Buying a used battery for your car or truck is a great way to save money, but you need to make sure that you are getting what you pay for. A used battery can be just a good as a new one, as long as the battery health is good and it fits the vehicle properly.
One of the first things you need to check before buying used car batteries is battery condition. The shop selling used car batteries should test them and be able to tell you what the condition is after the test.
A load test will put a significant strain on the battery and measure the results with a specialized tester that measures the battery's cranking amps. This load test is the best way to determine if the battery has the power it needs and if it is going to be able to provide that power when you are trying to start the car.
The battery should also be tested for charge storage, so charging the battery to capacity and letting it sit for a few days then testing the charge is a must. This test will determine if the battery will hold its charge if you do not drive your car for a few days.
Leaks and Acid Buildup
Another vital thing to check on used car batteries is the outward appearance and condition of the battery. If the battery has any damage to the outside of the case, there is a potential for it to leak, and it should be avoided. Holes or cracks in the case indicate a battery that has been in an accident or been treated rough and is not a good purchase.
If the battery has a lot of corrosion on the terminals and outside of the battery, you may be able to clean it up. Still, it is an indication that the battery maintenance was skipped or neglected, and most likely, this is not a battery you want to purchase and depend on.
The size of the battery you need for your car or truck is essential. The battery needs to physically fit in the vehicle and have the proper power rating as well. If the battery is not going to fit in the location that it is supposed to be in, it could be unsafe to put in the car.
Check the required group size for your battery in the owner's manual of your car or truck and ask for a battery in that group. Also, check the terminals to make sure they match your current ones.