Some simple measures to protect your battery – How to take care
Buying a new battery or going for a car battery replacement is the ultimate solution and it should definitely be opted for when the need comes. However, at times, we tend to take some easy but not-so-correct way outs that adversely affects the battery conditions. Some sensible measures and careful habits can help our car battery to serve its normal span.
To make a start, you should check whether the battery is getting charged properly and is holding its charge. For this, you require a battery tester, which you can get from any servicing centres nowadays. A battery having full charge has a voltage reading of anything between 12 to 13 volts. If you find yours to be less than that, you should take help of a hydrometer. If the acid to water ratio is indicated to be less in the battery cells, you should bring them back to the normal levels. The normal level would show something around 1.2 specific gravity on the hydrometer. As we know that a battery consists of 6 cells, so we should note here that the specific gravity reading in all of these cells should be the same.
One of the easiest but significant measures is to ride your vehicle regularly. If not using it for travel purpose, at least you should turn on the engine and keep the car running for quite some time. This helps the battery to get charged and discharged on a regular basis. If it remains in a discharged state for a long duration, the battery tends to get corroded due to the formation of sulphate layers on top of it. Similarly, don’t let the battery get overcharged. It is equally harmful to the battery.
Next, you should take a look at the clamps and cables of the battery. If they look to be unclean, use a brush and little bit of baking soda to get them cleaned properly. It is very important to keep the entire battery and the surface area around it absolutely clean. Accumulated dirt combined with moisture conducts electricity, no matter how much but still would drain the charge from your battery. In this entire cleaning process, you need to pull out the clamps and bolts from the terminals of the battery at times. Make sure that in case they are too tight to be pulled off, you use a clamp pulling device and get it done. This ensures that nothing gets damaged in the process.
If the clamps or cables of the battery require replacement, make sure you get the ones that are heavy and moulded.
Lastly, avoid using jump-starts frequently and that too do it only if it’s absolutely urgent. It not only tends to damage the battery but other electrical units in the car as well. Usually, a battery becomes flat when more charge is utilized from it than it gets from the alternator. This can be avoided by using a battery charger which is relatively easier to get nowadays.