5 Common RAV4 Battery Issues and Fixes

Toyota manufactured the first crossover compact SUV, named the Toyota RAV4. The RAV4 is a good choice for users who want to go off-road and have better fuel economy with compact SUV features.

There are a few downsides to the SUV, like engine, transmission, fuel economy, battery issues, etc. You should know about the battery issues before purchasing a RAV4.

Besides, there has been a massive recall for battery issues. So, I will discuss all the battery issues, causes, solutions, and some frequently asked questions.

Toyota RAV4 Battery Issues

Dead battery, battery draining, loose connector, charging and battery size issues are common battery issues in a Toyota RAV4. Now, I will discuss the problems briefly:

1. Dead Battery

There have been many complaints about dead batteries in the Toyota RAV4. Generally, battery charge lasts for weeks or months. But some RAV4s were reported to have dead batteries within just a few hour’s break. Old or damaged batteries can also cause the issue.

2. Battery Draining

Faulty or malfunctioning electronic parts can cause batteries to drain. Sometimes, they can parasitically discharge the battery. Draining can happen even if the engine is off. It is a common issue reported by RAV4 users.

3. Loose Connector

Faulty or loose connectors can cause battery issues in your RAV4. Loose connectors cause sparks and can start a fire. So, checking the integrity of the connectors and cables of a battery in RAV4s is necessary.

4. Charging Issue

Some users complained that the battery of their RAV4 won’t charge. Electrical connection issues between the alternator and the battery may cause it. Faulty alternators also cause charging issues.

5. Battery Size Issue

The battery size issue is a common problem with many Toyota vehicles. RAV4s from 2013–2018 are highly affected by the issue. Toyota’s replacement battery size is shorter than the stock battery. It can cause movement and lead to short circuits and other issues.

Causes of Toyota RAV4 Battery Problems

Old batteries, electrical issues, bad alternators, extreme weather, and parasitic draining are the main causes of Toyota RAV4 battery problems. Here is a brief discussion:

Old Battery

Batteries can lose their temper over time. Electrolytic components in a battery can become dry and cause the battery to perform poorly. Aging batteries can be another reason for sudden battery draining and dead battery issues. Usually, a new RAV4 battery can last 3–5 years.

Electrical Issues

Faulty electrical connection can cause battery draining and hamper charging. If a battery does not charge over time, it will become dead suddenly. Faulty battery connectors and wires are responsible for electrical connection issues.

Bad Alternator

Alternator is responsible for recharging a battery. Faulty alternators can cause the battery not to charge over time. It leads to battery draining, damaging, and not charging issues with the RAV4 battery.

Extreme Weather

Weather can affect the performance of a battery. The suitable temperature range for battery storage and operation is 25°C or 77F. Below-zero temperature reduces the battery performance. Overheating increases the aging procedure of the RAV4 battery. So, extreme weather can cause battery issues.

Parasitic Draining

Faulty electronic components can drain the battery over time. Sometimes, it drains the battery even if the engine is off. It causes dead batteries and leads to battery damage.

Solution to Toyota RAV4 Battery Problems

You can follow these methods to avoid and solve battery issues:

Battery diagnosis: New RAV4 batteries should last up to 3 or 5 years. But you should check the battery periodically. You can use a voltmeter to check battery levels. 12.5V reading means the battery is fully charged. 11.8V means 25% and 12.3V means 50% charge of the battery. There are some other methods for testing the battery. You can also use battery testers to check battery health. Many tools are available for battery testing. Diagnosing the battery regularly will help you avoid damaged or dead batteries.

Checking connections: If you face any battery problems, you should also check the connectors. Loose connectors can cause sparks and other issues. Damaged connector cables can also cause charging issues.

Parasitic draining checkup: You should check your vehicle for parasitic draining. In this process, check the battery level after turning off the engine. Parasitic draining can cause damaged or dead batteries.

Diagnosing alternator: Faulty alternator can sometimes cause the battery to not charge. Regular charging is necessary for better health and performance of the battery. Replacing the alternator may become necessary. The replacement cost is between $300 and $600 for the alternator.

Battery replacement: Old or damaged batteries need replacement. It can improve the performance of your vehicle. New batteries will cost you around $990–$995.

Toyota RAV4 Battery Recall

Toyota has announced a recall of 2013–2018 RAV4s for battery issues. Around 1.8 million RAV4s will be recalled for that cause.

Toyota informed us that the 12V replacement battery is a little bit shorter compared to the stock battery.

So, the hold-down clamp doesn’t fit it properly. Loose battery clamps can cause battery movement while taking sharp turns and create short circuits.

Toyota is still working on the solution. A possible solution is to replace the battery tray hold-down clamp and improve the positive terminal cover.


Is there a recall on Toyota RAV4 battery?

Yes, there is a recall coming for the 2013–2018 RAV4s for battery issues. Toyota has already announced that. Approximately 1.8 million RAV4s are going to be recalled. The expected recall date is in the late December of 2023. It is considered one of the biggest recalls for any issue.

What is the factory warranty on a Toyota battery?

TrueStart batteries get 24 months of free exchange warranty regardless of mileage or 84 months on a prorated basis for newly purchased vehicles.

True-2 batteries get 18 months of free exchange warranty regardless of mileage or 60 months on a prorated basis for newly purchased vehicles.

Here, proration is for battery only. It doesn’t include applicable tax, labor costs, or towing.

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