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How Long Before Car Battery Dies With Radio On? Let’s Discover More!


One of the most often used electronic features in automobiles is the radio. It adds excitement to our journeys and keeps us occupied on the road. You may wonder: how long before car battery dies with radio on?

In most cases, the vehicle’s battery will expire within a few hours. If you’re going to leave your radio on when the engine isn’t running, it’s best to turn it off first. The majority of car batteries are capable of powering a radio constantly for several hours at a stretch.

However, the battery, the radio, and the number of hours you use it all have a role. Follow A to Z to learn more!

How Does a Car Battery Work?

how a car battery works

Think of your automobile battery as a crockpot. Cold-cranking amperage (CCA) is only stored in batteries (CCA).

The bucket is now whole since the batteries are always full. The alternator will no longer maintain the bucket filled if the engine is turned off. When an electrical component is turned on, the bucket’s water level drops.

Your automobile battery will be drained more quickly if the electrical components draw or absorb a lot of currents. The amperage draw of each component varies.

If you’ve ever wondered if listening to the radio in your car drains the battery, now you know. You’ll be able to answer this question.

Listening to the radio as you put on the sunshade and gather your luggage is a pleasant perk. It’s simple to keep your radio playing even while the engine is off. This straightforward method is little-known, even though it may be beneficial.

You may also put the car into accessory mode by pressing the start button with your foot off the brake while the engine is off.

Is the Radio Draining the Battery While On?

In the case of radios, for example, you can’t accuse them of depleting your battery. However, if you keep the engine running for hours at a time, it’s very another story.

The battery will be drained faster if you have lights on when you put the key in the ignition.

Batteries for automobiles are shown below. 60 AH is the typical capacity of these batteries. However, a standard stereo will require around five amps of electricity.

As a result, you should expect to have a few hours of battery life left. Engine starting requires roughly 130 Amps, though. To put it another way, you may not be able to start your car in only minutes should you leave the radio running.

Exactly How Long can a Car’s Battery Last if the Radio is on All the Time?

Given that your car radio is the only one utilizing energy, it should take a few hours for your battery to be completely drained.

The battery might be drained if the radio is left on while your car is not moving. On the other hand, radios and stereo equipment use a small amount of energy. As a result, other factors are more likely to blame battery drain

Additionally, keep in mind how much battery power your stereo consumes. Any additional speakers or subwoofers will cause the power to deplete considerably more quickly, as will many powerful speakers.

Some radios have huge displays, which can drain the battery more quickly than smaller models. The power can also be drained faster if you fiddle around with the switches a lot.

However, make sure all lights and heaters are turned off to avoid a rapid loss of electricity.

What Should You Do If Your Car Battery Dies When You’re Listening to the Radio?

The battery in your automobile may have reached the end of its functional life, and you’ll need to get a new one.

We recommend SiriusXM SXPL1V1 as a regular vehicle radio since it has at least 10-15 hours of battery life.

Another consideration is that your vehicle may only require a full charge if you frequently do brief, stop-start drives. The best option is to use a wall loader with a charging capacity of at least 4 amps (4000ma) to charge for at least an hour or two.

Can the radio continue to drain the battery while it’s off?

Get it checked out if you ever find yourself in a position where the radio drains the battery while it’s not in use.

The battery will not be deleted when the radio is switched off. Make sure the radio is hooked correctly if this happens to you. Considering these other possible explanations may be a good idea, as it is highly unusual that even when the radio is turned off, the battery will drain.

  • It’s essential to be sure that the radio is actually turned off and not simply mute.
  • Eventually, the battery may fail.

Turning Off the Radio Before Turning Off the Car: Is This Crucial?

In current cars, turning off the radio before shutting down the motor is frequently unnecessary.

A new generation of automobiles is more powerful and more fuel-efficient. As a result, starting the motor and the radio simultaneously is not a problem.

Although switching off the car radio before putting it in the park can save you a small amount of battery juice, it won’t have a significant impact.

Without Draining Your Car Battery: How Do You Listen to the Radio?

car radio listening

Portable radios are a superb option to avoid exhausting your car battery while listening to the radio.

Pocket radios are a great option if you’re concerned about exhausting your vehicle’s battery.

The movie’s soundtrack may be heard over the FM radio in most cars. However, you don’t want to drain your entire vehicle’s battery in this manner.

For this reason, it’s better to pack a portable stereo or speaker in a pocket or bag instead.

As I mentioned previously, the length of time radios may be used on several things. Keep your engine running periodically if you plan on listening to the radio for an extended period.

You’ll be able to keep your battery charged and prevent it from being depleted this way. Even so, it’s preferable if you only bring a little radio with you.

Your car battery will last longer as a result, and you’ll save time as a result.

Special Note: Your automobile is made up of various components that all operate together. Regular automotive tune-ups and safe vehicle storage are other easy strategies to ensure that the lifespan of your battery may reach its maximum capacity.

Remember that a well-functioning vehicle relies on many different elements, including the battery, to keep it going for as long as possible.

Is Operating Radio With Engine Off A Good Idea?

When the engine is off, you can use your radio, although it’s not recommended. In order to start the engine, car batteries are designed to produce massive quantities of electricity in a short period of time.

They aren’t meant to be emptied slowly over several days or weeks.

One of the drawbacks is using relatively thin lead components for chemical bond storage.

Various battery technologies can be recharged as many times as the rated number if they continue down to 0% capacity. While you should expect twice as many rated charging cycles if you constantly drain them to 50% of their capacity.

For automotive batteries, deep discharges below 50% capacity harm and shorten their life spans.

This means that you should avoid using any gadget powered by a car battery for longer than necessary before it drains the battery’s capacity by half. A good rule of thumb for radio and automobile audio systems is to not use them for more than three to four hours with the motor off.

There are various reasons why you would wish to listen to music while driving. However, you may choose to leave the engine off for various reasons, such as to conserve petrol or for other reasons.

That being said, there’s always the concern about running out of battery power when listening to music in your car.

It’s a difficult question to answer. If you have an amplifier and a subwoofer, the total power demand of your entire audio system might increase by many times.

Typical sound systems typically take four and eight hours to set up and test.

Because of this, it is best to avoid listening to music when the engine is off for more than three to four hours a day.

Final Verdict

Can radio drain car battery? We hope you get your answer. You can listen to your favorite stations for hours if your phone’s battery is strong and in good condition.

An auto mechanic may do a battery load test on your car batteries once a month, which will ensure that you have proper car battery maintenance.

Every six months or so, you should check the acid level in your automobile battery as part of your routine maintenance.

Keep an eye out for acid stratification, which occurs when batteries are not fully charged or have shallow discharges and are left at a charge level below 80%.

A stratified battery causes electrolytes to accumulate at the bottom, resulting in a depleted battery at the top. 

You’ll have more problems if your automobile battery is unhealthy. Please turn on the radio in your car, but remember to keep it in good condition!


How do I know if my radio is sucking my battery?

Any of the following may indicate that your radio is drained of power:

  • The car won’t start even if the battery is only a few weeks or months old.
  • The motor revs significantly when the automobile is started.

Is it feasible to recharge a battery that has been entirely discharged?

To utilize the battery in your automobile again, you will need a new one to replace the one you have.

An automobile with cutting-edge technology that can recharge itself whenever the ignition is turned on is an alternative if you don’t want to deal with this.

Is it possible to leave my car in accessory mode for a lengthy period of time?

You should anticipate keeping your car in an accessory mode for around 30 to 45 minutes. 

To minimize exhausting the battery, the newest cars cut off the accessory mode after 20 minutes; this is either done on a timer or by the vehicle monitoring how much power is being utilized by the accessory mode.

Is there a connection between the radio’s battery and sound quality?

If you don’t drive your car very often, you may notice that the battery in your vehicle is deteriorating.

Those things won’t turn back on without a completely charged battery when you start the car. It is necessary to repair the internal fuses or put in a new battery if the radio’s fuses are near to blowing.

Can A Battery Drain Without Being Connected?

There is a self-discharge rate for all batteries, even if they aren’t attached to a vehicle or any other power source. A shorter duration may be seen if the battery has not been completely charged before going into storage and if the battery is exposed to severe temperatures (hot or cold).

Can Leave Car Lights Damage My Car’s Battery?

Your car’s battery may be depleted entirely by simply leaving a door slightly open and allowing the inside lights to glow. However, if you repeatedly deplete your battery in this manner, you risk damaging or even destroying it.

Does a car’s battery need to be left running to recharge?

Once every two weeks, take a brief drive or idle the car for 10 to 15 minutes to keep the battery charged if you notice that any of these automobiles start readily (the starter spins swiftly). Taking a half-hour trip once a week could help slow down sluggish cranking.

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