About Battery Replacement
Diamonds may be forever, but batteries are not. A car battery lasts approximately 3-4 years – or less in regions with high heat and humidity. A key sign of pending failure could be sluggish starting cycle. Many mechanics suggest having a battery “load tested” once every two years, in an attempt to predict just how much life may be left in your battery.
Auto Repair Centers
Battery Replacement Prices by Make
- Alfa Romeo
- Aston Martin
- Land Rover
Battery Replacement Questions & Answers
How much does it cost to replace a car battery?
Depending on power, size, and quality, prices for a replacement car battery range from about $45 to $250. Your local dealership, auto parts store or automotive service center can check your current battery or hook you up with a new car battery. In many cases, no appointments are necessary.
How long does a car battery last?
The average car, truck or SUV battery should last six years. But there are a lot of key factors that can change that:
- extreme temperatures
- heavy accessory loads
- frequent towing
In those cases, you may only get 3 or 4 years from your car battery.
And, of course, many people have had the regrettable experience of coming out to your car and your battery is dead because someone left the lights on or left a door or trunk open. In that case, all bets are off for the longevity of a battery!
How do I jump start a battery?
The next time you insert the key or push the ignition button and nothing happens, follow these simple steps:
- Pull the jumper cables out of your trunk (you DO have jumper cables, right??) and find another car that can give you a jump.
- Put both vehicles in park and shut off the ignition.
- Attach one of the red clips to the positive terminal on your dead battery and the other red clip to the red POS post on the good battery. If you need help figuring out which terminal is which, look for “POS” or “+”.
- Attach the black clip to the negative (“NEG” or “-“) terminal of the good battery.
- DO NOT attach the black clip to the black battery post on the dead battery. Sparking could ignite the dead battery’s electrolyte fumes. Instead, clip the other black clip to a clean, unpainted metal surface under the hood.
- Start the vehicle with the good battery and let it run for approximately five minutes. Even though the other vehicle isn’t running yet, this will put some charge into its dead battery.
- Now try to start the vehicle with the dead battery.
- If the engine doesn’t turn over, it may need to build up more charge. Rev up the donor engine so that its battery delivers more amperage in the process. Then try again.
- If it starts, don’t turn it off quite yet. Drive a while. The alternator may be able to recharge the battery on its own. If not, the battery charge is too low, and you need a replacement.
How do I replace a car battery?
A confident do-it-your-selfer can replace a vehicle battery. Start by checking your vehicle owner’s manual for the battery’s proper size and location. Find the positive and negative posts. The positive post will have a red plastic cover over it. Look for a + sign stamped onto the battery or printed on a nearby label. Loosen the negative (-) terminal bolt and remove the cable. Be sure not to touch the positive post. Once you loosen the bolt, use a terminal puller to remove the cable. Repeat the sequence with the positive post.
Now remove the clamp or retaining system that keeps the battery in place. Carefully lift out the old battery. Look for any corrosion on the cables and remove it with a wire brush or terminal cleaning tool.
Drop in the new battery so that the positive post lines up with the red cable. Secure it with the battery retaining clamp that you removed earlier. If the battery has anti-corrosion washers, put them in place now and use a thin layer of anti-corrosion grease to prevent buildup. Tighten the positive cable and then do it all over again with the negative (-) black cable.
Make sure the battery is secure and congratulations: you’ve replaced your car’s battery!