Do You Need to Replace Your Car Battery? Here Are Some Signs to Watch Out For
Is it time to replace car battery? This question rules the mind of many car owners who last replaced their battery a few years ago. Needless to say, the car battery is the heart of your car. Your car cannot function without a battery in good condition. Therefore, you have to be cautious about the condition of your battery. The dilemma facing most people who own a vehicle in Singapore is their lack of familiarity with the way a battery works. Simply put, they do not know how to determine whether or not they should go for car battery replacement.
This reason is why explaining how a battery works is the best way to start. As you know, all you need to do to start your car is press a button or turn a key, depending on the make and model of your car. When you start the car, the battery has to provide sufficient current to power the engine. The ignition launches a chemical reaction that leads to the engine starting. However, a dead battery will not be able to provide the energy required to get the engine running. So, with the brief introduction out of the way, here’s a look at some signs that you need to replace car battery:
The Engine “Purrs” to Life
Your car is subject to regular wear and tear. There will come a point when the battery starts wearing out. Therefore, the battery will not function effectively, rendering it unable to provide the power required for the engine to start right away. This reason is why you should observe the sound your engine makes when you turn the ignition on. If your engine ‘purrs’ to life, or starts slowly, your battery might be dying down. Keep in mind that this symptom is probably the last one before your battery dies completely.
Your ‘Check Engine’ Light Comes On
The ‘check engine’ light is among the most vague components of your car. The light might switch on for any number of reasons. In most cases, your battery could be working fine and the cause for the light coming on could be different. However, you should take your car to a mechanic if you are facing this issue. The expert will be able to diagnose whether or not you need to consider car battery replacement.
You Changed Your Battery a While Back
Do you know the average life of a car battery is 3 to 5 years? Therefore, you have to keep in mind the time that elapses since you changed the battery. As a rule of thumb, as soon as you cross the 3-year threshold, you should have a mechanic test the condition of your battery. Often, car owners do not get regular checkups for their car battery, as well as other components. Hence, they frequently face performance issues. Also, replace your battery if your mechanic tells you that the condition is not ideal, even if the battery did not reach its maximum useful life yet.
Corrosion on the Connections
The battery connects to your car’s engine via the terminals, i.e. the positive and negative connectors. Over time, the connectors can develop corrosion. You will notice a whitish substance on the terminals. This sign probably means that your battery is undergoing corrosion. The effect of corrosion is that the battery will not perform optimally. The terminals will not relay sufficient power to the engine, and you will have a hard time starting your car. Once the connectors corrode, the battery’s performance will deteriorate to a point that you have to opt for replacement.
A Foul Odor
The last thing you want when you pop your hood is a foul smell. If your battery is leaking, you can smell something akin to rotten eggs. The leakage can be the result of damage to the battery, or if the battery suffers from internal shorting. In this situation, you should remove the battery from its case and take in for testing. After testing, you might have to opt for car battery replacement.
Lights Are Not Bright
Keep in mind that your car battery is responsible for powering each and every electrical component of your car. This includes the lights, the entertainment system, and any other gizmo you install. You may notice that your lights are not as bright as they should be when you start your car. The reason for this could be that the battery is not retaining charge properly. A key tip is to keep the items you plug into your car to a minimum.
The Battery Case is Out of Shape
Last, but not the least, check the shape of your battery case. The elements of nature, especially harsh weather, can wreak havoc on the condition of your battery. Extreme temperatures can cause the battery to swell, which damages the battery and the case loses shape.
So, there you go, watch out for these signs so you can identify when you need to replace car battery.