We’ve all been there. You’re rushing out the door to get to work one frigid winter morning, hop in the car ready to blast the heater and get comfortable; your turn the key… and nothing happens. Your car’s battery is dead.
It’s easy to blame the cold weather for your battery’s untimely death, but did you know your battery was likely taking a beating in the summer heat long before the cool winter air rolled in? It’s true–heat, more than cold, shortens battery life and efficiency.
Most car batteries tend to last for about 5-7 years with normal use. However, extreme heat (such as a normal Texas summer) can cause the liquid in the battery to evaporate. These low fluid levels can damage the internal structure of the battery.
High temperatures aren’t the only culprit, however. If your car’s voltage regulator malfunctions, it can push more voltage than it should to the battery, which slowly kills the battery as time goes on. You probably won’t notice this issue until it’s too late–like when you’re heading to work one cold morning and your car simply refuses to start. This can be due to the fact that colder weather thickens the oil in your car’s engine, which means the battery has to work harder (and sometimes it just doesn’t have the power left to push through).
In order to keep your battery healthy for as long as possible, be sure to have your mechanic check your car’s electrical system so they can catch any early warning signs before it’s too late. Also be sure to keep the top of the battery clean, as dirt and grease build up can drain battery power.
While looking for dirt and grease build up, also keep an eye peeled for corrosion on the battery terminals. This corrosion can reduce the flow of the current and lead to more battery woes.
If your battery is on its last leg, don’t hesitate to replace it. It’s often cheaper to take care of it before it becomes a full-blown problem than after when you’re stranded in a parking lot and having to pay to have it towed to a shop to pay for a new battery and labor costs. Fortunately replacing a battery yourself is a fairly straightforward task if you have the proper knowledge and don’t mind getting your hands dirty.
If you find yourself unable to get your car started, fret not. Be sure to call a reputable local towing company to get you squared away as quickly and affordably as possible. If you’re looking for such a towing company in the San Marcos or New Braunfels, TX areas, be sure to give Will Tow a call–we’d love to help you get back up and running as quickly and painlessly as possible.