What To Do When Your Car Battery Dies
Finding that your car has a flat battery is incredibly frustrating and it always seems to happen at the most inconvenient moment! This article will help you deal with this when it happens to you and covers why your battery may have died and what you can do to get your car back on the road when it does.
The Causes Of A Flat Battery
There are a variety of reasons for a car battery to fail so it can be hard to say the exact cause. Here are some of the most common causes of battery failure:
- The headlights or interior lights were left on while the car was parked and the engine was off.
- The radio or CD player was left on while the car wasn’t running.
- The air conditioning is left to run when the car is switched off.
- The car has not been started/has been left standing unused for a long time.
- The battery itself has not been maintained.
- Alternator problems – if the voltage regulator or the diode bridge fails the car battery is not being charged when running.
- Very cold temperatures.
What Can You Do If The Battery Dies?
If the car battery simply has a low charge it is easy enough to recharge it by removing it from the car and attaching it to a car battery charger. These are easy to find and fairly cheap to purchase and they just plug in to the mains. If the battery is completely discharged you will need to jump-start the car.
How You Jump Start A Car
In order to jump-start the car you need:
- A set of jump leads
- Another car with a working battery.
- If there is no donor car available you will need a power pack.
How To Jump Start A Car – The Method
- Jump leads – it is helpful to keep some in the boot for this exact situation.
- Park both cars in neutral – make sure you are in a safe location.
- Attach the black clips – attach the black clip of the jump lead to the battery’s negative terminal, then attach the other end of the cable to the negative terminal on the battery of the other car..
- Attach the red clips – attach the clip to the positive terminal to the working car battery, then attach the other end to the positive terminal of your own battery.
- Start your car – if it won’t start you need to check the cables. Switch off your car and have the other car run it’s engine for a few minutes. Then try to start your car again.
- If your car starts – keep the engine running and drive around for a minim of 15 minutes so that your battery has a chance to recharge.
- If your car wont start – you may need to replace the battery.
If you have a successful jump start but the car refuses to start again afterwards despite having been driven for a while you will need to replace the battery as it is no longer holding a charge.
Keep these in your car in case of battery failure:
- Jump leads
- Power Pack
- A Mains Battery charger
At a minimum you should keep jump leads in your car.