Your car battery is the heart of your car. Your battery provides the electricity needed to power door locks, windows, headlights, interior lights and the rest of your car’s accessories. The moment your battery dies, your car is dead.
There are five important factors to consider when choosing a car battery:
- Reserve Capacity
- Cold-cranking amps
Size refers to the height, width, and length of your battery. Purchasing the wrong-sized car battery is both a waste of money and a potentially damaging decision.
Reserve Capacity (RC) rating refers to your battery's ‘lasting power.' RC is the number of minutes your battery can continuously supply the minimum voltage needed to run your car should your car's alternator fail. Excellent reserve capacity rating allows your car to run on your battery alone if your alternator stops working. The longer the operating time of your battery's reserve capacity, the better; because it’s the one quality of the battery that saves you from getting stranded.
Brand refers to the battery’s trademark name. Buying the cheapest brand just to save a few dollars could turn out to be the most expensive battery you've ever purchased. Cheap batteries may also have defects and perform poorly. Frequent battery changes, which mean repeated installations, will suck up the money you thought you initially saved.
Battery Age gives you an idea of how long it should perform. A battery fresh battery is one that is less than six months old.
Cold-cranking amps (CCA) measure your battery's ability to start your car even in extremely cold weather. During freezing condition, your car’s engine oil thickens and is sometimes hard to start. Higher cold- cramping amps insure that your car's engine starts faithfully - even on freezing mornings.