Battery Low Start Vehicle: Meaning, Causes and Fixes

As you prepare to go out for the day’s work, you got into the car, but oops, the car started making some usual clicking sounds. At first, you’re wondering, ‘what’s happening?’ A low battery is the first issue to suspect. What’s the meaning of vehicle battery low start vehicle? What causes it and how can you fix it? Stay connected as I offer answers to all your questions about battery low start.

What’s Battery Low Start Vehicle Mean?

If your car won’t start or it’s showing a sign of a low start, the battery is the first culprit. The battery is either dying or dead. It can also be that it’s corroded or there are wrong electrical connections. An issue with the car starter or a bad alternator can also be the cause of a vehicle’s low start. 

It doesn’t matter how conversant you’re with vehicle operations. You cannot determine or second-guess the cause of a low start by merely looking at the signs. You need to subject the car to a scan. This way, you can come up with a cocksure solution. 

You may infer a battery is slow from the special messages on a vehicle’s multi-information display (MID). Messages displayed include ‘Replace Battery,’ ‘Change Battery’, ‘Battery Low Start Vehicle’ and ‘Battery Charge Low.’ The battery state of charge (SOC) will drop due to frequent short trips or long-term vehicle storage. Any of these contributes to the slow start you experience.

Causes of Battery Low Start

As indicated above the following are the possible causes of a low vehicle start:

Problem with the Alternator

The alternator is a critical part of the car. It is responsible for sending current back to the battery once the car is running. As you drive, the battery supplies electric charge throughout the car, losing energy in the process. The alternator will recharge the battery as the engine runs, causing auto electronics to receive the needed power to work. Once the alternator goes bad, the battery isn’t recharged. Hence, it’s not able to recover the lost energy it’s dissipated to the other car parts. Once the engine comes to a halt, the uncharged battery won’t be able to power the car to start.  

Faulty Alternator: How to Fix

With a digital volt ohmmeter (DVOM), or voltmeter, you can fix a faulty alternator. The instrument can detect the amount of voltage the alternator is giving out. Make sure you turn off your car engine, remove the serpentine belt, and disconnect the wiring connectors and battery. Place the black lead on the negative terminal of the battery and the red lead on the positive. Once you’ve taken these steps, place the tool on the alternator to read the DC volts.

A Dead or Dying Battery

Your car battery can become dying or dead due to a wide range of factors. Prominent among the causes is a bad alternator. A defective alternator can overcharge the battery, feeding it back with more than the necessary electric current. During overcharging the battery receives more heat than needed. The consequence is overheating and the eventual death of the battery. A dead or dying battery will cause the vehicle to have a slow start. 

A low, weak, or flat battery will result in the vehicle experiencing a poor start. As a result, you’ll hear a clicking sound. A failing starter motor can also be responsible for the clicking sound from the car engine.  

Dead Battery: How to Fix

Once a battery is dead, the best fix is a replacement. Typically, an auto battery has a lifespan of three to four years, but you can maximize the battery life by doing routine maintenance. Once your battery is nearing its lifespan, you should expect some of the issues to spring up.    

Wrong Cable Connections

I’m sure that this isn’t something you don’t wish to experience or experiment with. Whether inadvertent or mistake, wrong cable connections can cause your car not to start or have a slow start. At other times, the cables that connect the battery and other electrical components to the car may cause the battery to have a slow start. The charging system may be faulty.   

Once the cables are loose or not properly connected, your car battery won’t receive a full charge. The consequence is that the battery will only transmit half or less-than-a-half charge to the engine. Consequently, the engine will be short of power to start the car. 

Loose or Wrong Connection: How to Fix

The first thing you want to do is to inspect the cables to ensure that they are securely connected. Make sure the wires are intact and in their right places. The terminals may also have been corroded and not in good shape. Corrosion can stop the vehicle from starting. If the cables, terminals, and wires are securely in place, the car will start.

Corroded or Loose Battery

Another reason you can experience a battery low start is if the battery is loose or corroded. An auto battery usually gives off hydrogen gas. This gas can provide a ground for the condensed acidic electrolyte to settle down on the battery. When the electrolyte vapors emit on the battery, the battery will become corroded. A corroded battery will automatically prevent your car from starting or experiencing a slow start.

Corroded Battery: How to Fix

Thereare things you can do to take corrosion from your car battery. The best method is to combine baking soda and lemon juice or vinegar. Soak a measured quantity of lemon juice or vinegar in a cotton swab and dab it on baking soda. Spray the baking soda on the affected part of the battery. Sprinkle the solution on the corrosion and allow it to soak or fizz for a few minutes. Scrub and rinse the corrosive element from the surface. This way, you can reduce, or at least, neutralize the effect of the corrosive acid.   

An Issue with the Starter or Ignition

When you hear slow cranking, there’s a chance that your car starter has gone bad. One of the possible causes is a degraded battery. A faulty electrical connection or rundown battery can also be a culprit. If the battery drains after being parked for some time, the starter may start to malfunction.

A Wrap

The battery is a critical component of the vehicle and if it’s gone defective, you won’t have a great ride. The final thing I will tell you is to avoid extreme temperatures that can shorten the life of your car battery. A slow start can be remedied, but a corroded auto battery may only need replacement.