Have you checked your battery lately? When you turn the ignition key to start your car, everything depends on the battery hidden somewhere in your car’s engine compartment. Batteries don’t have to work too hard in the summer, but when the temperature drops and the winter chill sets in, stay alert because it’s that time of the year that your precious battery is prone to failure.
Flat batteries are one of the most common reasons for roadside assistance!
Why put yourself at risk? At Auto Electrics QLD, you can come in any time for a free battery check! We will test and report your battery levels and give you a very competitive quote in the event you need a new one.
1. It’s had its third birthday – An older battery (more than three years) is less likely to withstand extreme weather conditions. Very hot or cold weather may cause it to fail sooner. We all know we’ll have to replace our car batteries sooner or later.
2. You’ve already jump-started your car a lot – If you have to jump your vehicle more than three times in a single week, it’s time to replace your battery. Even a fairly new battery can turn into a dud really quickly if it has been jumped more than three times in a week. Using a jump box or jumper cables is hard on your battery. They work by figuratively “shocking” it back to life. Save yourself the headache and just replace the battery if you’ve had to jump it more than three times in a week. You won’t regret it.
3. One day it starts fine, then the next day it won’t start at all – If starting is an intermittent problem for you, it’s a sign that either your battery terminals are loose, broken, corroded, or calcified or that you have a parasitic draw (your power is being drained by some gizmo that’s on when it’s supposed to be off, or by some wire that’s touching something it shouldn’t).
- Check out the battery cables first, as they are usually the prime suspect and are easier to check yourself.
- Make sure the cables fit firmly and securely on the battery posts. There should be zero play in them. You shouldn’t be able to wiggle them even an inch when they are tight. Also, make sure that the cables going to the terminals are not frayed or falling apart; if they are, replace them as soon as possible.
4. Your engine cranks over, but it doesn’t start – If your engine cranks or turns over when you turn the key, but it won’t start, I say the most likely culprit is your battery. It might be your starter, it might be something else, but 94% of the time, it’s really your battery, even if the car is cranking fairly vigorously. Even if an ammeter (current-measuring device) says the battery is good, it can still be a few volts shy of what your vehicle needs to run efficiently. When you find yourself with a car that won’t crank hard enough to start, you’ll want to use jumper cables or a jump-starter box to get it running again.
5. Your engine doesn’t crank or start, and the lights don’t come on! – This situation is pretty straightforward to diagnose, and it’s an even stronger indication that your battery is at fault. Your battery powers all the accessories and lights in your car, especially when the alternator is not running. So, if your car just seems to be completely void of all signs of life, then your battery is the first thing you should be looking at.
And be aware that in this situation, where your vehicle doesn’t even have the juice to work the lights or turn over the engine, it could be a combination problem involving your alternator as well. If the car won’t crank or start but the headlights do work, that may indicate a more interesting problem, maybe the starter or a mechanical problem in the engine.