How Long Do Car Batteries Last?

Close up of auto mechanic jumping battery

As nice as it would be if car batteries could last forever, that’s not the case. Most batteries last for three to five years, although there are factors that impact the life span. Find out what can reduce battery life, as well as the steps you can take to avoid these problems.

Your Usage Pattern

Your driving habits impact the life span of your battery. If you go on many short trips, your battery won’t have enough time to recharge fully. That, in turn, can reduce the life span. Also, if you park your car for long periods of time, the battery will self-discharge. Again, this might mean you have to replace your battery in two or three years instead of five.

However, there is a way to prevent your usage patterns from impacting battery life. Simply use a maintenance charger to keep your battery at the proper voltage, even when it’s parked for long periods of time.

Your Location

This might come as a surprise, but your location also impacts the life span of your battery. For example, it’s not unusual for batteries to last longer than five years in the Northern United States due to the cooler weather. However, in South Carolina and other southern states, the heat can cause batteries to degrade faster. That means your car battery might only last around three years.

Fortunately, some manufacturers have taken steps to protect batteries in hot climates. For instance, you can get a Buick or GMC with a heat shield that protects the battery when it’s scorching outside.


Vibrations can also wreak havoc on a battery. The internal components can break if your battery vibrates excessively, but you can avoid this issue, too. Use battery hold-down hardware to keep your battery in place when you drive. This will limit the vibrations, so your battery will last much longer.

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The Charging System

This isn’t a common problem, but sometimes, the charging system malfunctions. For example, it might over or under-charge the battery. Either issue can reduce the battery’s life span. If you think you have a problem with the charging system, take your vehicle to a service center for a checkup. Once the problem is fixed, you should get more use out of your car battery.

If you’re having problems with your car battery, the service center at Bradshaw Chevrolet Buick GMC of Greer in Greer, South Carolina, can diagnose and fix the problem. Simply schedule your service online and then bring your car to us.

We are also here to assist you if you’re in the market for a new or pre-owned vehicle. Then, you can start fresh with a new charging system, and you can get a heat shield for your battery if you wish. Stop by today to go over your options.

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