Car batteries are a crucial part of your car. Not only do you need the battery for your creature comforts like the stereo system and the modern safety systems like lane-keep assist, you also need the battery to be operational in order to even start the car. But with any battery in this world, car batteries do run out; worsen over time and long use and need replacement.
As we talk about how to replace the battery, it is important to know why the battery is important. Knowing the importance will surely incentivise replacement.
The starter motors of cars require battery power to start the car- as alluded to earlier. When the battery runs out, the car will refuse to start. Even more infuriatingly, in modern cars where you don’t use a key to unlock, the ‘keyless entry system’ and the button press action on key fobs will be rendered useless. As the car’s unlock systems do not have power, they will not be able to receive any signals. As such, you will be locked out of your car and you have to find the weirdly placed keyhole- manufacturers these days are keen on placing the manual keyholes inside absolute caverns.
Other systems and equipment in your car will also stop working. Infotainment systems, lighting, navigation etc. require 12-volt battery power and cannot function with it.
Reasons To Replace
Car batteries deteriorate quickly. Such is the truth will any lithium-ion battery. As batteries go through charge cycles; receive and store charge, they get progressively worse in condition. Depending on brand, usage and other factors, your battery can wear down in just 3 short years. In these cases it is important you replace the battery or you will risk suddenly being locked out of your car or worse, not being able to get it started in case of an emergency. Another thing to keep in mind is that as the battery deteriorates, its power delivery can get bad which can make the equipment in your car act flaky.
Replacing a car battery in actually not daunting at all. In fact, it is a beginner level job. Knowing what to do will give you the confidence to go ahead and replace your battery.
To begin with replacement, you will need some common hand tools and safety gear. You will need a
- Wrench/ socket wrench
- Eye glasses
- Brush/ towels
After procuring all of the above alongside a new battery- do be careful in buying your battery, check the owners-manual of your car or contact a dealership to now the exact spec of battery you will need- you can get started on replacement. Below is a step by step break down for you.
Safety first. You will be working with electricity and even though the battery cannot kill you, it is better to be safe. So, put on your gloves. Another thing you will need both the gloves and safety glasses for is that with older and more damaged batteries, there might be harmful toxic deposits. You do not want to get in contact with these. Also, if you spot a toxic deposit, it is recommended to hand the job over to a professional.
Locate the battery. Different cars have their batteries in different places. The battery is most commonly found in the front engine bay. But often manufacturers hide the battery away in the trunk. Refer to your owner’s manual to find the placement of your battery.
Switching it out. Having located your battery, begin to remove it by disconnecting the battery leads. From there unscrew the bolts that hold the battery in place. After unscrewing, it should be free for you to pull it out. Following that, you should inspect the ‘battery tray’- place where the battery sits. Clean out any debris and substances. Once done with cleaning, move onto placing in the new battery. Installation is the reverse of what you just did. Place it in. Screw it secure. Connect the leads paying good attention to the polarity.
Replacing you car battery is imperative. Lithium-ion batteries do not last very long. And your car needs a battery to function. This unbalanced equation is why you replace the battery. In most cases, it is an easy DIY job which you can do within 30 mins. You are encouraged to do it yourself- unless of course you have a large issue with faulty and leaky batteries which are better worked on by professionals- and save yourself some cash in form of labour charges of a pro