The battery in your car really is the heart of your vehicle! Responsible not only for starting your car, it also provides all electrical power for the important – can’t do without functions like your head lights, windscreen wipers as well as comfort functions like heating and radio.
A flat battery is the most common cause for car breakdown by far in the Uk. Your car battery typically has a life span of 3-5 years but this can be adversely affected by both hot and cold weather. Short journeys (less than 20 minutes) will also shorten the life of your battery over time as this does not allow enough time for the battery to sufficiently recharge. Plugging in other electrical devices such as MP3 players, mobile phones and satellite navigation systems can all put a strain on your battery.
There are, however, a few things you can look out for to avoid being stranded!
Slow Crank – Your car is slow to start, perhaps spluttering into life after a couple of attempts
Engine Light – The engine light may come on if the battery power is weak.
Battery Fluid Level – Car batteries usually have a part of the casing that is translucent so you can keep an eye on the fluid level. If the level is below the lead plates, consider getting the battery and charging system checked.
Swelling Case – Excessive heat can cause the casing to swell, decreasing the life of the battery.
Leaking – Leaking can also cause corrosion around the posts and may stop your car from starting. You may also notice the smell of sulphur.
If your battery is over 3 years old, it is advisable to get an annual battery check. Small things that you can do to help the life of your battery is make sure all interior and exterior lights are off at the end of your journey, and unplug any power cables too.
At Service MOT Repairs, we can do a quick and simple check to diagnose any battery problems before they arise. This is a free service and can be booked by calling 01604 491011.