How Long Does A Battery Last?
The battery in your Ford motor vehicle is specifically designed to work in that vehicle. It is covered by Ford's New Vehicle Warranty for a period of 12 months or 20,000 km. which one come first, but if looked after, should last much longer than that. Some of the factors that affect your battery life may include:
- Poor electrical connection such as dirty or loose battery terminals or loose/ and dirty earthing points;
- Cold climates and temperatures will reduce both the battery's performance and service life. A study in the US found a vehicle's battery would reduce its output by as much as 35% at 0oC and as much as 60% when the temperatures were below -18oC. If the electrolyte levels are low in the battery, low temperatures can cause it to freeze destroying the battery. Similarly in very hot conditions, corrosion inside the battery increases which in turn reduces the lifespan;
- heavy stop/start drive cycles reduce battery life when compared to longer drives. Short trips don't allow the vehicle's alternator (or generator) enough time to fully charge the battery, causing sulphation. This is a crystalline deposit that builds up inside the battery preventing it from charging fully;
- Low electrolyte fluids (distilled water) in the battery due to poor maintenance will also shorten the battery life. Similarly, incorrect fluid (such as normal tapwater) being used instead of distilled water will also shorten the lifespan;
- Long storage periods where the vehicle is not started or used will also affect the battery's lifespan;
Regular inspection and maintenance of batteries will minimise the risk of premature failure of your battery. When it comes time to replace your battery, make sure it matches the electrical requirements of your vehicle. For information regarding the correct battery specification for your vehicle, contact your local Ford dealership or refer to your owner's manual.