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Bob

New Battery Suggestions

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My Armada battery has gone south, and I am looking to replace the battery with something that won't leak. I was looking at the Optima Yellow Top batteries, but I have seen mixed reviews. I was wondering if anyone had any experience with a good battery to use in a vehicle that uses a lot of gadgets (dash cam, GPS, radar detector, etc).

 

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From my years in car parts, I have found that when Optima made Optima, people were happy with them. Now I hear more bad than good.

My understanding is that all batteries sold in the US are either made by Johnson Control or East Penn. Regardless of brand. Batteries are made to the specifications required of the seller. In other words, a Super Start is made to the specifications given by O'Reilly Auto to sell with their cost versus profit margin. Same with Walmart, Interstate, NAPA, etcetera. Even though these batteries are related, they are not equal.

Based on your need for a good battery to run the electronic, I would highly recommend an absorbed glass mat battery (AGM). These als have superior resistance to off road rigors as well.

Since you live in Reno, I'd pop in and see Bodie or Justin at Carquest there before they get converted to Advance Auto. They might still have some of the good old Carquest batteries, which I think are better made. That store has yet to be converted to Advance, since it is a California region store, which has yet to be converted. Winnemucca and Elko are part of the Idaho region thus converted in 2015. I am sure you can Google the address, it's off McCarran not far from Meadowood Mall.

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Thank you Dave. I will still head down to Carquest and see if I can get the battery there. Sounds like the AGM battery is the one to get for off road.

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They should be fine.

Damn spell check on my tablet ... I was rereading my post and it changed my apparently misspelled "absorbed" and replaced it with "aborted". ... :sorry22: And I see where this forum won't allow me to edit my posts, apparently after a relatively short period of time ... 

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I absorbed the glass and aborted the mistake. I think I'll take a sledgehammer to my tablet ... I hate inanimate objects that think they know more than I do and take action to second guess me ... :Various_Artists-blowup::computerbash:

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On 9/3/2016 at 11:10 AM, David A. Wright said:

From my years in car parts, I have found that when Optima made Optima, people were happy with them. Now I hear more bad than good.

My understanding is that all batteries sold in the US are either made by Johnson Control or East Penn. Regardless of brand. Batteries are made to the specifications required of the seller. In other words, a Super Start is made to the specifications given by O'Reilly Auto to sell with their cost versus profit margin. Same with Walmart, Interstate, NAPA, etcetera. Even though these batteries are related, they are not equal.

Isn't EnerSys still independent?  I know Johnson Controls was supposedly pondering buying them, but I don't see anything saying they actually did buy them.  If I had a choice, I'd get an Odyssey.  The offroad guys give them high marks, but you pay through the nose. 

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I am thinking of going with the NAPA AGM battery since they have a 5 year return policy (non-prorated if I remember correctly). I was thinking about a Bosch AGM from Amazon, but if I had to return it, it would be a nightmare as they would probably make me return it before sending me another.

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2 hours ago, desertdog said:

Isn't EnerSys still independent?  I know Johnson Controls was supposedly pondering buying them, but I don't see anything saying they actually did buy them.  If I had a choice, I'd get an Odyssey.  The offroad guys give them high marks, but you pay through the nose. 

Never heard of the brand, so have no comment. Other than that if word of mouth and forums of the off road crowd give it high marks, it should be a good choice. And if Johnson buys them, get one quick before they neuter it.

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If you want the best battery for your money... Get yourself a Red Top Optima... They run $175-$200 at local Oreilly's, but you will never have any issues with it. That's the only battery I run in all my cars, and have one in wife's 04 Dodge Ram 5.7 Hemi for 5yrs and counting...

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You couldn't pay me to run an Optima now a days. The last 3 brand new ones, red and yellow tops were junk. They were once a really good battery, 3 of them I had lasted 10-12 years. The new ones to replace those? 2-3 years under the same conditions.

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When I was in the auto parts business (2009-2016), my experience with Optima for vehicle use was largely negative. High warranty returns, low customer satisfaction, Optima faithful becoming disillusioned. All apparently due to the original manufacturer selling out to another company who made original claims while builing them as cheaply as possible.

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I hedged bets and replaced the battery in my Tacoma a few weeks ago with a Northstar AGM.  The factory one had been showing wetness around the vents, and was getting to the point that it would only charge to about 12.4V (after sitting overnight). 

The battery is made in the USA (Missouri), and all the forum reviews I've read from actual users provided positive (no pun) feedback.  The one thing I'm not clear on is sizing - they don't seem to be direct OEM drop-ins (for example, their 27F is a bit different in size than the Toyota/Delco 27F). 

That means I'm going to have to fabricobble a slightly different hold down, but meh. 

 

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The OEM battery in my ‘02 Tacoma TRD 4x4 (Delphi) went sour in ‘09. I replaced with an Exide. That one lasted until ‘17. I replaced with a Carquest (Johnson Control). All batteries simply wet acid, best quality (for the store). Three batteries in 16 years, I think I got my money’s worth.

The OEM battery went through my most active off roading period, the Excide went through the most severe weather (winter temps down to -29).

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The Delco started to shit the bed after my epic winching event, after having an undercut road cave in on me.  It still had enough amps for a few years to start the truck, but it lost a lot of capacity after that incident.  When changing the oil a few weeks ago, I had the radio on (and the fan at low speed, which is why I did not notice it).  An hour of low-speed fan and the radio on, and the truck wouldn't start.  That right there is borderline stupid to head into the boonies like that, so out she came.  The AGM's withstand high draw loads better, so I took the plunge. 

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    • By Bob
      The other day I jumped in the Durango in a rush to get my daughter to school. I turned the key and heard nothing. Damn battery took a crap on me, so I started looking for a replacement. I am tired of the cheap junk at autozone and pep boys, so I decided to go with an Optima Red Top. Anyone know if these are any good? I like the fact that they are sealed, which means they won't leak all over when off roading.
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