Even though it is still fairly nice weather, the cold winter months are right around the corner. Now is the best time to prepare your car for the brutal weather of the winter. AAA of Southern New England stated that the #1 reason for car breakdowns during the winter is a dead or weak battery. How do you prevent this from being you this winter?
Car batteries usually have a life of 4 years. If your car battery is near the 2 year mark, start looking for signs of weakness. If you don’t remember when you last replaced the battery look at the letters and numbers on the battery. For example, Interstate Batteries have a code on the cover of the battery. The first letter stands for the month it was manufactured, A = January, B = February, etc. Then the following number indicates the year, 1 = 2011, 2 = 2012, etc.
Signs of battery weakness:
Your car is slow to start or it hesitates a little.
Your check engine light comes on.
Your fluids keep running low.
The battery case looks inflated. Swelling can be caused by excessive heat of the summer and cause it not to last long.
If your battery smells like rotten eggs…replace it!
With any of the above symptoms of possible battery weakness, you can have your car checked out by a mechanic. It is a good idea to have your car thoroughly inspected before the winter. If the battery is over 2 yrs old and you are questioning it going into the cold winter months, it might be a good idea just to replace it. Better safe than sorry!