How Long Do Car Batteries Last?

The average car battery life depends on the factors of places, weathers and driving habits

Do you know how long does a car battery last? The lifespan of each and every car battery depends on the care maintenance it is being given. If you maintain your car battery quite well it should be able to last up to five years before being replaced.

You can achieve proper maintenance by regular charging of the battery before it fully discharges and also having frequent check-ups on it for physical damage.

You can know if your battery’s time is up by checking its ability to hold charge after being recharged. If yours is one that keeps dying just a few days or hours after recharging, then this might mean you will need to replace it soon.

Other reasons why you will need to replace your car battery might be because your battery has experienced physical damaged or even when it dies out more than often leaving you stranded always.

Will Weather Affect The Lifespan Of Your Car Battery?

A car battery would last longer than the stated number of years if it is used in conditions of low temperatures and low humidity. It may even last for one year more after the five normal years.

This is why the lifespan of batteries varies from one geographical location to another; high temperatures increase the probability of damage through increasing the rate of sulfation and water loss from the battery.

Warm weather leads to a battery not being able to live to its expected life expectancy as it causes a number of chemical reactions that damage the car battery.

The warm conditions lead to the battery losing fluid through evaporation and this tampers with the internal components of the car battery. This makes the average battery life of car batteries shorter when it comes to warm climates.

Other factors that affect the lifespan include the brand of the battery as well as the maintenance practices afforded to the battery.

In most cases one takes the battery for granted and this makes the battery unable to last for as long as it should. Regular topping of wet cells and checking on the body of the car battery for bulges helps prevent the battery from damaging while you are using them.

Hot Weather

In this case a battery may last for up to 3 years. Hot temperatures reduce the lifetime of car batteries by a significant amount. The heat makes the battery fluid evaporate and hence leading to its poor performance.

It also increases the probability and rate of corrosion occurring on the terminals of the car battery. This leads to the reduction of the lifespan of the battery altogether.

This is seen when car batteries in hot areas are unable to live to any time close to their expected lifetime. The countries and states with similar conditions are discussed below and the lifetime expected for car batteries used in them.

Cold Weather

Just like hot temperatures, a car battery in this condition may last three years. Cold temperatures have also been seen to have an impact on the lifespan of car batteries.

This is because chilly conditions force the car battery to work twice as hard to keep the car engine running as it should. The cool temperatures also cause the engine oil to be quite thick and this greatly strains the car battery.

Cool temperatures do not affect the lifetime of car batteries as adversely as hot temperatures but it causes the battery to have to work twice as hard to power up the car.

This is sometimes too demanding for inferior types of batteries rather than the high quality ones. As a result, the former are not advised for use in areas experiencing cool temperatures.

Does Each State Affects The Longevity Of A Car Battery?

As indicate above the life of a car battery is significantly dependent on the weather conditions that it is subjected to.

Therefore, a car battery would last for varying periods in the case of different states across the country. This is because the states experience different weather conditions and thus the battery is also bound to last for varying periods when in use.

Florida

On average the lifespan of a car battery in Florida ranges from two to three years. This is because of very warm summers in this state that causes the electrolyte to evaporate and hence the shorter lifespan.

Texas

In Texas, a car battery may last up to approximately four years before being fully damaged. Car batteries are always negatively affected by the excess heat that is experienced in the state of Texas.

This heat is responsible for the deterioration of the internal parts of the car battery and hence a reduced lifespan.

In order for the battery to even last for the stated four years’ time they have to be well maintained. Regular check on the battery fluid and topping work to increase the battery lifespan.

Colorado

In this state, a good brand of a battery is able to last for six years while a poor brand may just live for two years.

This is because the conditions here favor high quality batteries than they do for poor quality batteries. On the average, the lifespan of a car battery in this state is approximately four years.

Minnesota

The car batteries in Minnesota can last for as long as two to three years before getting damaged. This is because of the cooler temperatures that affect the lifespan of the batteries in that they may not be able to live for longer years.

Arizona

Batteries in this state last for as long as three years, on the maximum. However, if you keep a close eye on them and practise proper maintenance you might get one extra year. The reduced lifespan might be due to the desert heat that is experienced in the state.

California

In the state of California, car batteries are bound to be damaged quite easily. They may last for a period of two to three years only.

This is because of the heat that the damages the integrity of the battery and reduces its lifespan altogether. However, if you buy a top brand of car battery it may surpass this mark and even live for up to four or five years.

Hawaii

The lifespan of a car battery in Hawaii can be up to three to four years. This short period might be attributed to the fact that temperatures are quite high and hence the car battery is easily susceptible to damage.

High temperatures cause the battery fluid to evaporate and this has been seen to lower the life expectancy of the car battery altogether.

Las Vegas

In this state car batteries will only live for as long as two years. This is because of the conditions in Las Vegas which are rather too hot and dry. You will realize that heat is one element that destroys car batteries just as cold temperatures.

Does A Country Location Also Affect A Car Battery Life?

Just like the different states, the life of a battery varies from country to country. This is because the countries experience different weather conditions which impact differently on the lives of the car batteries.

The following country are indicated as well as the life expectancy you should expect from a battery in each country.

United Kingdom

Car batteries in the United Kingdom can last for up to four years. This because of the balance in weather conditions- the temperatures do not get too hot nor too cold.

Such weather conditions are favourable for a good type of battery and hence the ability of the battery to last for as long as they do.

Canada

The average lifespan of a car battery in Canada ranges from four to five years. This is due to fairly cold winters that prevent the car battery from being reliable beyond this point.

As a car owner for your car battery to even reach the four year mark you will need to have it well maintained. This will help to avoid the car battery dying out and leaving you stranded in the middle of a drive.

Australia

A normal car battery would last for a period of three to four years in Australia. This may be due to the harsh hot temperatures that derail the battery by causing the battery fluid to evaporate.

For your battery to even reach this mark, you will have to properly take care of it. regular topping and occasional inspection will enable the battery last slightly longer than the stipulated time period.

New Zealand

A normal car battery is able to last for as long as three to five years in New Zealand. This might be attributed to optimum temperature and weather in this country and hence the battery is not adversely affected.

The battery must, however, be well maintained for it to last for even close to this period in time.

India

On average a car battery should be able to last for as long as three to four years in India. This is the case for an ordinary type of car battery.

You will realize that in this part of the world dry cells are able to outlive wet cells because they are not vulnerable to evaporation of battery fluid which is the case with hot temperatures.

Malaysia

On average a car battery in Malaysia should be able to last for as long as three to four years. This is due to harsh hot temperatures which causes the battery fluid to evaporate often.

Like any other battery, the battery in this parts have to be regularly checked for it to be long lasting.

Philippines

The car battery in this parts could last for as long as two years before getting damaged. This solely depends on the care and maintenance they are taken through. Some good quality batteries may even last for two more years if they are well maintained.

South Africa

The car batteries in South Africa could last for an average of three years before they get to be unreliable.

This might be due to fairly hot temperatures that derail wet cells and cause the battery fluid to evaporate hence making the battery last for its expected lifetime.

Is Electric Car Battery The Same As Regular Car Battery Lifespan?

Electric batteries are designed to last some few years more than regular car batteries- they can last for eight to ten years or for 100, 000 miles. This might just be the major difference between regular and electric car batteries.

This is guaranteed by a large proportion of manufacturers as they want the buyers to feel confident of the product they are dealing with.

Electric batteries are even much more expensive to replace and they cost quite an amount of money when you go to buy a new one. Such batteries may even outlive the electric cars in some cases provided they are well maintained.

Most manufacturers do not recommend replacement of electric batteries before they get damaged, so you should not rush to replace yours before the 100,000-mile mark.

Tesla Electric Car Battery Life

The Tesla electric battery can comfortably work for close to the 500,000-mile mark. This is approximately twenty years before being replaced.

In the case of a well-maintained electric car battery, the battery might last longer than this, even the ordinary electric battery will be seen to operate quite well after getting to 500,000 miles.

Toyota Prius Battery Life

In the case of Toyota Prius electric battery, it can be able to last for the range between 12 and 15 years depending on its location of operation.

It is reported that in California-compliance states, the Prius battery can last for up to an average of ten years or for 150,000 miles, however, for non-California compliance states a battery can go two years’ shy, eight years, and for 100,000 miles before dying down.

Nissan Leaf Battery Life

The Nissan Leaf car battery even though comes with a warranty of eight years, has an expected lifespan of close to ten years.

This time period varies according to the maintenance the car battery is subjected to; poor driving, long durations of being discharged and high temperatures and humidity make the battery last for a short while.

It is obvious that a well maintained Nissan Leaf car battery can outlive its 10-year mark if well maintained and cared for.

4 Factors That Can Shorten Your Car Battery Life

There are a number of common practices that as car owners, we practice that shorten the lifespan of our car batteries.

Most of these practices are done without us having knowledge of their impact on car batteries. The following practices reduce our car battery’s life by a significant margin.

1. Poor Maintenance Practices

Most car owners are unaware of even the basic car maintenance practices. Some may have even never opened the car bonnet and thus do not know the condition of the battery. In this case, the car battery might even be physically damaged without them realizing so.

There are wet batteries that need to be topped often and this is an important maintenance practice. In some cases, the maintenance practice if ignored may not only cause damage to the battery but also to the car they are used in.

2. Bad Driving Habits

Some drivers are just reckless and this keeps the car battery at harm’s way.

For instance, some drive the car in bumpy conditions and this causes the battery to experience some knocks which damage it physically. The vibrations also loosen the battery terminals and this interferes with the integrity of the car battery.

It is important to know that going for frequent short trips is a bad driving habit when the car battery is concerned. This is because the car battery is unable to fully charge because of short trips, and a car battery in discharged state is unable to live to its life expectancy.

Some drivers also drive the car while playing the stereo and using all sorts of car accessories that drain the car battery to exhaustion.

3. Not Taking The Car Battery Through Regular Inspection

It is important, just as you do for the car, to take the car battery for regular inspection routines. In this way, you will be able to discover an arising issue with the car battery and correct it. If it is the terminals that need replacing, then you should have them replaced.

Regular check-ups are one way that will ensure your car battery might even get to the five years it is expected to last.

In some cases, the inspection helps the car battery even outlive to more than the stipulated time. Most well cared for car batteries might even last until the six years’ mark and still be reliable in performance.

Other bad habits that lead to your battery not living to its intended lifetime include overcharging the battery or even turning the headlights before the engine is on. Overcharging arises from using a charger that is not recommended or even leaving the battery on a charger for a long period of time.

Switching on the headlights before turning on the engine adds weight to the car battery when you get to igniting the engine. The car battery might not start altogether.

4. Replacing The Car Battery With An Inappropriate Type

Most of the time car owners go to buy a replacement battery and do not choose the right battery for their car. Such batteries are unable to much with the power demands of the battery and thus will not be effective at all.

At first the battery might work but later on you will start witnessing some signs that show that the battery is not providing as much power as it should to the car.

Car owners are also advised not to leave their cars idle for long periods or even play the stereo while the car is idle for a long time.

Having the stereo or the air condition on for long kind of burns out the car battery and hence when you actually want to drive the battery will be unable to perform its job.

How To Improve A Car Battery Life

Car owners need to know how to well maintain their car battery, as replacing the battery can be quite costly. This will also help to avoid being stranded because of a battery that has died down.

As temperature and climate are somehow uncontrollable, you can extend the battery life of your car battery by following these maintenance tips.

1. Drive For Long

Short rides make the battery charge incompletely as compared to long distance driving. Taking your car out for frequent drives is what it takes to have it well maintained.

In the case that you can’t use your car quite often, I would advise getting a portable car battery charger whenever you go out with the car to avoid being inconvenienced.

2. Fasten The Car Battery Tightly

A battery that is not tightly fixed is bound to move around in its position more often. This leads to it having a number of knocks that end up damaging it physically. It might also cause the battery to have short circuiting within itself.

Whenever you go for a drive on bumpy roads, make sure to check that the terminals are tightly connected as this causes loosening of the bolts.

3. Turn Off Car Lights When You Get Out Of The Car

Leaving headlights and interior car lights might drain the car battery significantly. You should always check that these lights are switched off every time when coming out of the car.

4. Be On The Lookout For Corrosion

The terminals of the battery are bound to corrode with time, it is advisable to check the battery regularly and clean the build-up formed.

This counts in extending the lifetime of the battery significantly and it helps with its day to day performance too.

A toothbrush dipped in baking soda solution can be helpful in scrubbing the terminals.

5. Keep The Battery As Close To Full Charge As Possible

Car batteries get damaged if they are left in drained state for long periods of time. It is recommendable to have them as close to full charge as possible.

This can be rather difficult especially in hot weather conditions. The alternator can help in most cases when you suspect the battery is significantly discharged.

In most cases the alternator is unable to recharge a fully-depleted battery and this might even interfere with the recharge cycles that a battery can sustain.

6. Give The Car Battery A Brake

If you are not going to use your car for quite some time, it is advisable to fully disconnected the car battery. This prevents devices like the car clock and other car accessories from draining the battery even as the car is off.

7. Use A High Quality Charger

Whenever the charge of your battery is low, you are advised to use an excellent choice of charger you can get. This is because some chargers may damage the battery altogether and hence shorten their lifespan.

The charging should be once a month in the case of warm climates and at least three times a month in the case of cold climates. Check the article on the best car battery chargers if you like to buy one.

8. Proper Storage

Whenever you have to disconnect your car battery from the car, you should ensure that the storage compartment has ideal conditions that will not damage it.

Do not store it in extreme cold and hot temperatures as this will cause the battery to undergo chemical reactions and hence damage it altogether.

9. Regular Testing Of The Battery

This helps in your case as you get to know what you are doing wrong. A car battery tester can be used to check on the voltage output of the battery. If the voltage level is okay, then you are on the right track maintenance-wise.

10. Avoid Too Much Use Of Car Electronics

It is not advisable to have the car stereo on at all times even when you are in the car. Items like the air conditioner and the radio do not have to be used always as they cause a toll on the car battery.

You need to keep their usage on the minimum while also avoiding leaving the car battery idling for long.

11. Know How To Prepare Your Battery For A Jump Start

A warm battery is bound to jump start faster than a cold one.

You are advised to let your battery access the sunlight as you prepare to jump start it. Increase in temperature enables the battery jump start quite easier than had it been in cooler temperatures.

By the way, I have written the product review for the best jump starters that will help your dead battery to revive.

11-1. How Much Can A Jump Start Help Extending A Car Battery Life?

A car jumper comes to the rescue when your car battery dies out on you while you are on a ride.

In most cases you are fortunate as the battery might just be down. In this case you can continue with your ride and later on take the car battery for charging.

In some cases, though, the car battery might need to be replaced even after the car jumper has enabled your car battery power up for some time.

The battery might be damaged or if you had just taken it from recharging, the battery might be unable to hold charge thus will need to be replaced altogether.

As seen above, there are quite a number of maintenance practices that will decide the lifetime of your car batteries. This will ensure that your car battery is up and running and you will have few incidences of getting stranded while on the road driving.

How To Know When You Need To Replace A New Battery

The best time you need to replace a new car battery is even before it dies out. This will help prevent situations of being stranded on the road with a bad battery.

In most cases, the battery you have in your car when stranded is so weak that you will not be able to power it up using a battery jumper.

The following signs indicate a weak car battery that will have to be replaced:

1. A relatively slow engine crank
2. Whenever the check engine light is illuminated
3. If the battery is damaged physically- like a bulged case
4. Leaking of the battery fluid
5. Flickering of dashboard and door lights
6. If the car battery has been used for quite a number of years

Sluggish cranking or if you notice the electronic car systems are unable to function well show that the car battery is not at its best.

When you notice that the headlights are not working normally and are rather flickering then it might be time to replace the car battery.

It is advised to have the car battery checked before replacing as in most cases this is just caused by a car battery that has low charge.

If you realize that your car struggles to start in the morning, then the issue might be arising from the car battery. You might also notice that the dashboard lights are not as bright as they used to be before, or that they are flickering.

In most cases, the battery might have been used for say three to four years and there is something wrong with it. This may be the time to replace it as any other maintenance practice may not work to revive it at all.

When going to replace a car battery, you are advised to know and be sure which type of battery is suitable to be used as a replacement battery.

This is because each and every car has its own type of demands and not just any battery will be able to work out for your car. Some batteries are unable to much up to the requirements of your car and might not work as well as they should.

What Is The Longest Car Battery I Can Recommend?

If you have ever owned one of those cars that can’t help but drain your car battery significantly, then you probably know the importance of a long lasting battery.

A battery with a long lifespan is important especially when you are using the car in areas of relatively too high or too cold temperatures.

The following are the best car batteries that we recommend for your car.

1. Optima 8020-164 35 Red Top

This is the recommended battery if you own any type of car, be it a truck or even a simple salon car.

Its flexibility is just commendable. It has an excellent performance in all types of conditions- and most importantly in both cool and warm temperatures.

This is a battery for you if you do not want to be dragged down by the car experiencing car problems every now and then. It is specifically a great option to go for in the case of diesel engines.

Pros

  • Its ability to stay still in position does not limit you from driving in bumpy terrains
  • It does not need regular topping as it is maintenance free
  • It has a good CCA rating of approximately 720
  • It works quite well for diesel engines to provided there is a suitable alternator
  • It is quite affordable even as it offers quality features

Cons

  • Its heavy weight makes it not suitable for small cars
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09/03/2021 12:03 pm GMT

2. Exide Edge AGM Sealed Battery

This is one of those batteries that is solely designed to be free resistant from spillages and leaks.

This is achieved through the use of Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM). It is also manufacture to meet high demands that some cars require from their juice box.

This particular battery works quite well if you own one of those large vehicles. You will realize that its performance is just awesome. This gives you a comfortable driving experience like never before.

Pros

  • Its reserve capacity is at 2 hours which is simply magnificent
  • It is able to last quite long regardless of what type of car the battery is used in
  • Spillage is a thing of the past for this particular battery
  • Has a commendable CCA of 770

Cons

  • It is quite heavy
  • It is a costly car battery
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3. Odyssey PC680

The brand- Odyssey, does a great job in designing a top performing battery that is also highly affordable.

It is the car battery to go for if you do not want to spend too much on a new car battery but you want to buy a good performer. It is an excellent type of battery in terms of strength and also lifetime.

It might come across as slightly inferior than the car batteries on this list but this does not mean it is not a quality one. You should know that its capabilities make it rank a par above other batteries and hence the reason it is among the top long-lasting batteries.

This is a type of battery to go if you want to use the car in areas experiencing moderate temperature conditions. You actually do not have to spend too much on a car battery when you can simply go for this option.

Pros

  • It is designed to avoid spillage of the electrolyte
  • Its CCA ranking is 170
  • Recharges at a very fast rate
  • It is great for rough terrains as it is able to handle vibrations
  • It is a light battery and can be used even in small cars
  • Unlike its rivals it is able to enjoy a relatively longer cycle life

Cons

  • Its low CCA rate makes it a poor choice when it comes to cold weather
  • Its low reserve capacity makes it susceptible to die out frequently
  • Its size is quite small making it a poor replacement in some cars
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09/03/2021 12:10 pm GMT

The above batteries are simply the notable ones which you are advised to go for. Some of them are maintenance free meaning regular service is not mandatory.

They are also designed to offer adequate amounts of power for your car and you will surely enjoy your experience with either of the three.

Conclusion

The last thing any car owner will want to deal with is a complication of the car battery. it is rather annoying getting stranded in the middle of nowhere and because your battery died on you. That is why it is advisable to go for one of the high quality long lasting battery you can get in the market.

Even after getting an excellent choice of a car battery, it is advisable that you practise proper maintenance to ensure that you do not cause damage to your battery. This is because battery replacement can be rather expensive especially if you want a high quality of a battery.

As a car owner you should know that car batteries need to be replaced more if you are living in areas which experience too hot or too cold weather conditions.

Written by Yusuke Kohara

Hi there! My name is Yusuke. I write about automotive topics for Car Proper. I love cars and have a passion for writing helpful articles on tools, car accessories, and how-to to help my readers solve their problems. In my spare time, I'm either working out, reading the book, or spending time with my family. I also work for a digital consulting agency.

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