How to Clean Your Car's Battery Terminals

How to Clean Your Car's Battery Terminals

It's important to clean your car's batteries from time to time. A dirty battery can cause corrosion, which can prevent your vehicle from starting. What's more, it can also accelerate your car's self-discharge rate and lessen its life span prematurely.


Cleaning your car's battery terminals doesn't require rocket science. All it takes are some tough, disposable gloves, a spray bottle, pliers, wire brush, cloth, petroleum jelly, and apron.


First step: Locate your car battery by reading your manual. Oftentimes, they're at the front, near your engine, or at the rear, in the trunk area.

Second step: Raise your car's hood. Make sure your car's engine is turned off before you do this (and you're wearing protective goggles and gloves as well)

Third step: Disconnect your car's battery by removing the plastic or rubber that covers the battery cables connected to the terminals. There will be two of them.

Fourth step: Use pliers or a socket wrench to loosen the negative terminal's clamp. It's labeled with a minus symbol or a black cover.

Fifth step: Use pliers or a socket wrench to loosen the positive terminal's clamp. It's labeled with a plus symbol or a red cover.

Sixth step: Read the instructions on your battery terminal cleaner. Spray it on the battery's clamps and terminals.

Seventh step: Get your wire brush and brush off any rust, dirt, and corrosion on the battery's surface. Keep scrubbing until the metal has been stripped down of all the impurities.

Eighth step: Once the terminals and clamps are clean, wipe them off with a clean cloth.

Ninth step: Protect the terminals by applying a layer of battery terminal protectant to help prevent corrosion from happening again.

Tenth step: Attach the clamp to the positive terminal and negative terminal. Also put back the covers on their respective terminals. Close the car's hood.


  • A car battery contains corrosive materials that might damage your skin. So before you clean your battery, make sure to wear protective gear like gloves, goggles, and apron.
  • Newer cars often have batteries that are hooked on a jump box or a 12V battery source. Make sure to read your owner's manual first before you disconnect the battery.
  • Cool down your vehicle for at least 30 minutes before you work on cleaning your car's battery

Read All

Featured Articles

Recommended Articles For You

Read All