Welcome to our series of educational posts about various car care topics. We hope you find the information helpful and invite you to comment below and share this post with your family and friends. If you have any topics you want us to cover in this series, email us at [email protected].
During the winter months we see many seasonal issues. Lately we’ve seen problems with electrical systems. When an electrical system has problems, we like to point fingers at the battery. Today we’ll talk about batteries.
Think you may have a bad car battery?
When was the last time you checked under your hood? Here at Tune Tech Fairview, we want to empower you to feel confident to check under your hood for battery issues. Here are some things to look for.
The most common and most visible problem is corrosion on the battery terminals and connections.
Corrosion on car battery terminals
Everyone has seen something like this before, so what is it and what does it mean?
The definition of corrosion is the breaking down or destruction of a material, especially a metal, through chemical reactions. On a battery, this is caused by hydrogen being released because of the acid that is inside the battery. When the hydrogen touches the metal, it causes the white fuzzy stuff (rust). When the corrosion is bad enough on a battery and cables, it makes it difficult for the current to pass though the cables and start the car. It also makes it difficult for the alternator to recharge the battery. When the battery is not properly charged, the cold weather is particularly hard on it and can even freeze it.
If you do find corrosion on your battery, you can follow some simple steps to clean it to try to establish a better connection.
Along with corrosion on battery terminals and connections, you should also check for frayed or broken cables, dirt or water on the battery, loose hold-downs, and cracks in the battery case or cell cover (see diagram below). If you do find these issues on your battery, correct them if you can, or have us help!
Things to check for car battery problems
All of these things will be fairly visible, and you should have no problem diagnosing the problem areas. We hope this helps and that you feel empowered to get out there and check under your hood. If you want help with what you find, just let us know, and we can point you in the right direction. Give us a call at 208-377-4220. If your battery does need replaced, our current promotion (good through February) will get you a rebate worth up to $20 on a new battery.