Battery brands


#1

My battery is coming to its end. I was told by oil change person and its color has changed from green to dark on the top of battery as well.

From where to buy battery? Walmart, autozone etc?

Any opinion about battery brands.

Do you change battery by yourself or take to mechanic? I think most parts battery prices included your battery otherwise it cost more. If you are changing battery on your own than how to over come that discount factor?
Thanks in advance!


#2

I find your second sentence incomprehensible. Battery tests don’t ever provide clear winners across group sizes. If you want it installed, go someplace that will do it free. Those same places will usually give you a free charging systems check also.
I know Advance and Autozone will do both and Advance has coupons available online as well.


#3

Most places that sell batteries these days install them for free.

What kind of climate are you in? Extreme ups and downs through the year, from cold winters to hot summers? If so then brand might matter. If not, just ask around for what kind of warranty you get. I recall once getting a battery from store A only to find out soon after that store B had the same priced battery with a much better warranty.


#4

There is a recycling deposit charge for your old battery. You return the old battery to the store where you bought your new one and you get your deposit back. Agree with oldtimer 11, that may be your best route.


#5

“I find your second sentence incomprehensible”

I think the OP has a battery with a little window “eye”.
There’s a green colored bead that floats up to the window when the electrolyte has high specific gravity (fully charged).
The battery in my Matrix has this eye. The battery is 8 years old and the eye stopped working a couple of years ago.
I think the bead is stuck in there out of sight because the SG still measures OK with a hygrometer.
So the eye not working by itself is not proof that the battery is going bad.


#6

A colleague of mine went to an independent battery shop for a battery. The battery that was installed had no label on it. My colleague asked what brand of battery was installed in his car. The proprietor opened his desk drawer and there were dozens of different labels in the drawer. The proprietor responded, "What make of battery would you like it to be?"
Batteries are dense as far as weight is concerned and apparently, one battery plant produces batteries under different labels so that the batteries will be shipped as little distance as possible. Just buy the battery group that is specified for your car and buy the battery by ampere hour capacity. Don’t worry about the brand.


#7

I used to buy batteries for trucks and buses from a very good local commercial supplier. when I asked the first time I bought there , what brand battery he carried he asked if I wanted a Viking or a Willard. When I inquired what the difference was, he said “The label, it’s the same battery”.


#8

True. There only a hadfull of battery manufactuteres and the Costco Kirkland is the same as the Sears Diehard at little over half the price, but Costco does not install where I live.

My last battery was from Walmart; they installed it for free and the price was right. The key is to buy “enough” battery in terms of CCA (Cold Cranking Amps) to meet your needs. When I had a Chevy V8, my battery was 1000 CCA, the biggest that would fit in the box.

When in doubt, as for a Police or taxi model battery.


#9

unless something has changed, there are still only 3 major batter suppliers in the world. The higher grade stuff at Walmart is the same battery sold by most of the OEM suppliers (AC Delco, Motorcraft, etc) I have had good luck with the Everstart batteries from Walmart.


#10

There used to be 3 or so major battery makers,and actually the WAL-MART battery is fairly decent(keep in mind that I havent really studied the warranties)but the NAPA brand(Globe Union?) was usually backed pretty good(they didnt hassle you if you had a problem) the other Guys ,Advance,Auto Zone if you did all the discounts you could apply would give you a deal comparable to WAL-MART and at least Advance would install the battery(Auto Zone refused to install mine one time-but they did put one in my Wifes “Element” a couple of weeks ago so its a buyers market,generally the best deal is at Wal-Mart if you trade your old battery in -Kevin


#11

The OP should first verify if the battery is indeed nearing the end of its lifespan.
Here is what I do when I am in that situation:

  1. Go to closest Sears automotive department for a free battery load test. If they show you test results that indicate the battery is bad, tell them that you will be back later, and drive away.
  2. Drive over to Costco and buy their Kirkland battery, which is identical to the Diehard Gold battery at Sears, albeit with a longer warranty than the Sears Diehard.
  3. Install the Kirkland battery myself
  4. Pocket the $60 that I saved by buying the identical battery at Costco

;-))


#12

Johnson Controls is a major manufacturer producing many different brands.


#13

^
Yup!
Johnson Controls makes Interstate, Sears Diehard, Costco’s Kirkland brand, and several other battery brands–in the same factory. By comparing the specifications, you can see which ones are identical, with the only exception being the brand name on them.


#14

the colored eye on the battery has NOTHING to do with the useful life. That is there for when batteries are in storage before being sold. It is a cheap built in hydrometer and is not accurate for ever. Many places offer free battery testing. Take advantage of one of them before spending money for no reason


#15

I have judged a battery by it’s cca (cold cranking amps) I like interstate, but when comparing prices compare cca.


#16

Doesn’t matter how many CCA it is when you buy it if in 6 months it has 0. Quality with a good warranty is the way to go. You don’t need 1000CCA. My daughters Civic battery last week tested at 105CCA and was still starting, just a little slow.


#17

“DieEasy”…excuse me, DieHard batteries have used these for years. I always thought it funny that piles of them in the junk yard still had their green eyes but were deader than a doornail.


#18

Consumer Reports rates batteries by battery group. “Battery group” defines the battery physical size, and the orientation of the posts. Each make/model/year of car uses a certain battery group. The CR ratings typically show certain brands are recommended only for certain battery groups. For other groups, another brand is better. Suggest to visit local library and look up the most recent CR report on batteries. Make sure you know which battery group your car uses beforehand.

My Corolla – if I remember correctly – uses battery group 35. Last time I purchased a battery for it, CR told me the best brand was the Costco brand. That’s where I purchased it, and it has been working fine.

If you are unsure about doing the replacement yourself, your local inde auto shop will be happy to do it for you. I think Costco would have installed my battery for me if I had wanted them. But for a DIY’er it is pretty simple thing to do, esp on an older Corolla.

One thing to consider: Newer cars sometimes don’t like having the battery disconnected. There’s been reports here of certain Ford vehicles that won’ t start after disconnecting the batter. A good shop will avoid this by making sure the car’s computer systems remain powered up during the battery swap.


#19

Does this oil change person work at a quick-lube shop? If so, you need to be aware that those shops have a reputation for suggesting unnecessary work. A battery and charging system test from another place, as suggested above, is a good idea here.


#20

I have had good luck with wal-mart brands, they always seem to have date codes no longer than 2 months old on the shelf…I believe these are also made by Johnson Controls…Have one in my lawn tractor going on 8 years old and you can tell its getting old by slower cranking. Just replaced a 7 year old one in my 5.0 Mustang…Those magical green eyes are only showing you one cell. They should have 6 of them. Best way is, get your battery load tested and will tell you more than those green eyes. Any battery that sits on the shelf for more than four months has already started to sulphate due to self discharge. I have seen batteries on auto store shelves with date codes over 6 months old…