Why Do My Car Battery Terminals Keep Corroding?

January 24, 2018 6:43 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Your car battery isn’t something you usually have on your mind until it dies. But car batteries can have other issues that can affect your car’s functionality and even your safety. One problem you may face with your battery is a continually corroding terminal, which requires professional battery repair in Houston, TX.

Corrosive gas release

When a battery is operating normally, it actually releases corrosive gases. This is just how battery acid works, and it’s not a functional or safety concern until the battery is forced to work harder than it should. Once that starts to happen, whatever the cause, the battery then starts to release higher levels of these corrosive gases than are acceptable for your engine.

Releasing too much hydrogen gas occurs when the battery is being overcharged or undercharged. (You should be able to tell which is the case by determining whether the corrosion is on the positive or negative terminal, though we recommend you take safety precautions when poking around the terminals.) One of the most common causes of overcharging is a bad cell in the battery. This makes the battery lose voltage, and so the alternator tries to charge the battery to make up for this loss of power. The alternator will keep doing this, overcharging the battery and encouraging the battery acid to release more corrosive hydrogen gas than is normal or safe. A faulty alternator may also be the culprit.

Your battery may be undercharging, on the other hand, which could be the result of a faulty voltage regulator. Either way, you’ll see a damaging increase in corrosive gas release—and either way, you’ll be in need of some battery repair, because the hydrogen gas, when released at too high a rate, mixes with the other elements under the hood and attacks the terminals, causing relatively rapid corrosion.

Effects of terminal corrosion

A small amount of corrosion is fairly normal, but if you notice an abnormal amount of buildup, it’s important to get a charging system checkup before it’s too late. The longer the corrosion is allowed to go on, the weaker the battery will become—and the more dangerous trying to jump it will become as well.

Battery repair in Houston, TX

If you notice a whitish buildup on your battery terminal, either positive or negative, don’t wait too long before seeking out diagnosis and battery repair in Houston, TX. Whether it’s a bad cell, a faulty alternator or some other charging system problem, you can count on Texford Battery Co. to diagnose it honestly and get you back on the road safely and quickly. Battery repair has been one of our main services for seven decades. All of our trusted team members have a comprehensive and tried-and-true knowledge of battery problems, and it’s that long experience that sets us apart from our competitors. Bring your car to the shop for a charging system checkup, or just give us a call to get advice and estimates for repairing your damaged car battery.

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