Your automotive battery ensures that your vehicle starts every morning before work. When the battery starts to die, you want to charge it, but can you overcharge a car battery?
Yes, you can, so you need to be careful. In this guide, we discuss car battery overcharging and show you the correct way to charge a car battery.
When you overcharge your car battery, it dies. However, if you are running an older battery, it can be dangerous to overcharge it.
As the sulfuric acid and water inside the battery case begin to boil, the battery itself can start to swell. Eventually, the plastic casing is going to melt. Additionally, the flammable hydrogen gas can build up. If there is a tiny electrical spark, the battery could explode.
Obviously, this is all the worst of what could happen. However, you don't want to find out what happens if you leave a car battery charger on too long.
Most Common Causes Of A Car Battery Overcharging
Can you overcharge a car battery with a charger? Yes, so you want to know some of the causes of battery overcharging before they occur.
Symptoms Of An Overcharged Car Battery: How To Check For Signs
If you aren't sure how long to charge a dead car battery, you could easily overcharge it. Some of the most common symptoms that you have overcharged your car battery include a loss of water, complete battery failure, or a hydrogen explosion. On newer cars, you might also get a dashboard indicator telling you something is wrong with the battery.
With the best car battery tester, you can see the health of your automotive battery and watch for signs of overcharging. You should know how to read a car battery charger and how to read the tester. A fully charged battery is going to read 12.6 volts when it's not in use. Once you start running the vehicle, you should see around 14 volts. If it is higher than 14.8 volts, the alternator might be overcharging the battery.
How To Charge A Car Battery Correctly: Step By Step Guide
It doesn't take a lot of skill to learn how to charge a car battery at home and figure out how long should you charge a car battery. In this section, we will discuss how long to trickle charge a car battery and the steps you should take.
While you will achieve the best charge with the battery unplugged, you can move forward with charging a car battery while still connected.
People Also Ask (FAQs)
Can you leave a car battery charger on overnight? Is it bad for the battery to charge overnight?
It depends on what charges a car battery. If your trickle charger has a float mode, it will automatically slow the charge down once it is full. Otherwise, if the charger needs supervision, you shouldn't leave it connected overnight.
Does a new car battery need to be charged?
Usually, the new car battery is completely charged, but it never hurts to drive a little, to be sure. Do you know how long to leave a car running to charge battery? Typically, a short 15-minute drive on the highway should be enough to charge the car battery.
How much charge does a car battery need to start?
The battery must be at least 75% in order to start. Can you fully charge a car battery with jumper cables? No. While the jumper cables might help you get started, the battery will not be at full capacity. You must ensure it gets charged before you shut down the engine or connect a trickle charger to it when you get home.
What if my car battery won't hold a charge?
If the car battery appears completely dead, it might help to try battery reconditioning. However, if that doesn't work, you will need to replace it.
Now that we have answered how to know when a car battery is fully charged, it's time for you to ensure this vital piece of equipment is in its best shape. Hook up your car charger and make sure you don't overcharge your precious battery.