Auto Tips

Common Signs Your Car Battery Needs Replacement

car battery replacementComing out of a winter where temperatures can frequently dip below freezing, you may be wondering whether or not your car’s battery is going to need replacing. While the average car battery lasts anywhere from 3 to 5 years, many factors contribute to its lifespan. At Tommy’s Automotive, we routinely check our customer’s car batteries and can recommend replacement based on a few things.

Signs You Need a New Car Battery

No one wants to get left out in the cold – and a car battery can leave you stranded at home, at work, or somewhere in between. To ensure your vehicle doesn’t leave you without a ride, there are some things to pay attention to:

  • Slow Engine Crank. If you notice that your engine is slow to crank or struggles to start, it could be a sign of a weak or failing battery.
  • Dashboard Warning Lights. Some vehicles are equipped with battery warning lights on the dashboard. If you see the battery light illuminated while driving, it could indicate a problem with the battery or charging system.
  • Dimming Lights. Dimming headlights, interior lights, or dashboard lights can be a sign of a weak battery, especially when you turn on electrical accessories like the radio or air conditioning.
  • Electrical Issues. Problems with electrical components such as power windows, door locks, or the radio can sometimes be attributed to a failing battery.
  • Corrosion. If you can, check the battery terminals for signs of corrosion or buildup (our techs at Tommy’s can also check for corrosion). Corrosion can interfere with the battery’s ability to charge and may indicate that it’s time for a replacement.
  • Old Age. If your battery is approaching 3 to 5 years old, it may be nearing the end of its lifespan, even if it’s still functioning. Consider proactively replacing it to avoid unexpected failures.
  • Unusual Odor. A sulfurous or rotten egg smell near the battery could indicate a leak or internal damage, necessitating immediate replacement.
  • Visible Damage. Physical damage such as cracks, bulging, or leaking fluids from the battery casing are clear signs that it needs to be replaced.

Another thing to consider is where you live. Places with excess humidity or extreme temperatures (cold or hot) can affect the longevity of your car battery.

Tommy’s Offers Battery Check-Ups & Replacement

Not everyone knows how or wants to check their battery to ensure it is in good shape. At Tommy’s Automotive, we will gladly check your car’s battery to see just how much life is left. If a replacement is needed, we can recommend the best one for the best price. Schedule your routine check-up and car service today.

Best Ways to Get Better Fuel Economy

crazy gas pricesAs gas prices continue to climb, many of us are feeling the pain at the pump. While no one can say when the fuel costs will go down, there are some great ways you can save some money and get better fuel economy – no matter what vehicle you drive.

Tips for Fuel Savings

You may not be able to incorporate every tip at every trip to the gas station – but we hope these bits of advice will help you save a little bit the next time you fill up.

  • Drive Slower – whether you’re late for work, feeling a bit of road rage, or just hate going slow, driving fast burns more fuel than a slower MPH. On the highways where the speed limit is 65-80 MPH, a ‘sweet spot’ for fuel economy is between 65 and 69 MPH. This allows you to be safe while also saving your fuel.
  • Tire Pressure – every time you put gas in the tank, you should make it a practice to check your tire pressure. Tires with too low of tire pressure (or too high) are not only dangerous but can greatly impact your fuel economy.
  • Check the Air Filters – helping your engine run more efficiently is a great way to increase your average MPG. Both the engine filter and the air filter should be checked every 3 months. Your tech will be able to recommend the timing of replacement.
  • Carpool – although this isn’t a favorite option (we all love our own rides), carpooling with a co-worker or taking turns with pick up and drop off for school can help save your trips and your fuel.

Get Your Vehicle Running Efficiently

If it’s been a while since you have had your oil changed, your air filter and engine filter checked, or you aren’t sure how to make sure your tires are at their correct level, schedule an appointment at Tommy’s. We are trusted and reputable and would love to help your vehicle run more efficiently. Hopefully, we will see the prices at the pump drop, but for now, let’s all do what we can to help one another save.