When someone says “Car Battery” you will think of a black box or heavy cube that can be found somewhere under the hood of your car, and without the car battery your car simply won’t be able to start and run the car, not even the radio. We usually take the car battery health for granted and don’t think much about it until the day that car battery stops working!
The question is, how do I choose the right battery for my car?
All cars operate with batteries that are 12 Volts – unless you have a classic car that was produced in the 1960s, then its 6 Volts. Lorries are, however, 24 Volts.
The battery from inside is basically water, acid, and plates of lead, and that’s why its heavy. It basically changes the chemical reaction between acid and lead into electrical current.
So basically the car battery has two main functions:
- Producing electricity
- Storing electricity
The liquid inside the battery is 25% Sulfuric acid, a small amount of which could cause serious damage to skin and body.
Inside each battery there are 6 cells each has 2.12Volts giving the battery a total of 12.72 Volts for the entire battery, which is usually referred to as 12V battery.
Where can I find my car battery located?
Most batteries can be located near the car engine under the hood, but some car manufacturers started placing the battery away (i.e., inside the cabin or back trunk) to keep it away from the heat and vibrations. This is especially good in hot countries like UAE where this helps to keep the battery in good condition for longer.
How long should a car battery last?
The presumed life expectancy of a good quality car battery is 3 to 5 years, extreme high or low temperatures is what affects this time. Also, short rides can also reduce the durability of the battery as typically they would need 10 to 15km to start charging again. In addition to how many power consuming accessories are installed on the car (like fog lights, sound systems, and others).
What are the different types of car batteries?
There are different kinds of batteries:
- Batteries that need to be filled with Acid at the time of purchase (cheap prices)
- Batteries that come pre-filled with acid, which means it can’t be topped up and do not need maintenance (this one you must pay attention to the production date)
- Dry Batteries that contain lead and acid but acid is absorbed through carbon sheets instead of liquid which gives the impression of being dry (more durable, do not leak, and can handle extreme vibrations and Bumps – good for 4x4 off-roaders out there) but comes at an expensive price (3 times as much of regular batteries).
How do I know which battery fits my car best?
Looks at the numbers on your existing car battery,
- Try get the newest production date of the battery
- Check the battery connections if they are located at the top or the sides of the battery
- Check the positioning of negative and positive connectors as sometime the connection cables can be too short, and you won’t be able to switch
- Try get a battery with the same numbers and not less, here is what those numbers mean:
- AH: The Size of Battery (70-85ah, 85-105ah, 95-130ah)
- MCA: Cranking Ampere
- CCA: Cold Cranking Ampere at low temperatures
- RC: Reserve Capacity
In short, when buying a car battery take the largest possible battery size (AH) that can fit in your car with the highest CCA and RC.