Flat batteries are the most common cause of a breakdown at any time of year, but particularly so in winter.
A breakdown in batteries can occur at any time of the year, but is a growing trend in winter months and is mainly due to a drop in temperatures, motorists’ high dependency on lights, wipers and rear demister.
What are the Reasons for Flat Batteries?
A flat battery is most commonly caused by:
Lack of use or vehicle only used for short journeys
Something has been left on (light(s) or a faulty component is draining the battery)
A fault with the vehicle’s charging system
A fault with the battery itself
Temperature (extreme heat and cold)
Need a New Battery?
Batteries generally can last up to eight years, depending on usage. However, its efficiency will begin to deteriorate the older it gets and consideration must be given to its replacement following the five year period. Ensuring these are replaced before it reaches its life expectancy could save a great deal of inconvenience and time at the side of the road. If your car is struggling to start it’s usually a sign that the battery is weak. That will certainly catch you out when the weather is colder as batteries have to work harder in low temperatures.
If you mostly do short journeys or leave the car standing for days at a time, invest in a modern battery conditioner/intelligent charger. These can be left connected to the battery indefinitely and can prolong its life without overcharging it.
Check that everything electrical is turned off when you park up – even an interior light, boot light, or radio left on overnight can kill a battery when it’s cold.
Give the Battery a Chance
Switch off everything electrical and depress the clutch (for a manual vehicle) to reduce the load on the battery when you start a cold car.