Batteries & Electrical

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CAR BATTERIES AND ELECTRICAL SYSTEMS

Even the most meticulously maintained vehicle won’t start without the right battery, properly installed and appropriately fitted. From your car or truck’s ignition to its door locks, the battery allows you to get from ‘Point A’ to ‘Point B’.

WHAT DOES AN ALTERNATOR DO?:

 

  1. Provides power to the electrical system
  2. Recharges the battery when the car is running

 

Your vehicle’s circuits act as pathway for electrical power. The voltage regulator controls the voltage passed through the circuits. Remember, all of these components require consistent attention and maintenance to ensure your vehicle is reliable. Your vehicle doesn’t solely function on its battery, so if any components fail, your power source is reduced to a twenty pound paper weight.

 

HOW DOES A VEHICLE’S START SYSTEM WORK?

 

Turning the ignition causes a small current to pass through the starter relay, causing a stronger current to flow through the battery cables and into the starter motor. The starter motor cranks the engine (vroom!), forcing the piston to create enough suction drawing a fuel and air mixture into the cylinder. The ignition system creates a spark igniting the mixture and your engine starts. Once your engine is roaring, put the pedal down and hit the road!

TOP 5 THINGS TO DO IF YOUR CAR WON’T START

At KB Tire and Auto, we understand the frustration when your car won’t start. To help get you where you need to be, our team of expert auto technicians put together a list of things to check if you can’t get your car to start.

CHECK YOUR CAR’S BATTERY

A dead battery is usually the number one reason a car won’t start! So, before you throw your keys to a place where they will never be found, grab your jumper cables. Your battery can die for a number of reasons – leaving a dome light on overnight, poor conductivity or it could be old. Whatever the reason, try to jump-start your car. If the jump-start fails, you may be dealing with a dying battery.

TIME TO REPLACE THE IGNITION SWITCH

If you know your battery is working properly, your vehicle’s ignition switch could be faulty.

QUICK TIP FROM KB TIRE & AUTO: Remember, your car’s battery controls your headlights and dashboard. If your headlights and dashboard turn on, you’re most likely dealing with a bad ignition switch.

DO YOU HEAR THE ‘CLICK, CLICK, CLICK’ OF A BROKEN STARTER

Your car’s starter is responsible for providing the necessary force to get the engine moving. If you hear a clicking sound when you turn the ignition over, a broken starter could be the issue. In this case, you may need to call a tow truck!

WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CHANGED YOUR FUEL FILTER?

Your vehicle’s fuel filter should be changed every 10,000 – 15,000 miles. If you can’t remember when your filter was replaced or if your filter has ever been changed, it may be time to call KB Tire for a tune up!

DO YOU NEED GAS?

It happens to all of us – the gas light has been on for the last 15 miles and you have had every intention of filling up, but you got busy. If you’ve been running on fumes, your car may not have enough gas in the tank to start the engine. Our suggestion? Call a buddy and get a lift to the gas station.

AUTOMOTIVE ELECTRICAL SYSTEM GLOSSARY

 

At KB Tire, we understand not every automotive term is common knowledge. To help you confidently voice your concern to your auto mechanic, here are a few key terms to consider when asking about your vehicle’s battery or electrical system.

Battery:

Composed of a series of lead plates submerged in a 35% sulfuric acid, 65% water solution, your vehicle’s 12-volt battery houses a chemical reaction releasing electrons through conductors, producing electricity which is then channeled into your vehicle’s electrical system.
The battery supplies electricity to all of the electrical system components, including the essential power required to start your vehicle. ‘Gentlemen you may start your engines!’ In periods of high demand, the battery also supplements power from the charging system.

Charging System:

The charging system is your vehicle’s electrical system’s life force. It’s where everything begins and ends! The charging system consists of three main mechanisms: the alternator, circuits and the voltage regulator.

Starting System:

The system used to start your engine actually consumes more electrical power than anything else your car does. The starting system consists of three components, the ignition switch, the starter relay (or solenoid) and the starter motor.

Here's How It Works:

Turning the ignition causes a small amount of current to pass through the starter relay, causing a stronger current to flow through the battery cables and into the starter motor. The starter motor cranks the engine, forcing the piston to create enough suction that draws a fuel and air mixture into the cylinder. The ignition system creates a spark that ignites the mixture and your engine starts.

Contact us for battery replacement or electrical system repairs.

Call or send us an email. We’ll have you back on the road, “fully-charged” in no time.