What can cause your car battery to die?
The typical story is that you wake in the morning to find out that your vehicle will not start. The battery must be dead right? But how did that happen. Many reasons can cause batteries to die. Let's look further into the situation.
It might be your fault...
Although most vehicles today have battery saver mode. Many vehicles from 2010 and older do not. In this case you may have fallen victim of leaving headlamps turned on, leaving doors cracked open or even having a bad mobile audio installation at your local radio shop. Either way, your battery is dead and now you must deal with it. Not fun...
Parasitic drain is due to components in your vehicle continuing to run after the key is turned off. Some parasitic drain is normal – your battery delivers enough energy to keep things, like your clock, radio presets, and security alarm operational at all times. However, if there's an electrical problem, parasitic drain can exceed what's normal and deplete the battery.
If your charging system isn’t working properly, your car battery can drain even while you’re driving. Many cars power their lights, radio, and other systems from the alternator, which can make the battery drain worse if there's a charging problem. Then you’ll be stranded at roadside with a stalled car that needs a boost. And even then, bad charging will drain your car’s battery. A professional mechanic will be able to diagnose what's causing a charging problem.
A car alternator recharges the battery and powers certain electrical systems. If your alternator has a bad diode, your battery can drain. The bad diode can cause the circuit to charge even when the engine is shut off, and you end up in the morning with a car that won’t start.
If your battery is old, it might not hold a full charge. If your car consistently won't start, it’s possible that the battery is worn out. You should generally replace your car battery every 4-5 years. If your car isn’t starting consistently, and your battery is old, battery replacement should be the first thing you consider.
Having a battery that won't hold a charge is frustrating, and figuring out what's causing the problem can be tricky. Assuming that the cause of the battery drain is not human error, you will need the assistance of a qualified mechanic who can diagnose your car's electrical problems and determine if it is the battery or something else in the electrical system.
Yours In True Auto Care,
A & J Automotive Repair and Fleet Services
2539 Mercantile Drive Suite 2-A
Rancho Cordova, CA. 95742
(916) 388-1552 Office
(916) 388-1590 Fax