One of the first ways you can determine whether your car’s battery is dying is to check its age. The battery has a sticker on it that lists the month and year that it was manufactured. For example, if the sticker says 12/20, it was manufactured in December 2020. You should have one more year of life out of your battery, as the average lifespan of a battery is three years. If your battery is older than three years and you notice any of the following problems, your car’s battery is dying.
Battery Warning Light
You may end up with a battery warning light on the dashboard that will not turn off. This is the engine control unit’s way of telling you that the battery is not maintaining its charge. Unfortunately, a battery cannot be repaired. When it no longer holds a charge, it needs to be replaced.
A Cranking Engine
You may also see the battery light illuminated while you try to start your automobile. In this case, the engine will crank several times before it fires up. If the battery is dead, the engine will crank and not fire up. If you have to jump-start the battery frequently, it is getting too old.
You will also start to have electrical problems with your vehicle if the battery is going bad. For example, one of the things that the battery supplies power to is the starter. Consequently, this, too, can make it difficult to start your automobile. Your headlights may also get dim.
If you are concerned that you need a new battery, pop the hood and inspect the one that is installed in your engine. If you see corrosion on the battery cables and terminals, the battery is leaking. You can clean the cables and terminals to see how long it takes for them to get corroded again.
Sulfuric Acid Smells
This being said, if you smell sulfuric acid around the battery, it is leaking battery acid and it needs to be replaced as soon as possible. For those who do not know it, sulfuric acid smells like rotten eggs. Consequently, you will smell rotten eggs if the battery is leaking acid.
Finally, the battery also needs to be replaced right away if the battery case looks warped or cracked. Problems with the chemical reaction inside the battery can also make the case a bubble. Bring your vehicle to our shop if your battery case is misshapen.