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‘Charge Your Car Day’ – how often should you check your car battery?

In a bid to draw attention to the critical role car batteries play in our daily lives, CTEK, a renowned manufacturer of car battery chargers, is marking today as Charge Your Car Day.

The initiative aims to encourage motorists to take better care of their vehicle’s battery to prevent costly and inconvenient breakdowns.

Battery failure is a leading cause of roadside callouts in Australia, accounting for around 43 per cent of incidents, according to an Australian survey. A significant portion of these failures can be attributed to drained or flat batteries, making them the primary culprit for breakdowns.

Surprisingly, more than 20 per cent of survey participants overestimated the lifespan of their car batteries, and over 42 per cent couldn’t recall changing their car’s battery in the last three years. The findings suggest motorists might not realise their battery is in distress until it’s too late.

Recharging your car battery can be a good way to optimise its lifespan. Recharging is considered an energy-efficient and cost-effective alternative to a battery replacement, too, which can set you back around $350. A typical charge uses about the same power as watching TV for five hours, or doing two loads of washing.

It’s not just traditional cars, electric and plug-In hybrid vehicles also require battery charging. The 12V auxiliary battery, responsible for crucial functions like lighting and climate control, requires routine maintenance to operate optimally.

According to CTEK, regular maintenance charging helps prevent sulfation and keeps the battery in optimal condition, reducing the risk of breakdowns. It’s also a good idea to check your battery mounting brackets and connections, and dust off any residue. If you’re unsure, visit your local car battery specialist – some outlets can perform a complimentary check for you.

Regardless of whether you’re a driving enthusiast or a conscientious commuter, checking your car battery every six months could be a nifty way to keep costs down and keep you on the road.

Brett Davis

Brett started out as a motor mechanic, but eventually became frustrated working on cars that weren't his. He then earned a degree in journalism and scored a job at Top Gear Australia back in 2008, and then worked at Zoom/Extreme Performance magazines, CarAdvice, and started PerformanceDrive/PDriveTV in 2011 with Josh Bennis, and ran it for 12 years. He's now the owner and managing editor here at Driving Enthusiast.

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