Why Batteries Fail in The Summer Heat

Why Batteries Fail in The Summer Heat

We look at why car batteries fail and give suggestions to pass on for how to limit heat damage.

As you can see, I am in the best attire for this summer weather. I’m not even going to the beach, but with this weather, I’m taking no risks.

Even here in Ohio, temperatures in the 90s can feel like they’re in the hundreds. At that point, it isn’t the best idea to sit outside all day. So just imagine how your customers car batteries hold up after roasting in this heat for months!

In this Tire Review Continental Tire Garage Studio video, we look at why car batteries fail and give suggestions to pass on to your customers on how to limit heat damage.

During the summer, heat can cause important battery fluids to evaporate, causing your customer’s battery to fail.

This evaporation can speed up the natural process of battery corrosion and oxidation. Sulfation, a process in which small amounts of lead sulfate remain on the lead plates of batteries after every recharge, can also be accelerated by the heat, leading to failure. Additionally, the battery charging system can malfunction, resulting in overcharging, which can also shorten the lifespan of a battery.

Even if a customer’s car battery survives through the summer, a heat-damaged battery will likely fail when facing the challenges of winter.

It’s a common misconception that cold weather is the primary cause of battery failure during winter. In reality, the summer heat is often responsible for it. Folks often blame the cold temperatures for dead car batteries in winter, but cold weather itself does not damage the structure of the battery.

When a customer comes in for battery service or replacement this summer, give them instructions on how to protect it from the heat as much as possible. Suggest garage parking, parking in the shade or car covers to protect battery health. In fact, according to a report by the EPA, shade can leave surfaces 20-45℉ cooler than unshaded surfaces.

Corrosion on a battery can quickly drain its power and can also prevent it from sending electrical signals to your customer’s engine. Tell your customers to always be mindful of battery corrosion, be cautious with battery use and use smart driving habits, like taking a route with less stop-and-go traffic on your grocery run, occasionally.

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