate corrosion due to the acid being denser than water and settling at the solution’s bottom. This leaves the upper areas of the plates exposed to water/electrolyte, thus causing sulfation/corrosion. Once the plates sulphate considerably, they cannot hold the charge and will need replacing.
Replace car battery when? Keep all the above points in mind to keep you fully aware of any changes in your vehicle’s battery behaviour. Please don’t wait till it dies and leaves you stranded; change it before the inevitable happens.
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