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Batteries

Everything about Batteries

You surely know, without battery, you will not be able to start your modern vehicle's engine. Unfortunately, battery defects are still on the top position on the UK's breakdown statistics. The many appliances in the current vehicles such as the air-conditioning system, the heating system or the infotainment system constantly put a strain on the energy storage. There are special battery solutions for vehicles with a start-stop system, which are often more expensive than conventional electricity storage because of their larger capacity. So the price of a battery depends on the storage capacity, measured in amperes (Ah) and the battery type (lead accumulator, AGM battery, EFB battery or GEL battery). A distinction is made between open systems where distilled water can be replenished and closed, so-called "maintenance-free" battery systems. The trend on the battery market is clearly moving towards the closed system.

Below, we have put some information together for you about car batteries you might find interesting and helpful. If your car's battery needs changing or if you are thinking about upgrading to a high capacity battery, please contact us or just come to see us at our Roberts Tyres workshop in Sleaford. We will be happy to give advice and find the right battery solution for your vehicle.

Types of car batteries

If you want to buy a new car battery, you might be somehow overwhelmed and confused by the enormous varieties on the market...

As a matter of principle, closed, so-called maintenance-free batteries are the most commonly used ones these days. The generally common trade name as a starter battery is actually not quite correct, because basically it is a lead accumulator, which is always charged by the generator and is partially discharged by the appliances in the vehicle.

The different types of batteries:

Lead-acid accumulators: The so-called "wet-battery" - Most common form of car batteryAGM batteries: Light and therefore also suitable for motorcycles. Instead of heavy lead plates, a light, absorbing glass fiber layer is installed. AGM stands for Absorbent Glass Mat.EFB batteries: EFB stands for Enchanced Flooded Battery. Used mainly in vehicles with start-stop systems. A kind of braid made of polyester serves as storage medium.GEL batteries: contains gelled acid, because of the strong power discharge, especially in high-performance systems.Lithium-ion batteries: Used because of their high energy density, especially in electric and hybrid vehicles.

In modern vehicles, car batteries usually have to do heavy work due to the many additional appliances such as air conditioning, heated seats, navigation system and much, much more. It is not surprising that there are many different car battery types: 55ah, 60ah, 70ah, 44ah etc. The specification of the amperes (Ah) measures the storage capacity of the battery. More specifically, it is the amount of current which can be taken at a constant temperature of 27 ° C for 20 hours up to a voltage of 1.75 volts per battery cell. With 36 Ah, of course, small cars require a smaller capacity than compact vehicles (up to 50 Ah), medium-class cars (up to 70 Ah) and top-class cars (up to 120 Ah).

Classification of battery packs

For an exact car battery designation usually the current strength or the charging capacity serves as the ultimate size. At the voltage, all the current stores are at 12 volts and so the capacity must be the distinguishing feature. This electrical unit indicates how much power can be absorbed by the battery. If a battery is constantly charged with 5 amps for 20 hours and is then fully charged, the capacity is five times 20 hours (100 amperes/Ah). The battery can then discharge exactly this charging capacity until it is completely discharged. This allows you to differentiate between the different car batteries.

Weight

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Batteries are not exactly "light weights". On average car batteries depend on the design as well as the storage capacity between 10 and 30 kilograms. With this mass, the battery then also constantly presses on the battery carrier and loads it even more when traveling over bumpy roads. A damaged battery compartment can therefore also be a danger to the power storage itself. The battery tray breaks and the battery is on the road. A regular visual inspection of the vehicle is therefore urgently recommended.

Plus/Minus

What does the battery power plus/minus mean and what is it about connections in red and a black? A question that many car drivers will probably ask. The answer is quite simple: the positive pole of a battery must always be connected to the red cable, while the negative pole must be connected to the black cable. When removing the battery, first remove the negative pole from the terminal block and then the positive pole follows. When installing a new starter battery, you must proceed exactly the opposite way: first connect the positive pole to the electrical system before the terminal is connected to the negative pole and screwed tightly.

Volt

How can you measure volts on the car battery and thus determine whether your battery still provides a sufficiently high voltage? There are two possibilities: Either you drive your vehicle forward with a powered engine forward in front of a house wall, switch on the low beam and observe whether the light darkened shortly after switching on, or you can measure the battery voltage with a so called "multimeter". The red cable is connected to the positive terminal and the black cable is connected to the negative terminal. If the meter shows between 12.7 and 12.4 V, the battery is OK.

How can you measure volts on the car battery and thus determine whether your battery still provides a sufficiently high voltage? There are two possibilities: Either you drive your vehicle forward with a powered engine forward in front of a house wall, switch on the low beam and observe whether the light darkened shortly after switching on, or you can measure the battery voltage with a so called "multimeter". The red cable is connected to the positive terminal and the black cable is connected to the negative terminal. If the meter shows between 12.7 and 12.4 V, the battery is OK.

If it is less than 12V, it will be time for a battery change.

Tension

Nowadays, the on-board electrical system in the car usually operates with 12 volts as standard. This car battery voltage, better still more, must at least be applied to the battery, so that it can supply sufficient electrical energy for the start of the engine. The measurement of the battery voltage is actually quite simple: The vehicle should already stand for at least one to two hours. Then measure the vehicle battery voltage with a multimeter pre-set to the correct voltage . The red cable from the multimeter is held at the positive pole of the vehicle, while the black cable is connected to the negative pole at the same time. A fully charged battery should now display between 12.7 and 12.4 volts. If the value is less than 12 volts, the battery voltage is no longer sufficient and the battery should be charged or replaced as quickly as possible Too low a volt number can also be an indication of a defect at the generator, which does not charge the battery sufficiently.

Manufacturing date

The date of manufacture of the battery is important because a battery that has not been connected and used for more than 12 months can already be discharged - even if no power consumer uses the battery. In order to find the exact time of manufacture, you should take a closer look at the negative pole of the current storage. There is often a four-digit number, the first two digits indicating the production week and the last two digits indicating the year of manufacture. There are also batteries, which have a date on a sticker with the manufacturing date broken down in month and year.

Durability

One of the three most frequent reasons for a vehicle breakdown is a defect in the battery. But how can the battery life be extended? Above all, avoid short journeys, which makes the battery much slower because it can not be fully recharged during short trips from the generator. Wherever possible, the fluid levels in the storage tank should be checked once a year, and, if necessary, distilled water should be used to prevent the battery from drying out. Also saving electricity helps to save the battery. The rear window and side mirror heaters should be switched off manually as soon as there is a clear view.

We hope you found this information helpful. If you are still not sure what kind of battery to buy for your car, we will certainly help you to to get the right battery in the right size and strength - and certainly at the right price. Our experts will also be happy to fit the new battery for you in no time.

Please contact us - or just come to our workshops in Sleaford.