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Winter Driving Tips: 3 Signs Your Vehicle’s Battery is About to Fail

Let’s not leave it to chance next time. Typically, a battery doesn’t die “all of a sudden”. Normally they will warn you that the end is near by displaying unusual behaviour such as…

Slow Engine Start

It takes a considerable amount of power to start any vehicle and all of that power comes from your vehicle’s battery. Once started, the alternator helps by replenishing the power used during startup, but initially, it’s all up to the battery.

When a battery is nearly out of life, you will likely notice that your vehicle is not as eager to start and that the engine turns over slowly. It’s critical that you don’t brush this off as inconsequential because most often you only get one “slow start” before the battery gives up altogether. In fact, if your vehicle starts at all, it would be best to assume that it will not start again, so drive directly to your dealer to get the battery serviced or replaced.

If that battery is too far gone, then you may only hear a series of clicks, which means there is not enough power to turn the engine and, sadly, that you’re not going anywhere. If you happen to get help in the form of a “jump” from another vehicle or a roadside service, again, it would be best to assume the battery will not start again, so drive directly to your dealer for help.

Electrical Issues

Your battery provides the required power to run all of the electronic components in your vehicle as well. In today’s vehicles, there’s a vast array of electronic components at work the second you turn the key. If your battery is failing, then there may not be enough power to keep all of them working properly. Some may start to act erratically, or not work at all. One of the most common issues seen is dim headlights. If your lights are dimmer than they were, it’s not likely a problem with your lights. It’s most likely a problem with your battery.

Bottom line: If something worked fine yesterday, but today it is acting “weird”, then do not ignore it. Get to a service centre immediately and have a trained technician investigate the problem.

Dashboard Warning Light

Today, most vehicles have a warning light that will specifically alert you when there are battery problems. It will come on if the battery is not being replenished properly or if the battery is suffering from some kind of internal defect. These lights are often referred to as “idiot lights” because they are not specific about what exactly is wrong, but make no mistake, if your battery light comes on, you are definitely having a significant problem and you need to get it looked at immediately. These things never fix themselves and only ever get worse.

So, do your best to get familiar enough with your vehicle that you can identify when it starts to act strangely. Cars and trucks are not “moody”, so if they don’t respond to your usual commands in a very predictable and familiar way, chances are you need to have it looked at.

If you would like your battery checked or would like the peace of mind of a pre-winter service to check all your vehicles major components and fluid levels, then click the SERVICE REQUEST button below.

Jan 10th, 2018