Okay, you’re all dressed and rushing out to catch up with a meeting or occasion, but somehow, your car refuses to start.
You’ve tried to turn on the ignition many times, but it’s just not working; apparently, the battery is dead, and you weren’t expecting such a scenario to occur – probably because you just charged the battery the day before, or a few days ago.
Yes, jumpstarting your car can be a good way to navigate such scenarios, but what would you do if it happened where/when there’s no other vehicle around?
What could be the reason(s) why your car battery doesn’t hold a charge, and how can you fix this up? This article clearly explains how to fix a car battery that doesn’t hold a charge.
Why Is My Car Battery Not Holding Charges?
There are pretty many reasons why your car battery can’t sustain charges. However, below are the commonest possible reasons.
1. The Battery is Old and Weak
Just as with every other component that makes your car move, the battery can get weak after many years.
Apparently, an old and weak battery would not sustain charges. If you’ve never changed your car battery since you bought the vehicle, maybe it’s time to do that.
Read Also: What Causes Spark Plugs To Go Bad Fast?
2. Faulty Alternator
Sometimes, even new batteries don’t hold charges, and this can make you wonder, “what could be the cause?”
Well, for your car battery to charge, the alternator must be functioning properly. It is the alternator that charges the battery while your car is running.
A faulty alternator might not charge your battery while you drive; so, there’d be no current in the battery when you park.
Hence, in the basic sense, your battery is not bad; it’s just not charged, and that’s why your car isn’t starting up.
The part of a car battery prune to corrosion is the “posts” or “terminals” where the charger is connected.
Usually, the battery posts are metallic, and thus, they are liable to rot or corrode. Once they corrode, it’d be difficult for your car battery to charge properly.
4. You Have Too Many Gears Connected
Your car battery has a limit to the number of aftermarket electronic gears and accessories it can power.
If you have too many gears connected on – such as cigarette lighter, car refrigerator, trunk light, etc. – that could be the reason your car battery drains faster.
Now, how do you deal with a battery that won’t hold a charge? The troubleshooting steps are easy DIY techniques.
How to Fix a Car Battery That Doesn’t Hold a Charge
Firstly, try out these simple troubleshooting tips, and if the issue persists, get an experienced auto electrician to fix your car.
1. Get a New Battery
If the battery on your car has been there since you bought the car and has aged past 10 years, it is advisable to get a new battery since the issue you’re facing is because your current one is old and weak.
Getting a new car battery isn’t so expensive, and you can do the replacement yourself.
2. Check for Faulty Alternator and Fuses
As mentioned earlier, a faulty alternator would not charge your car battery properly; thus, causing the battery to retain very minimal current that may not be sufficient to kickstart your vehicle after a stop.
Similarly, defective electrical fuses could be the culprit here. You can test your car’s alternator using a voltmeter.
3. Clean The Battery Posts
There’s the possibility that your car battery posts are not clean – probably corroded. Thus, you need to clean them up using a battery post cleaner.
If your car battery posts are not shiny, use the cleaner to clean them until they are bright, and possibly, shiny.
Corroded battery posts will cause your car’s battery not to charge; thus, even if you take the battery for a charge in an auto battery charging center, because of the corroded battery posts, the battery won’t charge properly.
4. Disconnect More Loads
If you have too many electrical gears connected to your vehicle, remove some of them and see if your battery can sustain charges.
This is recommended if the battery is a new one and the posts are fully functional.
Also, if you just changed your alternator but your battery seems not to be holding charges, it could be a result of the many connected gears, which are draining the battery rapidly.
The four methods above are tips on how to fix a car battery that doesn’t hold a charge.
However, it is important to note that while buying a new battery for your car, you should check and test the battery at the store where you’re buying it from.
Also, stick with the recommended battery size and capacity in your car’s owner’s manual. This can possibly save you from facing battery failure scenarios – at least not sooner than expected.