Accentuate the positive; disconnect the negative
There comes a time in every car battery's life when the old pep just isn't around anymore. No matter how many times you jump-start your car or recharge the battery, your headlights continue to dim, and the odds that you'll hear the dreaded empty "click" when you turn the ignition key continue to rise. But changing a car's battery is a simple process. We'll explain how to get from removal to disposal to replacement in no time--so your car can get the new juice it needs.
Before you begin
Always exercise caution when dealing with car batteries. The danger isn't just electricity; batteries contain a sulfuric acid electrolyte solution, which is highly corrosive and produces a flammable gas. So turn the engine off, work in a well-ventilated area (like outside), and use protective eyewear and gloves (especially if your battery is more than five years old).
While a leak is highly unlikely, you may want to keep a box of baking soda on hand to spread over possible spills. Also, a battery is heavy (30 to 60 pounds, or 13.5 to 27 kilos), and you'll be bending into your engine area to remove and replace it. If you have back trouble, you may want some help with this part of the job.