How healthy is your car battery?

It is so annoying when you get a flat car battery! Sometimes it can even occur without warning. This happened to my family on the first day of an epic two week, 4,000km road trip. Thankfully we were right near an auto store and were able to get a jump start so that we could find a service centre that could replace the battery as we didn’t want to risk another failure on our trip. I can report there were no further mishaps, thankfully!

New YouGov research from CTEK has revealed that Australian motorists spent an estimated $761million on replacing their car battery in the last 12 months alone. The CTEK Battery Check Survey of 1,065 Australian motorists looked at the impact of flat car batteries on consumer’s time and wallets.

It’s not just your daily driver you should think about when it comes to battery health, but also your garage queen. If you have a car that is only driven a limited amount of time each month its battery will suffer. The solution is a trickle charger that maintains battery power when your car is not being used.

The CTEK Battery Check also found that the majority of Australian motorists aren’t taking the simple steps required for maintaining the health of their car batteries.

Extending car battery life

Short road journeys, particularly in urban areas, can often involve frequent stopping and starting of the engine, putting immense pressure on the vehicle battery and requiring it to work harder. Couple this with the immense demands of modern vehicle technology, and you’ll find more current is being drained from the battery than the alternator can provide, meaning the battery won’t have enough power to charge the starter motor.

The battery, which is designed to start the car and balance the electrical demands of the system, suffers as a result and rarely gets recharged above 80 per cent of capacity. Regular short journeys in modern cars can therefore significantly impact a car’s battery life long-term.

Helping Aussies save money

Most motorists are not aware that when their battery loses its charge it impacts the fuel economy – with the research finding only 20 per cent of people understanding that when the battery is drained, the fuel economy is reduced. Petrol prices are on the rise globally, but despite this, the research reveals most motorists (80 per cent) have no idea they can increase their fuel efficiency with a simple charging solution.

 Better battery health

More than 80 per cent of Australian motorists will experience a flat battery at some stage in their lives. When a flat battery is detected it can be a major inconvenience. To help motorist’s better look after their vehicle, CTEK has developed a list of tips for maintaining better car battery health:

1.     REGULAR CHARGING: Australian motorists are more likely to have a flat battery replaced than recharging it.

“Regular charging of your car’s battery can prolong its life by two to three times, ultimately saving you money by reducing the frequency of having to buy a new battery,” said Robert Briggs, Director of Sales and Marketing, Asia Pacific, CTEK.   

“A charger, like the CTEK CT5 Start/Stop, can be used just once a month to keep a car’s battery in good health. If you’re heading off on holiday and leaving the car in the garage, by just simply connecting the charger to the battery for the duration you’re away, you can ensure the car will be ready to go when you return,” added Mr Biggs.

 2.     MONEY SAVER: Battery failure is often reported as the number one cause for breakdowns around the world, and with a growing amount of sensitive electronic equipment being added to today’s modern cars, this issue is on the rise. As a result, motorists are unnecessarily paying for battery replacements, towing, and mechanic time, and having to throw their existing batteries away. Car battery smart chargers can help you save time, battery costs, towing costs, repair costs, and the environment through regular battery maintenance.

 3.     KEEP IT COOL: Most drivers are likely aware that warm weather can put a tremendous strain on a car’s cooling system. But it’s probably not as well known that heat is also the number one killer of car batteries. While freezing weather brings out the weaknesses in a battery, it’s actually hot weather that causes a significant reduction in battery life. Motorists should bear this in mind as we experience these heatwave conditions across Australia.

 4.     START SMART: After leaving the car’s lights on and draining the battery, most Australians (64 per cent) would solve the issue by using jumper leads and either going for a drive, or leaving the car idling. However, this won’t fully recharge a car’s battery, and could in fact create long-term damage. The most reliable way to restore your battery is to use a charger.

 5.     GET ENERGY EFFICIENT: Start/Stop technology is great for the environment, as it’s designed to increase a vehicle’s fuel efficiency, reducing emissions. However, it can also put a considerable strain on your battery in traffic – the battery may need to start the engine several times in a matter of minutes, all while keeping the vehicle’s electronics powered.

 By keeping the battery fully charged, you can take full advantage of all the Start/Stop technology benefits, such as better fuel efficiency and lower CO2 emissions. If you only make short journeys, and own a start/stop vehicle, it’s particularly important you use a product like the CTEK CT5 Start/Stop regularly to keep your battery in peak condition.

 The CTEK CT5 range starts from $169 RRP, and is available to purchase from Repco and Battery World stores nationwide. For further information on CTEK, the leading global brand in the care and maintenance of vehicle batteries, visit: www.ctek.com/au.

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