How to Remove Corrosion from a Car Battery

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Between providing the first spark of power to your engine and powering all your electronic devices, from the stereo to the climate control system, your car’s battery does quite a bit. Without it functioning properly, you could end up stranded on the side of the road around Palm Beach, Greenacres, or Boca Raton without the ability to start your vehicle back up.

Remove Corrosion from a Car Battery

One of the main causes of a premature car battery failure is a buildup of corrosion on the battery that causes it to lose power faster than it should. So, today, the team at Braman Honda of Palm Beach is giving you tips on how to remove corrosion from a car battery to extend its life.

Step by Step: How to Remove Corrosion from a Car Battery

Cleaning the car battery terminals is a fairly easy process, but many may be wary because they’re afraid of getting a shock. For this reason, it’s important that you follow each instruction in order so there are no accidents.

Please be mindful that it’s always a good idea when doing automotive maintenance to have a buddy around in case you need assistance. Also, be sure to wear a pair of work gloves and safety glasses to prevent injury.

Locate the Car Battery & the Terminals

The first step to removing corrosion is to find the car battery. For most vehicles, it’s under the front hood of the vehicle on one side of the engine bay. From there, locate the terminal covers and carefully lift them.

Disconnect the Car Battery

Throughout this step, be sure not to touch anything metal while you’re touching the battery. This includes the side or body of the car. It could short out the car battery and cause it to fail completely.

To disconnect the car battery, you’ll need to unfasten the clamps to the terminals by loosening the NEGATIVE clamp first. If there’s a lot of corrosion, you may need to use a tool like rubber handle pliers to get it off since it may stick. Once the NEGATIVE clamp has been removed, you can remove the POSITIVE clamp.

Prepare a Simple Cleaning Agent

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The most common battery corrosion cleaner is made at home with a mixture of water and baking soda. Create a mix of two tablespoons each of water and baking soda in a clean plastic container. Stir lightly until it forms a nice paste.

Clean the Battery Terminals, Rinse, Then Dry

Using the solution and a clean toothbrush, apply the paste to the battery terminals. You’ll see the cleaner sizzle a bit as it breaks apart the corrosive material on the battery (this is a good thing). Then, use a wire battery cleaner brush to scrub away any remaining corrosive material.

After they’re free of debris and corrosion, rinse them with a bit of water using a spray bottle or by simply pouring a tablespoon or two of water over each terminal. Then, use a clean rag to dry the battery terminals completely. To prevent further corrosion in the future, you can put a bit of petroleum jelly on each terminal before replacing the clamps.

Reconnect the Battery

After the battery is completely clean and free of corrosion, you can reconnect it using the POSITIVE clamp first. Then reconnect the NEGATIVE clamp after. If there’s corrosion on the clamps, clean these before reattaching to prevent further battery corrosion. Be sure to replace the rubber or plastic terminal covers at the end.

Learn More About Your Car Battery

If corrosion isn’t the only thing you’re worried about, contact the team at your local Honda service center near Boca Raton, Greenacres, and Palm Beach. The friendly and knowledgeable service team at Braman Honda of Palm Beach will be happy to answer any and all questions you have about your car battery. Give us a call or use our online form to contact us now.