Can a Completely Dead Battery Be Recharged

Published on: May 3, 2022
Written by Liam Jaxon / Fact-checked by David Rowan

People frequently believe that a dead battery should be thrown away and instead spend loads of money on a fresh new one. So they often suspect that a completely dead battery can be recharged or not. Indeed, if you want, you can recondition a battery to its original condition with a bit of effort, and the following writing will walk you through the process.

Now you might have a query in your mind about how to charge a dead car battery at home? Your old battery will appear to be brand new, and you may use it again! It’s pretty simple to recondition outdated batteries, and anyone can do it.

All that is required is time and a few simple tools to obtain a battery completely. Also, it is important to know how to choose your battery to avoid dead batteries often. Thus, we’ve written a detailed article on a battery that will guide you through the process of recharging any type of battery.

can a completely dead battery be recharged

Symptoms of a Dead Battery

There are several techniques to determine if your car battery is dead, as detailed below:

Electrical Difficulties

Your automobile may start and run properly, but a dead battery is still possible. Another clue that your car battery is dead is if other electrical devices in your vehicle — such as the headlights, air conditioning, radio, or so on, suddenly fail to function correctly. Taking expert help is the best alternative if you can’t fix your dead car battery in this condition.

Smelling Sulfur

If a sulphur-like smell is coming from your car battery, then it might be a sign of a leaking battery. A leaking car battery is an unmistakable sign of a dead battery or a battery approaching the end of its useful life. This situation requires immediate attention. The most cost-effective solution is to get a new battery.

Refuse To Function

Inactivity can drain a car’s battery. It’s not a solid idea to let a car idle for months at a time. Of course, if you don’t use it, you won’t know whether the battery is dead or not. Idle cars’ batteries often drain due to disuse. Besides, erosion, alternator problems, and even bad weather can damage an idle battery.

Starting Problem

If you hear a ticking sound when you turn on the car and your car won’t start, that indicates a dead battery. If you face this issue, don’t keep trying to start your car because you risk damaging your car’s battery if you do so. In this situation, we recommend finding another car to help Jump a Car Battery. Long-term solutions require more than a jump-start means you need a new battery.

Engine Light 

It’s simple to ignore a check engine light, but doing so could harm you and your automobile. The check engine light could be the evidence you need to examine your car’s battery. Even if you don’t see an issue with your car, it’s still good to check.

Causes of Battery Discharging

Various factors can cause a flat battery. Something electrical issues create a battery drain or malfunctioning battery that can not keep its charge for an extended period. Below are the reasons:

1) Human Made Mistakes

Sometimes we all make silly mistakes, such as headlights may have been left on, the trunk may not have been entirely closed, or even some internal lights may have been left on. All these mistakes lead to a dead battery, and your car won’t start the next day.

2) Bad Charging

Car batteries can be drained while driving if the charging system is malfunctioning. The alternator often powers the lights, radio, and other systems, causing the battery to drain faster. Defective belts or stretched timing belts on the alternator can cause it to malfunction.

3) Parasitic Drainage

Parasitic drain occurs when elements in your car keep running after the engine is off. Parasitic drain is usual if your battery powers your clock, radio settings, and security alarm at all times. However, improper wiring, poor installation, and faulty fuses can cause parasitic drain that depletes the battery.

4) Intense Temperature

Long-term battery life can be harmed by sulphate buildup in the car. Temperatures of over 100°F or below -10°F can cause lead sulphate crystals to form. In these conditions, your battery may not charge quickly, especially if you only drive short trips.

5) Aged Battery

If your battery is old or badly maintained, it may die often. An old or weak battery will not hold a charge well. If your car continuously refuses to start, the battery may be dead. Batteries must be changed every three to four years.

Other causes of dead batteries include rusted or loose battery cables, too short driving trips, and a defective alternator.

Is the Battery Really Dead?

Before you know how to charge a completely dead car battery, it is essential to determine how dead the battery actually is. The voltage across both terminals of a healthy battery should be 12.4 to 12.7 volts when measured using a voltmeter, a valuable tool for diagnosing battery issues. If you have a question,’ can a battery be too dead to recharge?then you need to test the battery first.

If the voltmeter shows a reading of fewer than 12.4 volts, you will most certainly have difficulties starting your vehicle. It will depend on how much lower the battery voltage you should use to recharge your car after jump-starting it. 

Just Drive If Above 12 Volts

According to the AA, batteries between 12 and 12.4 volts are safe to recharge with your car’s alternator. That means turning off the audio, turning off the lights during the day, and turning off all heating and cooling systems to maximize the alternator’s output into the battery. A greater rotation will also put more power into the charging circuit. Aim for a 30-minute drive to recharge the battery.

Use Proper Charger If Below 12 Volts

A car battery gets drained when its voltage falls below 12 volts. The alternator in your car can keep a healthy battery charged but not fully recharge a dead one. If you use it to recharge a depleted battery, you risk damaging the alternator. Before or after a jump start, a severely depleted battery should be linked to a jump starter or a specialized battery charger. These chargers are made to recharge a dead battery safely.

Steps of Recharging a Completely Dead Battery

Don’t panic by thinking,how do you charge a completely dead battery?Following the steps:

1) Check that the charger is not powered; if so, then unplug it. Your circumstance and battery type will dictate the charging pace. It takes up to 24 hours to fully recharge a completely dead battery.

2) Unwrap or detangle the charger cables. Then find the car’s battery’s positive and negative sides. Look for a P, POS, or + symbol near the terminal and an N, NEG, or – mark.

3) Clip the red cord to the battery’s positive connector. The black cable should be connected to the negative terminal of the battery at this point.

4) Plug in the charger. If an extension cord is required, then use it. Wait for the battery to charge completely.

5) Next, unplug the charging device and remove the positive and negative clamps.

6) After unplugging the charger, test the battery using a multimeter. To be charged, the meter must register 12.6 volts or greater. If you don’t have it, try starting the car and turning on the lights.

What Type of Charger is Required to Recharge a Completely Dead Battery?

A battery charger is required to recharge a completely dead battery. The type of charger required depends on the type of battery being charged. For example, lead-acid batteries require a specific lead-acid charger, while lithium-ion batteries require a lithium-ion charger.


1) How Long Can a Car Battery Be Dead and Still Be Recharged?

If you don’t plan to drive your car for a few weeks for whatever reason, you should still start it to recharge the 12V battery once a week.

Is it Safe to Recharge a Dead Battery with Higher Cranking Amps?

It is not safe to recharge a dead battery with higher cranking amps for batteries. Using a charger with higher cranking amps can potentially damage the battery and its internal components. It’s best to use a charger with the recommended cranking amps to avoid any potential harm to the battery.

2) Can You Revive a Completely Dead Car Battery?

By driving about, you can completely recharge a dead battery that has been rescued by a jump start. A 24-hour charge may fully recharge a car battery. If that doesn’t work, another car battery charger can recharge a battery.


A completely dead battery can be easily recharged, whether you can manage it yourself or need expert service in a hurry. So all your confusion of can a completely dead battery be recharged? -now might be removed after reading the whole article. 

A dead battery is annoying, and figuring out what’s wrong with it is difficult. However, we recommend identifying the reason for dead batteries and taking the necessary steps to avoid the situation. If you have further queries, then contact us.

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About This Writer

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Hi, I am responsible for the 'Homeowners Power Solutions' category. My name is Liam Jaxon and a licensed technician with 7 years of experience in vehicle batteries, electrical gadgets, and home appliances. My working experience in different residential & light commercial electrical sectors and the automobile industry helped to acquire vast knowledge in this industry.

Hi, I am responsible for the 'Homeowners Power Solutions' category. My name is Liam Jaxon and a licensed technician with 7 years of experience in vehicle batteries, electrical gadgets, and home appliances. My working experience in different residential & light commercial electrical sectors and the automobile industry helped to acquire vast knowledge in this industry.

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