Roadside assistance firm the RAC has equipped its 1500 patrol vans with battery testers, allowing them to check the heath of a vehicle’s battery at the roadside.

The RAC claimed that breakdowns involving batteries are the number one cause for call-outs, with 445,000 members needing assistance in 2015.

The RAC driver can battery’s how much life batteries have by flagging when they have low ‘reserve capacity’.

“One particular benefit is a significant improvement in the testing accuracy of partially discharged batteries, allowing our patrols to give members a definitive opinion on their batteries’ health or that of the vehicle’s starting and charging system,” said RAC technical director Phil Ryan.

“The unit carries out a five-minute charge acceptance test, which displays both the battery’s cranking state of health – the ability to start the vehicle – and its reserve capacity. This gives patrols a final decision on whether a battery is fit for purpose or needs replacing,” he added.

After testing the battery patrols can email over the detailed report.