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How to know when our car battery is dead

When your battery dies it may appear like your vehicle is experiencing highly complicated problems and can set you into panic mode. However, once the issue has been diagnosed, jump starting your car or buying a new battery are relatively easy and cheap procedures.

Below are some clear signs that indicate your battery is either dead or on its way out.

1. Engine cranks but doesn't start

If your engine makes that horrible cranking sound when you turn the key, but does not actually start it is possible your battery is on its way out. If this is the case you may need to use jumper cables to get your car on the road again. It's important once you jump start your car that you let the engine run for at least 30 minutes to allow the alternator to fully charge the battery. This should give the battery enough juice to allow the car to run for a few days whilst you hunt for a new battery.

NOTE: Alternators are used in modern cars to charge the battery and to power the electrical system when its engine is running.

2. No lights

This is a super easy problem to diagnose. The battery powers all the lights and accessories in our car, so if all of the lights aren't working at once, then our car battery is a likely culprit.

NOTE: If your car doesn't even have the juice to turn on the lights or the engine there may also be additional car maintenance issues like a problem with the alternator.

3. Our car needs extra energy to start

An early sign that a car battery is running out of juice is that you regularly need to put extra energy into starting your vehicle. It's that moment when we get in the car, tap the accelerator pedal a few times but the engine still seems quite weak - and then suddenly, it starts up and finally maintains idle. If this is happening, your car battery may be getting too old and may need to be replaced.

NOTE: If it is very cold outside, it's quite normal for your vehicle to take a little longer to start up and may not necessarily mean you are having battery issues. Gas is harder to vaporise when it is cold and batteries produce less power in cold conditions.

4. Jump starting... again!

If you have had to jump start our car more than three times in a week, it's time to replace the battery and/or have the alternator checked (as it may not be recharging the battery effectively).

NOTE: Even a new battery can get old really quick if you have had to jump start our car more than three times in a week. Jump starting your car is literally like shocking the battery back to life and can be pretty tough on it.

Provided there are no glitches, your battery should last two to three years.

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