Why Did My Car Battery Just Quit Working?

May 5, 2021 10:45 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

You get in your car, turn the key and… nothing. Although your battery seemed fine yesterday, today it’s completely dead. Why do car batteries die in Houston, TX, and is there anything you can do to fix it? Read on to find out.

How car batteries die over time

Batteries are mainly lead and acid. The vibration in a vehicle rattles the internal components and creates cracks in the internal welds. This loosens the connections, and can even break them. This creates a failure to conduct an adequate current to start the car.

The failure may be a slow process, but usually occurs after the car is stopped and a restart is attempted. The failure may have happened while the car was being driven—this can occur when the internal components were shaken loose, but were still touching each other, allowing the car to continue to operate. You’ll only notice the issue later when you try to restart the car.

If the battery is more than two years old, a simple real load test can determine if a weak weld is a problem waiting to happen. A “real load test” is a test in which the battery has to release current and voltage for a specified time. Some load testers just “simulate” a load and don’t actually stress the battery, like what occurs when you start the vehicle. This means that they can easily miss lurking issues.

Other reasons your car battery might die

There are some other possible causes of a dead car battery:

  • Extreme temperatures: Both hot and cold weather can affect how well your batteries hold a charge. Even 32 degrees Fahrenheit can weaken your car battery by 35 percent. If the weather looks chilly, make sure you park indoors and consider using a trickle charger.
  • Corrosion: Battery acid is quite corrosive, which can affect the terminals and connections. Pop your hood and take a close look at the battery. If it’s coated with “fuzzy” blue or green growth around the terminals, that’s corrosion. You’ll need to clean off the corrosion with a rag or a stiff brush. If the battery still isn’t performing properly, it might be time to get a new one.
  • Leaving your lights on: Everyone who drives has accidentally left their lights on after they’ve parked at some point or another. If your car doesn’t automatically turn them off, get in the habit of checking every time you park your car. Otherwise, you might come out in the morning to a dead battery.
  • Parasitic drain: Your car’s electronic systems may also drain the battery, especially if you have a bad alternator or a broken fuse. If your battery keeps dying unexpectedly, take it to a battery repair shop and ask them to check for electronic issues.

When you need help charging a dead car battery or replacing it with a brand-new battery in Houston, TX, stop by Texford Battery Co. We have over 70 years of experience helping customers troubleshoot battery problems and replace their old, dead batteries. Call us or visit in person today.

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