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Your Guide to Car Battery Quality Testing

Car Battery
The ability to test the integrity of your car battery, whether for maintenance or for occasional checks, is a critical skill to have.

Since the electrical system of your automotive car battery is essential to almost every component and function of the vehicle, you need to identify signs of weaknesses to prevent a costly problem from happening. Make sure your mechanic does routine checks or you can do it yourself.

Below are some guides that will help you test the quality of your car battery:

New Batteries

While the actual electrical outflow of batteries varies, it should support all the necessary functions of the vehicle from the ignition to the air conditioning. Fully charged batteries will usually have 12.6 volts or higher depending on the brand. When turned on, the average voltage will play at a ballpark 14 to 15 volts. The best and most convenient way to determine the voltage is through the use of a multimeter.

Some practical tips:

  • If the multimeter does not light up at all or is dim upon contact with the alternator, this means that the battery is either dead or will soon lose all charge.
  • On the contrary, a well-lit multimeter indicates good battery health and charge.
  • If you don’t have a multimeter on hand, you can determine the battery quality by looking at the brightness of the headlights as soon as you start. If it does not produce enough luminance or the exposure varies throughout the day, it may be time to have the battery recharged or replaced.
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Load Testing

Another great measure to determine the quality of your batteries is through load testing. To pass this test, the battery should maintain a voltage output of 9.6 volts for 15 seconds in a one-half CCA rating with 70°F temperature or higher. Ask your mechanic to perform this test with a carbon pile load for a more accurate result.

Car batteries are just as important as the fuel. They both power the vehicle in ways that cannot be replicated by the other.

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