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Battery neglect and poor maintenance stalls 70,000 motorists per year and costs up £28 million

October 5th 2023 is ‘Charge Your Car Day’ and CTEK, the world’s leader in battery charging solutions, has released research that finds that half of the vehicle batteries currently on the road aren’t performing nearly as well as they should. Battery related breakdowns are on the rise caused by people driving less due to the rising cost of living costing motorists upwards of £400 per year.

According to research by the RAC, up to 40% of all breakdowns in the UK are caused by battery failure, with a significant proportion of these batteries being drained or flat. Even when it comes to electric vehicles, one of the main reasons for breakdown is a discharged 12V battery, according to breakdown rescue provider Start Rescue. CTEK is calling on motorists to consider the health of their battery this Charge Your Car Day to help prevent costly and inconvenient breakdowns.

The cost of charging

High energy prices mean many people are concerned about the cost of living but recharging your battery requires minimal amounts of power and is more cost effective than a battery replacement that can cost up to £130. The energy required to recharge your car battery is the same as watching TV for five hours, less than it would cost you to cook in an electric oven for an hour, play on game console for three hours or do two loads of laundry.

Richard Wilkerson, a CTEK customer and car enthusiast, said: “In early 2019, I purchased 2 MXS 5.0s for their de-sulphation capabilities, to use on my aging AGM Optima Redtop and Yellow Top batteries. Our cars are low mileage and are often stored in a garage. The garage isn’t climate controlled, so it can be freezing or also get hot. Modern car ECUs and aftermarket alarms do drain 12v batteries, especially with the lack of usage on low mileage cars. It’s a great feeling to be back from travelling overseas for over a month and to start the car, having the engine fire up without hesitation. The components used have withstood years of use so far.”

“The oldest AGM battery maintained by my CTEK was a 11-year-old Optima Redtop. I retired the Redtop with a battery life of 68% at 11 years. The Red Top was $200 USD. The CTEK saved me $200 since most batteries need replacement at 5 years old. I also have a Optima Yellow Top at 8 years old and CTEK maintained. My CTEK’s have paid for themselves since I’m replacing less AGM batteries as they have longer service life.”

Take care of your hybrid battery’s health

Electric and Plug-In Hybrid vehicles also require battery charging. The 12V auxiliary battery runs important accessories like the car’s lighting, radio heating and air conditioning and will not perform optimally unless routine maintenance is performed. Charged via the car’s internal DC-DC system the 12V battery is only charged to 100% when connected to an external battery charger – like the CTEK MXS5.0 – not when you plug in the vehicle for its normal charge. When it comes to the lithium-ion battery in new EVs that is supported by the vehicle charger, it is important to set a charge limit of 80-90% to stop degradation of the battery, most vehicles have this built in capability but always refer to your car manual.

Care for your battery – even when you need to get going quickly

Regular maintenance charging helps prevent sulfation and keeps the battery in optimal condition, with the aim to avoid any breakdowns. However, if you do breakdown, using CTEK’s CS FREE adaptive booster is a wise choice compared to traditional jump starters. The CS FREE’s adaptive boost technology ensures a safer and gentler start, reducing the risk of damaging the battery or causing electrical system issues. This innovative approach not only gets you back on the road swiftly but also safeguards your battery’s health, providing a more sustainable solution for vehicle maintenance and peace of mind on the go.

CTEK reliably charging the market for 25 years

CTEK has spent more than 25 years focused on charging, maintaining, and protecting car batteries around the world. All CTEK chargers are easy to use, and you don’t need any special automotive knowledge to use them as each intelligently assesses the health of your battery and then applies the correct voltage to recharge your battery and recondition it to ensure it is operating at peak performance.

Tony Zeal, Training Manager at CTEK, said: “CTEK battery chargers are famous the world over for their performance and reliability – we even make branded chargers for over 40 of the world’s biggest and most prestigious car manufacturers. Charge Your Car Day was launched to celebrate and acknowledge the hard work of the humble car battery and to raise awareness of how regular battery maintenance saves you money. Charging your car battery reduces breakdown, extends the life of your battery by up to three time, limits the amount of costly repairs and damage to complex electrical systems. In challenging economic times, a car battery charger saves you money especially given the rising trend to using our cars less. This year we’re keen to reinforce the mantra – get moving, stay moving and keep charging!”

What type of charger are you?

  • Auto Enthusiast – You obsess about the internal workings of your motor. You choose your oil type; your tires are premium and never drop below the required tread depth. Your charger is permanently set up in your garage and you charge daily. You appreciate that the battery is the heart of your car.
  • Conscientious Commuter – You know what you need to check. When refueling or charging, you’ll check your tire pressures and wiper fluid. In your boot you have a jump starter and you know that it damages your battery and could be dangerous but equally you like to be prepared.
  • A to B – You appreciate your car for getting you to where you want to go. Google maps or equivalent is always on and even though you know it’s important, you haven’t yet popped the hood. Battery charging doesn’t cross your mind and if you get a flat battery, you have your breakdown provider on speed dial.
  • Magical Motorists – Your car is magic. You’re unaware there’s a battery in there but the possibility of your car breaking down does briefly cross your mind. You drive only when no other option exists and when you do so your main touchpoints are the steering wheel and the volume button for the radio. Thank goodness for Apple CarPlay.

For further information on ‘Charge Your Car Day’ and advice for motorists, please visit: Charge Your Car Day |

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