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When Should I Change My Car Battery?

There should be a movie called "Hey Dude, Change Your Battery!" because as a rule most people hang onto their batteries way too long, leading to trials and tribulations down the road. At Lindsay Volkswagen, we help people with their battery maintenance almost every day and replace our customers' batteries just as often. But, whether you live in Sterling, VA or anywhere else on the planet, battery replacement is a major deal for any car owner.

They say a car is the second largest investment you'll ever make next to your house, so we all know that you want to keep your vehicle in top shape in every way you possibly can. You need it to help you in many ways, so taking good care of it is mandatory to keep it running well. Regular maintenance is an integral part of that, but there are also other parts of your car that simply need to be replaced over a period of time. As you probably already know, one of those parts is the battery and that's why we're offering you this information.

If you stay vigilant about your battery's condition, age and status, you will likely not experience a breakdown due to battery failure.

Normally, car batteries will last anywhere from 3-6 years, which is pretty remarkable when you analyze their significance to the overall functionality of your car. The wear and tear on your battery is one vital factor to always consider, but there are other ways to tell that it’s time to replace your battery with a new one. As your battery gets older and starts to show its age, continually look for these telltale signs. If any of these become noticeable, it’s probably the correct time for you to schedule a service appointment to have your battery replaced or at least inspected at a reputable shop.

Sluggish Starts

This will usually occur in the winter, and it certainly is an unhealthy sound every time you hear it. Prior to your battery dying completely, it will exhibit some starting issues. If you continue driving with that weak and ailing battery, it won’t be very long until you find yourself stranded on the road as a result.

That Nasty Sulfur Smell!

Batteries are filled with a amalgamation of water and sulfuric acid, but over several years of use, those fluids will slowly but steadily evaporate. This creates an unbalanced mixture that can cause your vehicle to overheat or boil, which is where that sulfur (or rotten egg) odor is probably coming from.

If you can look for the signs, you will be fine and your battery will serve you for years to come!

Sources: Forbes, SF Chronicle and Parts & People

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