Common Myths about Your Car Battery

car battery LongmontA car’s battery can be compared to the heart of the vehicle, responsible for all its electric systems. The experienced mechanics at Best Auto Repair in Longmont understand the vital role of the car battery and can expertly diagnose and solve any problems with it. Alex Leanse of Popular Mechanics examined some myths about the car battery and clarified the hugely important part it plays in our vehicles.

Facts vs. Fiction About Your Car Battery

  • The average life of a car battery is 6 years.
  • Using electronic components when the engine is off will shorten the life of the battery so take care to turn off the headlights and interior lights when you turn off the car. Also be sure to unplug devices like cell phones & GPS units that are plugged into the charger!
  • The liquid electrolyte solution used in most batteries is affected by extreme outdoor temperatures. Parking your vehicle in a garage will extend the life of its battery.
  • Cold weather will limit the amount of power that the solution is able to transfer. A battery heater can reduce this problem but beware that buying a battery with a high CCA (cold cranking amp) will NOT help because the car’s computer sets the amperage for ignition.
  • Hot weather causes the solution to evaporate faster, which means its ability to hold a charge is lowered. Replacing lost solution with deionized water is an acceptable short term fix but do NOT use tap water because the cells could be damaged by impurities.
  • Even a dead battery is full of environmentally-harmful chemicals so always take old ones to a mechanic or auto supply store to be recycled properly instead of just being thrown away.

Most drivers assume the battery is dead when their car won’t start but there are a number of other possible reasons. Some potential problems are a faulty starter motor, clogged fuel injectors, worn spark plugs, a failed alternator or corroded battery terminals. So if your vehicle starts showing signs of a low battery, such as a sluggish startup, failing interior lights or a battery warning on the dashboard, then bring it in to Best Auto Repair of Longmont for a quick diagnosis before you hear that dreaded click of a dead car battery.

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