For anyone who is a new car owner has a question on their mind, “how much is a car battery?” Every car owner has to change their car’s battery more than one time while owning a car. The day your car stops working or does not turn on, should not be the day when people shop for their car. This is not really the case as most people buy a new battery when they face a problem with it.
A car battery just like any other component of a car eventually goes bad. That is why it is important to be prepared for such a scenario. The question still remains how much is a car battery and which one is the best for the price.
- Introduction To A Car Battery
- How Does A Car Battery Work
- How Much Does A New Battery Cost
- Frequently Asked Questions
Introduction To A Car Battery
A car battery is an integral part of a car. It might look like one of the most easily treatable systems, but there are much more complex parts of the electrical system. An individual, especially in today’s day and age, needs to know how the electrical system works. Especially if they are a new car owner. The last thing anyone wants to experience is to get stranded with a dead car battery. The more an individual knows about this battery system, the more he/she is equipped to face a problem like this.
Usually, the average life of a car battery ranges between 3 to five years. Problems like bad battery habits and exposure to extreme temperatures can cause your battery’s lifespan to decrease. Car batteries lose the ability to hold an electric charge, especially in conditions like these.
1. What Is A Flat Battery?
A battery is responsible for turning on the car and making all the electronic components work properly. Therefore you want your battery to always work perfectly fine. A car battery usually has the ability to hold a charge for about 5 years. Once a car battery has lost the ability to hold any charge or the voltage is under 12V that means that your battery is dead. A dead battery is also known as a flat battery.
The main symptoms of a dead battery are no lights on the dashboard, the engine won’t turn and the car won’t respond to any of the buttons on the dashboard. To fix a dead or a flat battery what you need to do is jump start the car and allow the alternator to recharge the battery. What you can also do is buy a car battery charger. That can also help you get rid of this problem.
2. Checking And Testing A Car Battery
While maintaining a car battery, the first thing you need to do is visually inspect both the terminals and the connectors of the battery. The second thing an individual needs to do is check the terminals and connectors of the car’s battery. The terminals of the battery need to be lean and rust-free.
Only then can the battery give out the correct output for the car to function. You also need to look out for the connectors. They should be clean and connected tightly to the terminals for the output needed by the vehicle to operate.
A rusty or loose connection to the battery might be the root cause of several problems related to your car. A rusty or loose battery may cause some problems in the transfer of electricity from the battery to the car and vice versa. To avoid such problems, an individual needs to clean the battery terminals and connectors regularly.
The first thing you need to do is turn off the car and disconnect the battery with caution. After that what you need is some battery cleaner and remove the rust from the terminals with a bristle brush. Once you have done these things you need to wipe and dry the terminals before you reconnect the battery.
3. How To Check The Battery’s Condition
Here is an explanation of everything you need to do to check the condition of your battery yourself. You will need a multimeter for this:
- First of all, you need to set the multimeter to a 20 volts setting.
- After that, connect the multimeters’ red probe to the positive terminal and the black probe to the negative.
- After the multimeter has taken its reading, the voltage needs to be under 12.6 volts. This will help you confirm that the battery is flat.
- On the other hand, if the voltage is more than 12.6 volts, then the battery is perfect and in good condition. This means it can hold the charge.
4. Testing The Alternator
An alternator is a vital part of the electrical system of a vehicle. It is responsible for turning on the car and the smooth working of the car’s electrical system. If your car battery is flat, the next step you need to undertake is to check the alternator.
Considering the fact that your battery is flat, you will have to jump-start the car. The only other way to test a car’s alternator is to remove it and then test it. This can be extremely complicated. Here is how to test your alternator:
- The first step is to jumpstart your car. If you have a manual transmission, another way to jumpstart your car is by pushing the car and putting it in gear.
- Secondly, once the car is turned on, connect the multimeter red probe to the positive terminal and the black probe to the negative terminal.
- Set the multimeter’s test set to the 20-volt settings.
- The multimeter should read anywhere between 14.2-14.7 volts. If the reading on the meter is about 13 volts, then you have a weak alternator. This will not be able to charge the batteries. Especially when you turn on accessories like the headlights and air-conditioning.
- If the multimeter reads far below 14.2 volts that means you’re in need of a new alternator and replacing the alternator. Make sure you also refer to our guide on how long should an alternator last and how long do alternators last, as well as the alternator repair cost.
The cost of getting a new alternator is around $500. For some of the cars out there a new alternator can be as cheap as $200 (once you’re aware of how long does it take to replace an alternator). On the other hand, some premium cars out there can be extremely expensive.
How Does A Car Battery Work
As said before, the traditional function of a battery is to power the electronic components of a car. The main function of a battery is well known by everyone but people do not know what else is a car battery responsible for. A car battery also is responsible for powering parts of the car like the starter motor, the spark plugs, lights, all electrical accessories, etc.
Usually, the life span of a car battery is about 3 to 5 years on average. Bad driving habits and if the battery is exposed to extreme temperatures can shorten the life of a car battery. Over time a car battery usually loses the ability to hold an electrical charge. This further makes the supply of power unavailable which prevents an individual from starting an engine. This is what is known as a flat battery.
An individual should know about how the electrical system and the car’s battery work. The car battery is like the heart of a vehicle. That is why the last thing you want is to be stuck with a dead or a bad battery.
How Much Does A New Battery Cost
Maintaining a car is usually extremely expensive and cumbersome. Technology is not perfect and things can go wrong at a point in time. We all know it, but when you’re faced with unexpected problems like a failing battery, knowing everything about it, from the price to the cost of fitting becomes a priority. Choosing a particular battery can be extremely overwhelming because of the number of options available in the market.
On average, a car battery can cost you anywhere between $100-$200. The price usually depends upon the size of the engine and the voltage needed for the car to work. Here is a list of things that will help you choose the correct battery for your car.
1. Car Battery Performance and cost
The performance of the battery is one of the main features that we need to check while upgrading the battery of your car. Different cars have different needs. To give you an example, an older car that does not have a lot of technology is not going to require as much from a battery as a newer or luxury car would need.
A battery’s cost is also affected by the external conditions that it faces. One of the ways in which batteries are rated is by their cold cranking amps (CCA). This measurement help’s a consumer know how well a car will perform in the cold weather. The main responsibility of the CCA ratings tells its customers how many amps the battery can deliver at 0 degrees F for 30 seconds. It does this while still maintaining a certain minimum voltage.
If you live in a colder climate that places higher demands on the car battery, you can expect the price tag to reflect that higher CCA.
2. Warranty And How Long The Battery Will Last
Whenever you hear a product coming with a solid warranty it just puts the consumer’s mind at peace. A battery with a huge warranty can really be helpful in situations where the battery fails unexpectedly. Just knowing the fact that the battery will be replaced free of charge for a certain amount of time can give you the motivation to pay a little bit extra. Different companies offer different warranties which should be considered while buying a battery.
The battery’s warranty and life expectancy are directly related to the cost of the battery. A battery with a cheaper price tag does sound like a good deal but it generally doesn’t come with a good warranty. It is important to find a sweet spot between the cost of the battery and the warranty they offer.
3. Battery Construction
Technology is an area where innovation and advancements take place every day. Batteries are no different, they have advanced a lot over the years. The two main types of batteries are: flooded lead-acid batteries and absorbed glass mat (AGM).
3.1. Flooded Lead Acid Batteries
The old tried and true battery technologies are the flood lead acid batteries. The most important function of your vehicle’s battery is to power the starter with further results in getting your engine running. Turning the engine on takes a huge amount of energy and that is where the lead acid batteries shine. These lead acid batteries deliver power in bursts. These batteries then further get recharged with the help of an alternator.
A lead acid battery is made up of sex cells placed inside the case. Each of these cells has a 2.1- volt battery. So all of them together comprise a 12.6 -volt automotive battery. Each of those six cells is made up of a positive plate and at least one negative plate. Inside these cells are insulating separators that prevent the positive and negative plates from touching. All of them are submerged in an electrolyte fluid that is a mixture of sulfuric acid and water.
3.2. Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) Batteries
Absorbed glass mat batteries are a new type of technology that is a superior type of lead acid battery. Rather than having the lead plates and sulfuric acid, AGM batteries use fiberglass separators. The acid is completely absorbed into these separators. Here is a list of the merits of this design.
- The most important advantage of having an AGM battery is a spill-proof design. A spillproof design makes the battery of battery quality and that is why it has a higher price.
- There are certain gases that would normally be released in the normal use of a flooded lead acid battery. Instead, they are absorbed into the fiberglass mat. This does not only help in the issues of evaporating electrolytes. This also allows the battery to be mounted in any position.
- Another merit of having an AGM battery also results in your battery having a longer life.
- An AGM battery has a better ability to retain a charge during periods of non-use.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most popular and frequently asked questions about the car batteries that are present in your cars.
How Much Volts Is A Car Battery
When the engine is turned off, a fully juiced-up car battery voltage measures up to about 12.6 volts. The 12.6 volts is labeled as a “resting voltage”. When the car is turned in, the voltage usually rises up to 13.5 or 14.5. This usually happens due to the alternator of the car. There are 6 cells that are present inside of a battery and each of these cells holds a 2.1- volt. So all of them placed together comprise a 12.6 -volt automotive battery. Each of those six cells is made up of at least one positive plate and one negative plate. Inside these cells are insulating separators that prevent the positive and negative plates from touching. All of these sex cells are submerged in an electrolyte fluid that is a mixture of sulfuric acid and water.
How Much Is A Battery For An Electric Car
Electronic vehicles have been introduced by several automotive companies all around the world. With the increase in global warming and the fossil fuels depleting every day, the future does hold a place for electric cars. Electronic vehicles are powered by batteries. They are the same rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that are present in the electronic devices used in the modern world. The only difference is that they are extremely big. A battery of an electric car has cells that are grouped in packs. The most expensive component in each battery cell is the cathode. The electrodes are responsible for holding the charge. At the current rates and pack size, the cost of a medium size EC can cost you anywhere around $6,300/-. Even though the battery pack sizes have decreased by about 89%, but are still very expensive.
How Much Is A Used Car Battery
Buying a used car battery can be an extremely risky move. As car batteries become used, they tend to get worn down over time. Used batteries face the risk of leaking battery fluid and can potentially harm the engine parts of your vehicle. If the price of a used battery is too good to be true, it is probably because the battery has lost the ability to hold a charge. There are several shops that sell used car batteries. A used car battery can usually cost you about 50% for a battery that might have some juice left. Used car batteries work extremely poorly and might cost you more than what you expect in the long run.
How Much Is A Battery For A Hybrid Car
Hybrid cars have taken over the automotive market and have become extremely popular. Different hybrid batteries are made up of different materials in them. For example, the company Toyota uses nickel-metal-hydride. Other hybrid batteries might use sealed lead acid batteries. Although most modern hybrid cars use lithium ion batteries. Each of these hybrid car batteries has different manufacturing costs. Therefore the cost to replace these batteries is also different. A change in the hybrid battery can cost you anywhere from $1000-$6000 alongside the labor cost. In addition to paying for the battery, there will also be costs for testing the new battery. These parts of the battery replacement can cost you an extra $1500.
How Much Is A Car Battery At Walmart
Walmart is an American multinational retail corporation that operates a chain of hypermarkets. In layman’s terms, Walmart is a departmental store where an individual buys anything, from groceries to parts for their cars. It is one of the biggest cooperation in the united states with huge revenue. An individual can buy almost anything at a Walmart, that too at a relatively cheaper price. The advantage at Walmart is that there are a variety of brands available to choose from. You can choose a battery based on the price and the warranty offered. Usually, the price of a car battery is based on size but an average size battery usually costs around $75 in a Walmart facility.
How Much Is A Car Battery Charger
A car failure can happen at any given point in time. A car failure is usually caused due to a dead battery. Anyone enthusiast who owns a car, a motorcycle, an SUV, or a can should own a car battery charger in their tool kit. A car battery is an integral part of the electronic system of an automobile, so having a dead battery can be extremely stressful. Going on a short driver, which means constant starting and stopping can cause several problems for the battery. The battery will have to put greater effort than normal. Add different accessories like air conditioner, headlights, windows, stereo, etc can also be the cause for your battery losing charge. That is why it is important to keep a battery charger at home, this helps keep the battery of your charged and running.
Vehicles that are sold in today’s day and age have several electronic features that make the life of consumers comfortable. That is why a car battery in good health is extremely important. With the introduction of new technology like hybrid systems and electric cars, car batteries have become even more important.
The battery of a car is extremely important and with the new technology, a dead battery can cause several problems. That is why it is important to know all the information about the electrical system of a car. Alongside that, it is also important to know about the batteries of the car, how they work how much they cost, etc. Knowing about the different types of batteries and their cost of them can help an individual to make an informed decision when facing any problem related to the battery of the car.