For those of us who either drive or own vehicles, one of the last things we want to experience is a dead battery. But this can easily be avoided.
My family and I bought our first car in November of 1989, and since then, we’ve either owned or driven several other vehicles, both gasoline-powered as well as diesel-powered. What I’m going to share works for all.
When you have finished your driving for the day… and please note… this applies to new batteries as well as to those which are not so new, (two years is considered a normal time for a regular lead/acid battery to work well), do NOT just switch off the ignition and lock up the vehicle! With the engine still running, switch off all the lights, radio and any other electrical appliances: accelerate the engine to a “fast idle” speed which is just above its normal idle speed, but do not race it. Keep the engine running at this brisk idle for about one minute, then release the accelerator and switch off the ignition.
I have found that this significantly improves the state of the battery while it is resting and gives you a quicker start the next day. Of course, do not neglect to check your battery cells periodically to ensure that the “plates” are covered with electrolyte, unless it is a maintenance-free battery. If necessary, buy a bottle of “Battery Life” or any other brand of distilled water, which is usually available cheaply from most gas stations, and gently add it to each cell until the dark plates are just covered. Do not overfill.
I am currently experimenting with a friend’s car which has a maintenance-free battery, and so far, that one minute of fast idling leaves it at a high charge between 12.97 and 13.25 volts when I check next day.
I hope this little tip will help you greatly in maintaining your battery. Feel free to leave comments or questions. I’ll welcome your feedback here on the site. I hope to also give some other timely tips if my life is spared, not only on cars, but on other areas of interest to me, and which may also be of help to you who will be following my tips. I’m a customer-centric type of person and always try to make sure that others benefit as well.