Identifying A Bad Battery
Below is a step-by-step process to help identify if the battery is dead, or just requires a repair.
1.) Inspect the battery.
Are the terminals fully connected? Are there any bumps or bulges in the plastic housing? Is the battery leaking? Is a terminal broken or melted? Is there a large build-up of dirt or corrosion on the top of the battery? Is the battery giving off heat (even when the system is turned off)? If the battery is a wet-cell (flooded) battery, make sure the battery's water level is maintained with distilled water. If the terminals are loose or disconnected, simply reconnecting them should fix the issue. However, aside from cleaning mild corrosion with a wire brush and NOCO Battery Cleaner, the rest of these signs may indicate a bad battery. Take the battery to your local automotive store and have it looked over by a professional.
2.) Take a voltage reading with a voltmeter.
It is recommended to keep the battery above 75% (at least 12.4V for a 12V battery) for health on longevity. If the battery is below 75% it is likely the battery is sulfated. Sulfation is a natural byproduct of a battery producing energy. If your battery has sulfated, use the repair mode from a NOCO GX Charger or above to desulfate the battery. If the voltmeter reads 0% it is likely that a fuse or other connection has been blown and needs to be replaced.
3.) Load test the battery.
A local automotive shop, such as NOCO reseller AutoZone, will be more than capable of load testing a battery. Load testing the battery is possible to do at home with a digital voltmeter and a fully charged battery, however a professional will be able to diagnose any issues that may arise with the battery's health.
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