August Car Tip: A battery by any other name is still a battery!

Heat kills batteries. Cold kills batteries. Change of weather kills batteries. So, when you need a battery are they all the same on the inside? Essentially, they are. What you are paying for is a free replacement period and a warranty. The longer the free replacement period, the more expensive is the battery. In Houston, to have a battery last more than three years is exceptional. Normal life expectancy here will be between 24 to 36 months. Did you know that there are southern batteries and northern batteries? Did you know that Benjamin Franklin invented the term battery and positive and negative?

While a battery is a battery is a …., battery testers are not equal. Some testers are terrible. A good battery might test fair on a poor piece of equipment; a bad battery might test okay. A good tester can cost upwards of $1800 and not many parts stores will spend that kind of money, neither will auto repair shops except shops like ours. Have you ever gone to a parts store, asked them to check the battery you know for a fact to be bad, only to have the young kid at the counter say, “Ma’am, your battery tests just fine.” How frustrating!

Essentially a test will come back with one of four conclusions: Good, Marginal, Bad, Recharge and Test. What does that Recharge and Test finding mean? Essentially it means the battery is weak, and the tester doesn’t know if that is because the battery is actually bad or because it needs to be recharged. A battery has to be charged up fully before the test can check if all the cells in the battery are working.

We now sell AAA of Texas batteries. This is a NEW program. The free replacement period is 36 months and the warranty is 70 months. If you are a AAA member, this is an awesome battery for the price. AAA still makes house calls and road side assistance for batteries, but they will only replace them if they test bad. If the conclusion is Recharge and Test, AAA’s policy will be to send you to the nearest AAA Approved Auto Repair Facility, which could be us.

August being a hot month is hard on your battery. Make sure it is not corroded and the cables are tight. We will provide a Free Battery Test with any service. We also offer instruction cards for teens and young drivers on the proper method of jumping a battery. Just stop by the shop and request our information card.