Can Car Batteries Get Wet (Or Should They Be Replaced)

If you’ve got your cat battery wet, then you may be wondering if it’s damaged for good or if it’s still useable. In this article, not only will you get the answer to both questions, but you’ll also learn much, much more!

So keep reading to find out everything you want to know and more!

So, Can You Get Your Car Battery Wet?

Fortunately, car batteries are a bit more durable than other batteries, and because of this, they can handle being wet without damage. However, this doesn’t mean you should leave your battery out in the rain or get it wet constantly, as the lid and terminals will begin to suffer from water damage over time.

And of course, this doesn’t mean you should completely submerge a car battery in water either, as this will result in the battery becoming flooded.

How Come Car Batteries Can Get Wet?

You may have seen that it’s not a good idea to get other batteries wet, so how come there’s a bit more leniency with car batteries?

Well, it’s because they’re made from a water-proof material called polypropylene resin which is designed to keep lead-acid and water inside the battery but also stops any more water from getting in as well. On top of this, the battery terminals are made of lead, so getting them wet isn’t going to cause them to rust which can often be the case with other batteries.

You also have to realize that car batteries are exposed to the elements a bit more than regular batteries, so it stands to reason they’re going to need to be a bit tougher also.

However, it’s important to note we’re talking about a battery getting wet, submerging a car battery will likely ruin it completely.

What Happens When A Car Battery Gets Wet?

Fortunately, if your car’s battery only gets wet a couple of times, the chances of permanent damage happening are going to be quite small. However, repeated exposure to water will eventually cause the components of your battery to corrode, which can result in problems later on down the line.

Why Do Car Batteries Get Wet?

There are a couple of things that can cause your battery to become wet.

The Elements

First of all, extreme elements can be pretty harsh on car batteries and can cause them to get wet in a variety of ways. From rain to melting snow, water can slowly seep into the battery casing and even into the cells if your battery has been exposed for too long.

Heat can also cause condensation to form on the outside of the battery which can eventually drip its way down into the cells and cause corrosion.

The Cleaning Process

It can also be surprisingly easy to get your car battery wet while

Evaporation From The Battery Itself

The second main cause of a wet car battery can be evaporation from the inside. If your battery overheats or is overcharged, then it can cause some of the electrolyte liquid to evaporate and get forced out through the vents in the casing.

This can also lead to water damage on both the inside and outside of your battery, potentially leading to corrosion and other problems.

Why Can’t You Submerge A Car Battery?

The reason that you can get a car battery wet but not submerge it in water is due to the vents on top. Car batteries have large vents to help gases escape, but this means when submerged, water can also get in. Once water floods the battery, the chemicals will become diluted and leak out altogether. Causing the battery to malfunction and break.

As well as this, when the battery is in water, it will also begin discharging because water is a conductor; this is especially true in saltwater.

Does This Mean You Can Leave A Car Battery In The Rain?

If you leave a cat battery in the rain for a long period of time, then, of course, there are going to be some consequences. First of all, as more water begins to hit the battery, it will begin to discharge, slowly losing charge over time.

As well as this, long periods of rain will also cause the battery to corrode over time as well. So over time, leaving a battery in the rain is not a good idea.

However, if you need to install a battery in the rain, or if it’s only in the rain for a little bit, then there should be no problem with your battery, and it will work fine when you need it to start. Just make sure you’re drying it thoroughly.

Changing A Battery In The Rain

If you’re changing a battery in the rain, then you may be worrying that it will shock you. However, as long as you don’t complete the circuit by touching the two terminals together, then you won’t get a shock. But once again, try to keep the battery as dry as possible to reduce the corrosion that could occur on the battery terminals.

But, Can Water Ruin A Battery?

Absolutely, water can ruin a battery on a long enough time frame. However, brief exposure to water or rain isn’t going to affect the battery in any noticeable way. So just keep the battery out of the water as much as you can, and you won’t have to worry about any damage occurring.

Can Water Damage Car Battery Chargers?

Now that you know batteries are essentially safe when they get wet, you may be wondering if car battery chargers can handle getting wet as well.

Well, unfortunately, they’re not like car batteries, so you’ll definitely want to avoid getting a car battery charger wet.

Unlike batteries, the charger has a lot of parts that definitely shouldn’t be getting wet. And because you’re plugging it into mains power, there are obviously a lot of things that can go wrong. So it’s best to avoid getting a battery charger near any kind of water.

Can You Start A Car With A Wet Battery?

Yes, it’s fine to start a car with a battery that’s been exposed to water. As long as it can still hold a charge and isn’t corroded, there shouldn’t be any problems starting your car with a wet battery.

If you find that your battery has gone through some water damage, it can be a good idea to have the terminals cleaned off and any corrosion removed before trying to start the engine, however.

Can A Battery Charger Get Wet?

No, a battery charger should never get wet. Battery chargers can be damaged by water and can create a dangerous situation if exposed to any moisture. It’s best to always keep your battery charger in a dry place.

If water gets into the charger itself then it may cause permanent damage and cause it to short.


Here are some frequently asked questions that people have about their car batteries getting wet.

Will A Car Battery That Was Sitting In Water Be Fine?

Unfortunately, the answer is no. If a car battery has been submerged or sitting in water for an extended period, then it can cause permanent damage to the cells and can even cause them to short out.

Can I Drive My Car If The Battery Is Wet?

Yes, you can drive your car if the battery is wet. Just make sure that you have properly dried off the battery and any exposed parts that could be affected by water. Driving with a wet battery can cause it to short out so be cautious while driving.

Why Is Your Car Battery Wet On Top?

If your car battery is wet on top, then it could be because it’s sweating. Sweating occurs when the battery is overcharged and too much acidic steam escapes through the vent. After which the moisture settles on top of the battery.

Can Tesla Batteries Get Wet?

Yes, Tesla batteries can get wet and they are even better protected than traditional car batteries. This is because they are sealed and can withstand more water exposure before any damage can occur. So, although you should still try to keep your Tesla battery dry, it can handle some moisture.


So, as you can see, it’s entirely possible and, in most cases, safe to get your car battery wet without having to worry about permanent damage happening to it. As long as you’re not submerging the battery in water or exposing it to the elements for a long period of time, then water isn’t going to have much effect on a car battery. In all likelihood, only a little bit of energy will be discharged from the battery, but that’s about it.

However, if your battery does get wet, it’s still a good idea to dry it thoroughly to prevent the water from corroding any parts of the battery.

And lastly, if you do leave a battery out in the elements for too long, you should check to make sure the terminals and lids haven’t been damaged because these are the most susceptible to damage.

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