Car Battery Testing Methods You Can Use At Home

Anyone who is a car fanatic can always tell you how important a car battery is to a car. It plays a key role when it comes to operating the electrical features in your car. This often includes ignition, using the headlights, playing music, washing the windscreen and also using the AC.

When using a cell that has a low voltage, you will notice that your car will start having problems whenever you want to ignite it. You will also notice the headlights starting to go dim or become quite dull at night.

Depending on how you are using the battery, it may last for about 4 or 5 years at maximum. Anyway, to make sure that the device is in good condition and that it's working properly, you will need to be testing it regularly. With that said, let us look at a few ways in which you can do that at home. See more information here

Car Battery Testing at Home With A Voltmeter

car battery testing at home with voltmeter

One of the easiest and most common ways of testing your accumulator at home is by using a voltmeter. You can either use a digital voltmeter or an analog voltmeter depending on your budget and preferences. Before using the voltmeter, you should first ensure that your car has been switched off.

Also, make sure that any other electrical accessory of the vehicle is switched off as they might be draining the cell power. You should then proceed to where the cell is and remove any covers that you may have on the cell terminals. On the red terminal of the battery, connect the voltmeter positive end. The negative end of the voltmeter should also be connected to the black terminal on the power unit.

You can then know the voltage of the battery by checking the readings on the voltmeter. If your car battery is in good condition the voltmeter should give a reading of about 12.4V — 12.7V. If you get a reading of above 12.5V this will mean that the accumulator is in good condition. However, if you're reading is lower than 11.8V, this is an indication that the charge is low, and something should be done about it.

Headlights Testing for Your Car Battery

Check your headlights for a healthy battery

If you have been dealing with automobiles for quite a long period, a voltmeter can't be the only thing you can use to check the charge on a vehicle’s power source. You can also perform a test just by using the headlights. You can just check the performance of the headlights when reversing.

If the lights appear to be quite dimmer than they are usually, then you will know that your battery is low on charge. Brighter headlights don't also mean you are good. This shows that the alternator is perfectly working however, it isn't supplying the accumulator with enough power to recharge fully.

If you didn't notice any changes with your headlights, then the device is functioning fine. Click here to see why it is important to test your vehicle’s power source.

Do You Have the Battery Health Indicator?

car battery health indicator

With the rapid change in technology, a lot of things have also changed with it. When it comes to cars, this power health indicator is the latest technical add-on. This new component is just a cover that you can get installed on the accumulator.

Whenever you start the car, you will notice an arrow that will either shift on the red side the green side. If it is in good working condition, you will see the arrow turning to the green side. When it shifts to the red side, it will be an indication that there is a low charge.

But, if you have a bad power source or if it is completely dead, A black color will be shown. This will help you to know when you need to do the replacement.

How To Perform A Load Test?

For you to perform a load test, make sure that you have a true carbon pile load. You can then proceed by testing the cell at a CCA rating of 1.5. If it is in good condition it will maintain a charge of 9.6 volts at 15 seconds. When you are doing a load test. You should make sure that the accumulator is fully charged.

Using A Power probe 

Another method you can use is by using a power probe. If you do not have a voltmeter this device can come in handy.

Power probe

Using the power probe is quite simple as you only need to tap the positive end on the positive terminal of the car’s power unit and the negative end to the negative terminal of the battery. If the accumulator is in good condition and can work perfectly well, you should receive a reading of about 12.2 - 12.9 volts.

However, before doing the test, make sure that the ignition and any other electronic accessories in the vehicle are switched off.

Car Battery Test with an Ammeter 

You can also test the cell at home using an ammeter. An ammeter is often used to check the charge that is entering and leaving the power unit. This can help you know whether it is getting enough charge supplied by the alternator or not. If you realize that the charge entering is full then this is an indication that your car battery is working great.

Are You Ready to Test Your Car Battery At Home?  

It is a good idea to always check the voltage level of your car’s accumulator. This will let you know whether there is something you need to do about your car’s power unit before you leave. Riding with a bad power cell can be dangerous as you might end up getting stranded in dangerous places.

When inspecting the power source, make sure to check for any bulging sides or any cracks. Also, consider replacing it when you start getting readings that are less than 11.8V. This indicates that you are operating on a battery that has a low charge and therefore might cause you some problems driving.

You can use these few methods to avoid such challenges. However, make sure that you know how to test your car battery first.

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Hatice Degirmenci