Waking late in the morning the morning and rushing through your morning routine because you’re late for work is not a good way to start a day. Adding it with a car that wouldn’t start due to a failing battery will definitely make it worst. When it happened to me several years ago, it seemed like lady luck punished me with a “double black-eye”, since I got penalized for being late at work and it cost me a lot of bucks for the new replacement battery.
To avoid being in this kind of frustrating and annoying scenario, you have to make sure that your car battery is always charged. You also have to understand how a car battery works to be familiar with its behavior. Allowing you to make sure that it will always have enough amount of charge that you need to start your vehicle every day.
In this post, I will be providing you a guide about car batteries and help you avoid the same fate I mentioned earlier. I’m gonna provide significant information about car batteries and how you can charge them at home.
(Watch this video if you don't feel like reading).
How Are Automotive Batteries Recharged?
Before we go to the part where I will be guiding on how you can charge your battery at home. You first have to understand how the battery works, here’s a quick overview.
Normally, car batteries are recharged and stay charged by taking in the extra power that your car’s engine produces. When the engine is running or while you are driving, the alternator of your car harnesses the extra power of the engine and use it to deliver electric energy to the battery. It recharges the battery and help it recover the amount of charge it delivered when it started the engine and to power your car’s electrical grid.
Pretty simple right?!
However, if you have a faulty or broken alternator, it won’t have the ability to deliver enough amount of electrical energy to charge the battery. This prevents the battery to be charged which will eventually lead to a severely discharged automotive battery; causing to fail on you and your vehicle frequently.
Methods Of Charging An Automobile At Home
Having a bad alternator will take a toll on your car battery, leaving it severely discharged and caused it to fail frequently. Fortunately, there are several ways that we can do to charge an automotive battery at home. Methods that we can use to make sure that the battery has enough amount of charge and prepare it for our daily routine.
Sounds good, right?!
Let’s make it even better because I’m not only going to tell you the methods I mentioned above. But I’ll be with you every step of the way, providing you with a step by step guide on how to carry out each of them.
So, let us begin!
Preparing The Car Battery To Charge It
Prior to the main charging operation. If you are going to charge your car battery, the first thing you have to do is to prepare the battery for the charging process. To do this, here are the steps you have to follow.
Wear the Appropriate Safety Gears - If you are going to charge your car battery at home, you will be directly working with it every step of the way. This will expose you to some hazards that the battery poses. So, you have to make sure that you are wearing the appropriate safety gears before you proceed.
To prepare your automotive battery, you have to put on your rubber gloves and goggles to protect you from the harmful battery fluids within your car battery. You also have to make sure that there are no children or other people in the area where you are working.
● Determine the type of battery - To make sure that the charging process you will carry out will go smoothly. The next step you have to take is to identify what kind of battery you are going to charge. By doing this, you can make sure that you will be using the appropriate charger for the battery. Eliminating any issue that may damage the battery.
● Get the appropriate battery charger - Now that you already identified the right type of battery you are going to charge. You can now get the right and appropriate battery charger suitable for the charging operation. It will also allow you to use a charger that will suit your preferred charging settings which should also be compatible with your car battery.
● Remove the battery from the vehicle - Once you identified the type of battery you have and you have the right appropriate charger, you are now ready for this step. In this step, you will have to disconnect all the cables attached to your car battery. Then detach it from the battery tray and remove it from the vehicle. If you are unsure how to do it, you can consult your car’s owner’s manual.
● Clean the exterior of the battery - To ensure a stable charging connection and efficient flow of energy. Clean the exterior of the battery, especially the terminals. Be sure to get rid of the corrosion buildups on the metal parts of the battery. You can do this by using a simple baking soda solution and an old toothbrush.
Now that you have successfully completed the battery preparation. You can now proceed to the main charging process of the battery. Charging a car battery at home can be done in several ways. To walk you through these processes, you refer to the guides below.
Using Battery Charger
The first method of charging your car battery at home is by using a car battery charger. It can be a portable charger, trickle charger, speed charger or the conventional device. As long as the charger is compatible with your battery, this method is going to work. To carry out this charging operation, first, you have to make sure that you follow the battery preparation steps above. Then follow the steps below.
1. Place your battery charger on a firm surface - To start the charging operation, you have to make sure that the charger is placed on a leveled and firm surface. Place it far from the battery you are going to charge to eliminate the risk of shorting the battery or starting a fire.
2. Connect the cables of the charger to the battery - The next step is to connect the charger to the battery using the cables and clamps of the charger. In connecting the charger, you have to make sure that you are following the right polarity.
3. Configure the charger - Based on the type of battery you are going to charge and your charge settings preference. Set up the charger and configure it according to the right settings. You can consult the user’s manual of the charger to make sure that you are setting it up correctly.
4. Charge the battery - Once you have established a flawless charging connection between the charger and your battery. You can now turn on the device or start the charging process. Then you can leave it to allow the charger to charge your battery until it reaches its maximum capacity.
5. Check the battery - Finally, you can run a voltage check on the battery after the charging process is done. This is just to check if the battery is successfully charged. To do this step, all you have to do is to get your voltmeter and then run a quick voltage check.
With The Help Of Another Car Battery
If you don’t have a battery charger available. You can charge your car battery with the help of another car battery. This process is like jumpstarting your car battery because you are going to use another car battery to provide your drained automotive battery with enough energy and store some charge. To this, just follow the steps below.
1. Park the other car near the dead one - In carrying out this charging method, you have to park the other vehicle or the charged battery near the dead battery that you are going to charge. The distance should be near enough to make sure that the length of jumper cables that you will use will connect the two batteries.
2. Take you jumper cables and connect the two batteries - With your jumper cables, connect the two batteries. Again you have to make sure that there will be no polarity issues in the connection for efficient transfer of energy and smooth flow charge.
3. Start the engine of the other car - To charge your dead car battery, start the engine of the car with the charged battery. This will enable the electrical system of the car to charge your discharged car battery. Keep in mind that you should never take the other car out of neutral or park during the entire process.
That is how to charge a car battery at home and make sure that it has enough voltage within it to start your car the next day. Remember, don’t commit the same mistakes that I did. If your car alternator is faulty or broken use the methods above to keep your battery charged. This will not only help you avoid the inconvenience, but it will also help you keep your battery healthy.