How to Charge Your Car Battery
If you’re trying to visit the Borgata, Storybook Land, or anywhere else in the area, you’ll need a working vehicle. Therefore, it’s useful to know how to charge your car battery if the situation arises.
Below, we’ll tell you the different ways you can complete a battery charge and how to know when your battery needs to be replaced entirely.
Read through this informative guide from Boardwalk Acura, then contact us for service near Egg Harbor, Atlantic City, or Vineland.
Ways to Charge Your Car Battery
There are a couple of ways that you can charge your vehicle’s battery. The first method is by connecting jumper cables to an operating automobile. The second technique is to grab a portable charger and try powering up the battery that way.
In order to successfully start your car, you’ll need another vehicle that’s running properly. Grab a pair of jumper cables, then complete these steps:
- Open the hood to your car and locate the battery.
- Have the driver of the working vehicle park close to you and shut their engine off.
- Take the positive (red) clamp of your jumper cable and attach it to your car’s positive terminal post.
- Attach the other red clamp to the positive terminal of the other car’s working battery.
- Take the negative (black) clamp of the cable and attach it to the negative terminal of the other car’s working battery.
- Take the other negative clamp and attach it to a non-painted metal surface on the main engine block of your vehicle.
- Start the working automobile, then wait a few minutes and try to start yours.
- If your car starts, let it run for a few minutes to help charge the battery more.
- Remove all the cables carefully, then try to drive around for at least 30 minutes so your battery can continue to charge.
If you have access to a portable charger, you can use that to try and charge up your car’s battery.
In order to do this, you’ll need to remove the battery from the vehicle. Make sure everything is shut off, including the lights and any electronics, such as the radio. Then, remove the battery, clean the terminals with a mixture of baking soda and water, and complete the following steps:
- Check that the battery charger is off.
- Connect the positive cable on the charger to the positive terminal on the battery.
- Do the same for the negative cable and terminal.
- Set the charger to the slowest charge rate.
- Turn on the charger and set the timer.
A fully charged battery should be at 12.6 volts. If it’s currently below 11.8, then it could take about 12 hours to get back to 100% power.
Checking the Vehicle Battery Voltage
We mentioned before that a battery needs to be at 12.6 volts to be fully charged. One way you can check the current voltage is with a multimeter. Once you have that, you can check the volts this way:
- Set the voltmeter to 20 DC volts.
- Touch the negative battery terminal to the negative meter probe.
- Touch the positive terminal to the positive meter probe.
- Have someone turn on your car’s headlights to give the battery a light load.
- Check the voltmeter reading.
If the battery is reading at less than 11.8 volts, then it needs to be charged or possibly replaced.
When to Replace the Battery
One way to know a battery replacement is needed is if it no longer holds a charge. However, there are other warning signs that you could be on the lookout for, such as:
- Slow engine crank: If you try to start your car and it takes longer than normal, the battery may be failing.
- Swelling/bloating battery case: This can happen from excessive heat and may decrease battery life.
- Low battery fluid level: Part of the battery casing is usually translucent, so you can visually inspect the fluid level. If it’s below the lead plates, then the battery should be tested right away.
- Old age: Car batteries can last anywhere from two to five years. If it’s coming up to that point, you’ll want to have it looked at by a professional as soon as possible.
Schedule Car Battery Service Today
Whether you need a battery charge, repair, or replacement, the experts at Boardwalk Acura can help.
Schedule service with us today, and we’ll have you back on the roads of Egg Harbor, Atlantic City, and Vineland again before you know it!