How To Avoid Corrosion On Battery Terminals
Following on from our post on Maintaining Your Car Battery, here we focus on how to avoid corrosion on battery terminals. Car batteries are used to start a car and power the electronic aspects of the vehicle. They supply power that is used to ignite the fuel before your engine starts up. But when the battery terminals get rusty, there won’t be proper flow of power which makes your car useless for the moment.
Take a look at the battery to check if there is any white powder on the battery terminals. If there is, then, it’s corroded. Corrosion can delay your car engine from starting up or not starting up at all. The average lifespan of a battery is at least four years. This may vary from one brand and capacity to the other, having in mind that proper cleanup and maintenance is done regularly. Below are some tips on how to stay away from corrosion on battery terminal.
Safety Tips For Cleaning Battery Terminals
To avoid touching corrosive materials or to avoid any contact with the corrosive material, it is recommended that you use hand gloves, protective goggles, and a work smock. Make sure not to touch the metal parts and frame of the vehicle other than the battery terminals to avoid putting the battery under the danger of short-circuiting.
Be conscious of any fault or leaks in the battery, in case of any cracks; then the battery needs a replacement. So also, replace or repair any damaged wires you notice.
If your vehicle is a new one, then you’ll have to be very careful as disconnecting the battery might be a little bit tedious. Some might be connected to a 12V battery source, which may be through the OBD port, like a jump box. Vehicles with a special system can be taken to a specialist for its repair. You can also refer to its user’s manual to know how to disconnect the battery.
Below are step by step tips on how you can disconnect and clean up your battery;
- Locate where the battery of the vehicle is placed. You can consult the vehicle’s manual to know where the battery is situated but for most vehicles, it is placed at the front, near the engine. Some are placed in the trunk at the back side of the vehicle. Some might need you removing the front wheel at the driver’s side and the fender for good access.
- Switch the car off; let it cool for at least 30 minutes. Then press the release lever button to open the bonnet.
- Put on all our safety wears. The safety overall, gloves and safety gloves.
- How to disengage the car battery: there are two plastic covers protecting the terminal points where the cables are connected to the battery terminals, remove these rubbers.
- Spot the negative terminal; it is usually covered with a black terminal cover or marked with the minus sign. Loosen the clamp using a pair of plier s or a socket wrench.
- Also, the positive terminal is covered with a red terminal cover and usually marked with the plus sign.
- Battery terminal cleaner usually comes with instructions written on its bottle; follow these instructions to clean up the corrosion on the battery terminals. There might be a bubbling reaction on the battery terminals after spraying the terminals with the product.
- Using a wire brush, gently scrub the terminals and clamps till the metal is exposed. This will remove the corrosion on the battery terminal.
- Spray the terminals and clamps with water to rinse any foam or bubbles and corrosion away from the terminals and clamps.
- Use a soft and clean cloth to dry the terminals and clamps.
- Battery terminal protectant can be used to avoid any future corrosion, apply a thin layer of this protectant on each battery terminal.
- Refix the clamps to the battery terminals starting from the positive terminal. Then, fix the other clamp to the negative terminal.
- Put the two terminal covers back into place and close the bonnet. Once all these are done, your battery terminals are protected from corrosion, and you won’t have to go through stress whenever you start your car.