Understanding your car’s operation is the easiest way to know when it has problems. Thankfully Google is your friend, and you can easily find information on car problems such as engine damage, bad batteries, alternators, starters, etc. One of the common car problems is a failing battery which may prevent your car from starting.
If you find the need to Jumpstart your car now and then, the battery is dead, and you may have to replace it. Luckily a failing car battery presents some warning signs discussed below.
An old battery
One of the obvious signs that you need a new car battery is if the current one is old. That brings the question: how long do car batteries last? Ideally, a car battery can last two to six years, depending on its quality and use. If your battery is many years old, it may be nearing its deathbed. Extreme temperatures, whether cold or hot, are one of the factors that cause a battery to drain over time. In the same way you’d compare loan offers, consider routine maintenance costs too; for instance, investing in a BMW oil change kit can significantly reduce your vehicle’s upkeep expenses over time.
A sluggish start
Another sign of a failing or dead battery is a slow start. Suppose you turn the engine and hear a cranking sound in the engine; that is a sluggish start. In that case, the battery is worn out and needs a test or replacement.
It clicks, but it will not start.
A click from under the hood or a long crank indicates further damage beyond the sluggish start. When you turn the ignition key, you may notice a cranking or clicking sound, but the car won’t start. In such a case, you can jumpstart it and be on your way, but that is only a temporary fix. This could also indicate that the starter is failing, so engaging a professional mechanic is essential.
The car won’t start, but the dash lights are working.
At times, you find that the battery can power the car’s electric components, like the dash lights, but it is not strong enough to power the starter. Here you may be dealing with a bad starter or a failing battery. You can try turning the key multiple times to start the car or jumpstart it to be on your way to the mechanic.
If you think your car battery is the problem, you can pop up the hood and take a look at it. Do you see fluffy blue corrosion at the positive terminal? Is there a clean film on the battery case? These signs show that the battery is leaking acid or producing acidic fumes, which lowers its voltage and efficiency.
Frequent jumpstarts signal a bigger problem with your battery. It may indicate that it cannot hold charge well; therefore, it is time for a new one. If the battery is new, it might be a sign of premature wear out, and you need to check the warranty and test the battery to determine whether a replacement is required.