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Author Topic: New battery recommendations?  (Read 441 times)
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strange
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« on: 01/09/17 06:23 pm »

At about 135,000 km (or about 85,000 mi), I find myself in need of a new battery.  Old one is just starting to give me trouble.  I guess the cold weather of late doesn't help much.  I have a 2012 and this will be the first new battery for this truck.

Does anyone have some recommendations - good and bad - that will help me out here? I was thinking of just going OEM and then I think, maybe one of these AGM Optima ones.  I don't have a large draw on power, but I must admit I use that damn seat heater daily.  Even in the warmer weather.  Great for a damaged back!

I only have a single battery in the truck now, but I love the idea of a second, backup battery.  And if I ever go that route, I should have two batteries that are the same, right?  With the much higher price of AGM batteries, I would probably not do a dual AGM battery setup.  I have read before that Costco have highly rated batteries at low prices... I just don't know...

Any thoughts...?

Thanks!

Michael
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« Reply #1 on: 01/09/17 07:08 pm »

I have an Optima Red Top in my 2013... strong cranking in hot or cold weather. I had a dual battery set-up in my 2010 with a Red Top for starting and a Blue Top for back-up/accessories. I used the T-Max system -

https://www.amazon.com/T-MAX-47-3800-Dual-Battery-System/dp/B0026JCNJE/ref=cm_cr_pr_pl_footer_top?ie=UTF8&colid=NOBATHE9JXJ2&coliid=I37Z852D7YTYFM

The one benefit of a Costco or Walmart battery would be, if you ever had any trouble, those stores are all over the place.
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« Reply #2 on: 01/09/17 07:36 pm »

If doing two batteries you do want them to be the same if you are using a solenoid to connect them.

I had very bad luck with Optima and won't touch them. Unless you have a very large sound system or using a winch they are WAY overkill. Just get a standard decent quality replacement battery and be happy. The Duracell battery I bought recently at Sams Club looked just like the AC Delco I pulled out of my '09 CTS.  Cold weather will let you know when your battery is bad... The battery can not discharge as much electricity in the cold and everything needs more power to turn over to start in the cold.  So it is not a coincidence that the majority of battery failures are in late fall / early winter.
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« Reply #3 on: 01/09/17 09:37 pm »

I always heard the only reason to have an AGM was if you wanted to mount the battery on its side or upside down (ie; boats, UTVs, Jeeps, etc). Or if it was going to end up on its side or upside down (ie; motorcycles, ATVs, etc.).

I gave up on Optimas too. We lost several blue tops installed in several boats that only lasted a bit over 1 year.

« Last Edit: 01/09/17 09:39 pm by AirJunky » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: 01/09/17 09:53 pm »

Believe quality control went down when Optima was bought out?

Also, on the AGM's, aren't they supposed to have a special charger?
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« Reply #5 on: 01/10/17 04:32 am »

When engine is running battery does not matter anymore as alternator provides power.

Go to local auto parts store and compare prices for their premium AGM battery.

should run ya about $100-$150.

I cannot see spending $200 for the name optima.
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« Reply #6 on: 01/10/17 07:21 am »

Battery is used as a spike protector in vehicles today so you certainly need a decent battery. AGM are more durable but not necissary. Rapid discharge batteries such as Optima are nice for winches because they provide more immediate power which can help pull a stuck vehicle and can help those big stereo systems hit the subs harder and cleaner but otherwise are a total waste. 

If going with 2 or more batteries you want the same model and age batteries to maximize lifespan of your batteries. Your alternator is going to favor one of the batteries and generally if you have two types of batteries or one being years older than the other you MAY only charge one battery all the way and the other may only get to 90% (Or less) charge. Will they work if different? Maybe.... Even going with an Optima red top and a blue top in same system can cause issues.

Rodney
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« Reply #7 on: 01/10/17 11:48 pm »

I really would not worry about Brands because there about 8=10 companies that manufacture batteries. Instead look at the CCA=(cold cranking amps) rating since you live in a cold climate


Interstate Batteries seems to have good reviews they are made by Johnson Controls
« Last Edit: 01/10/17 11:51 pm by MS03 2500 » Logged

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strange
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« Reply #8 on: 01/11/17 09:46 pm »

Years ago - man, like maybe thirty? - I had to get a new battery for my little Honda Civic.  I found this little battery shop, that just did batteries.  That was his whole business!  Anyway, I remember him talking about the "sealed batteries" and "regular" batteries.  He could just not understand sealed ones where you could not add acid, check on the level and the specific gravity - he just hated those.  But seal batteries are about all that's out there.  Anyone got anything on this?  Even if you really wanted a good "regular add your water" type, where would you go?

I really appreciate the comments regarding the batteries.  I looked hard at two different Optima batteries (yellow and red) but I decided to go with an AC Delco Professional.  It's what my local mechanic stocks and I like to support him when I can.  I believe it's what my truck had in there already.

I do love this forum!

Michael
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« Reply #9 on: 01/11/17 11:01 pm »


Was tempted to go with the sexier (more expensive) AGM, last year.

Still trying to survive the Caterpillar meltdown, so went with the AC Delco Professional.

When battery chemistry started to become more stable, recall when "sealed" units hit the market.

Later learned most could be serviced by prying-off the caps.

The batteries became more stable, but the charging systems weren't as well regulated, back then.
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« Reply #10 on: 01/12/17 02:28 pm »

So, Nick@Night, it would seem that the old boy was somewhat right.  You can service an older style battery with the removable caps, but not so much as those fancy "sealed" units.

I must admit, that when i was a kid, it was kind of cool to "check out the battery" and carefully make sure the levels were correct and that the specific gravity was spot on.  (when I say "kid", I don't mean something like a nine year old.  I was think more like 20's.  Sorry to all the 20's out there.  I guess I'm old now...)

I don't think I've even seen a battery in last few years, that has screw covers over the different banks.  I wonder if they are still out there...  I think I did ok with the original AC Delco Professional that was in my 2012, and I'm going to assume that I'll get about the same five years out of this new one.

I would still love to hook up a second battery, but it's more about a pissing contest, I think.  I don't have a winch, big audio system or a mass of extra lighting.  It would just be kind of cool that when I turn the key, I would know that I have a "system" out under the hood!  If the truck did not come with that damn second battery tray, I probably would never have even thought of it.  And now, it would be the price of two batteries and not one, that I would be replacing.

Oh well...  She starts up like new, battery is all nice and shiny and new and I just washed her in the driveway with the temperature at 1C - which must be about 35F.  Couldn't ask for more...

Michael
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« Reply #11 on: 01/12/17 03:27 pm »

With the T-Max dual battery system that I had in my old Avy, the second battery received a trickle charge and wasn't connected to the primary battery until voltage dropped below 12 volts. I had a Blue Top deep cycle Optima as the second battery and used it to run an inverter for camping and tailgating.
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« Reply #12 on: 01/12/17 03:36 pm »

To my knowledge, 100% of the original sealed lead antimony batteries  could be serviced; unfortunately, you would have to break the seal to remove the rectangular caps, voiding the warranty.  The sealed "gel" batteries hadn't come to market, yet.

Later, some of the maintenance-free models were shipped without seals.  All you had to do was pry the rectangular caps off.

Anyway, that's how I remember it.  It's been awhile.

Recall when batteries gassed more, & charging systems were less sophisticated.  The terminals always seemed to be covered with corrosion, but I don't see that, anymore.

My '88 C3500 was a Camper Special, with a dual battery system.  Never really had an interest, since then.  If I actually needed the extra power, good to know there's already a place for it, under the hood.




« Last Edit: 01/12/17 05:39 pm by Nick@Night » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: 01/16/17 05:43 pm »

I just replaced mine last month before a cold snap. I found the Optima Red Top on 4wheel parts for 146.99 and autozone matched their price. It has 800 CCA vs the 6 hundred something from the stock ac delco, and a 3 year full warranty. Same price as their other batteries, so I feel like I got a good deal...  
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« Reply #14 on: 01/16/17 08:08 pm »

With Optima batteries be careful of discharging too far. They can be rough on alternators when they are too dead if they will charge at all. Other than that I wouldn't do anything special with them.

Rodney
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« Reply #15 on: 01/16/17 09:15 pm »

This particular brand isn't what it once was.  That's all we're saying.

"Looks good on you, though."

......from Caddyshack.

We tend to have a darker sense of humor, up here.
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« Reply #16 on: 01/17/17 10:04 am »

The was a few years they had a problem along with other battery manufactures because of material quality so they got a bad rep  .. I had a two Blue Top and one failed when it was about two years old so I called Optima, they asked the info on the battery and said it was in the date range that they had issues with and sent me two new ones.

I've been using Optima's for a long time and that was the only problem I've ever had. They have typically last 7 plus years, the Blue Tops in my AV now are over 5 years with no problems.. I run the D34M dual purpose, it has 5/16 stainless studs that make it real easy to attach cables.

Don't be so quick to dismiss the Optima's..
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