Top 10 Car battery facts
If you’ve ever suffered the let-down of a flat car battery, you'll know what a drain it is. If it does go flat for no obvious reason it may be time to replace your battery. Just like the ones in your TV remote control, car batteries need to be replaced at some point. Here are 10 car battery facts that may indicate you need a new battery – and, if so, why you should replace it.
- A flat battery is one of the top reasons for calling out the RAC. Causes are varied but fall into two broad categories – either something electrical (such as the lights) were left on, or the battery has become unserviceable and needs replacing.
- Modern vehicles are equipped with a number of on-board computers that control and monitor various systems. These often place a constant small drain on batteries even when the vehicle is parked up. It can mean that when the vehicle is left standing for a long period, when left in an airport car park for example, the battery can slowly discharge.
- The battery is a vital component of all cars. A good battery can last for over five years with proper care. However, battery failure can occur in as little as three years, depending on the usage, maintenance and seasonal temperatures.
- Premature battery failures can be caused by defective charging systems that cause the battery to be over, or under-charged; or other electrical faults.
- Ensure you get the correct battery for your vehicle’s specification. Depending on the level of equipment fitted, the battery specification can vary. It may help to make a note of the numbers on the existing battery. However, be aware that if it’s not the original battery, it might not even be the correct battery type for the car – so check the owners’ manual or call an expert if in any doubt.
- Your vehicle’s on-board computers may require particular procedures to be carried out when the battery has been replaced. Check your owners’ manual or consult an expert if you're not sure.
- More and more vehicles now come with “Stop-Start” technology. This significantly helps drive down fuel consumption, saving you money on fuel and lowering the impact of driving on the environment. “Stop-Start” technology places greater demands on car batteries, so you should expect to pay a little more for these more sophisticated batteries.
- Don't forget battery disposal. This must be done in an environmentally responsible way. If you get the RAC to replace your battery, you won't have to worry about this – it will be done for you.
- Call in the experts if you're in any doubt. All RAC patrols are experienced and fully trained, and have the necessary equipment and know-how to diagnose your vehicle. If needed, the RAC can supply you with a high quality battery that’s right for your vehicle – at home, at work or at the roadside – at a time to suit you, seven days a week. Read about our Battery Response Fitting Service.
- Just because the battery is under the bonnet it doesn’t always mean it’s easy to replace. The location of the battery differs depending on the make and model. Batteries are fitted in various locations such as the foot well, in the boot or even under the seats. Why not call an RAC patrol to fit your battery? Our patrols are experts and have a wealth of technical information to aid them during battery replacement.
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