Any auto parts store can test your car's battery. If you want to test the battery yourself, you'll need a multimeter. Here are the two main tests for testing the battery with a multimeter:

Voltage Test

To test the battery voltage, set your multimeter to measure in volts. With the engine off, touch the negative and positive test leads to each coinciding battery terminal. A good battery will measure ~12.6 volts with the engine off and ~14 volts with the engine running.

If the measurement reads to under 10 volts, then you'll need to test the alternator and possibly replace the battery.

Amperage Test

Parasitic battery draws are not uncommon. Set the multimeter to measure in amps and disconnect the negative terminal from the battery.

Touch one test lead to the car's terminal and the other to the negative terminal on the battery. Any measurement of more than .05 amps could indicate a parasitic battery draw.

 

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