The battery is essential as an electrical component of your truck, therefore it is important to check battery health regularly. The battery is vital when you want to start your truck, turn on the headlight, listen to music, clean your windshield using wipers, and run the air conditioning.
When your battery has low voltage, you will experience challenges when starting your truck, forcing you to jump-start it. A good battery will serve you for 4 to 5 years. However, you must regularly test your battery to ensure it is working perfectly. Here is how to check the battery health of your truck battery at home before deciding to replace it.
How to Check Your Truck Battery Health at Home
You can use different ways to check the health of your truck battery. Here are some of the ways you can use it at home.
Check the Voltage Using a Voltmeter
A voltmeter measures any electrical device’s voltage, it can be analog or digital. Your choice depends on one’s test and preferences. When using a voltmeter, first, you have to turn off all the truck accessories that can drain power from the battery, like the radio, ignition, and headlights.
Remove the covers of the terminals of your battery and connect the positive point of the voltmeter to the positive terminal of your battery and the negative end to the negative terminal of your battery.
Check the readings. A healthy battery has a voltmeter reading of 12.4V to 12.7V. Any reading above this indicates a healthy battery, but if it is below 11.8, your battery is not in good condition.
A voltmeter may not be very accurate, and you must test your battery under load.
Performing Headlight Test
In case you do not have a voltmeter, you can observe the reactions of your headlights when you turn on your truck.
When your headlights are not as bright as they should be, your battery might be low on power. When the headlights get brighter as you turn on your truck, the alternator works perfectly, but it does not supply enough power to charge your battery.
If you never observe any change in your headlights’ brightness, your battery is healthy.
Perform a Physical Inspection of Your Battery
It is necessary to perform a physical examination of your battery. Doing this will enable you to detect any cracks or physical damage to your battery. To inspect your battery, disconnect the terminals and remove them from the truck.
Place your battery on a flat surface and examine if it has any bulges. Budges usually result from overcharging or reactions of the chemical components of the battery.
Next, look at the terminals of your battery to see if they have debris accumulation and remove them. If you see any cracks on your battery, replace it.
Before installing your battery to its carrier, consider cleaning it using a soft brush, water, and some baking soda.
The above are 3 steps that will help you to check the battery health at home without necessarily having an expert do it. Doing this can also help you know how to make the battery last longer.