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Car Battery Capacity-Average Capacity, Choice And Testing
Most people barely go a day without coming into contact with a battery in one way or another. They’re on our phones and so many other devices, which shows that they’re here to stay.
We know that using the right battery is a huge part when it comes to functionality. There are some details you need to look at to make sure that the battery you’re getting will deliver depending on your specific needs.
Today, we want to look at what you should pay attention to as far as the capacity of a car battery is concerned. Capacity is the amount of energy your battery will be able to store in between each full charge and discharge cycle. The capacity is usually indicated as Ah (ampere-hours)or even kWh (Kilowatt hours)in some cases like the electric car batteries.
Since car batteries are types of rechargeable batteries, capacity is something that you should always prioritize with every purchase. I’m sure that everyone would want to best quality battery that has a good capacity rating, along with other specifications that come with the type of battery you’re choosing.
People often ask why it’s so important to look at what capacity you’re getting from your battery. What difference does it make anyway?
Choosing the right capacity will give you a steady supply of power for more hours before your battery is discharged. Your car will be able to run without interruptions and the electronic system accessories will still function.
That’s why you should always double-check on this detail before buying your new battery.
Not all cars are the same. That’s a fact. But, there is still a standard type of battery capacity that vehicles require to function properly.
On average, a good car battery will be within the 50Ah-100Ah range. Most normally fall around the 70Ah capacity range.
This is usually just estimation because there are many factors in between that could how long your battery will last. Some of the common factors that could affect your battery capacity include weather conditions.
The type of capacity you go for should be in line with other details like the specific type of battery your car uses, the type of engine, just to name a few.
While finding out the capacity you need, you should get some guidelines on how to read the labels on a battery. It can get very confusing but once you learn, you’ll know exactly what you’re looking at. In case you’re not one hundred percent sure request some assistance at the store.
These are some of the things to check when it comes to capacity rating.
Confirm The Rating System
The first thing is to check what rating system the company is using. Some use the 10-hour rate system, others the 20-hour rate and some also use the 100-hour rate system. Once you recognize this, you can get a clearer perspective, especially when comparing batteries at the store.
Look At The CCA (Cold Cranking Amps) Rating
Although the CCA is meant to show you the efficiency of the battery when starting at very low temperatures, it’s a good way to give you a rough idea of the capacity of the battery.
A high CCA rating will give you enough stored energy per hour, depending on the type of car you have.
Aside from these details, you should also check areas like voltage just to make sure everything is perfect. The standard type of pf battery should be a 12V battery.
It’s even better if you have the manual with you. You’ll be able to directly find out what type of battery capacity you need to look out for.
The most common way of testing a battery capacity is through a multimeter. This is an instrument that measures the voltage, currents, and other specifications of a battery.
There are different types of multimeters including the digital ones, which are commonly used in these modern times and the analog multimeters. The digital ones are preferred because they tend to give more accurate readings. The type you choose all depends on your preference.
Through this instrument, you can be able to test and get a proper capacity indication of your battery.
We’ve seen that multimeters can vary but these are some of the things you need to remember when using one.
Make sure your battery is fully charged-this This will give you a better estimate as compared to a partially charged battery. Confirm that the battery is ready for the test by ensuring that the voltage reading indicates a fully charged battery. This should be at the 12.6V mark.
Observe the safety precautions-don’t be too eager to jump right into this test without being keen on some of the safety recommendations. You could be putting yourself in the way of danger if you’re not careful. You should remember things like checking if the multimeter is in good condition and safe for use, wearing protective gear to prevent injuries, and generally being cautious before, during, and after the test to prevent avoidable accidents.
The final steps should be taking note of the current indicated by the resistor and recording the number of hours it’s taken the battery to reach the half-charged mark. From there, you can now calculate the Ah capacity.
The equation should be, battery current indicated multiplied by the number of hours taken to reach the 12V mark. Multiply the number you get by 2 to find the Ampere hour of the battery.
This test requires you to be very observant to get the best possible estimate. It’s also recommended that you give the battery enough time to recharge once you’re done with the test.
Battery capacity isn’t a constant thing. It will reduce over time but choosing a high initial capacity range will ensure your battery lasts longer either way. Along with that is making sure that you’re doing regular maintenance.
Some of the other main areas that could affect the capacity include the age, which means your battery has been exposed to a lot of wear and tear.