Content provided courtesy of USAA.
Today, most car batteries are designed to operate maintenance-free for several years. But because extreme summer temperatures can destroy a battery and leave you stranded, the nonprofit Car Care Council recommends having your car's battery tested periodically and, if necessary, replaced.
A professional mechanic or an employee at an auto parts store can test your battery for free or a small fee. Some do-it-yourself tips include:
- Jiggle it gently to make sure it's securely mounted.
- Inspect the metal connection terminals. They should be tight, clean and free of corrosion.
- Monitor your car for signs of a weak battery, such as dimming lights, accessories not working and the battery indicator light staying on.