(NAPS)—To help you avoid getting stranded with a dead car battery on your next family road trip, Gale Kimbrough, also known as “Mr. Battery,” offers these suggestions:
- Take a few minutes to read about your battery in your car’s manual and become familiar with the type of battery it is, where it is and how it can be cleaned safely.
- At the start of each new season, check the battery to make sure it is still fully charged for the excursions ahead.
- When working with your car battery, wear protective eyewear, remove all jewelry and wear long sleeves to protect your arms from battery acid discharge.
- Perform a visual inspection to see if the battery case is showing signs of extreme bulging, cracking or leaking. Replace your battery if you see any of these signs.
- If your battery has removable filler caps, open them and check the water level in each cell. If the level is low, add distilled water (not tap water) until the plates are covered, preferably to one-half inch above the plates. This prevents the buildup of sulfate crystals, which can reduce the overall battery charge and performance.
- Avoid overfilling, because heat can cause the electrolyte solution inside to expand and overflow.
- Clean up the connections by removing any corrosion and lead oxidation and make sure to brush the dirt and grime off the case.
- To remove the battery cables, first disconnect the negative cables and then the positive. To reinstall the cables, first connect the positive cables and then the negative.
- Be sure the battery is mounted securely in place to minimize vibration. Excessive vibration is harmful to the battery plates and terminals and could lead to battery failure. After completing reconnection, use a protective spray on the terminal connections.
- Have your battery and electrical system professionally tested every three to six months, especially prior to heading out on a trip or extreme changes in temperature.
In just 30 seconds, Interstate All Battery Center locations can provide a free printed analysis of your vehicle battery condition.
For further information and the location of a nearby Interstate Batteries dealer or Interstate All Battery Center, visit www.Interstatebatteries.com.
Checking the battery is a wise move before any long car trip.