You probably don’t give a second thought to what happens when you turn the key in the ignition – unless it doesn’t work, that is. The car battery, which is responsible for providing that initial spark to start up a vehicle, is often overlooked until something goes wrong.
Care for it
Drivers need to put in some effort to care for their car batteries. It starts with regular monitoring and maintenance – for instance, the batteries should be periodically checked to ensure they have enough power to last through a season. Extreme temperatures can impact performance, so it’s a good idea to have the battery examined in fall and spring to make sure the harshest seasons didn’t lead to issues.
There are a few other aspects of a battery that should be monitored as well. For example, it helps to regularly clean the battery, as rust or dirt buildup can affect its performance. Batteries also need to be secured properly to ensure acid isn’t spilling under the hood. Most of these tasks can be taken care of with a simple auto tune up.
There may come a time when drivers need a new car battery. If and when that occurs, drivers should be smart about the process and let an auto repair franchise handle most of the responsibility. After all, replacing any car part can be difficult, so it’s best to let the professionals handle anything that is expensive or dangerous.
However, drivers do have the chance to step in and do the right thing with their old car batteries. Most the materials used in these parts are recyclable, but about 7 in 10 drivers are unaware of this and the fact that they could be recycling their old batteries, according to a study from Johnson Controls. As a result, approximately 2 million batteries sit in garages when they could be put to good use.
“Most people think about cans, paper or glass when they recycle, but the materials in automotive batteries are the most recycled materials in the world,” said Ray Shemanski, vice president and general manager of Johnson Controls, Power Solutions.
So the next time you have to change out your car battery, make sure you’re doing the right thing from start to finish of the process. This includes using an expert when needed and disposing of the part properly. It doesn’t take much time and won’t negatively impact your vehicle maintenance, so there’s no excuse not to.
"Are You Treating Your Car Battery Right?" (2014, December) Precision Tune Auto Care. Retrieved from: http://www.precisiontune.com/are-you-treating-your-car-battery-right