I Left Car Lights On Overnight – What To Do? (Explained!)

This is a mistake that can happen to anyone, and it is also a mistake that must not be repeated. Do you wish to learn more about what happens if you leave your car lights overnight and what to do about it? Keep reading to find out.

So what to do if you have left your car lights on overnight? The first thing you have to do is to check your car battery. Leaving your car lights on overnight can drain the life out of your battery.

This is an honest mistake. Unfortunately, anyone could have left their car lights on overnight. This can be because you overlooked it, or you just completely forgot about it. 

While this may not cause severe damage and can be fatal, leaving your car lights on can damage your car’s battery. The result, though, is not the same for everyone. Of course, many things can affect the outcome of your car’s battery. 

So with that, let us learn more about what happens when you accidentally or purposely leave your car lights on and what to do next. Here we go.

I Left Car Lights On Overnight

Will My Car Battery Die If I Leave My Lights On Overnight?

Yes, there is a huge possibility that your car battery will die after giving supply to the lights turned on overnight. This is an accident that happens to anyone. There are some cases where the accident will happen once. 

This is because the effect cannot be forgotten. If you have left your lights on overnight, it will be more likely that your car battery will die and will not work anymore. If your lights are turned on for the night, your car battery will be giving a supply of power to the lights overnight. 

As a result, your car battery will be very drained with all that endless supply of power. That is why if you try to start your car in the morning, the chances your car will not start anymore. The lights in your car are very crucial. 

You may leave your car lights on overnight, and they may not burn out on you. However, they will significantly drain your car’s battery. This is the same with any other lights in your car. 

If you leave any of your lights on overnight, they will all drain your car battery. If this happens, if you are turning your car on in the morning, there will be a big possibility that your car will not start anymore. But there are also some slight chances that your car will still start. 

There are risks, though. You might already be on the road, and your car can stall on you. If you are driving your car, your car battery is also maintaining its charge at the same time. 

So you can say that if you are driving your car, your car battery is also charging at the same time. However, your car battery will not recharge on its own. This is the reason why your car battery will die for just a short period if you have your lights turned on. 

The same will happen if other devices in the car are left to be turned on. If there are electronics in the car and connected in the car and left on, they will also drain your car battery.

How Long Does A Car Battery Last If The Headlights Are Left On? 

The length of time will vary with some things. For example, if you have a car battery that is fully charged and still working like brand new and in excellent condition, it can be possible that your car battery can last in the morning. However, this is unlikely. 

On the other hand, if your car battery is not fully charged and is also not in its best condition, your car battery will not last the night and probably will not live throughout the night.

What To Do If I Left Car Lights On Overnight?

If you have left your car lights on overnight, you should immediately check for the car battery. If you have checked your car battery and found out that it is indeed dead because the lights turned overnight, you must call immediately for a mechanic to get some help. You can also try to jumpstart your car. 

If you know how to jumpstart a vehicle, you can try to do it yourself. So you will have to hook up another battery that is in good condition and fully recharged to your dead battery. If you have already hooked the two batteries, you can start the second vehicle with a good and charged battery. 

This will then provide enough power to your dead battery to start and allow you to rerun your car. If you have done this, you can drive your car for about twenty to thirty minutes, and the activity can also help recharge your battery at the same time. It would help if you remembered, though, that this might not work out every time. 

It would also help if you also considered that you need someone to perform the jumpstart. You must need another vehicle with a charged battery. 

If you are unlucky and your battery is dead and is not working anymore, you might replace your old one. The bad news is that the car insurance will not likely pay to tow your truck, and they might not also pay the cost for the battery replacement.

turned on car lights

How Do I Get My Car To Start After I Leave The Lights On?

If your car still starts after leaving your lights on overnight, then you are good to go. You have to check for any drainage, and you can charge it also. If your car does not start in the morning, you can try to jumpstart your car. 

This can give your car battery a jolt of power. If your car will still not start after jump starting, it is best to check with a mechanic. You might have to replace the battery with a new one.

Will The Battery Recharge When I Left The Lights On?

No, the battery will not recharge if you leave your lights on. Leaving your lights on can drain your battery.


In summary, lights in the car are critical. It must be turned off if necessary. Leaving your car lights turned on overnight can cause drainage to the power of your car battery. 

As a result, your car battery can be dead. You can try to jumpstart your car. If it does not work, you need to replace your old battery.



Image credits – Canva

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My name is Hank, and I've been in the automotive industry for 27 years. I've been working in my own auto repair shop for the last 13 years, and now I want to help you here, on my blog. Let me know if you have any questions. Read more