Don’t Let Winter’s Wrath Sap Your Battery’s Power
Your car’s battery is not immune to the harsh temperatures in winter; in fact, winter temps may be impacting your battery more than you realize—especially if your car does more sitting than driving. To protect your battery’s power throughout the cold, dark days of winter, and avoid the costly purchase of a new battery, RoadandTrack.com Writer David Gluckman advises you to invest in a battery charger. But make sure it’s the right battery charger; Gluckman’s prefers ones made by Battery Tender.
“They have intelligent circuitry inside to cycle on and off and keep the battery at the right level without overcharging. They’re perfect for winter lay up or any kind of long-term vehicle storage,” reports Gluckman.
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Another way to save your battery’s strength if you plan to have it hibernate through winter is to disconnect the battery, according to FarmandDairy.com. “Certain devices, such as clocks and alarm systems, continue to drain battery power when the vehicle is off. If your car will not be driven enough to recharge the battery, keep it disconnected when the automobile is being stored.”
Your battery is working hard enough during winter; don’t let corrosion, grime, and dirt make it work even harder, advises FirestoneCompleteAutoCare.com. “If you notice a white powder around the terminals that looks something like dead skin on dry winter hands, you’ve got a case of corrosion. Luckily, you don’t need a special cleaning spray or fancy tools to freshen things up. Keep your battery sparkling with a damp cloth, some baking soda, water, and a toothbrush.”
Getting into a freezing car in the morning is definitely no fun, but it’s important for the battery’s health, that you wait before cranking the heat or the tunes. “Do not start the car with the heater and the radio on. They can use up the power coming from the car’s alternator and prevent the battery from charging. Do not leave the heat and the radio on while the car is idling. Otherwise the car will not be putting out enough power for the alternator to charge the battery and power the electrical systems,” explains FarmandDairy.com.
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Winter is a demanding season; these tips can help ensure your vehicle’s battery will be able to power through until spring.