Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: How Can I Prevent My Car Battery From Dying?

asked by on

How can I prevent my car battery from dying?

A: The battery has a limited lifespan of betwe...

The battery has a limited lifespan of between two and five years. A battery life can be shortened by lack of maintenance, leaving lights on and causing a discharge, charging system problems, or defective cables. A battery is made up of a plastic box, lead positive and negative plates or grids, separator plates and liquid called electrolyte. All this put together makes a battery. The lead in a battery will become sulfated, meaning it will become useless after it has produced voltage for you to use to power your vehicle. Some will be suspended in the electrolyte and redeposited back on the plates while charging the battery. For the most part, the battery will last as long as the lead plates last without touching each other or falling apart. As the plates are used up, the battery capacity is diminished until it cannot produce enough power to be used for your automotive needs.

Now, as you use the battery, a buildup of electrolysis-caused corrosion will start to build on the battery cables and connections of the battery. As this buildup grows, the battery will have to use more of its power to get through it to supply the needed power for you automotive needs. If the connections are not serviced on a regular basis the battery lifespan will be shortened. I have seen batteries last twice as long when they are regularly serviced and cleaned. Cleaning the battery cables and battery will help prevent no crank conditions, excessive starter stress, and issues with alternator failures. An alternator’s main cause of failure is due to weak and bad batteries and it’s connections. A lot of computer component failures can be related back to a battery failure.

Now you can see that keeping up on your battery services and replacements can help not only extending the lifespan of the battery, but to extend the life of a lot of other vehicle components as well. Remember a battery will not last more than two to five years, so if you have not had a replacement recently then look at getting a new battery installed or your old one serviced.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Dash and headlights flash for about 1 minute after shut off

Hi there. It sounds like the lighting system has feedback through another circuit. This could be due to a short circuit, open circuit, missing/failed ground point, corroded ground point, corroded connector, loose connector, or relay block faults. With the age...

Q: What does the service due Warning Light mean?

The service due Warning Light is located on the instrument panel. This light illuminates to remind you that it is time to service your vehicle. When the service due Warning Light appears, it does not mean that anything is wrong...

Q: What would cause all of these electrical problems?

It is difficult to say what is going on with your Vue without being there. This will likely have one problem that is causing all these issues. The removal of the BCM has probably made this more difficult to diagnose...

Related articles

How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.