Car batteries typically have a lifespan of three to five years, but Colorado’s winters can create additional strain on the battery. Extreme temperatures shorten the lifespan of car batteries, so it’s important to take as much care of your battery as possible.
How Cold Affects Your Battery
Cold temperatures impact many important functions in batteries. It thickens the oil in the engine, making it harder to move the oil and forcing the battery to work harder. It can also reduce the battery’s charge and lengthen the amount of time your battery takes to react and turn on. If your battery’s charge is too low, the cold temperatures can freeze it.
In the winter, you also need the engine to power the heating, defrosters, seat warmers, headlights, and several other things. The greater strain on and requirements of your battery make it more likely to die.
Signs Your Battery Needs to Be Replaced
There are a few obvious signs in winter that your battery is likely going to die. If the lights and electrical components are dim and weak or if your car takes especially long to start up, it may be time to look into a new battery.
Here are some tips to keep your battery in its best shape this winter:
- Be sure your vehicle is fully powered down. If you leave a light on or a door open when you get home at night, you could end up leaving the battery working overnight.
- Consider an oil change. Newer oil won’t be as thick as old oil, so the battery will have an easier time starting the engine.
- Buy a battery blanket. This can keep the battery warmed up over cold nights, so it’s ready to go when you leave in the morning.
- Clean off corrosion. Rusty or corroded terminals can harm your battery and can be cleaned off with baking soda and water.
Get a Maintenance Check
A professional can check if your battery is holding a charge and do necessary maintenance for winter. Contact Ken Scales Automotive today.