Can Your Car Battery Die While Driving? Explained

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image of jump starting car battery

Suppose you suddenly notice your car’s engine warning indicator is blinking while you’re driving. In such situations, what will you do, especially if there is no garage nearby?

Typically, most amateur drivers will keep driving to reach the final destination in such situations. However, a professional driver will consider the battery’s health whenever seeing the warning light.

This is because driving a car can cause the battery to die quickly, even after showing the warning indicator light. Once the battery dies, the engine, including the electric systems of your car, gradually stops running.

Don’t you get why it will happen, then read the entire context? Here you can explore in-depth information in this regard.

Why Will Car Battery Die While Driving?

There are numerous reasons that can push your car battery to die while you are driving. According to Luis Johnson from batteryquery, some of the causes you may identify easily while others will need professional assistance. For your help, below, we have illustrated some significant causes of dying your car battery while driving.

  • Faulty Alternator: An alternator helps to charge the car battery while you’re driving. Typically, it converts the mechanical energy into electric energy to charge the battery in direct current. If the alternator doesn’t function properly, the battery won’t get charged, causing the battery to die.
  • Defective Fuel Pump: Sometimes, malfunctioning of the fuel pump will cause the battery not to charge. This can mainly occur if the wrong type of fuel is pumped in. Apart from that, blocked fuel filters can also be the reason for the fuel pump failure of a car.
  • Bad Car Battery: Even after having a good alternator, your car battery can die while driving if you have a bad battery. This is because a bad car battery can force the alternator to work twice to keep the car engine running. Once the alternator overworks, it strains the engine, eventually causing the battery to die.
  • Faulty ASD Relay: ASD relay involves supplying power from the battery to ignition coils and injectors. So, if the ASD relay does not function properly, it will prevent the car’s engine from starting. As a result, your car’s battery will drain quicker and even die while you are driving.

Can Your Car Battery Die While Driving?

Yes, your car battery can die while driving, although it is less likely to happen. This is because an alternator always functions to charge the battery whenever the car’s engine is running. But after a certain period, the battery will die, whether for battery lifespan or other reasons.

Typically, you will not get any signs that your car battery is dead if the alternator works properly. But if the alternator stops working along with the battery, you will lose power to your car. As a result, your car’s engine, lighting, radio, HVAC, and power steering will stop working.

So, if your car battery won’t get charged by the alternator, it will discharge through the electrical system. Once the battery is discharged completely, it will die gradually because of not get charged by the alternator.

In addition, if the cells of your car battery are damaged, the battery will not charge from the alternator, causing the battery to die through the electrical systems of your car.

What Are The Signs Of Having A Bad Car Battery?

checking voltage of the car's battery

Although most cars don’t have any indicator of realizing a bad battery, some physical signs you will notice. These signs will help you to understand that your vehicle battery is not functioning properly. Some of the common indications of having a bad car battery have been pointed out below.

  • Your car will suddenly stall, meaning the engine will stop working. 
  • The engine of your car will crank slowly when starting.
  • You will face difficulty starting the car in the winter season.
  • The terminals of the battery become loose, corroded, or broken.
  • The distilled water of the battery is low or dry, especially if the battery is too old.
  • You will notice dim or no headlights on your car. 

If you notice any of the signs on your car, you should take your car to the repair shop. A professional mechanic will diagnose your entire car to find out the actual problem. If the mechanic finds any battery issues, he will provide you with information on what you have to do next. However, in the section below, we have discussed some possible solutions when you notice that your car battery dies while driving.

How Do You Deal With A Dead Car Battery When You’re Driving?

When you detect any signs that indicate your car battery has failed while driving, you should stop the car in a safe spot. In such situations, you can follow the techniques discussed below to pull over the car to the garage.

  • First of all, don’t panic and drive the car to one side of the route. If it is possible to go to a stoppage, drive the car slowly. If you find it difficult to drive the car, use the emergency brake to stop the car in a safe area.
  • If the vehicle stops running suddenly, try to restart it. If you can restart the car, drive slowly and reach a garage to get the issue evaluated.
  • Jump to start the car, which is the best way to start a dead battery and get your vehicle’s engine running. 
  • If you’re unable to restart the car, let other drivers or repair shops know you are in trouble.

Some Effective Tips To Preserve Your Car’s Battery Life

Likely, you can prevent the battery dying issue of your car by employing some simple tips. For your help, below, we have pointed out some such tips in this regard.

  • Avoid frequent short trips in your car. Short trips are the main cause of the car battery lifespan decreasing faster.
  • Always try to keep your car battery terminals clean because faulty terminals will cause the battery to not receive power from the alternator.
  • Ensure the battery of your car is secured tightly. This is because driving a car on rough terrain will cause the battery to be damaged.
  • Don’t turn on your electronic system when you are not driving the car.
  • Make a schedule to test your car’s battery so that you can take action whenever you find any fault.  

Frequently Asked Questions About Car Battery

Car drivers are always conscious of the battery, which raises different queries in their minds. That’s why here we have answered some of the frequently asked queries.

1. When Should I Replace My Car Battery?

In general, if you maintain the car battery properly, it will last around three to five years. However, this lifespan will vary depending on different factors like driving styles, weather conditions, and charging systems. When you notice any suspicious activity in your car’s battery, you should replace the old battery with a new one.

2. What Are The Signs Of Having A Faulty Alternator?

The common signs of bad alternators are dimmed interior lights, headlights, radio lights, and taillights. If you notice such signs in your car, the alternator doesn’t produce enough power for your electrical systems.

3. Can A Car Run With A Faulty Alternator?

Yes, but a car with a faulty alternator will run for a shorter distance. As the alternator is responsible for charging the battery, the car will not start once the battery is drained completely.


To sum up the discussion, you might have figured out whether your car battery dies while driving. Although it rarely happens, a car battery can actually die while you are driving. This mainly happens when your car has a bad alternator, which means it cannot charge the battery.

Consequently, the battery will drain quickly and die after a certain time. However, if you ever encounter such problems, what you should do has been discussed above. Besides, some of the tips mentioned above will help you prevent battery-dying issues while driving your car.

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