With the long, cold winter looming, it’s important to consider your vehicle to ensure that it operates for you dependably. Of all the car nuisances that frustrate drivers when the cold weather hits, a dead battery may top them all. With the following tips, however, you can ensure that your battery works effectively during the Vancouver and Richmond winters so you can rely on your vehicle on even the snowiest and coldest days.
Purchase a Quality Battery Charger
If you’ve got money to spare, go ahead and buy a new battery each winter and pay for its installation. If you have better things to spend your money on, hopefully, be sure to invest in a good-quality battery charger, which will protect the longevity of your battery. Look for a battery charger that has a float, storage, and a maintenance charge. A high-quality battery charger actually contains smart or intelligent circuiting that prevents your battery from being over-charged too. This type of battery charger is a must for storing any type of vehicle over the winter.
Keep in mind that you should also check to ensure that your charger is doing its job. You can use a meter to makes sure your battery is charging. Don’t attempt to charge your battery unless the connectors are clean. If your battery registers lower than 12.6 (assuming you have a 12-volt battery), there could be an issue with your charger or even the battery.
Keep It Clean
Be sure to keep the terminals of your battery clean and free from corrosion. Debris and corrosion can actually block the flow of current, which can ultimately lead to a depleted or even dead battery. Baking soda, water, and a stiff wire brush are all you need to effectively clean this corrosion build up from your car’s battery.
You can check the water level of your vehicle battery by removing its plastic cover. The water level should reach the necks of the plastic fillers. If the water levels are low, you can add some distilled water. Some types of batteries will alert you when there’s an issue with low water level. When you see an alert light, you can take your battery to your mechanic who can inspect and correct the issue.
An Engine Battery Heater
Although the climate of Vancouver is far milder than what the rest of Canada experiences, many drivers feel compelled to invest in an engine battery heater nevertheless. If you plan to store your vehicle in an unheated environment, for instance, you might consider this as an option to ensure that your car starts up when you need it to.
Consider Battery Age
Before the nasty weather hits this season, consider the life of your battery. Many auto body shops around Richmond and Vancouver suggest replacing your battery once it’s four or five years old. If you’re bringing your vehicle in for a seasonal check up with your mechanic, request a battery check. A load test can determine whether or not your battery is equal to the freezing winter weather to come.
Follow these tips so that you can depend on your car battery’s optimum performance. Talk to your auto body shop mechanic if you have any questions.