How Often to Replace Car Battery

Car Battery

Most auto experts will recommend you to replace your battery every 4 to 5 years, but the frequency will differ depending on several factors as well as your Lexus model. You should check your owner’s manual for a more accurate estimate. Learn more about battery care, such as how to know if your car battery needs to be replaced and how much is a replacement car battery, with our service center today! 

How to Know If Your Car Battery Needs to Be Replaced

While we can’t tell you how often to replace your car battery, we can tell you the signs to look out for in Monterey Bay. The following is how to know if your car battery needs to be replaced:

  • Dimming headlights
  • More frequent need for engine revving or jump starts
  • Takes longer to start the engine when you turn the key/push the button
  • Unusual power fluctuations

Causes of Car Battery Deterioration

  • Heat: Hot weather causes the evaporation of liquids inside a car battery, so if you live in a more consistently hot climate your battery life will be inevitably shorter.
  • Vibrations: If your battery’s hold-down clamps are loose, or you drive over rough roads frequently, vibrations will cause internal battery parts to break down faster.
  • Needing a Jump: If you’ve done something like leave your lights on overnight or let your engine idle for too long and require a jump start, this can shorten battery life significantly.
  • Time: A car battery can only go through so many charge cycles, so the death of your car battery is unavoidable, but proper care can prevent the battery from dying on you early. 

How to Test a Car Battery

Our service technicians will check your car battery twice a year whenever you drop by for regular maintenance near Salinas. If you want, you can ask for more tests throughout the year or even test your car battery yourself with these methods:

The Headlight Test: 

  1. Turn on the engine, keep the car in park, and make sure the headlights are on.
  2. Rev the engine and see if the headlight brightness changes.
  3. If the headlights get brighter, that means the current is not strong enough to keep the lights at normal brightness while the car is idling. 
  4. Take your car to a service center at this point for further assessment.

Using a Digital Multimeter:

  1. Set the voltmeter to 20 DC volts.
  2. Under the hood, touch the negative terminal (black) with the negative meter probe (also black).
  3. Touch the positive terminal (red) with the positive meter probe (also red)
  4. Have a friend turn on the headlights and check the voltmeter reading.
  5. At 80℉, 12.5 volts or higher means your battery is fully charged. 12.3 volts means it’s at about 75% charged.11.8 volts or lower means you have 25% or less charge. 

How Much is a Replacement Car Battery? 

A car battery is usually anywhere between $75 and $120. However, if you have a premium battery in Pebble Beach, it could be anywhere up to $200. Hybrid car batteries have a much bigger job, so they can cost anywhere between $1,000 and $6,000. Keep in mind, though, this higher cost is usually offset by the much lower gas consumption.

Learn More About Car Battery Care at Lexus Monterey Peninsula

Now that you know more about car battery replacement, contact us if you have any questions. If you need the help of an expert, make a service appointment online and then come by our Seaside location! 

 

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