A simple but essential part of keeping your Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, or Ram running its best is keeping up on its battery service. The battery is the heart of your vehicle’s electrical system, and while these parts are made to last for at least several years, a little maintenance every now and then can keep you from being left stranded.
Since battery strength can be expected to diminish after a few years, it’s good to know just how old your battery is. To find out the month and year the battery was manufactured in, look for the series of characters on the top of the case. It will start a letter indicating the month (A for January, B for February, C for March, and so on). The second character will be a digit representing the year (0 for 2010, 1 for 2011, 2 for 2012, and so forth. The numbers reset for each decade, of course, so for 2020 models a 0 now represents 2020.
Understanding the Signs
The factory-trained technicians at Harr CDJR are always available to handle your vehicle’s battery service, while you’re having other maintenance done or in a separate visit just for that purpose. Between visits, you can do your part by regularly taking a look under the hood and watching for telltale signs of trouble. Luckily, the warning signs of a declining battery tend to be fairly obvious. For example, if you notice any buildup of corrosion, loose cables, bulges within the battery casing, or any hesitation when you start the vehicle, it’s time to get it checked. While all of these warning signs are concerning, a bulge in the battery case is the most worrisome, as it can mean the battery is overcharged from an electrical issue or a buildup of gases. If you notice this condition, do not drive the vehicle. Have it towed in for service immediately.
Cold Weather Stress
New England winters can be unforgiving, and batteries are especially stressed by this season: it can take up to 60 percent more power to start a car when it’s cold outside. If you know your battery is on the older side, you can give yourself peace of mind by replacing it before the cold sets in. After all, the last thing you’ll want is to be stranded in frigid temperatures away from home.