Dead Cell in Car Battery

Last Updated on March 14, 2023 by Ryan

A dead cell in a car battery is an area where the battery has been damaged or corroded and no longer holds a charge. This can be caused by overcharging, lack of maintenance, or excessive vibration which causes internal damage to the plates inside the cells. A dead cell will result in reduced cranking power as well as decreased performance from any electrical components on the vehicle such as lights and other accessories that run off of battery voltage.

To fix this issue requires replacing the entire battery with one that contains healthy cells.

Dead cells in a car battery can be a major inconvenience and lead to costly repairs. It is important to identify and address the issue quickly, as dead cells can render your vehicle unable to start or cause other issues with its performance. If you suspect that there are dead cells in your car battery, it is best to take it into an auto repair shop for testing right away so that the problem can be addressed before any further damage occurs.

Car battery dead cell repair

What are the Symptoms of a Dead Cell in a Car Battery?

When a car battery is dead, it usually exhibits several symptoms. These can include difficulty starting the engine with or without any warning lights coming on, dim headlights and interior lighting, slow crank when attempting to start the engine, an illuminated check-engine light or ‘battery’ warning light on the instrument panel and a clicking sound when attempting to start the engine. Other symptoms of a dead cell in a car battery can include corrosion around terminals and posts of the battery itself as well as leaking fluid from cracked cells that can cause further damage if left unattended.

What Causes a Dead Cell in Car Battery?

A dead cell in a car battery is usually caused by a short circuit or overcharging. The short circuit can occur when the positive and negative terminals of the battery are connected, leading to an excessive amount of current flowing through it and damaging its internal structure. Overcharging occurs when the voltage applied to the battery exceeds its rated capacity, resulting in an increased chemical reaction that produces heat.

This excess heat causes damage to the electrolyte solution inside of the cells and eventually leads to their failure. Additionally, sulfation can also lead to dead cells if left unchecked; this is when sulfuric acid molecules form on the plates within each cell, blocking them from receiving charge and reducing their overall performance in powering your car’s electrical systems.

Can You Jump a Battery With a Dead Cell?

Unfortunately, you cannot jump a battery with a dead cell. If one of the cells in your car’s battery has gone bad and died, it will not be able to accept or store any charge from an external source. In this case, you’ll need to replace the entire battery so that it can function properly again.

However, if all of the cells are still functioning but just require additional power to get going again, then jumping the battery may prove successful – provided that both batteries used for the jump have enough voltage and amperage capacity (at least 12 volts).

How Do You Fix a Dead Cell in a Car Battery?

In order to fix a dead cell in a car battery, the first step is to determine which cell is dead. This can be done with a voltmeter or hydrometer. Once you have identified the dead cell, it must be replaced.

If possible, replace all cells in the battery at once as this will ensure that all of them are working properly and that your vehicle’s electrical system runs smoothly. To do this, disconnect the negative terminal on the battery and remove the entire unit from its mountings before replacing each individual cell with an identical one from an auto parts shop or online store. Reattach all terminals securely and reinstall your new car battery before giving it a charge using either jump leads or an appropriate charger for optimal performance.

Dead Cell in Car Battery


Dead Cell in Car Battery Symptoms

A dead cell in a car battery can cause a number of symptoms, such as difficulty starting the engine, dim headlights, slow cranking when attempting to start the vehicle, and an illuminated check engine light. Other issues that may be experienced include electrical components not functioning properly or intermittently working and the vehicle stalling while driving. If any of these signs are present it is important to have your car’s battery checked for damage or dead cells.

Dead Cell in Car Battery Fix

If your car battery is not holding a charge and you’ve determined that it has a dead cell, there are several ways to attempt to fix the problem. One of these methods involves charging up the battery with an external charger and then replacing the bad cell with an identical new one. This method works best if you can identify which cell is dead, as this will enable you to replace just that single cell rather than needing to purchase an entirely new battery.

How Long Can a Car Battery Last With a Dead Cell

A car battery can last without a dead cell, but it is significantly weakened and will not last as long. If the vehicle is driven regularly and kept in good working condition, the battery should be able to hold its charge for at least two years. On the other hand, if it’s left unused for extended periods of time or subjected to extreme temperatures, the life expectancy drops dramatically and could cause further damage to other components of your vehicle.


In conclusion, dead cells in car batteries can be an annoying and expensive problem to deal with. However, with the right knowledge and preparation, it is possible to identify a dead cell before it causes extensive damage. It’s important to regularly check your battery for signs of corrosion or other issues that may indicate a potential issue with one or more cells.

If you suspect there is a problem, take your vehicle into your local auto repair shop for further diagnostics and repairs as soon as possible.


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