2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery, 2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery (7 Remedy To 2018 Atlas Battery Problems), KevweAuto

2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery (7 Remedy To 2018 Atlas Battery Problems)

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You hop in your 2018 Volkswagen Atlas, turn the key and it barely cranks or doesn’t start at all. Or maybe the battery warning light kicked on or you’re experiencing flickering headlights. Whatever the issue, VW Atlas battery and electrical problems can quickly go from nuisance to major headache.

Battery failure is common in the Atlas after a few years. But a dead battery can sometimes be a symptom of a larger electrical problem rather than the root cause. This guide covers how to diagnose Atlas battery/electrical issues, troubleshoot the source, and make the right repairs to get back on the road.

Common 2018 VW Atlas Battery and Electrical Issues

2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery, 2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery (7 Remedy To 2018 Atlas Battery Problems), KevweAuto

Before diving into diagnostics and solutions, here are the typical battery and electrical problems reported by Atlas owners:

Dead Battery – An Atlas that sat unused for weeks may have a completely dead battery unable to start the vehicle. Normal degradation over time can also lead to failure.

Battery Draining When Off – Parasitic drains from malfunctioning components, lights left on etc. can drain the battery overnight or over just a few days.

Battery Not Holding Charge – Batteries fail to hold a charge over time. Short trips and cold weather accelerate this, requiring frequent jump starts.

Alternator Not Charging – A bad alternator fails to recharge the battery while driving, allowing the battery to slowly die.

Electrical System Faults – Electrical shorts, resistance in wiring, ground issues lead to electrical gremlins ranging from warning lights to complete failure.

Battery Warning Light – Illumination of the battery or charging system warning light indicates low voltage and often a bad alternator or loose connections.

Dimming Headlights – As batteries weaken, the headlights will dim significantly or cut out completely when idling or using accessories.

Now let’s explore how to accurately diagnose the cause and best remedy these common Atlas battery and electrical woes.

How to Diagnose 2018 VW Atlas Battery Issues

2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery, 2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery (7 Remedy To 2018 Atlas Battery Problems), KevweAuto

Determining whether the battery itself is bad or another issue is causing charging/electrical problems involves targeted diagnostic steps. Here is an efficient battery problem diagnosis process:

Check Battery Age/Date – Determine if the battery is nearing the 3-5 year expected lifespan where failure becomes more common.

Visual Inspection – Look for cracked/bulging cases, corroded dirty terminals, loose cables, low electrolyte levels pointing to a faulty battery.

Load Test – Use a load tester to determine if the battery can hold and deliver adequate charge. Failures point to replacement need.

Alternator Output Test – Utilize a multimeter to check alternator is charging at proper voltage levels while running.

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Parasitic Draw Test – Test for excess current draw when the vehicle is off pointing to a short or component malfunction draining the battery.

Voltage Drop Test – Test for excessive resistance along the charging circuit that impedes charging capability.

Through methodical testing and inspection, you can accurately determine if the battery itself is no longer functioning properly or if charging system issues or parasitic drains are the real culprit.

How to Remedy 2018 Atlas Battery Problems

Once the root cause of battery issues is identified through testing, the appropriate repairs can be made:

Recharge Battery – Fully recharge batteries that are merely drained to temporarily restore function and test.

Replacement – If the battery is over 3 years old or fails testing, replacement with an equivalent Atlas battery is required.

Load Reduction – Reduce electrical loads on the charging system by disabling redundant lights, accessories, electronic modules.

Parasitic Draw Repair – Isolate and repair wiring, circuits, components exhibiting parasitic battery drain.

Alternator Replacement – Replace faulty alternator no longer properly charging battery while driving.

Cable/Terminal Cleaning – Clean corroded cables and terminals restoring connections and charge flow.

Charging System Repairs – Fix loose connections, bad grounds, wiring defects obstructing proper battery charging.

The right solution depends on accurately diagnosing whether the battery itself is bad, if charging problems are depleting the battery prematurely, or if parasitic drains are the real issue.

What Causes Battery Failure in a VW Atlas?

VW Atlas batteries fail prematurely for a variety of reasons. The main culprits include:

Manufacturing Defect – Imperfections introduced during battery production including contaminated cell plates. Failures noticed very early on.

Vibration Damage – Excessive vibration from road impacts, engine etc. eventually damages battery plates and connections.

Cold Cranking Amps Exceeded – Attempting to start larger gasoline engines, particularly in very cold weather, overburdens the battery.

Electrical System Fault – Problems with the alternator, complex VW electronics or a short circuit overtax and damage the battery.

Normal Wear – Gradual degradation of plates and internal components over 3-5 years of normal usage.

Extreme Temperatures – Intense underhood heat in summer and very cold winter temperatures accelerate demise.

Deep Cycling – Repeatedly allowing the battery to discharge completely strains the plates and shortens life.

Poor Maintenance – Lack of cleaning corrosion, checking connections, topping off fluid reduces lifespan.

Diagnosing the specific factor causing premature failure provides insight into steps to take correcting underlying issues and prevent recurrence in the replacement battery.

Alternator vs Battery – How to Tell What’s Wrong

2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery, 2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery (7 Remedy To 2018 Atlas Battery Problems), KevweAuto

A dead Atlas battery caused by a failed charging system is often confused with a dead battery itself. Here’s how to determine if the real culprit is the alternator or battery:

Battery Warning Light – Illumination of the battery/charging system light indicates alternator issues. Lack of warning light points to battery.

Battery Voltage – Measure battery voltage with engine off and again while running. Dramatic voltage differences indicate poor alternator output.

Alternator Testing – Use a multimeter to check alternator is charging at the proper 13.5-14.5 volt level while running. Outside that range confirms alternator problems.

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Battery Testing – Conduct a battery load test to determine if the battery itself maintains and provides adequate amps. Failure equals dead battery diagnosis.

Age and Visuals – A battery over 3 years old with corroded terminals, bulging case or low fluid level suggests end of life replacement need over alternator issues.

Isolating if charging problems are tied to a dying battery or bad alternator streamlines making the correct repair – battery replacement or alternator replacement.

How to Prevent Premature Atlas 12V Battery Failure

While Atlas batteries gradually fail over time, focusing on prevention reduces costly early failures:

Purchase Quality Brand – Invest in a reputable battery brand known for longevity, high performance and warranty support.

Maintain Fluid Level – Check fluid monthly, topping off low electrolyte levels with distilled water to prevent plate damage.

Clean Terminals/Connections – Keep battery terminals and cable connections meticulously clean of corrosion using a wire brush and baking soda solution.

Avoid Excessive Heat – Park in shade when possible and use reflective windshield sunshades to reduce underhood heat strain on the battery.

Recharge Periodically – Use a smart charger to recharge the battery after long term storage to avoid deep discharge.

Check Charging System – Periodically load test the battery and test alternator output to identify problems before failure.

With smart preventative maintenance, the VW Atlas 12V battery can achieve maximum longevity within the constraints of gradual deterioration over years of use.

Options for Starting an Atlas with Dead Battery

2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery, 2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery (7 Remedy To 2018 Atlas Battery Problems), KevweAuto

Despite best efforts, there will come a day when an Atlas battery leaves you stranded with a no start condition. Here are options for starting the vehicle:

Jump Start – Safely jump start using cables connected to a running donor vehicle or portable jump starter pack. This provides temporary cranking power.

Battery Recharge – Remove battery and use a slow charger to restore adequate charge for starting. Removes any surface charge for better diagnostics.

Battery Swap – Install another fully charged battery to isolate whether no start is related to battery condition or other issues.

Emergency Roadside Service – Call for roadside battery service if unable to jump start yourself. Tech can test/replace battery and alternator onsite.

Tow Service – Arrange for flatbed towing to a shop or dealer for battery system testing and replacement if unable to start after jump attempts.

While frustrating, a dead battery provides an opportunity to proactively diagnose the source, make repairs, and identify steps to prevent recurrence and maximize the replacement battery’s lifespan.

Troubleshooting Atlas Electrical Gremlins

In addition to a dead battery, deteriorating battery condition can trigger an array of electrical gremlins ranging from flickering lights to stalling. Here are some electrical anomalies and possible fixes:

Dimming Headlights – Failing battery struggling to deliver adequate current. Check terminals and charge. Consider battery replacement.

Radio Resets – Insufficient power causing system to reboot and reset. Test battery and charging output.

Features Malfunctioning – Power sliding doors, power tailgate etc. may start glitching. Inspect for shorts and clean connections.

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Slow Cranking – Extended cranking time to start signals weak battery charge capacity. Attempt recharge before replacement.

Stalling When Idling – Low voltage strain can cause stalling as systems overload the limited power. Identify current draws exceeding supply.

Flickering Dash Lights – Loose battery cables or grounds cause erratic power delivery. Inspect wiring for breaks, damage, oxidation.

ABS/Traction Control Light – Voltage irregularities confuse electronic brake systems. Check battery, alternator belt, clean terminals.

Methodically tracing electrical anomalies back the root battery or charging system issue equips you to make the right repairs. Don’t ignore early warning signs of problems.

Preparing Your Atlas for Long-Term Storage

2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery, 2018 Volkswagen Atlas Battery (7 Remedy To 2018 Atlas Battery Problems), KevweAuto

Infrequent driving like extended travel or seasonal storage strains the Atlas battery. Prepare properly to avoid return home to a dead battery:

  • Clean battery terminals and check fluid levels
  • Install a battery tender or trickle charger to maintain charge
  • Disable ancillary features like WiFi, Bluetooth, heated seats
  • Turn off dashcam, electronics, lights that create parasitic drain
  • Fill gas tank to prevent fuel varnishing and degradation
  • Park on jack stands to reduce flat spotting on idle tires
  • Cover vehicle indoors away from elements if possible


Taking a few preventative steps dramatically reduces the chances of battery failure after periods of non-use. Give your Atlas battery the care it needs to power strong starts upon your return.

The convenience of your VW Atlas relies on a properly functioning electrical system and battery. But batteries inevitably fail over time. Knowing the right diagnostic and troubleshooting steps lets you accurately tackle Atlas battery issues and electrical gremlins fast. Take charge of your Atlas battery maintenance and charging system for dependable starts.

Frequently Asked Questions about VW Atlas Batteries:

Atlas owners often raise similar questions when dealing with battery and electrical issues. Here are some of the main queries:

What type of battery does a VW Atlas use?
Most Atlas models use an H7 12V Absorbed Glass Mat type battery, group size 94R. Specifications vary slightly by engine so confirm technical details.

How long should an Atlas battery last?
Approximately 3-5 years is the expected lifespan of the original VW Atlas battery with proper operating conditions and maintenance. Heat, cold, frequent short trips etc shorten lifespan.

Why does my Atlas battery keep dying?
Frequent battery death indicates charging problems, parasitic drains when parked, loose connections, heat damage, or normal old age degradation requiring replacement.

My Atlas battery warning light is on. Is it the alternator or battery?
The battery/charging system light indicates malfunction with the alternator. Test alternator output and belt condition. The battery may still need replacement, but start diagnosis with the alternator.

How much is an OEM VW Atlas battery replacement?
Genuine VW Atlas replacement batteries range from $250-$400+ from the dealer parts counter. Significant cost savings come from using reputable aftermarket brands.

Don’t leave uncertainties about Atlas battery or electrical issues stranding you. Arm yourself with knowledge of warning signs, diagnostic steps and repair remedies to stay rolling in your Atlas.

Ejenakevwe Samuel

I'm Ejenakevwe Samuel, and my blog is all about sharing the love for cars. Through my blog, I pour my heart into educating fellow car enthusiasts in everything they need to know about their beloved rides. Whether it's driving tips, maintenance tricks, or the latest trends, I aim to empower others to make informed decisions and take care of their vehicles like a pro.

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