You are listening to the radio while driving is one of the best experience you can have. It relaxes you and keeps your mind off worries and problems. However, will it take too much of your battery’s power if you do it more often?
Does listening to the radio drain car battery? Yes, more likely, the radio can drain your car battery if you keep it running without starting the engine. Some would say that the louder you go, the quicker the battery goes off.
To keep your battery alive for a more extended period, you should better allow the engine to recharge the battery. No matter how new your battery is, if you used it without running the engine, it will be completely depleted.
The best thing you can do to do enjoy your radio or stereo is to use it while you are driving. If you want to use it while on a stop, you better be limiting the number of hours you used your battery.
Will it Drain the Battery to Listen to the Radio With the Engine Off?
I have already answered this question above, and I repeat it, yes, it drains the battery. So you must avoid using your radio or stereo when the engine is off. Not unless you have a jumpstart kit ready anytime to boost your car engine, it will be fine, I guess.
Can You Save Your Battery From Draining if You Turn Off the Radio Before Shutting Off the Engine?
This method of saving the battery from draining is used many years ago. Modern day cars and vehicles no longer needed such technique. Cells from the old days were not as efficient and reliable as the current day batteries.
Batteries that were manufactured decades ago had experienced in delicate load handling. It was tough to crank engines, and additional loads like radio, fans, wiper and the like will prevent your engine from starting.
Modern cars and vehicles have improved this by detaching or disconnecting everything that keeps the engine running in the crank starting. If you are in doubt, try to check by playing the radio in the “on” position of the ignition. You will notice that the radio plays in the ignition on position but shuts down when you turn the engine to start.
Read related article: Why Won’t Your Car Radio Turn On After Your Battery Died?
Will I Need a Second Battery for My Car Audio?
Well, there isn’t any need for a second battery if your only reason is to listen to your radio for a longer time. Adding a second battery will not do you any good at all. It will just do you more harm than good.
Come to think of it. Your car battery is enough to provide you with the necessary cranking needed for your engine to start. When the engine is already starting, the alternator will already start working and will start charging the battery.
Therefore the battery is only acting as a load. Adding a second battery will only be adding to the weight. You will be making the alternator work double by charging two packs at the same time.
How Long Can I Play My Music While the Engine is Off?
Car batteries usually run around 60AH, and with this, they can supply at least 60Amps per 1 hour or 6Amps for approximately 10 hours. A typical car stereo uses a 10Amp fuse, and it will drain about 5 Amps in general usage. So you can run the radio for about a minimum of 5 hours or a maximum of 10 hours before the battery gets drained.
Modern cars and vehicles will allow you to play the radio for about an hour with the engine off. That’s the safest number of an hour before the battery gets fully discharged. Most batteries are designed to give high current for a quick period but not for running low powered accessories for an extended period of times.
Why Does My Radio Goes Off When I Turn the Engine On?
The car starter needed amperage as much as it can get to start the engine. The electrical switches of all the accessories like radios, gauges, headlights and the likes automatically turned off when the ignition switch turns on. The single-wire part of the switch that connects to the solenoid of the starter is temporarily cut off.
When you released the switch, the spring-load brings it back to the run position. The electric flow and power are restored to the accessories.
However, most ignition systems are using a buffer resistor to revive the voltage. It eliminates the damaging surge of the voltage. It may generally take around 2 to 5 seconds and it will depend on how many accessories you have powered on at that time.
What Could be the Problem if My Radio Remains Off After Starting the Engine?
Typically, the radio is turned off when you click the engine start. It will turn on again after the engine is already running. If your car radio remains off even until the engine is already running, then you might have a faulty ignition switch.
Have it checked to your trusted mechanic, as this can cause a parasitic drain to your battery. Any faulty electrical wiring eats up power to your battery. You will never know when your battery will stop working.
Why Would My Car Radio Start to Shut Off at High Volumes While Driving but When the Engine is Off it Continues to Run Smoothly?
Well, your car’s electrical system must have a higher voltage while your engine is only about 13.7V. When you are not using the car engine, and your battery is solely depending on your cell, it will only read about 12.5 V. It has 10% more power voltage when the engine is running which can then cause the radio to increase in heat and automatically shut down.
Listening to the car radio while traveling is an enjoyable experience, especially if you are a music lover. Therefore, the question, does listening to the radio drain car battery? Must be a primary concern of car owners who are also music enthusiasts. Know the capacity of your battery and check if it can carry the load of your audio presets.
1. Running the radio with the engine off won’t drain the battery – Dallas News
2. The Top 8 Things That Will Drain Your Car Battery – YourMechanic
3. Playing the radio when parked – Car Talk Community