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How Long does a Car Battery Last For

Your battery is a vital part of your car. Without a working battery, your car can’t even start, let alone drive. Without a fully-functioning battery, your car can’t turn on any electronic components, so there are no lights or radio either. Replacing your battery is an important part of car maintenance that cannot be ignored. But how long does the average car battery last, and what are the warning signs that it will need to be replaced soon?


The lifespan of a new car battery will depend on several factors, including how long it can hold its charge and how long it can be recharged. Once a battery can no longer be recharged, it is considered dead and will need to be replaced. In ideal conditions, meaning no excess humidity or extreme temperatures, a car battery can last up to six years, but this time span is often shorter for the average car. Most of us will experience extreme weather conditions at some point during the year, shortening the car battery’s lifespan.


While the lifespan of a car battery will depend on the vehicle, its condition, and if it is exposed to extreme conditions, most people find that they need a new battery every four years, give or take. If you drive in winter conditions for more than half the year, you may find that your car battery does not last quite this long. Exposure to extremely cold temperatures or cold temperatures that persist for long periods of time can shorten the life of your battery. Around the three-year mark, start paying attention to your vehicle and how it is running, and be prepared to replace the battery if it begins having issues. 

Sometimes car batteries may fail without any warning signs. By remembering when you last had your battery replaced and keeping in mind that most batteries last 3-4 years, you can have a mechanic check your battery condition as it nears this mark when you get routine oil changes and tire rotations. There is, unfortunately, no way to avoid replacing your car battery, so you will need to consider it a part of routine maintenance every four years or so.

Signs That Your Vehicle Might Need a New Battery

If your battery is nearing the end of its life, there are signs you can keep an eye out for. Watching for these signs will help keep you from being stranded with no battery and include the following: 

Slow Starting Engine

As components inside your battery wear out, it becomes less efficient, meaning it will take longer to charge your car’s starter, causing the engine to take a few extra seconds to turn over than usual. A slow starting engine can be a warning sign that your battery is about to give out.

Dim Lights and Electrical Issues

In addition to powering components like your car’s starter, the battery also powers the electrical components of your car. As such, the lights and electronics in your car may begin to dim and have issues as your battery gets close to dying. 

Old battery

If it has been 3-5 years since you replaced your car’s battery, this is a good sign that it may need a new battery soon. It’s easy to forget the last time you had your battery checked, so it can be helpful to make a habit out of asking your mechanic to check during routine maintenance, especially after you pass that three-year mark. 


In addition to taking longer to start your engine, an older battery may cause a clicking sound when you turn the key. So when you turn your key to start the ignition, your battery sends electrical signals to the starter to get things going. Failing batteries have a harder time doing this, and the electrical current sent to the starter will be weaker, making a clicking noise that you may be able to hear inside your car.

Certified Car & Truck Battery Services in Burlingame

Are you looking for safe, reliable, and durable car and truck battery services in Burlingame, CA? Schedule an inspection with one of the dealerships from Putnam Automotive Group.

An efficient, working battery is a vital part of a car running smoothly. When you have your battery regularly checked for efficiency, it can help ensure you don’t get left stranded with a dead battery. If you’re not sure when your battery was replaced or when it was checked last, find a Putnam Automotive Group location near you.