It’s a crazy Monday morning and you’ve prepped for an important meeting at the office. You rush over to your car and start it but it won’t start. You try again but fail and it all sinks in now.
Your car battery is dead as a door-nail. And as luck would have it, at the worse possible time.
How could that happen when you just drove your car yesterday? Well, the charge may have drained overnight due to any or a combination of the reasons we’ll discuss with you below.
The Car Lights
One of the most common reasons why your car battery has been drained is due to your headlights. You might have left them on overnight. It happens. Sometimes, you are just too tired that you forget to switch off your headlights. Similarly, you could have also left the internal lights on unintentionally.
All the lights in the vehicle are powered by electricity from the battery. When you are driving, your battery gets charged that’s why even if you use the lights, it won’t be drained. When the engine is off, the remaining power in the battery will still be able to keep the lights on until all the power has been drained.
Parasitic drain refers to any component in your car that uses electric power even if the engine is off. Examples would include the car’s clock or the security alarm. Parasitic drain is normal and your battery will still be able to handle it. However, when this is coupled with an electrical problem like defective fuses or faulty wiring, the parasitic drain could exceed what is expected and totally drain off all the power from your battery.
Corroded Or Loose Connections
Although your battery doesn’t need to be replaced for a very long time, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check on it for maintenance. Loose or corroded battery terminals can cause electrical troubles for your vehicle. The terminals give access to the power on the battery. If it is compromised, it wouldn’t be able to transmit power properly. That could not only lead to draining your battery but also damaging other components of your vehicle.
As we’ve mentioned, the car battery charges as you drive your vehicle all thanks to the alternator. If your alternator is defective, it cannot charge your battery and you’ll end up with a drained one. Apart from the alternator itself, you should also check the alternator belt and the tensioners. Make sure that they are all working properly to keep your battery charged.
Extremes Of Temperature
Whether it is too cold or too hot, these extremes in temperature will not be good for your battery, especially if it is already old. Newer batteries can be more resistant to extremes of temperature as compared to older ones. With extremes of temperatures, lead sulfate crystals can form and buildup. This could negatively affect battery life. Also, it could take a longer time for your battery to charge when driving in such conditions.
Frequent Short Drives
The car battery charges when you drive it so the longer you drive it, the more it would be charged. However, if you use it too often for very short drives, your battery might get easily drained. This is because the car uses up power from the battery to start the engine. If your drives are too short, the alternator might not yet have the chance to charge the battery with your short trip. This is likely the cause of having your batteries frequently drained.
Battery Replacement Is Required
Car batteries last long but they also need to be replaced. Older batteries are already weak and may not be able to hold a full charge well. If you observe that your car won’t start often, it could be due to a battery that needs replacement. Make sure you also do proper maintenance for your batteries so that you won’t need to prematurely replace them.
Drained Battery Solution
When your battery is drained, you’ll need a jumpstart service to start your vehicle. If you decide to jumpstart your car without hiring professionals, always take precautions while performing the procedure. Once you’ve driven the car after jumpstarting, it will charge. However, it is also possible that you need the battery replaced when it won’t hold a charge anymore.