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  • Writer's pictureJeff Guymon

Cost of Car Batteries

Car maintenance can be burdensome and changing a car battery is no different. However, knowing how much you will be asked to spend on your next car battery can prepare you and even save you time and money.

This article will be addressing and answering the following:

This article will walk you through everything you need to know about replacing a car battery including how much the battery and installation costs, how often you need to replace them, signs of a low battery and factors to avoid that shorten battery life.

How Much Does A Car Battery Cost?

Compared to other vehicle maintenance, replacing a car battery is relatively inexpensive. A car battery costs an average of about $100, however many different factors can cause this amount to fluctuate.

Mechanics say that a typical car battery costs between $75 and $120, while premium car batteries cost anywhere in the range of $90 to $200.

The major factor that determines the price of a car battery is the type of battery needed. The most common type of car battery is the 12 volt lead acid battery and these sell for about $125 to $135. Another more expensive type of battery you might need is the 12 volt absorbent glass mat battery (AGM), which will cost you around $200. These premium batteries cost more than the normal lead acid batteries because they are designed to power high end technology in luxury vehicles.

Other factors that will affect the amount you pay for your next car battery are:

  • The length of the warranty

  • If the battery is designed to run better in lower temperatures

How Much Does Installation Cost?

Mechanics charge anywhere between $10 and $100 in installation fees. The range of price is because labor costs depend on how long the installation takes and where your battery is located in the car.

One tip is that if you purchase your new car battery from an auto parts store like Autozone or other big-box retail stores, they will most likely install it for free (You can also purchase from Walmart or Amazon). Also, if your battery dies in an inconvenient place such as on the side of the road, call roadside assistance instead of a tow truck to jump start the dead battery or replace it (tip: once driving after a dead battery, don't start, the alternator needs to recharge the battery). CostHelper reported that some customers only paid AAA $119 for the battery and installation.

How Often Do Old Batteries Need To Be Replaced?

Mechanics suggest that new battery replacements should be scheduled every two to five years. Your battery's lifespan depends on factors such as vehicle type, climate and type of battery. When you are looking for the right battery, look for one that is less than six months old. Consider the quality of lead and the battery case in addition to if you need it to perform better in colder climates. Lastly, make sure the size of the battery and both the positive terminal and negative terminal match up with your car.

What Are Signs of a Low Car Battery?

If you haven't replaced your car battery in three or four years, you will want to watch out for some telling signs that your battery may die soon.

Signs include:

  • Dimmer than normal interior lights

  • Sluggish engine crank when starting your car

What Are Factors that Shorten Battery Life?

Extreme temperatures are known to shorten the life of car batteries. In a climate with extreme heat, battery fluid can evaporate. Next, as engine oil thickens in cold weather, the car uses more energy, which can also drain the battery. For cold weather, look for batteries with a Cold Crank Amps (CCA) rating on the label. Also, removing the corrosion from terminal posts can extend your battery life. This corrosion will appear in a faint white or blue fuzz and you can get rid of this by purchasing battery cleansing products at any auto store or make your own.

In order to make your own corrosion cleansing product:

  • Mix 2 tablespoons of baking soda and 8 ounces of water

  • Pour mixture over terminals

  • Scrub with an old toothbrush

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