Can summer heat hurt your car battery?

July 12th, 2014

Car Battery TN & VAMost drivers probably think of extreme cold as causing car batteries to die, but did you know excessive heat is the number one cause of battery failure? Heat evaporates the battery's fluid, which in turn causes damage to its internal structure.

Even if your car made it through last summer's scorching heat without any problems charging, your car's battery may be living on borrowed time. Prolonged exposure to high temperatures can significantly reduce your car battery’s life expectancy. If it is also answering the power demands of an array of technology – GPS, cell phone chargers and the like – your car battery may be working under additional stress.

You can do your part to ensure a longer life for your battery. Keep dirt off the terminals, because dirt can be a conductor that drains the battery’s charge. Also, make sure the terminals are free of corrosion. Corrosion can increase electrical resistance, blocking the current.

If your battery is more than five-years-old, it's time to think about replacing it. If it's over three-years-old, you should have it checked to see that it's retaining its charge. Locally, we haven't experienced 2012's heat extremes this year. But as we approach the dog days of summer, to ensure that you aren't greeted one morning by a car that won't start, make an appointment today to have your battery tested at Free Service Tire.

  Posted in: Auto Repair, Auto Repair 101