Hi, I'm Luis Johnson, an automobile technician, and power equipment professional. By profession, I'm a businessman and operate a car workshop. I have created this...Read more
Once a car battery dies, it is frustrating to experience and very expensive and time-consuming to replace. So, you need to know how to fix dead car battery to save some extra money and time.
Jump-starting a car might be the easiest solution to fix a dead car battery. To do so, all you need is a jumper cable and an extra car with a working battery. The battery can also be fixed using distilled water or Epsom salt.
Today, in this discussion, we’ll focus on all the potential ways to fix a dead car battery. We should also go over the symptoms of a bad battery and how you can protect your car battery from dying.
How Does a Car Battery “Die?”
There are usually a variety of reasons behind a car battery going bad, and it can happen in several ways. Among them, the most common way is a faulty battery charging system or corroded battery terminals.
Here are some of the most common ways in which a car battery usually dies:
Defective Car Alternator
When the ignition is on, the alternator sends power to the battery to be charged. So, if the alternator gets damaged, the battery will dry.
Damaged Charging System
A battery can also die if the car’s charging system is defective. It happens when the system fails to produce at least 13.5 volts.
Corroded Battery Terminals
The battery terminals tend to get corroded because of regular usage. So, if the terminals become corroded, it can lead the battery to drain.
Weather conditions play an important role in the health of a car’s battery. So, a battery can be dyed if the temperature is too cold or too hot outside the car.
This is a significant way in which a car battery usually dies. It is also known as a parasitic load.
Sometimes, the electrical components such as headlights, door lights, radio, alarm system, and clock run when the ignition is off. But it can cause the battery to drain, which is called a parasitic drain.
What are the Symptoms of a Dead Car Battery?
Different symptoms of a dead car battery indicate the battery is about to die or completely die. Here are some of them:
Battery Warning Light On
In modern vehicles, another significant feature is called a battery warning light. The car computer will trigger this light when the battery fails to take charge or malfunctions.
Corroded Battery Terminals
Another possible symptom of a dead car battery is corrosion in the battery terminals. Typically, a car battery will start getting corroded when it gets damaged or fails to take charge.
Odd Smells Coming From The Battery
If a car battery is already dead, it may start spreading different odd smells. This is because when the battery cells die, the lead acid battery’s acid will leak.
This liquid spreads bad smells. It will most often feel like sulfur or the smell of rotten eggs.
The Car Fails To Get Started
Usually, a car battery gives enough power to the starter motor. It lets the car get started.
So, when a car battery is dead, it literally fails to power up the starter motor. As a result, the car’s ignition is unable to respond, and the car can’t get started.
Electrical Components Don’t Respond
Electrical components such as door lights, headlights, and dim lights get the electrical power from the car’s battery to run. So, if the battery doesn’t have any power or becomes dead, it won’t be able to activate these electrical components as usual.
For instance, the electrical components of a car won’t run if its battery is dead. But these electrical parts may also have failed themselves. So, check them first to see if they’re working properly. If they’re all good, then the car has experienced a dead battery.
The Starter Motor Starts Cranking
Sometimes, the starter motor on a car cranks, but the car doesn’t get started at all. In this case, the car battery may be dead, or there’s a problem with the starter itself.
So, check the starter first and see if there is any issue getting with this motor. If there is no problem with the starter motor, then the problem might be because of a dead battery.
6 Possible Ways to Fix a Dead Car Battery
Several methods can fix a dead car battery and allow you to run the car until you get a new battery. Here are some of the most potent methods of fixing a dead car battery. They will revive a battery for 8-12 hours or even a single day.
1. Jumpstart The Car
The most popular and simplest way to fix a dead car battery is to jump-start the car. It is very effective when the battery is about to die or has just died.
To jump-start your car, you will need a set of jumper cables and a second vehicle with a running or alternative battery. But never try to jump-start your car with a frozen battery.
If you don’t have an alternative car battery or an extra vehicle, you can start your car using a portable jump starter. It is probably the fastest way to revive a dead car battery.
2. Use A 18-volt Drill Battery
This is another popular way to fix a dead car battery. It is a standard version of the jump-start method. In this method, you don’t need a second vehicle or an alternative battery.
It requires an 18-volt drill battery and jumps leads. According to this method, you must connect the 18-volt drill battery to your dead battery with the jump leads and then try to start the vehicle.
3. Epsom Salt
Magnesium sulfate (MgSO4) or Epsom salt is a strong acid that is very effective at tipping the chemical balance inside the dead battery cells. This method is helpful when the electrolyte level is low.
According to this method, you’ll need to make a solution of Epsom salt and warm water. To do so, liquefy one part Epsom salt in three parts warm water. Then cover each of the cells of the battery with this solution.
4. Distilled Water
Like the Epsom salt solution, this is a way to revive the battery when the battery has low electrolyte levels. It will be able to submerge the plates fully and create enough reaction area in the cells. This is also enough to help the engine to turn a bit more.
5. Using Hot Ash
If the battery is dead because of freezing conditions, it might be a good idea to revive the battery. To do so, gather some hot ash and disconnect the battery from the car.
Then remove the filler cap from the battery and place it on the ash. After that, wait for a while until the battery is warm enough. Then, reconnect the battery to the car and start the engine.
6. Adding Aspirin Solution
Like Epsom and distilled water solution, aspirin is also a helpful way to fix a dead car battery. As the name suggests, you’ll need some 350 mg to 500 mg aspirin tablets.
Crush the tablets very well and mix the powder with distilled water. Then, fill the battery cells with this aspirin solution.
How to Prevent a Car Battery from Dying?
Like other components, the car battery also needs regular monitoring and maintenance to keep it in good condition. Though a dead car battery can be revived and lasts for some days, it isn’t a permanent solution.
It may need to be replaced, and it will be very expensive. So, here are some easy tips and tricks that you can follow to extend the lifespan of your car’s battery:
- Drive your car regularly, so the battery doesn’t run out.
- Clean and lubricate the battery terminals regularly.
- Regularly check and ensure that the electrolyte level is accurate.
- Turn off all the electrical accessories when you don’t use the car.
- Don’t let your car sit for a longer period.
- Check the battery and ensure that the battery is charging properly.
- Replace the battery when it is outdated.
Often, we find people want to know more information about a dead car battery. So, here is some more information regarding a dead car battery:
What Happens If My Car Battery Has A Dead Cell?
When your car battery has a dead cell, it becomes unable to produce enough power to start the car. It will also fail to power up the car’s electrical accessories, such as the headlights, door lights, or dim lights.
Can I Recharge My Car Battery With A Dead Cell?
The simplest answer to this question is NO. When a battery has a dead cell, it lets the other cells drain, and finally, the battery fails to take power. But a dead battery with dead cells can be revived to start the car.
Will A Car Battery Last With A Dead Cell?
Yes, it will. Depending on the car’s model, a car battery will last about four or six weeks with a dead cell. But within this period, it’s better to replace the battery to prevent further damages.
Does A Dead Car Battery Harm The Alternator?
No, a dead car battery won’t harm the alternator of the car. The performance of the alternator can be affected badly because of a dead battery, but it won’t become damaged or bad.
You can follow the above solutions when experiencing a dead car battery. But it is definitely very annoying and expensive also.
So, it’s better to try to prevent the battery from failing. In this case, charge your battery regularly and check the charging system to see if it works properly. It is also crucial to replace the old battery on time.
Being more conscious while traveling or taking longer routes is also very essential. So, bringing an alternative battery with the car is a good idea. You may also carry the necessary tools for fixing a dead car battery.