When do I Replace my Battery?
That’s an important question for auto owners. All batteries wear out and need to be replaced - but some are replaced before their time.
Look, if your battery is dying and you need a jump-start, it could very well be that you have a bad battery. But motorists should have us test the battery first to see if it’s actually bad. The essential problem could be parasitic drain or a bad alternator that’s not properly charging your battery. Motorists in this situation also need to have our technicians review their alternator and have it tested. A surprisingly high percentage of “bad” alternators brought into Auto Select are actually just fine: the problem is a worn serpentine belt and/or belt tensioner. If the belt is slipping, it’s not spinning the alternator properly so it can’t fully charge the battery.
Hopefully, motorists can see that a dead battery can be the result of a chain of events: a worn serpentine belt, a worn belt tensioner, a bad alternator or a bad battery. If you don’t check the belt, tensioner and alternator you can just end up replacing batteries that are still good. Talk to your qualified Auto Select service professional. That brings us back full circle to when batteries do fail. There’s a chemical cycle that takes place inside your battery: the battery is discharged when you start the family car and is recharged by the alternator when you drive. Short trips around your town with frequent stops and starts may mean that your battery is never fully recharged. When a battery isn’t fully charged parts of the battery harden and are no longer available to “store” electricity. Over time, your battery just can’t hold enough charge for the needs of your family car. This is detrimental to your alternator as it tries to keep up, causing it to wear out prematurely.
Batteries last longer in colder climates and wear out faster in warmer climates. We want to remind drivers that, on average, 70% of batteries fail within four years. Many automotive experts recommend replacing your battery every five years. This will lessen the chances of being stranded on a local freeway with a dead battery as well as prevent undue wear on your alternator.