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・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Car clicking when I turn the key

A low battery is the most common cause of a no-start. A qualified technician, such as one of our YourMechanic experts, will inspect and test the battery, charging system, and starting system to confirm any diagnosis.

Q: Infiniti G35 OR G37

Hello. I think your decision will come down to your personal tastes. The G37 is the newer model, has a bigger engine, more power and is a little more advanced than the G35. At 100k there are a few things...

Q: Good morning Patrick, I have a 2007 Pontiac torrent. It refuses to accelerate and when u try to give full acceleration, it starts

Your computer is trying to protest the motor by going into failure mode and limiting the throttle opening. The overheating is the cause of the problem. You need to have the cooling system checked to see if there are any...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
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.