Car Battery Maintenance: A Few Tips*

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As we are in the middle of Winter I believe it is more important than usual to keep on top of your car maintenance. This post is going to focus on an aspect of car maintenance which is sometimes overlooked. So here are a few tips which should help you to keep your car healthy this Winter. After all, the high tech vehicles on the road in the 21st century are making more electrical demands than they ever have done before, and your car's battery helps to meet those increased demands in numerous ways.

The battery of the car supplies an electric current in order for the starter motor to crank the engine as well as providing power for various electrical components and accessories when the engine is off. When the vehicle is actually in operation if and when electrical loads exceed the the charging system's capacity then the battery will automatically step in and provide the required added power. As well as doing all of these things the battery also acts as a voltage stabilizer for the whole of the car's electrical system.

Battery Life

It's recommended that you replace your car battery approximately every three to four years, you must remember to do this in order to keep your vehicle operating as efficiently and productively as possible. There isn't much more annoying on the roads than losing power half way through a journey. Do not let it be a case of 'out of sight, out of mind' when it comes to your car battery. If you are local to West London you might wish to replace your battery in Hammersmith, at DAT Tyres.

If you leave your car to lie idle and unused for prolonged periods of time this can be bad news for the battery, you should ideally drive every day or two, and at least every three days this is to ensure your battery doesn't drain down.

Check The Acid Level

you should do this roughly every 6 months. You should look out for any acid stratification which can happen when a battery dwells at a charge of less than eighty per cent, never receives full charge or if it has shallow discharges. Vehicles most at risk of this are those used primarily for very short distance journeys with power stealing accessories in operation.

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Add Water Carefully

If you notice that the electrolyte levels are low (you can tell this as the plates will be exposed) then you can top them up with distilled water. Ensure you take care to only fill the cells to cover the plates. Using a sports bottle or a funnel is one of the simplest of fixes for this as it allows you to control the flow of the water quite well. Once the water levels have been topped up, you can then use a battery charger to re-charge the battery.

Conduct A Battery Load Test

Some would recommend you conduct a battery load test every month, this can be done by a mechanic, as it ensures that your car will run properly and charge 100 per cent efficiently even in sub zero temperatures.

Keep Your Battery Warm

As afore mentioned, we are in the middle of Winter and are forecast to undergo a 'cold-snap' this coming week or so, and as we all know, cold weather is also bad for car batteries. It is important you try and keep it warm especially a this time of year. I'd recommend storing your vehicle in a well insulated garage if you have the option to. If not an affordable alternative is to purchase an engine or battery heater. As well as making it easier to start the battery they also help to minimize the total amount of power being consumed.

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