Car batteries do not last forever. If you notice that the headlamps do not turn on, the battery is 3-7 years old or the car starts harder than usual, it may be time for a change.
You can bring your vehicle to an experienced and reliable car mechanic to change the battery to the car or you can do the job by yourself if you’re smart enough.
Changing a battery is a quick and easy task for most car models and vans and can be done with a minimum number of tools.
Do you need a new battery?
Here’s how to do it:
1. Make sure the battery needs to be changed.
You definitely do not want to waste time and spend money installing a new battery if the problem is not from the battery itself.
To know for sure what the problem is, consider a few things.
When the battery is discharged uninterruptedly or the electrolyte level is below the upper limit of the plates, fine lead sulfate crystals form in the pores on the surfaces of the positive and negative plates. This process by which hard lead sulphate is deposited is called lead sulphate. It happens in 85% of cases of acid leakage batteries. In this case, the positive plates become light brown and the negative ones will be matte, whitish.
Careful! Do not touch this dust with bare hands because sulfuric acid is harmful to the skin.
What to do?
Do not let the battery run continuously.
Check if the battery has recharged properly by driving at constant speed for 30 minutes (with minimal electrical power, including air conditioning).
Check the alternator. Some cars have trouble with the battery when running the engine, so check whether the alternator maintains the voltage at 13.8-14.2 volts or exceeds this range. Also, when the engine is off, the battery needs to be between 12.4-12.8 volts.
2. Buy the replacement battery correctly.
Find out what kind of battery is right for your car.
Provides information about the car you are driving at a local car parts shop: model, engine size and other details that the specialist requires.
This is important because car batteries vary in size and capacity.
The new battery must match the size of the location where you will assemble it.
What do you have to do before you change the battery?
A. Create a safe work environment.
Park the car on a flat surface, at a sufficiently high traffic distance.
Avoid cigarette smoke while checking the components of the car to avoid sparking.
To park in the slope, use the parking brake, and as an extra measure, the gearshift can be left in the first or second gear.
For added protection during use, use glasses and protective gloves.
Careful! Remember that electricity is not the only danger. Batteries contain a solution of sulfuric acid with electrolyte which is very corrosive and produces a flammable gas.
B. Check your car’s manual to see which devices may be affected when you disconnect the battery. Before removing the battery, make sure you have PIN codes for your navigation systems and radio settings, or have a memory card that saves all the settings for the electronic device.
C. After raising the hood, use the hood that keeps the hood or the hook system provided with new models.
Remove the old battery.
1. Locate the battery. The battery is a rectangular box with two cables attached to the frame. It’s harder to remove the battery of the cars that have it located in the side panel, such as Chrysler.
2. Identify the battery terminals. Locate the positive (+) and negative (-) terminals of the old battery to be removed.
3. Disconnect the negative terminal by weakening the clamp with a 8 or 10 mm spanner.
4. After this operation, proceed similarly to the positive terminal, keeping the order indicated to avoid a short circuit.
5. Remove the battery. The battery holder will be unplugged when removing the screws, clips, and bars where the battery is attached. Carefully lift the battery in the car because it weighs between 13.5 kg and 27 kg. If it’s too heavy, ask for a helping hand.
Install the new car battery
Wipe the battery tray and battery ends using a bicarbonate solution and a wire brush. If there is severe corrosion, call a mechanic to replace the battery.
1.Otherwise, let the battery assemble when all components are dry before proceeding to the next step. Replace the battery. Place the new battery in the same place where you just pulled the old battery, taking into account the positive and negative terminals. Be careful to fix it in the correct position.
2. Reconnect the positive terminal by tightening the screws.
3. Do the same for the negative terminal.
4. Use a spray with grease and lithium and spray the solution on the terminals to prevent corrosion.
5. Close the hood and start the car. Ensure that all electronic devices work correctly.
What about the old battery after you replaced it?
The old battery can be taken to a car parts shop, a car service or a recycling center after replacing it with a new one. Even if you get a small fee for this service, throwing the used battery in the trash is not the best option.
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