Need a New Car Battery? How to Choose the Right Type

Need a New Car Battery? How to Choose the Right Type


rev up your engines, eventually car
batteries go bad, how do you decide how to buy the right one for your car, now
years ago when I was young, batteries didn’t cost much, you could get
up for 35 bucks it was no big deal picking out a battery, but these days it
is a pretty big deal, look at the prices, they’re not giving them away, so I’m
going to give you a little battery lesson, when I was a kid, we had batteries naked,
they were vacuum sealed, we break the vacuum seal, then fill them with acid
when a customer needed a battery, and they were vacuum sealed for a reason,
they had an indefinite shelf life that way, today at the factory, they’re filled
with acid, so they start to deteriorate the minute they’re built and the acid is put
in, now filling the batteries with acid at the factory is not a good idea
because they start to deteriorate, and in this case, if you look closely, you can
see this one is made in Korea, so filled it with acid in Korea, then they ship
it on a boat here to the United States, it can take a long time between it being
made and you actually install it in your car, I’ve seen that particular brand of
battery sometimes they last a year or two and
that’s it, because of this, in a sense batteries are kind of like eggs,
now all batteries are dated, this is an easy one to read, it just says 8/13, so
it was made 8 of 13, so when you’re buying a battery, look at the date and
don’t buy one that’s more than one or two months old, because it’s deteriorated,
so you want to buy your batteries from the place that sells a lot of batteries, now
don’t be fooled by some of these chain stores, where they have a pyramid of
batteries sitting there, some of those batteries are in that pyramid for months,
and they’re not going to last long, so always check the date of your battery,
then comes the question, should you buy a battery that has a removable top where
you can add battery water, or should get a sealed one that you can’t add battery
water too, now this decision depends on you, because if you’re the type of person
that’s never going to check the battery water, buy one of the sealed batteries, of
course they’re not perfectly sealed, they still have vents to vent some gas, but
the smaller vents, so they’ll lose water a lot
slower than a non sealed battery, but they will eventually run out of battery
acid inside, then you got to replace the battery, the open style batteries, they got
tops you can take off, and you can look inside and check the water level, so if
you’re diligent like me, you can add distilled water when it gets low, and
these batteries will actually last longer, but if you aren’t diligent,
they’ll last a shorter time, so that depends on you, whether you’re going to
check the water or not, now there are other types of batteries out there you
can use it lasts a really long time, like I have in my motorcycle here, it has a
lithium iron battery, not lithium-ion but lithium iron phosphate, now it’s an entirely electronic battery, with no acid in it at
all, and it’s about 100 bucks and it works great in a motorcycle, but due to
manufacturing process and economy of scale, the ones for cars cost a whole
bunch of money and generally only racers use them, because here’s a lithium iron
phosphate battery for a car, and it starts at six hundred and twenty dollars,
so odds are you’re going to be buying a conventional battery for your vehicle,
but if your vehicle comes with a more modern battery like this absorbed glass
mat battery, it is a good idea to still use an absorbed glass mat battery when
it’s time to replace it, because your charging system was designed for such a
battery, these batteries do cost a little bit more, but they still have acid in
them and the same rules for buying them applies as with regular water acid
batteries, so the next time your car battery goes bad, you know how to replace
it, more quick fixes on the Scotty Kilmer Channel,
so if you never want to miss another one of my new car repair videos, remember to
ring that Bell!

About the Author: Michael Flood

47 Comments

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  2. I recommend Deka Battery in Madison, Tennessee. I am from that area and I now live in Cincinnati. When I do come down to Nashville and visit, I make a Deka stop if need be.

  3. I came here to late,I went to check my battery life,they said 55% life and the store guy said it's dead you need a new one

  4. in hot countries i find if fillers not have rubber..good..indevidial.. rubber..seal..have plastic to plastic seals.. they loose water…and die fast..also if leave on concreat they die..a chemical reaction..if battery is used like in a solar bank..

  5. What kind of battery should you buy when you be adding fog lights and subwoofers and you name it? Is there batteries with more juice or capacity?

  6. Back when I was a young mechanic cars were simpler . We used aa batteries to start them and they lasted for yrs. if they failed it didn’t matter. We could crank them by hand like model t’s. Cars didn’t need much battery power in those because the headlights were powered by kerosene or coal oil. I wish we could go back to hand cranked cars. For brakes we just carried an anvil w a rope attached and pitched it out when we needed to stop.we didn’t have radios in those days but most of the cars had a telegraph and it worked well except u needed a very long wire on trips to stay connected

  7. Would you recommend getting a battery from BMW and having them install on my BMW or should I can go to any auto shops?

  8. Scotty Kilmer ? I had bad experience with optima batteries. What car battery should I get for 1986 buick regal ?

  9. Optima Batteries are Total Junk, Mfg by Johnson Controls, a worthless manufacturer right next to Exide.

    You want a reliable Battery, buy one from DEKA, you'll pay a top price but you're getting true full grid (all 4 sides of grid frame are intact) battery made with the highest Quality standards in the Aftermarket industry

  10. I like your style – I run my RV & car both with a little 4-watt solar panel (with a diode) – keeps my engine battery tip-top year after year – 4 watts max out at 1/4 amp more often less – not enough to warrant a controller – works a treat

  11. Didn't say anything about CCA ( cold cranking amps ). I lived in NY and used batteries with at least 650 – 700 CCA now that I live in the south I use 550 CCA for obvious reasons.

    Also CLEAN YOUR TERMINALS AND CONNECTIONS with a wire brush. Easier for the alternator to charge the battery.

  12. Found an Exide Nascar battery at Home Depot for my Corolla. I got the one in the back that was about a month old. 75 dollars plus tax which is much less costly than the junk 99 dollar Toyota dealer battery made by Johnson controls and distributed by Interstate. The decent Toyota battery is around 130 dollars or more and is likely an exide battery like the 75 dollar one at Home Depot or the yellow battery at walmart.

  13. Hey Scotty, thanks for your great vids, I've got a quick question here. Time to replace the battery on my 2005 volvo xc90 2.5T. The oem is an H6 type with 600cca and can find it only at the dealer. Other places like costco are offering batteries with a higher cca, like 760, 800 or even 900. Could you please suggest me what to do, is the higher cca dangerous for anything like starter motor or the alternator. Should I consider the agm battery since the oem is not, or I just do what is written in the manufacturer's book and replace it with the exact same one. Thank you very much in advance.

  14. DO not buy Optima batteries. They are overpriced ($190 – $280) and the design makes it not fit properly or your cables can't quite reach the posts, even though they give you some adapters. Exide and Autozone's DuraLast Gold and Platimum are the best automotive batteries I've used. The DuraLast had "Made in Germany" stamped.

  15. Now that modern cars have IBS (Intelligent Battery Sensors) designed to regulate electronic and charging systems. Are we stuck with replacing OEM spec batteries with OEM spec batteries or can we upgrade to higher spec batteries?

  16. old 1990 camry no added loads, walmart brand $50 battery it is, never have gone cheap but im on a budget right now so in a few years i will be back to let yall know if it was a good battery

  17. Used to work at Sears Automotive/battery shop. The cheap batteries came filled, the Die Hards came in sealed, we had 5 gal plastic drums of hydrochloric acid to fill them, rows and rows of charging racks, and cases of baking soda in a pit to neuter the old batts.

  18. I heard from a guy who works (apparently) for a battery company, that those stickers with dates indicate when they were put on the shelf in the stores, more than anything else. The real date in supposed to be in some kind of code molded on the case or something.

  19. Scotty, What about a product called "Charge-It? It's a battery additive for making batteries last longer, and some claim that it can actually restore old batteries to useful condition again. Is it any good?

  20. Hey Scotty love your work, but I have a question on high-end versus low-in as in cost and real value, I've been buying 100+ batteries and they're not lasting a year in my car but having the warranty that's for 5 years in two years I'm on my fourth one and l'm getting frustrated with these worthless batteries and the prorate isn't really that much of a rebate over time is it worth just putting in a $40+ one and just pay it whenever it dies???
    Thank you Scotty for your expertise.

  21. I work for a battery warehouse, and i can tell you that Deka is one of the most reliable batteries. Interstate hasnt been doing so good in quality since they moved their distribution center in Mexico, Exide got bought out by an Indian Company but still american made just like Deka. DieHard is basically Deka just with the DieHard label slapped on it. Johnson Controls also recently got bought out as well and changed name to something else i cant remember

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