Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Why do I need to charge my car's battery ever week or two but I cannot find an obvious problem withe the electronic system.

asked by on

Every week or two the battery is low and must be charged. I think all systems are working fine. The car is started in the morning, and again in the early to late afternoon and driven for a mile, about 5 minutes of running. I know when the battery is low because the car turns over very slowly. It is often driven with the air conditioner or heater on and with headlights on.

My car has 60000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

If you are starting the car and only operating it for a very short period, such short duration operation does not give the car’s charging system sufficient time to re-charge the battery. Consequently, repeated short trips, especially in cold weather conditions, can slowly discharge the battery. If the car must be used in that fashion, it is perfectly acceptable to routinely use a high quality trickle charger. I emphasize "high quality" because you don’t want a cheap charger that could damage your car’s electrical system (particularly the car’s PCM and bevy of microprocessors). If, however, this problem of slow battery drain is occurring even when you drive for extended periods, then the battery and charging system should be tested and the vehicle’s electrical system should be tested for phantom or parasitic loads, too. If you desire a conclusive diagnostic, please simply request a battery/charging diagnostic and the responding certified mechanic will resolve this for you.

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
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Why do I need to charge my car's battery ever week or two but I cannot find an obvious problem withe the electronic system.

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: I got a message stating "Starting disabled theft problem" and the car will not start.

Hi there, thanks for writing in about your 2011 BMW 335 xDrive. It could be a low voltage situation with the battery. It can also be the key itself or the ignition switch. If you have access to a volt...

Q: Coolant

Hello. Typically in a circumstance such as this, a mechanic would pressurize the cooling system when cold, so as to allow up-close inspection, and identify the leak. A non functioning cooling fan can cause overheating which indirectly could cause coolant...

Q: Electrical or transmission problems with Hummer

Hi there. This vehicle is known for having a history of electrical issues. From the symptoms you are getting it sounds like a bad ignition switch or a failing body control module. Most of the time it is the ignition...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
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...