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Types Of Car Batteries | Explained

The car batteries in a vehicle should not be judged on its size. Though small, it plays many major roles in running the vehicle smoothly. Functions like starting your car, providing power to the infotainment system, headlights.. you get the idea. The running engine charges the battery in the car. Over the year after numerous cycles, the battery will eventually die and needs to be replaced.

Well, to have an idea here are various types of batteries for a car.

  1. Starting, Lighting, and Ignition Batteries (SLI)

    SLI batteries
    SLI batteries
    • Most of the vehicles on the road comes with starting, lighting, and ignition batteries or for short SLI batteries.
    • Like the name suggests, apart from starting the car, it powers all the electronics like the interior and exterior lights, infotainment system, etc.
    • An SLI battery has a very short charge cycle. That is the time for the battery to charge and then discharge is fairly less.
    • This type of battery can deliver power in short bursts of time like the starter motor of start the car.
    • The SLI batteries are made up of 6 galvanic cells oriented in a series format which forms a system and provides 12-volts.
    • Each cell provides 2.1 volts to give a total output of about 12.6 volts at full charge.
  2. Lithium-Ion (Li-ion) Batteries


    • This is one of the most under rated battery of the lot as it is mostly used in PHEVs and is a little expensive than the conventional Lead-Acid battery.
    • A Lithium-ion Battery has become famous for the last few years. The recent hybrid vehicles and electric cars use a Li-ion battery.
    • As compared to the other batteries the Li-ion battery significantly stores more charges.
    • Another plus positive is that these batteries weigh less than conventional car batteries of the same power.
    • Regardless of the use, the life span of the Li-ion batteries is long which is about 5-10 years.
  3. Lead-Acid Batteries

    Lead-Acid Batteries
    Lead-Acid Batteries
    • These are the batteries with the lowest maintenance.
    • Unlike the other batteries Lead-Acid batteries are sealed hence they cannot be serviced. These batteries can only be replaced.
    • Lead-Acid Batteries also work in short bursts to provide power to the starter motor.

How to choose the right battery? 

When going to get your battery replaced there are main two things you should consider. Voltage, current, CCA and CA.

Before you buy a battery

  • The voltage in a fully charged battery is around 12.6Volts and it refers to the amount of energy stored in the battery.
  • On the other hand, the current is the rate at which charge flows and is measured in amps.
  • The most common type of batteries used in Indian cars is the Lead-acid battery. The batteries consist of several plates immersed in an electrolyte solution.
  • The electrolyte is a solution which constitutes 65% water and 35% sulphuric acid.
  • It is the chemical reaction between the plates and the electrolyte solution that produces a current of 12.6 volts.
  • CCA is also a thing to consider before buying or replacing a battery.
  • The Cold Cranking Amps rating or CCA is the measure of how much amps the battery can produce for 30 seconds at -17ºC.
  • Most of the car’s batteries have a rating of 350, 450, and 600 CCA. The more the rating easy it is to start the vehicle.
  • CA or the cranking amps which is the measure of how much amps the battery produce but at 0ºC for 30 seconds.

Now that you know the different types of battery here is what you should do to extract most from your vehicle’s battery.

  1. Always check the voltage reading before buying a battery with the help of a multimeter.
  2. Read the right battery size mentioned in the car user manual. Exceeding the capacity from the recommended battery the electricals may troubleshoot.
  3. Installing a used car battery can be dangerous for you as well as your ride.
  4. Check your car’s battery connections frequently.
  5. If the car is having trouble starting the engine check the connections, clean them if the terminals are oxidized.
  6. Always keep either jumper cables or portable charger handy in case of a battery failure.
Jumper Cables
Jumper Cables

Also Read: Top 5 reasons your car battery is draining!

Utkarsh Bhardwaj
Utkarsh Bhardwaj
Technical Content Strategist at GoMechanic | Big Time Petrolhead with the passion for building cars and driving those beauties.


  1. Very interesting article. I’ve learned new things about car batteries.
    It is important to know what type of battery is best for our car. Equally important is what we do with the batteries after they wear out. For this we have developed a website with interesting articles in the field of battery recycling.

  2. quite awesome article. by reading this article i learned lot of thing about car battery. detailed writing makes more informative. thanks for the article.

  3. My car is running down due to flat battery. I read your article in which you detailed discuss about different types of battery and how to select a new battery. This article helps me out to buy best battery for my ride.


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