The lead-acid battery is the most common type of car battery and will usually last from three to four years. However, as with any other hard-working vehicle component, there are elements that will impact its lifespan. These include environmental factors such as temperature and humidity, corrosion around the battery terminals, and the number of components and gadgets it may be expected to power.
A straightforward, regular lead-acid battery for a small vehicle can be bought for around $100. A top-shelf AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) technology battery which can be used for modern vehicles with stop/start functionality can cost more than $500. It’s important to remember that you must use the right battery for your vehicle - the installation of the wrong battery can cause damage to a modern car’s electrical system.
The battery warning light, strictly speaking, is not an indication of the status of the battery. Rather, it is an indicator of a problem with the battery charging system. While the fault may indeed turn out to be the battery, the problem could also be down to loose wiring, a loose drive belt or, and this is the most likely suspect, the alternator.
No, you won’t be able to recharge your battery this way. The idea that a drive around the block or leaving your car idling will recharge the battery is nothing but a myth. The correct thing to do is use a battery charger system appropriate to the battery used in your car.
Yes. Eventually. Batteries will naturally lose their charge if they are not used. Today’s cars do need a constant, though small, amount of power. Without it, onboard computers and control modules may lose their memory and security systems may be disabled.
Yes. stop/start vehicles put extra load on the battery - it needs to provide power to other electrical components and be able to give the car a powerful kick to start again. A standard car battery cannot provide the capabilities required for the SSV system. A special type of battery, often an Absorbent Glass Mat (AGM) battery, is required for an SSV vehicle.