Cold weather can be tough on your truck’s batteries, diminishing their capacity and making it harder for the engine to turn over. But spring and summer’s warmer temperatures aren’t necessarily any easier.

That’s because heat increases the rate of corrosion on a battery’s conducting grids, reducing the voltage over time. It also causes lead sulfate to build up on the grids and electrodes – what’s known as sulfation. These problems interfere with charging and will eventually cause the battery to fail.

But the outside temperature isn’t your only concern when it comes to truck batteries. Regardless of the weather, parasitic losses from onboard electronics can drain a battery’s reserve capacity – whether it’s a coffee pot, TV or the truck’s telematics system that runs 24/7. If you’re not careful, you could be risking a failed battery and unplanned downtime.

Follow these simple tips to keep your batteries going strong in warm weather:

  1. Stay cool – Look for shade or covered spaces when it’s time to park your truck on hot days. This helps minimize the corrosion and sulfation that shorten battery life.
  2. Remember to disconnect – Keeping your cell phone charger, computer or other electronics plugged in pulls a few milliamps from your batteries and drains power. While small, these parasitic losses can add up. To preserve battery power, unplug all electronics when they’re not in use.
  3. Keep moving – The longer your truck is parked, the more your electronic accessories and systems drain battery power. Keep the truck on the road as much as possible so your batteries can recharge.
  4. Consider AGM batteries – Using high-quality batteries is one of the best ways to avoid downtime. The newer Absorbent Glass Mat (AGM) batteries are easier to maintain than traditional flooded batteries, and they handle extreme heat and high parasitic loads more effectively.
  5. Stay charged – To ensure long battery life, it’s important to keep your battery properly charged. Take time to evaluate both your power needs and your current alternator to be sure you’ve got enough amperage for the job.

Keep your Volvo truck on the road by having your batteries inspected and tested regularly. Contact the starting-charging experts for an appointment today at a Volvo Trucks dealership near you. If you need a new battery, order online from the SELECT Part Store™ and receive immediate stock confirmation and fast delivery – often the same day.