During the Coronavirus outbreak and lockdown in the UK, we’ve been known to use our cars less as we stay at home more often. However, it’s important during this time to keep maintaining your vehicle so it’s ready when need to use it. Despite our cars nowadays being so technologically advanced, you may think it’s odd that the battery on your car could cause issues. Almost a third of breakdowns on the road are due to flat batteries or battery related complications. Therefore it’s sensible to keep checking and maintaining your car battery. In this article we address how to prevent a flat car battery when our cars are sat for longer periods on our driveways without use.
Keep using your car to keep the battery charged
The first and most obvious method of maintaining your battery is to keep running it. Most of us are likely to have used our car daily, or at least a couple of days a week before lockdown without any battery issues. Therefore, it’s a simple fact that running your car (whether it’s to the shops or simply on your drive) for 15-20 minutes every week will help keep the battery charged. Avoid short journeys and stop/starting in short bursts (as starting your car drains battery power), and make sure the car gets up to temperature so that the battery is given some time to be charged by the alternator.
Use a trickle-charger to charge your car battery
If you have a private drive, then another option without starting your car’s engine is to purchase a trickle-charger to maintain your battery’s health. You can then charge the battery each week from your household mains electricity connection to keep a charge. Some trickle-chargers also have battery health monitors to give you an indication of the battery charge. Be careful when connecting the charger to your battery and follow the instructions otherwise you could damage your battery.
Disconnect all non-essential electrical items and alarms
If your car’s battery has recently been replaced then it’s likely to hold charge significantly longer than a battery which is over 2 years old. Therefore disconnecting electrical items from charge sockets such as phones or sat navs will help prevent battery drain. Also consider turning your car’s alarm off (if your car has this setting) to save the battery, although be aware of the implications of having no alarm on should your car be targeted by thieves.
Starting your car when the battery is flat
Should you find your car’s battery is flat and won’t start your vehicle then don’t fear. You’ll need to jump start the car either using a jump start pack if you have one, or another vehicle such as your neighbours car. Follow your manufacturer’s instructions carefully when jump starting and try to avoid electrical shock. If you’re looking for more details on how to jump start a car read our article.
Battery fault diagnostics in Bath
If you’re experiencing any issues with your car’s battery, or issues relating to the electrical functionality of your car at this moment, our team at MCM Garage in Bath would be happy to help diagnose the issue and help get your car up and running again. Book an appointment with our garage today or call us on 01761 415 501.