How Often to Replace Car Battery

Red battery stands out among regular gray car batteries

It’s frustrating when you try to start your car only to find that the battery is dead, and it’s even more stressful if you’re stuck on Minnetonka roads. Stay ahead of the stress: find out how often you should replace your car battery and minimize the risk of potential issues. Service experts estimate that you should replace your car battery every four to five years.

Real-world battery life varies depending on a couple of factors, but you can find out how to know if your MINI Cooper battery needs to be replaced in this helpful guide. If you have any questions, contact us at our Golden Valley service center.

When is it Time to Replace the Battery?

If you’re wondering how to know if your car battery needs to be replaced, keep an eye out for these signs:

  • Dimming headlights
  • More frequent need for engine revving or jump starts
  • The vehicle takes longer to start up with the key/push button
  • Unusual power fluctuations

Car Battery Deterioration: Know the Causes

Battery deterioration can affect how often you replace your car battery. A couple factors can shorten the lifespan of a car battery:

  • Temperature: Cars in warmer environments can have their battery life shortened because the heat causes the evaporation of liquids inside a car battery. Cold can sap the remaining charge from a battery with low power.
  • Vibrations: Loose hold-down clamps on the battery or driving on rough roads around St Louis Park can cause vibrations to break down the internal battery parts faster.
  • Needing a Jump: When the vehicle needs a jump start because you left the lights on overnight, your total battery life will shorten.
  • Time: Natural deterioration is expected. The car battery only goes through so many charge cycles, but proper care can help the battery achieve its best lifespan.

Consult the vehicle’s owner’s manual for the recommended battery maintenance schedule, or trust the team at Motorwerks MINI to perform a check when you schedule your routine maintenance.

How to Test a Car Battery

Although our service team is here to help, you can stay on top of your car care by learning how to test a car battery at home. Many retailers and service centers provide free battery tests, but you can test a car battery at home with these simple methods:

The Headlight Test: 

  1. Start the engine and keep the car in park with the headlights on.
  2. Rev the engine and watch to see if the headlights change brightness.
  3. When the headlights get brighter as the car is idling, this means that the current is not strong enough to maintain normal brightness for the headlights.
  4. Stop into the local Minneapolis service center for further assessment.

Using a Digital Multimeter:

  1. When testing a car battery with a voltmeter, set it to 20 DC volts.
  2. Lift the hood and touch the negative meter probe (black) to the negative terminal on the battery (also black).
  3. Touch the positive meter probe (red) to the positive terminal (also red).
  4. Ask a friend to switch on the headlights while you check the voltmeter reading.
  5. A reading of 12.5 volts or higher means the battery is fully charged. A reading of 12.3 volts means it’s at about 75% charged, and a reading of 11.8 volts or lower means the battery has 25% or less charge.

How Much is a Replacement Car Battery?

Wondering how much a replacement car battery will set you back? Most cars can have a battery that costs between $75 and $120, however premium batteries can reach up to $200. The more intricate batteries found in hybrid cars tend to be much more expensive. They can cost anywhere between $1000 and $6000, although they are almost always covered by long-lasting warranties.

Find Expert Car Care at Motorwerks MINI!

If it’s time to replace your car battery, talk to the team in the service center at Motorwerks MINI. Whether you’re looking to order a battery and replace it yourself or you’d like our certified technicians to take care of everything, you can rely on our genuine OEM parts for long-lasting performance.

Motorwerks MINI 44.973825, -93.369669.