Car owners are being urged to check their vehicles’ batteries before returning to work amid a warning that many could be flat after the festive break. The cold temperature and decline in use could see the battery stop working causing no end of stress for motorists on the early commute tomorrow. Halfords said most car owners have not checked the state of batteries for a year, much longer than the recommended three months. The firm also said that around one in six drivers aged between 25 and 34 did not know where the battery was located in their car, while half of all motorists had no idea how to jump-start or maintain a battery.”It’s not just commuters who feel sluggish after the festive period – but their cars too,” said Ella Colley, of Halfords.
CAUSES OF A FLAT BATTERY
-Leaving headlights, interior lights, flashers, and the radio on when the car isn’t running.
-Using the air conditioner when the car is not running.
-Not starting a car for long periods of time (e.g., while it’s in storage).
-Lack of battery maintenance – e.g not keeping terminals clean.
-Failure of the diode bridge or voltage regulator in the alternator (the alternator charges the battery when the car is running.)
-Low air temperature, which causes batteries to freeze – after the festive period, it is more common that batteries die, if they have not been used for a few days.
Taking Care of your battery
– Monitor Battery health on a regular basis. Simple tools like voltmeter or advanced tools like the CTX Battery Sense could help in avoiding unpleasant surprises.
– Keep the battery charged. The more the battery stays close to 100% charge, the better the chances of it surviving longer
– Keep the terminals clean. Use the correct chemical to keep the battery terminals clean
– If possible avoid a jump start as jump start may provide a short lease of life but may also shorten the life of a battery.
– Know your battery like what Ah is it, what is its CCA etc.