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You already know that a regular car repair is essential to ensure that your car runs smoothly. In addition to this, having a proper understanding of your vehicle and its systems will go a long way in preventing problems before they happen. As with many modern vehicles, the electrical system is one of the most important areas to regularly check and maintain, as any fault within this system could affect the entire car. Here are the main components of the electrical system and common issues that may arise in each part:

The Battery

The battery is a storage device that is used to start the engine and operate the electrical components in your car. he battery includes six cells of stacked positive and negative lead plates, separated by insulators and immersed in electrolyte, which is a water and sulfuric acid mixture.

Each cell gives 2.1 volts of power for a total of 12.6 volts. When your car shows signs of system failure, the most basic test that should be tried during your auto repair service first is a visual, a load and a voltage test of the battery.

The Alternator

The alternator produces electricity that is used to maintain the battery storage charge and run all the electrical components, including the ignition and the engine control systems. Many use internal voltage regulators to maintain the proper system voltage, which varies from 12.6-14.5 volts.

Always check your car's repair manual or ask your local car repair center to check the exact voltage of your car. Functions such as windscreen wipers, car sound systems, rear window defoggers and other similar electrical functions can put strain on the alternator and related components, which is why it is crucial to keep an eye on the warning lights which indicate problems with the electrical system.

The Starter

The starter is a motor that turns the engine to start the combustion process. Voltage is supplied directly from the battery and is controlled by a relay or solenoid from the ignition switch inside your car.

It is always best to start your car with all electrical accessories turned off, including wipers, ac, radio and heater, as this takes pressure of the starter and prevents wear and tear.Your car’s electrical system should be thoroughly checked and tested every two years or during its routine auto service plan to ensure that all components are running smoothly – often problems with the electrical system are simply common wear and tear issues which can easily be fixed, however if left unchecked small problems can become bigger problems.

Make sure to speak to your car service center to find out more about caring for your car.

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  • Engine oil level should be regularly checked
  • Tyres have a minimum of 1.6mm of tread depth
  • Ensure that the electrolyte level is correct
  • Never remove the radiator when the engine is
  • Ensure that your vehicle's brake fluid is full