Three Effects of Heat on Batteries

June 27, 2019 4:00 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Overheated batteries in Houston, TX are a likely consequence of the hot summers here. Whether it is leaving your laptop in the car or forgetting to park a golf cart in the shade, indiscretions on where you put valuable battery-powered devices and vehicles could have a major impact on battery life. As you likely wish to avoid replacing batteries anytime soon, here are three common effects heat has on batteries and why you need to take steps to minimize them:

  • Failure: Many people associate failed batteries with cooler climates during the dead of winter. However, most battery failures actually happen in the heat of summer. Heat places a constant drain on batteries by releasing sulfites. So, if you wish to avoid a dead battery, find shade for your vehicles or devices whenever possible. Do not leave power tools or devices in direct summer. Also, consider summer a good time to replace vehicle batteries if they are near the end of their predicted lifespan. With the pressures heat places on batteries, summer is actually a more logical time to replace them.
  • Reduced lifespan: Even if you avoid a failure, the heat is still reducing your battery’s useful life. When batteries face constant drain and failure from heat, that keeps them from lasting their full lifespan. For every 15 degrees Fahrenheit temperatures rise, a battery’s power is cut in half—a 10-year battery will last 10 years at a constant 77 degrees, but only five years if it is continually exposed to 92 degrees. Some of this may be unavoidable, especially if you live in a warm climate, but there are steps you can take to lessen this impact. Start by keeping the top of the battery clean to prevent corrosion. If your battery is exposed to excessive moisture, for example, find a way to safely dry it off. Check marine batteries for damage and corrosion. This way, you will get your battery’s full life and avoid an early replacement.
  • Corrosion: Heat encourages chemical reactions that result in gassing, corrosion and passivation of the electrodes. Even batteries designed for high temperatures may eventually corrode, as that is a natural consequence of heat and chemistry. You may not see all the effects of heat exposure; heat also allows battery acid to evaporate quicker, which causes internal damage and further corrosion. You can limit corrosion by controlling heat exposure and paying attention to when your battery loses performance. A corroded battery can often be dangerous, so it should be replaced as soon as you notice.

Summer demands caution with batteries. Do not leave laptops and other sensitive devices in your car. When you are driving, keep the air conditioning on to prevent heat from affecting batteries. If you are preserving a vehicle or marine battery, avoid parking or docking in direct sunlight. This at least reduces the effects, even if you cannot completely eliminate them.

If your overheated batteries in Houston, TX are now non-functional, Texford Battery Co. is here to help. Visit us today to replace a battery or check out the battery accessories we currently have in stock. Our battery experts are ready to help!

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