Can extreme heat kill your car battery?
How often does it happen when your car self-start system takes time to start the engine at one go? Frustrating, isn’t it? Car batteries can be a real headache for car owners if not served with routine maintenance. New-generation car batteries have more sustainability when compared to old generation car models.
Many reasons can cause battery failure, like extreme heat, cold temperature, overcharging, and your driving habits. The most prominent reason among these is the extremely hot temperature.
How does extreme heat affect your car battery?
Well, according to the Car Care Council, your car battery is at more risk in summer than in winters. Cold temperature thickens the engine oil, making the battery work harder to start the engine. On the other hand, extreme heat causes evaporation of the liquid contained in the car battery, damaging its internal structure.
Some studies suggest that a car battery has a high risk of draining at high temperatures than in the cold. Battery tests have proven that it might last up to 10 years at 77F, while it may only last up to 5 years at 92F. Extreme heat is not all about the hot air, high temperature during summer drives up the heat beneath the hood as well, damaging the battery. Car companies service reports also encourage the fact that most battery-related issues are reported during the summer.
The damage that excessive heat can cause to car batteries also depends on the quality of the battery used and how regularly it has been checked. Driving with an unmaintained or bad quality battery can put your journey to pause anytime.
Getting the best out of your battery
On a regular basis, a car battery lasts for around 5 years, as per the reports of AAA. It is advisable to get your car battery tested every two years, for those living in a warmer climate and after four years, for those living in cold weather conditions. It is the owner’s responsibility to make sure that the top of the battery is clean, as dirty and engine grease may build-up, and when they do, they act as a catalyst and drain battery power.
Extreme heat can cause severe damage to your car battery, so encourage parking under shades. Get a routine check of the coolant level of your battery, especially during summer, when the risk of the engine getting overheated is higher.
For cars featuring an older battery type, the one with removable filler caps, the fluid contained in old battery types evaporates quickly and cannot withstand high temperatures. An upgraded battery is advised for such car owners.
As it is factual that extreme heat kills car batteries, and taking a few precautions during summers can help in avoiding unexpected breakdowns. Some of the ones mentioned earlier include encouraging parking under the shade, keeping the engine off when not driving, investing in a car cover to avoid uneven heating of the vehicle when kept idle, and routine battery check-ups to help you avoid frequent battery problems.