17 tips for caring for your battery during lockdown banner with willard battery

How to care for your car battery during the lockdown

  1. Make sure all electronics in your car is switched off- lights, radio etc.
  2. Makes sure doors, boot etc. are shut to make sure door lights and warning systems are off.
  3. Start the vehicle every day and run the engine for 5 minutes (in an open space/ with garage doors open).
  4. If possible and available, it is recommended to use a smart charger to keep the battery conditioned and charged.
  5. In a recreational vehicle, if possible, disconnect the battery (only if you are technically capable and are able to reinstall per manufacturer’s instructions).
  6. Where possible, park the car in a cool spot to prevent exposing the battery to high ambient temperature and consequent high self-discharge.
  7. If you suspect a problem with your battery, do not try to open it, revive it or fill it- rather contact our call-centre on 0860 12 00 12.
  8. If you can measure the voltage of the battery (with a voltmeter) and can easily access the battery, measure the voltage every few days. If the voltage drops below 12.6V, it will need to be recharged by running the vehicle for 10 minutes.
  9. Should the vehicle not start, follow the vehicle and battery manufacturer’s jump-starting or push-starting instructions and run the vehicle for at least 15-30 minutes to recharge. If the battery is damaged and not just discharged, this may not help.
  10. The following are signs that your battery is on its way out and may need to be replaced:

a. You hear grinding or a clicking sound when you turn the ignition
b. The engine does not swing at all when you turn the ignition
c. Your vehicle cranks slowly when attempting to start
d. Your headlights dim when idling but brighten when you rev your engine

If your battery is still under warranty, make sure you have your proof and purchase for a replacement. Do not attempt to repair, top up, overcharge or tamper with the battery in any way as this will void the warranty. Visit our website to find your nearest stockist who can assist you during this time.

  1. If you need to replace the battery yourself with a spare follow the vehicle and battery manufacturer’s instructions on fitment. As a minimum, make sure of:

a. Ensure that the battery is the correct size and type for the vehicle
b. Battery terminals are clean
c. The terminal connectors are correctly torqued- if you cannot do this, tighten so that they do not slip but do not overtighten.
d. Do not dispose of the old battery- it must be returned to a dealer for recycling

Perform regular visual inspections of the battery (where possible) – ensure that the battery is clean and dry and no signs of swelling. Wipe down the battery to remove dirt and grease- this is an insulator and can keep the battery hot.

  1. If your vehicle hasn’t been in use for an extended period, please have the battery tested at one of our our approved battery specialists.
  2. It is also recommended that if your vehicle hasn’t been in use for an extended period, that you minimise short drives- too many short drives won’t allow the battery to fully recharge.
  3. If you can access the battery, make sure that the terminals are not loose- a loose terminal will restrict the recharging of the battery.
  4. Do not use the vehicle battery for any other application (for example removing that battery and using it for a TV) as this might damage the battery and leave the vehicle stranded (this will also void the warranty on the battery)