In this article, I’m going to show you exactly how to change your car battery without changing the radio signal or any other settings. What’s the deal here? Why do you even need to worry about losing your settings?
Well, the thing is every time you need to change the car battery, you lose your programming. Why does this happen?
It’s because auto manufacturers use an anti-theft measurement in your vehicle. If your car loses power or the connection to the battery is cut down, the radio signal is disabled. Unless you put a special security code, it won’t function.
I know a lot of people that don’t even know this feature existed. Heck, most of them don’t even know their security code or how to enter it properly.
There is a lot of tools you might have to buy that will cost you a lot of money. But this guide will help you to change the battery without changing the settings while keeping the cost to a minimum.
When to Change Car Battery?
Before you go changing the battery, ask yourself this “Do I need to change the battery in my car?”
The ideal time to change a car’s battery is after three years. Usually, a battery running for 4 to 5 years will be completely unreliable. Old car batteries will be unsafe and can also cause reliability issues.
When you go shop for a new car, most of you judge the condition of the vehicle based on engine performance, body condition, comfort, and fuel efficiency.
But, how many of us actually pay attention to the battery?
Did you know that most roadside assistance calls are because of flat or damaged batteries? If you want to ensure your car runs smooth, take care of your car’s battery.
The newer the car, the more strain it will put on the battery. It’s because of the sophisticated computer system that maintains the overall performance of the vehicle. The best time to change the car’s battery is after two to three years of use.
How to Change a Car Battery Without Losing Settings
For most cars, installing a new battery is a quick and easy job. You could either go to your trusted mechanic or simply do it at your own. You don’t need too much stuff to change the battery.
Related Read: Best Battery for Ford
All You Needs:
- Pair of gloves
- Safety goggles
- 12v backup battery
- Two wires
- Jump leads
Step 1: Finding out the problem
The first step is to determine whether you need a battery change or not. Sometimes it’s not the battery’s fault that causes your car to malfunction. Sulfate build-up can be a common reason for this. It can build up around the terminal in the form of whitish or blue residue.
Removing this residue can solve faulty battery issues. Common symptoms are:
- Bad seal around the battery terminal
- Leaking acid
Before removing this whitish powder, make sure to wear protective gloves. This powder can contain sulfuric acid which can burn your skin.
Step 2: Getting the right battery size
Get the right model number, car name, and engine size info and take that to your local auto parts store. They’ll be able to help you find the right battery size. Why is this important?
It’s because different cars have different engine size and so does the battery. Getting the proper size of the battery, capacity and the size of the battery holding tray is important, otherwise, all the effort will go to waste.
Step 3: Set up a proper working area
Make sure to wear proper safety gears. Batteries contain not only sulfuric acid but also other corrosive material that can produce flammable hydrogen. Change the battery in a safe and controlled environment.
Step 4: Connect a secondary power source
There are two ways you can use the secondary power source. You can either use a booster/jump pack or use a twelve-volt auxiliary battery and a set of jump leads. You can buy a cheap 12v battery from Home Depot or Walmart.
A lot of people prefer to use memory saver, but according to industry experts, memory saver is not needed. Furthermore, it can mess with the security settings by saving faulty codes. That’s why I prefer to use a 12v battery as my secondary power source.
It’s time to connect the jumps leads to the secondary battery. Place your auxiliary battery down to the floor and connect the black lead to the positive terminal and black one to the negative.
Take the crocodile clips and attach it to the end of the leads that connect to the main battery. Be careful not to clamp both ends of the crocodile clips. Connect the red to the red and black to the black.
Attach the clips to a safe metallic part of the lead otherwise, it will strike back while taking the leads out from the battery current.
Related Article: How to Clean Car Battery Terminals: Step By Step
Step 5: Remove the battery
Now that the secondary power is all set up, it’s time to safely remove the battery. Use a socket to loosen the lug nuts holding the battery and safely remove the clamp.
Now that you loosened up the tray, the battery is no longer attached to anything physical. Remove the leads from the battery. Use your socket set to loosen the bolts on the battery leads that are holding the clamps.
Now, be extra cautious while removing the negative lead from your current battery. Always keep the crocodile clips connected from your secondary power source. Then one by one, remove all the leads and safely take out the battery.
After that, the only thing juicing the car is your 12v auxiliary battery. Finally, take out your new battery and keep the old one for safe disposal.
What to do with your old battery?
Take it to your local auto store and tell them to get rid of it. They might charge you extra bucks for that, but it’s worth it.
Step 6: Connecting the new battery
Put the new battery in place without touching the old leads that are currently supplying power to your car. Connect the red to the positive terminal and black to the negative terminal of your new battery. After you connect the leads, take the crocodile clips off them.
Now, tighten the bolts on the battery tray, remove the secondary power source and put the clamp back in place.
Start your engine for a test run to check if the battery and settings are all ok. If done correctly, you’ll be able to change a car battery without changing the settings.
Car batteries are potentially dangerous if exposed inaccurately with contents like; lead, acid, and plastic. So, never keep or store these batteries in curbside bins with typical household recyclable batteries.
The good news is; some shops today offer an exchange of money for your dead battery. This is because a 12V battery is the most recycled product in the world.
Plus, many local recycling depots, battery recycling companies, landfills, and transfer stations will accept car batteries free of charge for disposal.