Have you noticed the temperatures already starting to creep up the thermometer? Summer heat causes more stress on a car battery than cold winter temperatures.
As engineering and technical services manager for Interstate Batteries for more than 25 years, Gale Kimbrough, also known as “Mr. Battery,” is the hot-weather expert with some helpful guidelines to follow when caring for the automobile battery during the hot summer months ahead:
“Extreme heat affects the corrosion factor within a battery,” Kimbrough said. “Battery temperatures under the hood of an automobile can reach 175 degrees to 200 degrees in extreme conditions. This is why it is important for motorists to take necessary precautions of having their vehicle battery checked on a regular basis.”
Mr. Battery has some helpful battery care tips to follow when caring for the automobile battery this summer:
1. Wear protective eyewear, remove all jewelry and wear long sleeves to protect the skin from a possible explosion of battery acid.
2. Inspect the battery case for signs of extreme bulging, cracked or leaking. If you see any of these signs, it’s time to replace your battery.
3. Clean up the connections by removing any corrosion, lead oxidation, paint or rust from the top of the battery with a scouring pad or brass brush. Be sure to brush the corrosion away from the body.
4. If the battery has removable filler caps, open the caps and check the water level in each cell.
5. Make sure the plates are at least half covered. This prevents sulfation and reduces the possibility of an internal battery explosion.
6. If the water level is low, add distilled water (avoid tap water) until the plates are covered.
7. Avoid overfilling, especially in hot weather, because the heat can cause the solution inside to expand and overflow.
8. Have the battery and electrical system professionally tested every three to six months and especially prior to heading out on a trip.
In just 30 seconds, Interstate All Battery Center locations provide motorists with a free printout analysis of their vehicle battery’s condition. To find information and a local Interstate Batteries dealer or Interstate All Battery Center, visit www.interstatebatteries.com.