What Makes Car Batteries Die in Cold Weather and Avoiding it in Michigan
A Michigan winter can get pretty cold at times, especially when northerly winds descend upon the state and usher in ultra-cold air. This can cause your car battery to die, and then you’ll need to take it in for auto repair or car maintenance in order to get back on the road again. In this article, we’ll discuss why it is that your battery is so vulnerable to damage from extreme cold, and just what you can do to prevent that from happening. Nothing is worse than heading out for work in the morning and discovering that your car is dead, so remember this information and avoid that kind of mishap this winter.
What makes car batteries die in winter
Normally, a car battery operates by converting chemical energy into electrical energy, and this is what powers most of the systems in your vehicle. When the weather gets cold, this whole operation gets slowed down significantly, and when the temperature dips below freezing, you can count on your battery losing roughly one-third of its starting power. That means it will automatically be more difficult to start your car when the temperature is less than 32 degrees Fahrenheit. At the same time, the oil in your engine will become thicker, and this too impedes the successful startup and operation of your car. Since the oil is thicker, it will require even more battery power to get your vehicle going, and this quickly drains away the power stored in the battery.
How to prevent dead batteries in Michigan
There are several tips you can use to prevent your battery from dying unexpectedly after some frigid night in Michigan. First of all, you should have your battery strength tested at the onset of winter, so you know how strong it is before the really cold weather arrives. If your professional mechanic recommends that you switch to a new battery, you should follow his/her advice and put a fresh unit in your vehicle. If you can park your vehicle inside a heated area like a garage, that will allow you to avoid having the worst of the cold weather impact your vehicle.
You should get in the habit when leaving your vehicle for the day to turn off all the electrical accessories, so you’re sure something isn’t draining your battery without your knowledge. All those accessories can represent a serious drain on the life of your battery, so it’s important to ensure that they’re all turned off after using them. Make sure that your car doesn’t sit for long periods of time during cold weather, meaning that it should not be sitting in the driveway for a week at a time.
When you don’t drive your vehicle, it begins to lose power even if nothing is being used. By driving your car regularly, you can keep your battery charged up and you can avoid the possibility of a failure. One last thing you can do is purchase a battery heater, and these are available at all auto parts stores and some department stores as well. By keeping your battery heated during cold weather, you can go a long way toward keeping it operational all winter long.
Need battery help?
If winter does somehow sneak up on you before you’ve had the chance to take precautions, you can call the Showcase Auto Care Center in Michigan at (586) 979-6450. Our team will have you back on the road before you know it, and you’ll be good to go for this season and several more to come.