How Often to Replace a Car Battery

Car Battery


Service experts recommend replacing your battery about every four to five years, but it depends on several factors that can change this time frame. Learn how to know if your car battery needs to be replaced, how to test a car battery, as well as handy service tips below. Don’t hesitate to reach out to our service center if you have any questions or need to schedule a battery inspection at our service center near Mascoutah.



How to Know If Your Car Battery Needs to Be Replaced

There are warning signs to be on the lookout for to know if your battery is nearing its end:

  • Dimming headlights
  • More frequent need for engine revving or jump-starts
  • Takes longer to start the engine when you turn the key/push the button
  • Unusual power fluctuations

What Causes Car Battery Deterioration?

  • Heat: Hot weather causes the evaporation of liquids inside a car battery, so if your area is a more consistently hot climate, your battery life will be shorter.
  • Vibrations: If your battery’s hold-down clamps are loose or you frequently drive over rough roads, vibrations cause internal battery parts to break down faster.
  • Needing a Jump: If you’ve left your lights on overnight or let your engine idle for too long and require a jump start, this also shortens the battery life significantly.
  • Time: A car battery can only go through so many charge cycles, so the death of your car battery is unavoidable, but proper care can prevent the battery from dying on you early.

To learn more about your battery and how often to replace the car battery, check your vehicle’s owner’s manual or maintenance schedule.

How to Test a Car Battery

While our factory-trained technicians can test your car battery for you, this is a test that can be done at your Smithton-area home. Follow the steps below to test your vehicle’s battery.

The Headlight Test:

  1. Turn on the engine, keep the car in park, and make sure the headlights are on.
  2. Rev the engine and see if the headlight brightness changes.
  3. If the headlights get brighter, that means the current is not strong enough to keep the lights at normal brightness while the car is idling.
  4. Take your car to a service center at this point for further assessment.

Using a Digital Multimeter:

  1. Set the voltmeter to 20 DC volts.
  2. Under the hood, touch the negative terminal (black) with the negative meter probe (also black).
  3. Touch the positive terminal (red) with the positive meter probe (also red)
  4. Have a friend turn on the headlights and check the voltmeter reading.
  5. At 80℉, 12.5 volts or higher means your battery is fully charged. 12.3 volts means it’s at about 75% charged.11.8 volts or lower means you have 25% or less charge.

How Much is a Replacement Car Battery?

Replacing a car battery ranges between $75 and $120, and if you require a premium battery, that could cost up to $200. Since hybrid car batteries are a larger job, they can get quite expensive at $1,000 and $6,000. However, this cost is offset by much lower gas consumption.

Get Additional Service Tips at Auffenberg Kia

Now that you know how often to replace a car battery near Trenton, don’t hesitate to schedule a test drive to have your battery replaced. Our team will work hard to ensure that your vehicle continues performing at its best for years to come.


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