It can happen anywhere. In the driveway, at the grocery store, at your sister’s wedding. It can happen anytime, day or night, and as close or far away as it happens. That’s right, a dead car battery. As we find ourselves getting closer to the Spring Break road trip, it is critical to have your car battery checked by a trusted repair shop to find out if the charge and condition of the battery is good enough to handle the journey. Nothing kills the excitement of a road trip as much as car problems, especially a dead battery. But the good news is that there are some tell-tale signs that your battery might be dying.
Now heat, not cold, shortens battery life, says the Car Care Council. Heat causes battery fluid to evaporate, thus damaging the internal structure of the battery. According to another website, “A battery is necessary for starting up a car. The battery is charged by the alternator while the car is running, storing up the electrical charge necessary to start up the car hours or even days after it was last used. A car battery that is dying will not hold a charge as well as it once did and there are several warning signs will appear that indicate the battery is dying.” First, starting your vehicle will be problematic if you have a dying battery, especially after the car has been resting for many hours. If the car struggles to turn over but eventually does without a problem, it is probably the battery. If the battery has an extremely low charge, there may be only a clicking noise when you try to start up the engine, but the car will not start. Also, dimming headlights can also be an indication. If the headlights fade while the car is being started or just after it has started, the battery is dying and needs to be serviced or replaced. Third, another way to tell if the battery is dying are the electrical accessories. “If the battery is very low, some or all of the electrical accessories will be sluggish. The windows will roll up and down slower than normal, the radio may not be very loud, or the dashboard lights will be dim. If the electrical accessories do not come on at all, the battery is completely dead and needs to be charged or replaced.”
Usually a trusted repair shop can bring your car back to life with battery services which may include replacement, inspection, sealing, and much more. It doesn’t have to cost a lot of you have your battery checked every two years or so, and have it checked before a long road trip. This may be the most common car problem, but doesn’t have to be the most annoying. To keep your battery life going strong, one auto website suggests that you maintain your vehicle, fix faulty car parts which demand more of the battery, do not leave the car running idly for long periods of time, sit in severe cold or sever heat for long periods of time, and do not leave the lights or the radio on unnecessarily for too long. Taking a trip is fun, but ruining a trip with a dead battery is not.