You just turned 18, your dad gifts you that first car and you couldn’t be happier. But sooner you hit a big bump when you got that acceptance letter from the college on the other side of the country.
Thinking of wrapping up your precious baby before you leave for school? Well, I hope you do it right. Because you might as well be preparing to damage your car batteries.
Just like the old saying goes, not using your car batteries may render them useless. So, as a responsible adult, or not so much an adult, you need to know how to store car batteries in the house. Check out the full article and learn the detailed guide.
How to Store Car Batteries: A Step by Step Guide
Step 1- Secure a Place:
The place where to store car batteries is important. Find a secure place such as your garage floor. Now, storing car batteries on concrete floor is alright. But the dust that settles on top of the car battery can cause a bit of discharging of the battery. So, cover your battery when you leave it for longer periods.
You may also use a battery tray to keep the battery. Or you can use a car battery storage container, which is essentially a vented box made of plastic.
Another thing to make sure of is when you store the car battery, make sure it is in a spot where it is safe in case of an earthquake or flood. Do not leave scrap metals immediately above the area where you’ve kept the battery.
One of the most important aspects of storing a battery is the temperature. Store it in a shaded place and if possible, in a 15oC environment. Otherwise, the battery will discharge fast.
Step 2- Position it Well:
Do not place your car battery on its sides. Do not keep it upside down. Always keep the battery in an upright position. This will avoid damage to the battery, leakage and preserve its performance.
Step 3- Disconnect and Inspect:
Take the car batteries out of the car and as mentioned in step 1, secure it in a place.
But what you should do is disconnect the negative cable first and then the positive one. When you reconnect the battery with your car, you want to do it the opposite way. This is safer, also protective gloves are preferred while doing this.
Now clean your battery terminals if they appear to be greasy, dust off the dirt on top of the battery.
Now check the acid levels of the battery. Take off a knob and take a peek. If the levels are low, add some water, and clean off after sealing the knob.
Last but not least, check for leakage!
Step 4- Charge Before Storage:
Your battery if kept for a prolonged time without use, goes through a process called sulfonation. The sulfate ions accumulate on the plates and the battery loses efficiency. No matter you take it to the shop and the guy charges it up, it still won’t gain back the efficiency.
Before storing, you need to charge your battery.
One way to charge batteries is by getting yourself jumper cables and an inverter. Connect the positive end of the inverter to the negative end of the battery with the help of the jumper cable. Vice versa for the positive end of the battery and the negative end of the inverter. It should be done in this order.
Attach a multimeter and check the voltage. 13.4 volts is perfect in this case. This is how to keep the car battery charged when not in use.
Storing car batteries for longer periods? Wondering how to store a car battery for winter?
Batteries shouldn’t be kept idle for a long time. If possible, charge every week and use at least half an hour.
Otherwise, be aware of storing on a concrete floor as cooler temperature causes the easy discharge. In the winter months, how about keeping in a storage closet?
If you must place it in a garage, use a wooden plank (2×4 or 3/4″ thick plywood) underneath the battery.
It is highly recommended to use a battery tender. Battery tenders are small chargers that keep the batteries charged.
Any advice is to have wiring that can connect and disconnect instead of alligator clips for connecting the battery tender.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How can I preserve my car battery when not in use?
Place in a cool (15oC), dry room, or inside a container box in a fully charged state. Attach a battery tender if necessary.
How long can a car battery be stored?
If properly maintained, a car battery can be stored for up to 2 years.
Where do you store old car batteries?
Old car batteries should be given to an authorized recycle factory. But before that, they can be stored in a cold, dry place in a secured fashion.
Can you store a car battery on its side?
Don’t store a car battery on its side.
Can I store a car battery in my trunk?
No. It is unsafe to store a car battery in your trunk.
How long will a car battery last in storage?
A car battery storage duration is 2 years if properly done.
How to store a brand-new car battery or how to store a battery is crucial as lack of care ruins good batteries over time.
Storing the batteries is pretty easy and does not require you to go to a mechanic for help.