Car Battery Problems? Know The Steps To Clean The Terminals

Have you tried to start your car but nothing is happening? It could be due to a problem with your vehicle's battery terminals being dirty. Here are some ways that you can fix this problem on your own.

Verify the Car Battery Problem

If your car battery is not working right, you should immediately notice that problem when you get into the car. It is likely that your dome lights will not turn on, and when you put the key into the ignition there is no activity on your dashboard, radio, or lights. This is a good indication that something is wrong with the battery and it is worth investigating. 

Disconnect the Car Battery

Disconnecting the battery is easy, but it is important that you do it in the right order. Make sure you first disconnect the negative cable, which will be the black cable. The positive cable will be red. This will prevent any sparks from coming off the battery by disconnecting the wrong cable first. 

Clean and Dry the Battery Terminals

Your local auto parts store will sell special brushes for cleaning off the car battery terminals, but it can also be done by using an old toothbrush and a homemade cleaning solution. Simply mix together baking soda and water to create an abrasive cleaning solution that will do a great job at cleaning the terminals. The terminals can be safely dried when you are finished by using a lint-free cloth.

Inspect the Cables and Battery

Look over the battery itself now that it is out of the vehicle. Do you see any notable cracks in the casing? If so, this is a good reason to take the battery to a local auto shop to have it repaired or replaced. You should also look at the cables for signs of the cable starting to fray or the ends corroding. This is another reason to have these parts replaced if things are not working later on.

Reconnect the Car Battery and Start the Vehicle

Place the battery back into your vehicle, and reconnect it starting with the positive cable first, then the negative cable. Now you can get into the vehicle and try starting it up again. If the car starts fine, you know it was due to the corrosion that you cleaned off the terminal. If it is still not working, then you may have a dead battery or another problem with the electrical system. 

Visit an auto repair shop for more information.