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LEARNLETS
I know my car battery is charged, but I still have trouble starting the car. What should I do?
Check the battery terminals, the positive and negative knobs that the wires leading to the alternator are bolted onto, as well as the clamps. Older batteries can produce a sulfate build-up (a whitish-looking residue) that corrodes the terminals and clamps and leads to a bad connection.

To fix the problem, undo the clamps and try a gentle tap with a hammer on the terminals--this should break away the residue. Or you can scrub the terminals and clamps with a pasty mix of baking soda and water using a wire brush or an old toothbrush (always wear rubber gloves if you do this--the sulfate build-up can burn skin). Wipe the terminals clean with a moist cloth, let them dry, then reconnect the clamps.

If you're installing a new battery and want to avoid this build-up, coat the terminals and terminal clamps with a thin coat of petroleum jelly or high temperature car grease. This will help prevent future sulfate corrosion.


MORE LEARNLETS
Reduce Lapsed Auto Insurance Penalties
Clean Bird Droppings from Your Car
Claim Automobile Expenses on Your U.S. Taxes
Negotiate a Better Price for a New Car
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 OTHER 2TORIALS AND LEARNLETS
2torials:
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 AUTO 2TORIALS
Shop for Car Insurance
Which policy’s right for you? Explore the options. Understand the costs.
Improve Your Gas Mileage
Pump up the savings with these easy tips.
Jump-Start a Car
Coping with a dead battery is easier than you think. Deal with the challenge of jumpstarting a car quickly and safely.
Drive a Stick Shift
Get in gear, and reap the benefits and satisfaction of stick shift-driving.
Install and Remove Snow Chains
Get a grip on winter driving.
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