Mobile Battery Service | Is it your car battery at fault?
Updated: Jun 19
Vehicle trouble can and will spark when you least expect it.
From flat tires and overheated engines to faulty starter motors and damaged driveshafts, it’s almost never good news. But not all breakdowns need to result in a sizable bill and tow to the nearest shop, sometimes it can be a simple roadside fix that’ll see you on your way in no time at all.
For those breakdowns stemming from a damaged, deteriorated or downright dodgy battery, vehicle owners will be pleased to find that their issues can be quickly and easily solved thanks to Mobile Battery Service from E3 Roadside Assistance.
If you’re able to diagnose a battery issue and point your finger in the general area of the problem, you can save yourself from a huge headache and an even bigger bill.
So what are the telltale signs of potential car battery service issues to look out for and what causes them?
Battery Service Issues
There’s plenty of different reasons why your vehicle battery may be causing issues while seemingly innocently hiding away deep in your engine bay ranging from mild to severe.
Batteries are complex things and below we’ll discuss the most common issues that you can find on any typical vehicle battery.
A Loose Connection
The first of the issues to look for when suspecting foul-play from the battery is a loose connection between the cables and the terminals.
If the battery cables are firmly connected to the terminals (the +positive and -negative ends of the battery) then there’s no juice getting to where it needs to go. Ensure that the clamps don’t have any play and tighten if necessary to see if that rectifies the situation.
A Build-up of Gunk or Corrosion
It might not be the connection itself that’s loose, but what’s between the cables and the terminals that are putting a stop to the electricity getting to where it needs to go.
By checking and cleaning the terminals and cables for any gunk or corrosion that’s found its way between the connection points, you can be sure that there are no issues and that the battery is functioning perfectly.
A Bad Battery
There are a handful of telltale signs that you should keep your eye out for when diagnosing a bad battery.
Slow engine crank
Have you noticed that your engine has been sluggish or taking a little longer than usual when starting the vehicle?
A characteristic “rur rur rur” starting noise sound is typical of a battery going bad and, if it sounds like the car is struggling to turn over, it probably is. If, once started, the engine is back to business as usual, chances are that it’s either the battery or the starter motor that’s seen better days.
Check engine light
Have you noticed the check engine light on the dash but haven’t managed to put your finger on exactly what’s causing it?
Although this isn’t an exclusive characteristic of a bad battery, one of the reasons that the light can become illuminated is when the battery power is weak. It’s always worth checking before getting further into the bay.
Low battery fluid level
Although topping up the battery fluid may sound like a prank to pull on an apprentice, it’s very much something that needs to be on the maintenance list of any vehicle.
When taking a peek at the battery, you may note a translucent section of the casing to view the fluid level of the battery. If this level is lower than the lead plates (energy conductor) inside, both the battery and charging system should be tested.
Fluid levels drops are typically caused by overcharging (heat) and can be solved by either topping up the fluid with de-ionized water or a full battery replacement.
A bloated battery case
Having a long, hard look at the battery can give plenty of clues as to its health.
If your battery casing is looking a little bloated, it’s a prime indicator that it’s a battery that’s seen better days. It’s excessive heat that’s to blame for the swelling of the battery, meaning its life expectancy gets shorter by the day.
The smell of rotten eggs
If you’re able to smell the sweet, sweet smell of sulfur when popping the hood, chances are that you’ve got yourself a leaky battery.
A leaking battery is a smelly battery, but that’s not the only problem that you’ll find as this fluid leak can also cause corrosion around the +positive and -negative terminals, obstructing the connection and resulting in a failure to start.
The gunk should be removed to start the vehicle, but the battery should be replaced to avoid any further issues.
Three years or older
Although it’s not uncommon for batteries to outlive their expectancy, their health will take a hit as they age.
With driving habits, weather conditions and short trips of 20 minutes or less all having an impact on battery health, it’s important to regularly check the condition once that 3-year milestone is passed.
What’s the best course of action?
Figuring out the best course of action is never easy in a breakdown situation, but with a damaged or dodgy battery, there’s relief in an easy fix.
Nine times out of ten, it’s a mobile battery replacement service that’s the best bet to have you on the road again in next to no time at all. With an expert called out to identify and solve the problem, a Battery Replacement Service or Jump Start Service can have your day back on track with minimal cost and hassle.
If you’ve got a sneaking suspicion that it’s the battery that’s the cause of your vehicle issues, give E3 Roadside Assistance a call to come and help out with their expert advice and know how.
You never know, your transport trouble may be as simple as a loose connection, corroded cable or bloated battery. If that’s the case, you should expect to be up and running in a matter of minutes - that’s time and money well spent.