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Batteries Baby

I have been writing articles for several years now and the ones I’ve written on batteries are endless.

Most batteries last two to four years in hot climates and four to six years in cold climates. Tests have shown that under the hood heat and high outside temperatures accelerate battery failure.

Batteries are seldom thought of until they don’t work. Watch out for these signs:

1.     Battery warning light on the instrument panel is on

2.     Engine cranks slowly

3.     Headlights dim as vehicle idles

Before selling a battery do a full charging system inspection by checking the alternator, starter, motor and for corroded cables on battery posts. Check the dates on the new battery. Usually, you will find the date code on the side of the battery. It will either read, 1-5 or A-5. This is indicates the date the battery was made. For example, if the battery says 1-5 it was produced in the month of January in the year 2015. If the alphanumeric code letter is “A” The battery was made in January. If it is “B” it was made in February, so on and so forth.

Do not sell a battery for newer vehicles on cold cranking amps. Cars with fuel injection, which are most vehicles, are computer controlled and start right up.

Batteries come in all sizes. They are made to fit the areas under the hood. Batteries are grouped by physical size, where the terminals are placed and how the battery is attached.

Maintenance free batteries are the norm. The batteries that had to have water added are almost off the market place.

There are several batteries in the market place. Go to the Internet and check their ratings and prices. You may have to carry two price range batteries to help your customers.

Most distributors will supply your business with batteries and you only pay for them as they are sold.


Do you know the difference between superchargers and turbochargers?

Superchargers are belt-driven. Turbochargers use the engine’s hot gases to drive them. As time goes on, you will see more and more turbochargers coming into your shop.

Turbochargers can take a three- or four-cylinder engine and make it produce a lot more horsepower while still getting fairly good fuel mileage.

Turbochargers spin up to 250,000 rpm. They have a problem. If the correct oil is not used, the bearings will choke up — and that’s the end of the turbocharger. To replace it, ranges from $1,500 to $3,500.

In some of my past articles I have talked about how hard these small engines work — and the loss of engine oil in doing so. With the addition of the turbocharger, now there is a lot of heat added.

Here is my suggestion: Educate your customers who have turbochargers to use the best oil in their vehicles and to change the oil every 3,000-4,000 miles.


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