Are many made by the same company?
Are many made by the same company?
I was looking at cca for dollar cost in my last battery as I live in a cold climate. Autozone and Farm and Fleet ended up in the top by my method. Different climates can change battery recommendations. What state do you live in?
I sold Interstate batteries for years and they were the best as far as reliability and price. Most were sold for motorhomes and travel trailers. A few were sold for tow vehicles.
Batteries are so dense for their size that they are expensive to ship. Therefore, there are only a few companies that manufacture batteries. A battery with a particular label may be made by a different manufacturer in a different part of the country. I had a friend that bought a battery at an independent battery shop in my town. There was no label on the battery. My friend asked the owner of the shop what make of battery it was. The owner opened his desk draw which contained a bunch of labels and replied "What make would you like the battery to be?"
I think the best bet is to buy a battery from a store that has a high turnover of batteries. This way you avoid a battery that has deteriorated from sitting on the shelf for a long time. My local WalMart store is where I purchase batteries because of the high turnover.
For Ford products (Group size 65) and smaller cars that use Group 35 size, Costco beat Walmart by $10 or more. For seven day convenience, Walmart generally wins.
Costco batteries are made by Johnson Controls, and I have had best luck with them. I am unhappiest with an Interstate battery purchased through my trusted mechanic. Free replacement 13 months after install, something that no other battery I have purchased in 30 years achieved.
My dad had bad luck with a Merrimac battery that was installed as a replacement battery in his 1949 Dodge. He was advised to replace it with a Willard battery, which was supposed to be of high quality.
I think the best buy in a battery was from Montgomery Ward. In the late 1960’s, their top of the line battery had a lifetime warranty. The battery would be replaced for free if it ever failed in the vehicle in which the battery had been installed. Of course, Montgomery Ward probably figured that people would trade the car before the battery failed. I wonder who would make that warranty good if a person actually had a vehicle in which the Montgomery Ward liftime battery was installed. Motgomery Ward has been out of business for years.
I had purchased lifetime brake shoes in the 70’s and a lifetime muffler from Ward’s also. In Kansas City, their stores were more convenient than Sears stores. The brake shoes turned out well, but the muffler not so well. I went to get a replacement about two years after the initial purchase, and they refunded my money. Explanation was they has quit the lifetime muffler business and were refunding the money to anyone who needed a warranty replacement.
When Ward’s was finally liquidated in the 90’s (?), there was no business successor, so the lifetime warranty became worthless. Lifetime warranties are only as good as the company behind it. A good run, though, while it lasted.
The Everstart batteries at Wal-Mart are rated well. The Kirkland at Costco are some of the best. I have one of the AGM batteries (looks like a six pack) that I bought at Sam’s club but nobody has to spend that much. It’s one of those novelty things to me and I will not jump start any car with it. It’s almost too expensive to use.
The Diehard batteries when on sale are tough to beat. Buy only buy when on-sale. I keep my vehicles about 8-10 years (300k miles) and I only have to replace the battery once…and that’s usually after 7 years. So I just look around for a sale.
There might be an increase in Interstate Batteries in Massachusetts this winter. Their warehouse in MA…the roof collapsed from snow a couple of weeks ago.
What kind of car do you drive?
Stay away from the Costco/Wal-mart/discount chain batteries.
AC Delco and Motorcraft make very good batteries, Interstate is also a good brand.
Who cares if you save 25 bucks on a battery if your car doesn’t start one night?
Our cars are garaged.
When super cold, I park facing away from the wind or behind a building or wall.
I’llook at Motorcraft for the 2005 Toyota Corolla.
Wal-Mart sells Motorcraft filters and 1-quart and 5-quart oils.
I used to be a Die-Hard fan, but after a few early failures I’ve switched over to Walmart. Convenient, good price, and they’ve exhanged when needed.
Johnson controls makes Interstate, DieHard and is presently the sole supplier to WalMart. It would seem reasonable for them to use a standard design for all to increase buy quantities of raw materials and for simplified production. If you don’t like DieHard, then buy an Interstate or a WalMart battery and you are still Johnson Control’s customer.
Auto batteries are cheap in comparison to much else associated with cars. Pay $50 or $70 for 5 years of use sounds like a bargain to me.