How To Replace The Old Battery On Your Car

A friend once shared with me his plans for starting a car battery recharge service. I was quite taken aback as he was holding an MBA from a highly reputed university in the UK, and I expressed my astonishment at what seemed to be a bizarre career goal.

“It’s not what you think. The owner of a car battery recharge service hardly gets time to take aim with a fly swatter”, was the response provided by my friend.

I insisted that he elaborate and so he did.

Car batteries don’t last forever

An automotive battery doesn’t last forever. The lifecycle of a car battery is no more than 4-7 years, after which it’ll give out. Car owners, hence, will need to have their batteries recharged within a fixed time period. Otherwise, their headlights will start to dim when they’re driving on a highway in the middle of the night, or their cars won’t even start and will keep requiring repetitive jump-starts.

“So you see, most importantly this is why car battery recharge stores never see a dearth of customers.”

Replacing a car battery

My friend’s line of reasoning was very convincing. A total of 33977 charging points in the UK are in place across 12289 locations, implying that a car battery recharging station would indeed attract business. Many of the stores also replace the customer’s car batteries, and my friend was thinking along the same lines. But there was something that he hadn’t considered, and that was increasing popularity for DIY.

DIY auto battery installation

Many car owners in the UK prefer to remove and install their car batteries themselves. It’s not rocket science; it’s way simpler. DIY lowers the cost, as hiring a professional auto mechanic translates into additional cost.

For DIY battery maintenance, the very first thing that a car owner needs to do is check the sticker on the battery that displays its purchase date and its expiry date. If the battery is nearing the expiry date, he needs to replace it before it becomes unreliable.

Equipment he needs

To carry out the battery replacement, the car owner needs the following equipment:

  • An adjustable spanner
  • A pair of leather gloves
  • Baking soda and water to neutralize the acid
  • A battery terminal cleaner
  • Safety goggles

None of the equipment is hard to obtain. Most car owners admit that acquiring this equipment is the easiest part.

As he proceeds

The engine should be switched off, and the parking brake on. The car owner is strongly recommended to open the bonnet after switching off the engine. After opening the bonnet, he needs to place a blanket over vulnerable parts of the car, so that any acid that might drip from the battery won’t damage the car.

Removing the cables

The job gets serious from this juncture. The pro-DIY car owner now needs to keep the owner’s manual beside him, so he can check it whenever he needs to. It can tell him whether his car has negative earth. A car having negative earth means the cable attaching the negative terminal of the battery, attaches to the chassis of the vehicle.

Assuming the car does have negative earth, the owner needs to use the adjustable spanner to loosen the clamp that keeps the black earth cable attached to the battery negative terminal. In doing so he needs to remove the black cable from the negative battery terminal. If the car has positive earth, then the car owner needs to remove the red cable attached to the positive terminal of the battery.

Remove the battery

After he has both cables removed, he should remove the battery too. But before that, he needs to loosen all the securing nuts, bolts, and clamps using the adjustable spanner. He should keep his grip firm on the battery at all times to ensure the battery doesn’t fall out of its holder.

Clean the tray

At this point, the car owner needs to use the baking soda and water with the protection of gloves too. He needs to clean the battery tray with baking soda, dissolved in the water. The gloves will ensure his hands don’t come in contact with any of the corrosive elements of the battery. After he cleans the tray, he should dry it and put it back in place.

Placing the new battery

He needs to make sure the new battery is facing in the same direction as the old one with the positive and negative terminals in the same place. After he secures the battery, he needs to replace the cables in reverse order, i.e. replace the positive cable first, and then replace the negative cable.

A post by

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *