If you find it difficult to keep up with automotive technology these days, spare a thought for the humble car battery. After all, this unit has to deal with increasingly powerful engines, as well as a proliferation of electronic devices. Just take a look inside the cab and you may see an aftermarket satnav, an upgraded stereo system, a place to plug your smartphone and even a cooler for your drinks. To add insult to injury, your car may be fitted with the latest stop/start system that is designed to save money and protect the environment. It's little wonder that you need to pay attention to your battery condition and make sure that you replace it with the right version. What do you need to remember when it comes to choosing a battery?
Choosing a Replacement
It's true to say that battery technology has kept up to a degree, and you can now buy more powerful types to handle the extra load. Some batteries are designed to deal with the stop/start drain, and if you have one you will need to make sure that you specify what replacement battery you need.
Ask your battery supplier to sell you an absorbed glass mat (AGM) or ECM battery if you have this type of system fitted. These are much more powerful than their standard counterparts and should last for a reasonable time, despite the tremendous draw associated with this technology.
It pays to keep an eye on your battery performance at all times, and you should take action as soon as you notice something strange. If it takes a while for your car to crank over in the morning or the interior lights seem to be a little dim, then you need to visit an auto electrician so that they can test the capability of the battery.
If you do decide to change the unit yourself, take as much care as you would with anything else electrical. Remove the negative terminal first before disconnecting the positive, and use the same approach when you reconnect. Just remember to make a note of your stereo system security code, as you will need to enter this when you reconnect the new battery. Many people overlook this antitheft device and then struggle to turn their favourite sounds back on.
Take care before you try to replace an AGM battery, as this is a job best left to an electrician. You will need to retune it to your on-board computer so that your stop/start technology will work again.
If you have any questions about your replacement battery, contact a commercial battery supplier for more information.