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    Choosing a car battery

    Three things to look our for when choosing a car battery

    Here are some things to consider when choosing a car battery:

    Power

    Cold Cranking Amps

    Maintenance Free Batteries

    - Power


    What does power refer to in car batteries?

    The power contained in the battery is one of the first things to consider when choosing a car battery. It tells you the battery’s capacity i.e. the energy available in the battery. This is measured in ampere hour (Ah). This is also referred to as the “minimum capacity” on our website.


    Where can you find this information on the AllBatteries website?

    The battery’s power appears in two places on our website: To the right of the photo (4th bullet point down) and in the additional information section at the bottom of the product page.

     minimum capacity      

    capacity                       


    When should you go for a higher capacity battery?

    If you use your vehicle for short journeys, we advise going for a higher capacity battery. Thus you will have more energy stored and therefore more available power. This comes in really handy when you only make short journeys since the alternator doesn’t have enough to time to charge the battery. Your battery will therefore have a longer life.

    Your vehicle’s accessories are also another thing to consider. The more electronic equipment it has, the more power it will need so it then becomes more necessary to have a high capacity battery.


    An example of a vehicle which needs a high capacity battery:

    A vehicle with an average sized engine which is used for short journeys and which has a lot of electronic equipment like a top-of-the-range supermini will need a higher capacity battery (one with the highest Ah rating possible).

     

    - Cold cranking amps (CCA)


    What is CCA?

    CCA is name given to the burst of the energy that the battery releases in a very short space of time to start the car. It is measured in amperes (A). The quality of the components is a determining factor in the battery’s CCA. Therefore, the higher up the range you go, the purer the lead used to make the battery.

    The quality of the plates the lead is bonded to also has an impact on the CCA as they carry a strong current to the terminals to start the vehicle.

     

    Where can you find this information on the AllBatteries website?

    The battery’s CCA is displayed in two places on the website. It shows to the right of the photo and in the product description section.

    CCA 

    cca 2


    When should you go for a battery with a high CCA?

    If your vehicle has a large engine (big cars or diesel engines), we advise opting for a battery with a higher CCA.

    If you only use your vehicle occasionally or in winter, it is also advisable to have a battery with a higher CCA. The fluids used by the engine (oil, fuel) require more energy from the battery during winter. The lower the temperature, the more difficult it is for the battery to supply the necessary power to start the car. This phenomenon is amplified by sporadic usage.


    An example of a vehicle which needs a battery with a high CCA:

    If you drive long distances in a pickup truck, you would be well advised to choose a battery with a high CCA.

     

    - Battery casing: different technologies


    What is a “maintenance free” battery?

    Starter batteries are not sealed. This is where the name “open lead technology” comes from. This type of battery needs to “breathe” or more technically, to degas as long as the internal electrochemistry of the battery is active (in use as well as in storage). Small openings are created in the covers of car battery casings to make provision for this. The release of hydrogen (which is harmless to the health) creates evaporation and makes it necessary to top up the battery regularly in order to preserve the battery’s life. This manual action is what is referred to as the maintenance of the battery.

    A special cover is available among the mid to top range of Fulmen and NX Power Start batteries which makes it possible to recombine the gas, thus allowing it to be turned back into liquid. This prevents the electrolyte from evaporating, making manual maintenance unnecessary.


    Where can you find this information on the AllBatteries website?

    This information is given in the product’s description. When the battery is fitted with a gas recombination cover, it is specified that the battery is maintenance free.

    Maintenance free
    When should you choose a maintenance-free battery?

    If your vehicle is exposed to high temperatures, we advise opting for a maintenance free battery. The heat amplifies the degassing of the battery which causes the hydrogen level to drop. This causes premature ageing in the battery. Gas recombination covers prevent this from happening.

    We also advise opting for a maintenance free battery if your battery is difficult to get to and is not easily replaceable.


    Example of a vehicle which needs a maintenance free battery:

    If you live in a place where the temperatures are high for most of the year and you do not have a garage, a maintenance free battery would be the perfect fit.

     

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