Car Batteries - Recharging and Replacing the Battery
A simple battery test or replacement could fix all of your battery problems!
A dead battery is a huge inconvenience - it leaves you stranded because your car won't start. If you find yourself constantly needing to jump your car, especially when it's cold outside, it's likely that your car battery needs to be replaced. A simple Battery Test could tell our technicians much more about the problem! Sometimes, it's not the battery's fault, it could be a bad Alternator that's no longer charging your battery. it's a good idea to also have your Alternator examined and tested to be sure that it's producing enough power to keep your battery charged. We recommend you have both your Battery and Alternator tested before you have either part replaced.
Your car battery provides power to your vehicle in three different and very important ways. First, your car provides power at startup - often called startup cranking. The primary purpose is to provide power directly to the starter. This is why if you have a dead car battery, your car won't turnover and start up. Your battery also provides the required power to maintain the operation of accessories when the car engine is turned off; like your alarm system. The battery also supplements the power necessary to operate your headlights, wipers, and blower motor are all running while you're sitting in rush hour traffic.
We'll provide a FREE BATTERY TEST to keep you from getting stranded!
The Battery is tied into your charging system - which is composed of the belt-driven Alternator, various electrical circuits, and the Voltage Regulator. As long as the car is running, the Alternator is responsible for providing power to the electrical system and charging the car Battery. The Voltage Regulator does exactly what it sounds like, it controls the voltage and keeps it within the proper operating range of your entire electrical system.
Car Batteries are rated by CCA's - or Cold Cranking Amps.CCA's are a measurment to assure that the battery has enough energy to crank the engine over when it's cold. This can easily be tested. Don't get left stranded and get your battery tested if you're worried about it.
- HOW IS MY CAR BATTERY TIED INTO THE STARTER OF MY CAR?
Simply put, your battery is what supplies power to the Starter, allowing you to start the car and engage the Alternator, which is the primary source of power when you're driving the car. The Alternator is even responsible for charging your car battery while the vehicle is running.
The Starting System has several key components; the Ignition Switch, the Starter Relay (also known as the Solenoid), and the Starter Motor. These three parts are not only the starter, they also demand and consume more electrical power than any other systems in your vehicle. Each component directly interacts with another. The Ignition Switch controls the Solenoid, so when you turn the key in the ignition to start the car, the Starter Relay will then activate the Starter Motor. The Starter Motor then draws on the power from your Car Battery to turn the engine over.
- HOW CAN MY CAR BATTERY DIE IF I DON'T DRIVE IT FOR MORE THAN A DAY?
There are elements and features of your car that are running even when the engine is turned off. Items like the clock and the internal memory of the Engine Computer both use power from your car battery to operate while the car is turned off. They draw a very small amount of energy and shouldn't be responsible for an electrical drain on your battery. It's also important to note that high-end cars with new technology will draw more power.
Do you have a custom stereo system with an amplifier in the trunk? You may need to pull the fuse to prevent it from going into Standby rather than shutting down completely. You could also visit the shop where it was installed to have it inspected. Devices like aftermarket alarm systems and automoatic-dimming lights can draw a substantial amount of power for up to half an hour after they've been turned off.
- WHY IS IT SO DIFFICULT TO FIND AN ELECTRICAL DRAIN ON MY BATTERY?
Knowing that you have an excessive draw on the battery and knowing where the electrical drain is coming from are two different things. Once we've determined that there is a drain, we have to isolate which system it's coming from and where in that particular system the draw is. Sometimes it's not obvious and easy to isolate. While pulling fuses one-by-one is one solution to this problem, it's time consuming and a high risk of blowing fuses during the process. Even when we've isolated the ciruit with the high-draw, there are numerous loads that combined together are sucking the energy out of the car battery.
An electrical drain is simply anything that is draining power from the battery when the engine is off. Tracking down the one parasitic drain can sometimes take hours of testing fuses, circuits, and amps used by the different vehicle systems. An ASE-Certified Technician will take the time to perform a thorough electrical test, check all the battery connections and cables. Diagnosis of an Electrical Drain is time-intensive and requires problem-solving skills; it's a complicated system with many different parts that must all function in order to work properly.