At Lilydale Auto Electrics, we are experts on car batteries. The battery is one of the most important electrical components of your car. It stores electrical power so that your car is ready to start at any time of the day or night. The battery helps power all the electrical systems in your car and is recharged by the alternator, which is in turn spun by the engine to produce or generate electricity.
A car battery is based on lead-acid battery technology. This technology has been around for decades, it is relatively inexpensive, it is reliable even in the harsh environment of a car (big temperature swings, lots of vibration, etc.), and a car battery will typically last three or four years before wearing out. Overall, that’s a great set of characteristics compared to other battery technologies.
Inside your car battery are cells and inside these cells are lead plates and lead oxide plates. These plates are immersed in a water/ hydrochloric acid mixture that creates a chemical reaction and acts as a conductor. The chemical reaction causes electrons to be released and each cell makes approximately 2 volts. Cars use a battery with 6 cells and therefore produce 12 volts.
One clever feature of car batteries is that the process is reversible. So as the reactions create electricity and gradually erodes the plates, your cars generator recharges the battery and reverses the process.