How Often Do Car Batteries Need To Be Replaced?

In this article, I have discussed how often do car batteries need to be replaced, what are the signs and causes of a dead battery, and how to test a car battery.

More than 90% of car owners are victims of battery failure in some way or form. Close to 100 million car batteries are replaced each year in the U.S.

In this year alone, I was stranded on the road twice due to battery failure because I neglected the signs of an expiring battery.

It is super frustrating, stressful, and even dangerous if you are stuck on unsafe roads.

So to prevent these headaches, every car owner should when to replace the car battery and what factors may affect the battery life.

When Should I Replace My Car Battery?

How Often Do Car Batteries Need To Be Replaced?

According to an industry expert, car batteries should be replaced every 3 to 5 years. However, this timeframe depends on several factors like temperature, miles you put on the car, maintenance, brand, and shelf-life of the battery.

If you don’t want to be stranded on the road, you need to timely replace your car battery. For that, there are some signs of a dying battery that you should keep your eye on.

What are the Signs of a Dying Battery?

  • The car will take longer to start when you push the button/turn the key.
  • You will notice fluctuations in power.
  • Sulfation over the battery terminals.
Sulfation over the battery terminals
  • Dimming headlights is another sign.
  • Frequent jump starts are needed.

How to Test a Car Battery?

  • Start and rev the engine with the headlights ON in the parking position and check if the headlights change the brightness. If the lights get brighter while the car is in an idle position, it means the current is not strong enough.
  • Use a digital voltmeter and set it to 20DC. Connect negative (black) and positive (red) to the probe. Start the car and turn ON the headlights. If the reading is 12.4V or higher. If the reading is below this number, then your battery is either going to be dead soon or needs charging.

How Much to Replace a Car Battery?

The average cost of lead-acid car batteries is somewhere around $65 to $125. However, premium batteries can cost around $200 to $220. Hybrid car batteries are even more expensive.

They cost $1000 or more. If you are not sure which battery to select, consult a garage owner, he/she will tell you which battery is suited or your car model.

What are The Causes of Car Battery Deterioration?

Following are some of the factors that may affect the car battery life.

  • Temperature: It is common knowledge that batteries tend to last a bit less in extreme cold, but that statement is also true for extreme heat. The liquid inside the battery evaporates more than normal in the heat causing the battery to provide fewer amps than usual. This ultimately leads to a lesser lifespan.
  • Fluctuations/Vibrations: Loose clamping on the battery terminals, and driving in on bumpy roads cause the internals of the battery to break.
  • Jump Starting: When you forget to switch off the door light or headlights and leave it overnight, the battery goes down. Hence, you would need to jump-start it which is another factor of a lesser lifespan.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

How much does it cost to replace a car battery?

The average car battery replacement costs $65 to 125 dollars. However, premium car batteries cost more than $200.

How often a car battery should be replaced?

The average life of a car battery is 3 to 5 years depending on the temperature, charging system, and driving style.

What are the signs my battery is dying?

Some of the common signs are fluctuations in power, dimming headlights, sulfation over the battery terminals, rash engine cranking, and jump-start requirements more often.

Alex black

Alex Black

Alex Black is a seasoned electrical engineer with a remarkable 8-year track record specializing in appliances, generators, and transfer switches. With extensive hands-on experience in the field, Alex possesses a deep understanding of electrical systems and their intricate workings. Throughout their career, Alex has consistently demonstrated expertise in designing, troubleshooting, and maintaining various electrical appliances.

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