5 Symptoms of a Bad Car Battery and Replacement Cost


To start the engine and drive your vehicle, you need to crank it first. This requires the assistance of the ignition system and starter motor. However, they will need their own electrical current before they can begin to function. This is where the battery comes into play. The function of the battery is to create this necessary electrical current for the ignition system and the motor. The electrical current gets sent from the battery as soon as you turn the key in the ignition system. In rare cases, the battery will serve as a backup power supply if the alternator fails. But the battery won’t be able to supply the necessary amount of power needed for very long because it cannot handle this kind of energy demand.

The Top 5 Symptoms

Most car batteries will last between 2 to 5 years, depending on how often you drive your vehicle. If you use a lot of extra electronic accessories like the radio or air conditioner, they will also drain the power of the battery fast. Eventually, your battery will start to weaken and then go completely dead. It is best to replace your battery before it goes completely dead or else you could find yourself stranded somewhere.

Below are the top 5 symptoms of a weakening car battery. Let these be warning signs that you need to get your battery replaced soon.

Failing Lights – The battery supplies the power for all the lights in your dashboard and the accessories in your vehicle. Even your headlights will require battery power too. If any of these lights start to flicker, weaken, or shut off completely, this is a warning sign that your battery is low on power. Replace it soon before all the lights stay off forever.

Car Doesn’t Start – You may turn the key in your ignition and get the engine to crank over, but that doesn’t always mean it will start the car. If you have a failing battery, your car may not start after you crank the engine. This problem will just occur randomly, and you probably won’t even see it coming until you’re faced with it.

Corrosion – How often do you check your battery terminals? One clear sign of a bad battery is when corrosion can be found on these terminals. When a car battery has been used for a while, the battery acids will release hydrogen gas that seeps onto the terminals and causes this corrosion to form. Some auto shops will just say that you need to clean the corrosion off and that’s it. What they don’t tell you is the corrosion problem will come back if you keep using the same battery. That is why you need to replace it immediately.

Warning Light – Most cars have a battery warning light on the dashboard. If you see your battery warning light illuminating, then you should obviously investigate the situation by using a car battery tester to see how much power the battery has left.

Engine Dies Fast – Your battery may have enough power to turn over the engine but then your engine will fail shortly afterward. If you find yourself having to get a jump start on a regular basis, then you should consider getting your battery replaced soon. However, you may want to have a mechanic look over your vehicle and see if another component may be draining your battery power too.

Read also: 5 Symptoms of a Bad MAP Sensor in Your Car

Replacement Cost

The average cost of a replacement car battery is usually between $100 and $200. Of course, if you are driving a hybrid vehicle then that is a different story. But for any regular vehicle with gasoline power only, your battery replacement won’t be more than a few hundred dollars. Just remember that if your alternator goes bad, then your battery will likely go bad soon afterward because you’ll be supplementing power with it.


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