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Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 29, 2014 02:31PM
I seem to be full of questions today.

Battery is dying, or on its last legs. If I leave the lights and radio on for longer than just a few minutes, dead. Leave it out in the cold overnight (only low 40s), battery is dead.

Go with Die hard? Interstate? Costco? Some auto parts store? I don't need a monster battery, car is from 2012, just a small 4 cylinder engine and it doesn't get really cold here.

Does some one have consumer reports and can look for me?



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Speedy
Date: December 29, 2014 02:34PM
2012? You probably don't need a new battery, have it tested. It might be as simple as you not driving it enough to charge it or a loose alternator belt.



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 29, 2014 02:35PM
car is from 2012

either you got a really bad battery or you have other issues, such as battery is not charged properly, or something is draining the battery. I had batteries last 9 years and I changed it only because I didn't want to push it any longer. A car battery should easily last 5-6 years, 2-3 years is way too soon.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 29, 2014 02:36PM
Speedy lives up to his name
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: December 29, 2014 02:46PM
Quote
Speedy
2012? You probably don't need a new battery, have it tested. It might be as simple as you not driving it enough to charge it or a loose alternator belt.

That was my first thought as well.

You've got Les Schwabs in your area, right? Take the car there. They'll test the battery and let you know if it's indeed bad or not. And they will sell you a new one if it is bad, and that battery will probably be your best bang for your buck. And generally they have a good enough reputation that they won't sell you a new batter if you don't need one.




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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 29, 2014 02:47PM
Gets driven daily. it will be 3 years old in a few weeks.

I agree, it shouldn't need a new battery, but same thing happened to my wifes car (same maker) -- battery tested "replace" after just a few years.



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: December 29, 2014 02:47PM
Brand ? Agreed that 2 years for an OEM battery is WAY too short. You should still be on the manufacturer's warranty for anything gone wrong... go to a REPUTABLE dealer. (yes, I know.. oxymoronic..)

Beyond that, Interstate, Die Hard, etc.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: rgG
Date: December 29, 2014 02:52PM
Costco seems to have the best price for batteries, if you don't mind pulling the old one and putting the new one in yourself. In the last couple of cars I have replaced the battery in, it was a real pain, so I opted to get one installed in my Scion. Too many little brackets and hoses and crap going all around the battery.





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Speedy
Date: December 29, 2014 03:00PM
It depends on how much you drive your vehicle. Hook a battery charger pushing 10 Amps to it overnight, then see how it does.



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: davester
Date: December 29, 2014 03:05PM
A 2012 vehicle, including the battery, should still be under warranty. I don't think any new cars have a basic warranty less than 3 years. Go to your dealer and make them replace it for free.

Also, other than a defective battery, the only way to kill a battery that fast is to drive it only very short distances all the time so that the battery never gets fully recharged. If that's the case then get a battery tender (a solar one if you don't park it near an electric outlet) and keep it plugged in.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/29/2014 03:07PM by davester.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: macphanatic
Date: December 29, 2014 03:20PM
Honda's are notorius for having batteries go bad at the 3 to 3.5 year mark.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 29, 2014 03:27PM
Quote
macphanatic
Honda's are notorius for having batteries go bad at the 3 to 3.5 year mark.

Not in my experience!
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: space-time
Date: December 29, 2014 03:31PM
Quote
davester
... I don't think any new cars have a basic warranty less than 3 years. ...

Ferrari

[www.cars.com]
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: rgG
Date: December 29, 2014 03:35PM
Quote
space-time
Quote
davester
... I don't think any new cars have a basic warranty less than 3 years. ...

Ferrari

[www.cars.com]

And, you don't even want to know what you have to do to change the battery in one. Been there, done that, never again. grinning smiley





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Pops
Date: December 29, 2014 03:42PM
They don't make things like they used to. A bad cell after 3 years is not uncommon today.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: STL
Date: December 29, 2014 03:52PM
"A bad cell after 3 years is not uncommon today."
My luck has been much better.
Typically last 6-7years.

Suggest you look for an alternator problem or something else draining your battery.
Get your system tested before buying a new battery.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: ztirffritz
Date: December 29, 2014 03:55PM
[www.youtube.com]



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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: ztirffritz
Date: December 29, 2014 03:55PM
UltraCapacitor Boost Pack

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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Gareth
Date: December 29, 2014 03:55PM
Even though I'm mad at Pepboys for screwing me on a battery warranty once, they do have 20% off $75 and 25% off $100 for online orders and you can choose in-store pick-up. So they ended up being the cheapest by far for the last two batteries I got (which were Bosch AGM, which is probably more battery than you're looking for).

The only annoying thing about ordering online is that you can't browse the batteries by size/group and have to go with what they think fits your car. But in my case, for both vehicles, I use a slightly different size than was originally installed, which means I have to find a car that has the size I want and use it to browse Pepboy's web site.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: December 29, 2014 05:18PM
As for quality, I had 2 Walmart batteries in a row go out right before the 3-year warranty was up. One of them the day before. I'm on my 3rd one now after only paying for one. So, I give a strike against Walmart's quality.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: davester
Date: December 29, 2014 05:18PM
Quote
Gareth
The only annoying thing about ordering online is that you can't browse the batteries by size/group and have to go with what they think fits your car. But in my case, for both vehicles, I use a slightly different size than was originally installed, which means I have to find a car that has the size I want and use it to browse Pepboy's web site.

That is an incredibly annoying thing about a lot of auto parts vendors. I have this problem all the time with my MG. I know that a Group 26 battery is the mainstream one that best fits the car, but I always get shunted off by those websites to a Group 19 or something like that, which is rare and costs a fortune.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 29, 2014 05:31PM
thanks all/



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: GGD
Date: December 29, 2014 05:59PM
Quote
rgG
Costco seems to have the best price for batteries, if you don't mind pulling the old one and putting the new one in yourself. In the last couple of cars I have replaced the battery in, it was a real pain, so I opted to get one installed in my Scion. Too many little brackets and hoses and crap going all around the battery.

Just recently when I was in my Costco tire center where they have the batteries, I noticed that all of the Kirkland batteries were gone and replaced with Interstate batteries. I didn't investigate more to see how they compared to the Kirklands that I had bought in price, capacity, and warranty.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: mrbigstuff
Date: December 29, 2014 06:47PM
since Costco changed over from house brand to Interstate, I am not certain that they still support this policy, but one could return a battery to costco up to 36 months and receive a brand new battery for the cost differential of the old-new plus the recycle fee, of about $9. So, out the door for $17ish for a new battery under 36 months. totally above board, too. I hope that they have not done away with that, mine is about two years old... :-)
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: polychrome
Date: December 29, 2014 07:02PM
Costco Kirkland batteries are Johnson Control batteries rebranded as Kirkland. Depending on the market, they could be Interstate batteries or another of the highest quality models made by Johnson. I wonder why some Costcos now are selling Interstate and not ones rebranded as Kirkland.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: N-OS X-tasy!
Date: December 29, 2014 07:05PM
Quote
Pops
They don't make things like they used to. A bad cell after 3 years is not uncommon today.

This. The battery in my stepson's Scion xB died after less than two years. Replaced it with a Costco battery.



It is what it is.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Bill in NC
Date: December 29, 2014 07:14PM
Costco is the cheapest option.

And it's not that unusual to have a cell short - I've had one battery fail that way @ about 30 months.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Randalls
Date: December 29, 2014 07:47PM
Another vote for Costco. I read the consumer reports. I checked Walmart and checked the brand names such as Die Hard, Johnson and Interstate. At costco I saved about $50 and got twice the cranking amps and a better warranty. The downside, I had to do the remove and install myself.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/29/2014 07:50PM by Randalls.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: max
Date: December 29, 2014 08:19PM
Walmart brand and Interstate is the same battery....
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: chopper
Date: December 29, 2014 08:51PM
Wal Mart. Had a long run of good luck in them.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Carm
Date: December 29, 2014 09:12PM
Most cars have 3 year 36 month bumper to bumper coverage.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: C(-)ris
Date: December 29, 2014 09:17PM
Quote
Carm
Most cars have 3 year 36 month bumper to bumper coverage.

36k miles. I drive that in a year, easily. I have no problem believing that his 2012 is out of warranty.

I get my batteries at Sam's Club. They are engergizer brand, not sure who actually makes them. Previously, I purchased Die Hard Gold batteries from Sears, but the service I recieved on the last one that died before the time was up made me cease purchasing batteries from Sears.



C(-)ris
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Racer X
Date: December 29, 2014 09:33PM
Quote
Bill in NC
Costco is the cheapest option.

And it's not that unusual to have a cell short - I've had one battery fail that way @ about 30 months.

All it really takes is someone pounding a battery clamp down on a terminal to weaken the connecting strap that attaches to the end cell.

I managed an auto parts store for 4 years. The end cells failed at roughly 3 times the frequency of the center 4. When you tighten down on the clamp, and you see the top of the battery flex, you are causing damage.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Octave Doctor
Date: December 29, 2014 09:57PM
Had to get a new battery yesterday, had a feeling it was getting to be that time. Don't know what brand or how old the old battery was, so called a cab and went to Advance since they are the closest with decent batteries. Fun changing it out in the rain.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Bimwad
Date: December 29, 2014 10:44PM
There are only a handful of manufacturers that make most of the replacement batteries you see on the market.

JCI (Johnson Controls) is the largest, and make the Costco Kirkland, and some (but not all) of the Interstate, Sears, Walmart, AutoZone batteries, amongst others. If it's hencho en Mexico, it's probably a JCI battery.

Exide and East Penn are a couple of the other players. East Penn has a good reputation, and are made domestically if that matters to you. Exide has had its legal issues due to shenanigans involving selling used batteries as new in the past.

If you know the size, and do a little research, it's generally not that hard to discern who makes what.

Generally, what you're shopping for is convenience (is the store nearby?), and warranty support. Don't pay a lot of heed to the prorated replacement period, which you'll probably never use anyway, and won't pay much. The free-replacement period is more telling--the more confidence they have in the battery, the longer it will be.

Check your new vehicle warranty first. Certain parts of the car, like batteries and tires, can have different coverages than the rest of the car.

As mentioned, the Costco batteries are good value, and have good warranties, as long as you factor in that your membership has to be in good standing for it to remain in effect.

And don't expect a replacment battery, even if from the car manufacturer and sold by the dealer, to be of the same quality as the OE battery. They're two distinct markets, and quality can vary.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 29, 2014 10:53PM
called the dealer, OEM battery had a 12/12000 warranty. So more like 9 months for a family car.

They were offering a special -- $105 for 3 year full replacement, prorated up to 7 years.

DieHard had a 2 year one, $118. I think. Picture says 2 year, 550 CCA, description says 18 months and 640 CCA...

Firestone/Interstate has a 30 month replacement, 6 year warranty -- $120

Duralast was $138 for 3 year/5 year

Can't find a price for Costco online.

Not sure if any of them include the return fee of $15.



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: wave rider
Date: December 29, 2014 11:16PM
Don't know about pricing, but when I renewed my AAA membership, I noticed that they offered a service to bring a new battery to your car, change it, and take away the core.

Might be useful for some...

=wr=
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: mrbigstuff
Date: December 29, 2014 11:20PM
FWIW, I broke down and bought a battery from the dealer (about $125, IIRC) although it was more expensive by $40 or so. It weighs about half as much more as the aftermarket battery, if that is worth anything, and it fits just perfectly (as it should) so I don't have to worry about messing with adapters. These batteries typically last 7 years.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: jdc
Date: December 29, 2014 11:33PM
Quote
wave rider
Don't know about pricing, but when I renewed my AAA membership, I noticed that they offered a service to bring a new battery to your car, change it, and take away the core.

Might be useful for some...

=wr=

thanks, totally forgot about them, or figured they were $$$. Just looked online and they are $102, with free recycling and free install. 6 year warranty on it, but not clear what the replacement period is. Will have to call tomorrow...



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Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: wave rider
Date: December 30, 2014 12:09AM
Quote
jdc
Quote
wave rider
Don't know about pricing, but when I renewed my AAA membership, I noticed that they offered a service to bring a new battery to your car, change it, and take away the core.

Might be useful for some...

=wr=

thanks, totally forgot about them, or figured they were $$$. Just looked online and they are $102, with free recycling and free install. 6 year warranty on it, but not clear what the replacement period is. Will have to call tomorrow...

Neat! Let us know, I did get curious when I saw the insert in the membership bill.

=wr=
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: tronnei
Date: December 30, 2014 08:42AM
Quote
polychrome
Costco Kirkland batteries are Johnson Control batteries rebranded as Kirkland. Depending on the market, they could be Interstate batteries or another of the highest quality models made by Johnson. I wonder why some Costcos now are selling Interstate and not ones rebranded as Kirkland.

Just bought a new Interstate battery at Costco for a 2007 Corolla (replacing the original one, which lasted 7+ years). The Costco guy told me it's the same as the Kirkland batteries they previously sold, they just don't rebrand them anymore. Even so, the Interstate battery had a manufacturer's label that says something like "Distributed by Costco Stores."
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: rgG
Date: December 30, 2014 08:58AM
Quote
wave rider
Quote
jdc
Quote
wave rider
Don't know about pricing, but when I renewed my AAA membership, I noticed that they offered a service to bring a new battery to your car, change it, and take away the core.

Might be useful for some...

=wr=

thanks, totally forgot about them, or figured they were $$$. Just looked online and they are $102, with free recycling and free install. 6 year warranty on it, but not clear what the replacement period is. Will have to call tomorrow...

Neat! Let us know, I did get curious when I saw the insert in the membership bill.

=wr=

My daughter used this service when her battery died on her while she was doing an internship out of state. It was a lifesaver.





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Schpark
Date: December 30, 2014 09:54AM
Actually if you are in a warm weather state the batteries dont last as long as the cold weather states. When in Texas I would get 2-3 year life on batteries. In MN I get 6-7. The heat kills the batteries. Make sure to keep an eye on the water/acid level in the hot states.



"Without death, life would lose much of its meaning. My goal is to live in such a manner that I alter world in some fundamental way before I'm gone. As I get older and watch my son grow I realize I've already achieved my goal." - Ztirffritz
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Re: Car needs a new battery -- whats the best bang for the buck.
Posted by: Carm
Date: December 30, 2014 11:56AM
Quote
Schpark
Actually if you are in a warm weather state the batteries dont last as long as the cold weather states. When in Texas I would get 2-3 year life on batteries. In MN I get 6-7. The heat kills the batteries. Make sure to keep an eye on the water/acid level in the hot states.
Very true. The only reason my current car battery has lasted 5 years is because it is in the car cabin.
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