Jay Leno’s Garage Syclone

But many people find that they need to change their car battery every 1 to 2 years.

Why is this?

And what can you do to prolong your car’s battery life?

Well… That’s what we’ll discuss in this report.

We’ll show you why automobile batteries die early…and what you can do to prevent this from happening.

We’ll also offer you 8 simple tips and tricks to maximize the life span of your car’s 12 volt battery.

The tips we will teach you in this guide will be easy to do…and anybody will be able to do these (even if you know nothing about cars or car batteries).

So let’s get started! …

First, You Ought to Know That Every Car Battery’s Lifespan Has A Limit (but most people kill their battery well before it’s time)

Even if you take care of your car battery perfectly…it will still die one day.

This set lifespan is called the battery’s”Calendar Life” and it’s completely independent of how often the battery was charged or discharged.

After a battery reaches the end of its”Calendar Life” it will become unusable.

But most car batteries never make it their full”Calendar Life”…

Rather, they die early due to poor maintenance and care…that you can do something about.

A Little Background About Lead Acid Batteries Before Our 8 Battery Tips and Tricks…

Lead acid batteries are the oldest, most reliable, and most widely used type of rechargeable battery in the world.

  • Formatting is when the battery is new and has to be used gently.

  • Peak is the perfect performance phase, which we seek to keep for as long as possible.

  • Decline is a slow process, but one that gradually ends in the termination of the battery.

Batteries in decline can nevertheless be used for quite a while, but have to be watched.

Around this time, you may either recondition the battery or keep a close eye on it and try to replace it until a problem arises (like being unable to begin your vehicle for work).

8 Simple Tips To Prolong The Life Of Your Car’s Lead Acid Battery

Tip 1: Do a monthly inspection of the battery terminals to be certain they’re clean and corrosion free.   One of the first problems most people have with their car battery is the build-up of corrosion around the terminals.   Corrosion destroys the connection between the battery and the car and several batteries are replaced due to a lot of corrosive build up.   But often times, this can be readily treated by simply pouring a small quantity of Cola or a DIY anti-corrosion glue (one part water to three parts baking soda) within the corroded areas. 

The acid in the Cola or the alkaline properties in the DIY anti-corrosion paste will eat the corrosion away.  

Tip 2: Do not run any car accessories (lights, radio, or electronics) before turning on the car ignition and driving the car.   When the vehicle is on, the car alternator generates electricity and charges the vehicle battery after the battery has a voltage drop.   But if the car isn’t on, and you’re using the car’s electronics, you are just relying on the car battery to power those electronics. 

This is detrimental to the car battery because automobile batteries are not meant for this type of use.

Rather, car batteries are meant to offer a sudden burst of power for ignition.  They are not made to offer prolonged power for electronics and other devices (that is what a deep cycle lead acid battery could be for).   Using your car battery for a battery that powers electronics, rather than a battery that just provides you a burst of power for ignition, will damage the battery and greatly shorten it’s lifespan if it’s repeatedly utilized in this fashion.   So avoid operating any automobile accessories or electronics while the car is off.

Tip 3: Make sure the car battery is safe and has good battery cables.   The battery needs to be secured at all times.  If a battery is jostling around it’ll be impaired and could short circuit.   This may ruin the battery — and even damage your car while creating a safety risk.   The same could happen when you have bad battery cables (or they’re not connected properly).  So check your cables and be sure they have a secure connection also.

Protecting your car battery from large changes in temperature will help maximize the battery’s lifespan.   To do this you can use a car battery insulation kit.   Newer model cars already have these kits installed typically.  But if your car doesn’t have one, you can easily set up one yourself.   Just make sure it matches your car’s battery compartment.  Generally the companies selling these battery insulation kits will have a form on their site where you can place in your car model and year, and it’ll tell you if your battery will match their kit — like here (top of page).   These protective battery sleeves are typically made from plastic or an acid resistant, thermal resistant material.   These automobile battery insulation kits will insulate your battery and protect it while still allowing appropriate ventilation.

Tip 5: Fully control your car battery at least once a week (use a car battery charger or interchange batteries if you have to).   Your car battery drains even when the vehicle is off.  This happens because current is drawn from the battery by car accessories (radio, lights, etc.) or the automobile computers.   This is the reason why folks come home from long vacations and locate their car battery dead.  

Car battery chargers (regular or solar) will maintain the optimum charge level of your car battery when the car is not being used.   They do this by providing enough electricity for the car accessories and car computer, so that they do not continuously draw current from the vehicle battery when the car is off.   As you can imagine, these chargers are very useful…especially if you go on a trip or leave your car unused for some time.  They’re also helpful if you go on a lot of short car trips (like to work and back each day) and never give your battery a opportunity to fully recharge.  Repeatedly doing so can dramatically enhance your battery’s life — unless you use a car battery charger or interchange batteries, leaving one at home to fully control.   The most important thing to remember with this suggestion is…be sure you fully charge your car battery at least once a week since it will greatly increase the life of your battery.  Do this with a charger, interchanging batteries…or simply going on a car ride long enough to recharge the battery.

Tip 6: Check your car battery’s water level.   Most car batteries indicate if there is a need for water.   So check the vehicle battery water level indicator frequently and when water is needed, refill the battery with distilled water (and that is important, ONLY use distilled water to refill your car battery).

Lead-acid batteries release hydrogen and oxygen gases when they are overcharged.   This causes two problems:

  1. It can be volatile.

  2. It also breaks down the composition of the water in the battery — that shortens its lifespan

Tip 8: Check your car’s alternator.   If you’re doing everything we’ve recommended in this article but your car batteries are still dying early, you will want to look at your vehicle’s alternator (or get a mechanic to check it).   If your alternator is bad it will results in ineffective recharging of your battery and dramatically shorten your battery’s lifespan.