All too often, car batteries don't last quite as long as their manufacturers claim. This is usually due to the fact the car's electronic systems place the battery under greater strain than is the norm. In some cases, the local climate and weather conditions can have a negative effect on battery performance, too. Given that your car's battery is one of the most parts of its electronic installation, you should take good care of it. Not only will it mean that you need to change your vehicle's battery less frequently, but it will also diminish the chance that your battery fails when you are out on the road leaving you stranded because you cannot restart your engine.
1. Make Sure Your Battery Is Not Rattling
You may not notice it at first, but if you have driven over any bumpy ground, then your battery can start to shift around in its mounting. This usually becomes noticeable because your battery begins to rattle as you drive along. The same is equally as true for motorcycle batteries as it for those fitted to cars. In such cases, you should remove your battery and remount it whilst ensuring that all of the battery connectors are properly screwed into the relevant electronic terminals.
2. Give Your Battery a Proper Charge
If you only do short trips – perhaps to the local shops and back again – in your car, then the battery's charge will eventually wear down. All batteries in cars will trickle charge from the engine turning over, but you need to get up to a reasonable speed and maintain it for this to happen. Short trips across the city where you need to keep stopping and starting are bad for batteries if they are not supplemented by some faster driving on roads from time-to-time.
3. Check for Corrosion on Your Battery
Corrosion occurs with car batteries, just like it does with the sort of domestic ones you might have in your TV's remote control. Prevent any patches of corrosion from spreading by scrubbing the areas where it occurs down with a solution of baking soda. This will be enough to remove it and maintain the life cycle of the battery but always remember to fully disconnect it before doing this!
4. Turn Off Some of Your Electrics
If your air-conditioning, your rear windscreen heater, your wiper blades and your car stereo are all set to come on when you fire the ignition, then the pressure on your battery can be too much. Turn off anything that is not essential until you have got your car turning over and even driven for a mile or two for optimal battery performance.