Concerned about why your car’s battery cables are extremely hot? Perhaps your car engine has suddenly stalled or you noticed this when you attempted to start the car and the car starter turns really slowly.
Irrespective of the circumstances, this presents a dangerous situation. It points to an underlying issue that can damage not only the wiring, battery, or even cause a fire.
This post look at the possible reasons why the battery cables can get really hot and what you can do to fix the issue.
Why Car Battery Cables get Hot and Melt?
The battery cables get extremely hot if there’s a high current draw in the wiring over and above what they are designed to carry.
You can have excessive high current draw from the car battery if:
#1. There the battery connections are loosely connected. Inspect the battery posts for corrosion.
Remove any corrosion that might be on the battery posts until they are shiny and clear of corrosion.
Also, inspect the ground battery and starter connections. Make sure they are clean and tightly connected.
#2. The car starter is faulty. Arrange to have a starter tested at an auto repair shop or if you are handy, conduct the test yourself.
To test yourself, compare both the starter and battery voltages as you start the car (you’ll need two voltmeters for this). The voltage difference should not exceed 0.5V.
A higher voltage drop points to a damaged cable, or a loose connection in either the starter positive, negative, or ground cables.
Clean all cable connections and Replace the damaged cables.
Should you Replace the Battery Cables?
This depends on whether the cables have suffered any damage or not. Conduct a visual inspection of the cables.
Is there any sign of damage? Broken insulation or melted cables? If so, definitely replace it. Do not hesitate to contact a qualified auto technician for advice.
#1. What to Check if the Negative Battery Cable gets extremely Hot
Check for a loose or missing ground connection. Have you made any repairs recently that involved removing cable connections?
Have you connected all the ground connections? Clean all the cable connections and make sure they are firmly connected.
#2. Why the Positive Cable can Get Extremely Hot
The cable may be loose, damaged, or shorting somewhere along its length. With the engine switched off, inspect the cable for any signs of damage.
Clean all the cable connections and make sure they are firmly connected.
Car Battery Cables Hot and Car Fails to Start – What to Do?
There are several possible reasons. The car may fail to turn over if the battery voltage is low, the cables are loose or they have suffered damage that is causing a voltage drop.
A faulty and shorting starter can also cause the battery cable to become hot when starting the car.
You may also be interested in: How to remove stuck car battery terminals
It is not normal for car battery cables to become extremely hot. You need to fix the underlying causes.
This might be that (not exhaustive) the battery connections – positive, negative, or ground are weak or loosely connected or a faulty starter.