There is a variety of simple components in your vehicle that can cause complicated repairs, and the battery is one of them. Many drivers make the mistake of not replacing the battery until it won’t start the car. Others believe that replacing it with a generic, inexpensive battery is the perfect money-saving solution. However, doing either of these things can cost you considerably more than you saved – and causes unnecessary stress.
When it comes to choosing a car battery, there is a number of things to consider:
- Age – A battery is considered new when it is under 6 months old. You will see the date stamped on the label: a letter corresponds with the month and a number corresponds with the year, e.g., C7 = March 2017.
- Group size – Every vehicle make, model, and engine type has its own set of dimensions of the battery terminal. You can confirm the correct battery to be used in your car via your owner’s manual or replacement guide.
- Brand – As with size, your owner’s manual will recommend a specific battery brand for your distinct vehicle.
- Reserve capacity (RC) – A battery’s RC is the number of minutes it can operate the car if the alternator or fan belt fails. Each vehicle has a recommended RC value.
- Cold-cranking amps (CCA) – A battery’s CCA is its ability to start the car in cold temperatures. Even in Washington, the higher the CCA, the better.
Car Battery Saftey
Failing to replace your car battery in a timely manner or installing an incorrect battery can have very serious repercussions. The battery can start to seep acid around the terminals or at top. This battery acid is then wicked up the battery cables, corrodes within, and could increase electrical resistance in the cables.
With late model vehicles, even the smallest increase in resistance can wreak havoc on your computer systems and the way your vehicle runs. Once this problem occurs, you will likely not only need to replace the battery but also the cables or wiring harness that have suffered damage. You can never predict when this will happen – whether your car will be parked or you will be driving on a busy highway. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
Best of luck,