Category Archives: batteries

How Often Does a Car Battery Need to Be Replaced?

Your vehicle’s battery is something that you don’t think about much until it’s time to replace it. Replacing Your Car BatteryMany drivers don’t realize that it’s getting close to replacement time, however, until they wake up one morning and can’t get their car to start. By then, it’s too late. The battery is officially dead.

This is most inconvenient, especially on those cold Illinois mornings when you’re likely already running behind. But there are a few tips to keep in mind to avoid the surprise of a dead battery.

Car Battery Basics:

  • Corrosion observed on the battery should be addressed right away. This can happen over time, and cleaning away the debris may actually help your battery perform much better without replacement. However, it’s worth having a pro do this to ensure the corrosion is not a symptom of a bigger problem.
  • Extreme weather can take a huge toll on the lifespan of the battery, so be sure to have it checked by a trusted mechanic before winter hits to ensure that the scorching summer heat hasn’t taxed it completely.
  • If a vehicle is parked without driving for long periods of time, your battery can die sooner than it would with regular drives. Short drives can also cause older batteries to die sooner than a newer battery because there isn’t as much time for it to recharge.
  • Slow engine turn over can be a sign that your battery is nearing the end. Flickering or dim dash lights can also indicate that the battery is losing capacity to kick start your car with full power.
  • The average battery lasts 5-7 years, but this can vary greatly based on the quality of car battery purchased and how you drive. After 4 years from purchase, keep an eye out for performance as a good rule of thumb.

If you’re concerned about the condition of your car battery, bring it in to a local shop and the technicians can quickly run a test. While there’s never exactly a convenient time to have to replace the battery, you can avoid an unfortunate surprise by keeping an eye out for hints that the end is near.

For car battery replacement in Schaumburg, IL, call Express Auto Repair and Emissions at (847) 895-9131!

Winter Tips

Winter Car Maintenance

Winter Driving TipsFirst off, the electrical components of your vehicle should be thoroughly checked. During cold weather, it is generally more difficult to start your vehicle, so make sure your battery is fully charged. The ignition should be checked for worn spark plugs, damaged or faulty wires, and cracked distributor caps. It is also important to have your headlights cleaned and checked to see if they are working properly since visibility tends to decrease in times of inclement weather such as snow.

Since brakes are critical regardless of driving conditions, it’s best to have your brakes inspected. Never put off any needed maintenance as this could jeopardize your safety. Also check your tires. Make sure they are inflated properly and check for wear. If the tread on your tires is worn, it is crucial that you have them replaced. Its best to buy sets of four, but if you only plan on purchasing two tires, move the older tires to the front and mount the new tires in the rear.

To minimize your exposure to carbon monoxide, have your exhaust system checked for leaks—carbon monoxide poisoning is nothing to take lightly. Carbon Monoxide is hard to detect because it is odorless and death can result from too much exposure. If you find yourself trapped in the snow while your engine is running, clear any snow away from the exhaust pipe and crack open your windows.

Also, remember that there are many fluids in your engine. To prevent them from freezing, make sure the levels of antifreeze are adequate. Keep the mixture fresh by having it regularly changed. Don’t forget to have your heating and cooling system checked for leaks as well.

Winter essentials

In case of an emergency, it is always advisable to keep the following items in your car:

  • Small snow shovel
  • Ice Scraper
  • Gloves
  • Blanket
  • Snow brush
  • Flashlight
  • Traction Mats
  • Bag of material that can provide traction such as sand, salt, or kitty litter
  • Warning flares or triangles
  • Booster Cables
  • Paper Towels
  • Window Washing Solvent

For more information regarding safe driving tips and proper vehicle maintenance, visit this helpful guide at AAA.