2012 Volkswagen Beetle: Mental Note -- Turn Off Headlamps Next Time
June 25, 2012
Well, I managed to drain the Beetle's battery over the weekend. I went out to the VW on Sunday to run an errand only to find that it wouldn't start. The accessories worked, just not the engine starter. For a moment I thought something might be wrong (such as when the Jetta died on Mike for no apparent reason), but then I checked the headlamps switch, and sure enough I had left the lights on from driving the Beetle the night before. Oops.
The Beetle was on my driveway and I had access to another vehicle. I thought about jump-starting, but instead hooked up the Beetle's battery to my portable charger and let the battery charge back up for the afternoon. Two things came out of this:
1) A subsequent read of the owner's manual revealed that the battery "...should be charged by an authorized Volkswagen Service Facility because the factory-installed battery requires a charger with overload protection." Hmm. Well, the Beetle and battery seem fine after charging, but good to know I guess.
2) Also from the manual: the Beetle does have a battery rundown protection feature, but it doesn't apply to the parking lights (i.e., light switch on, vehicle parked/not running).
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor @ 2,697 miles