Guide and Reviews: Best Car Battery To Replace Yours With (2020 – 2021)

car batteries

The battery is an important component of a car and one that is required for its smooth functioning. The car battery is an electrical storage unit that is used to ignite the engine, control electrical features and also take the load when the car is idle.

Technologically advanced vehicles today demand more electrical load to run other components and accessories.

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It can be very difficult to ascertain how long a particular battery would last, but it is observed that most car owners wait till the engine starts to give trouble to buy a new battery. Buying the battery in advance is always a safe bet.

Best Car Batteries for the Money

Types of Batteries

There are two types of batteries that are usually available for purchase:

  • Flooded Lead-Acid Batteries: These batteries contain 35% sulfuric acid and 65% electrolyte water solution that cause chemical reactions to generate electrons. The electrolyte flows freely in this battery, hence it would require regular refilling of water.
  • Absorbed Glass Mat Batteries: These are lead-acid batteries as well, except a mat of thin glass fibers is soaked with battery acid. Unlike in the case of flooded lead-acid, the electrolytes do not flow freely in this battery.

What to Look for While Buying a Car Battery?

While purchasing a battery, there are several factors that a car owner must consider. These are listed below:

  1. Freshness of the Battery: Some of the batteries that one chooses to buy might have been in stock for a very long period of time. These batteries might not last for long. It is always good to check for the date of manufacturing on the battery. If it is not more than six months old, the battery is new and good to use.
  1. Size of the Battery: Not all car batteries are the same. They come in different sizes called groups. The size of the car battery is usually mentioned on the battery that the car currently runs on or in the user manual of the car.
  1. Installation: Installing batteries can be very tricky. In certain cases, using manuals or watching video tutorials might not be enough. If the car owner is not familiar with installing batteries, it would be good to find battery companies that would provide assistance with the installation of the battery.
  1. Climate: The climate of the local region must be also considered while purchasing the battery. Hot weather batteries designed to withstand extreme heat are usually labeled “S”, as in South and cold weather batteries have cold cranking amps (CCA) and are labeled “N”, meaning North.
  1. High-Performance Batteries: Lead-acid batteries are commonly used in most cars, but with recent cars having advanced electronic features, absorbed glass mat (AGM) batteries would be the ideal choice. AGM batteries can endure heavy power and support electronic features like power outlets for mobile devices and fuel-saving that usually take up a huge amount of power.
  1. Off-Road Driving: Not all batteries are designed to be used on all kinds of terrain. Certain batteries have fragile plates that might become weak and crack eventually if the car is driven on rough terrains. When purchasing for a battery for off-road driving, be sure to ask for ones specifically designed for such uses.
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Features of a Good Car Battery

Warranty

Most batteries last only for a couple of years if the car is used on a regular basis. A good warranty is a must while buying a battery.

There are brands that offer three-year warranty on their batteries. In some cases, the batteries might run out even before the warranty period. In such cases, certain brands provide a prorated fund if the battery dies before the replacement warranty expires.

Long Life

Most companies provide a warranty of three years. But it is always difficult to ascertain the life of a battery since the usage of the car varies from one person to another.

There are car owners who have used a car battery for more than five years while for some it hasn’t lasted for even a year after which they’ve had to replace it.

Batteries with a long life would cut down the expense of regular replacement.

Reserve Capacity

Reserve capacity is the duration the battery is expected to last, based on the amount of energy the car draws from the battery. This is usually measured in amperes per hour.

Batteries with good reserve capacities would ensure that the built-in juice of the battery runs even when the car is off to run electric features like the headlights.

Maintenance Free

As mentioned earlier, certain batteries are designed in such a way that distilled water would have to be refilled regularly to ensure its smooth functioning. This is common in lead-acid batteries.

This can be quite frustrating to do on a regular basis. The AGM batteries, on the other hand, are absolutely maintenance-free.

Carrying Handle

Car batteries are usually very heavy. They can be very difficult to carry.

Batteries with carrying handles make them portable and convenient to carry. This can be really helpful if the owner needs to take the battery to be fixed at a workshop or while carrying it to a garage.

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Cranking Amps

This is the measure of the battery’s starting power. This has to match the requirements of the vehicle.

This could vary depending upon the temperature of the local region. Cars in cold climates require cold cranking amps for the engine to start even during the coldest of weathers.

Best Car Batteries Reviewed

Odyssey PC680 Battery

The Odyssey PC680 is a powerful battery designed to meet the effects of land, snow or water.

Odyssey PC680 Battery

With a rugged construction, complete with pure lead plates and a non-spillage AGM design, the battery protects the car against any shocks or vibrations.

The pure lead plates ensure that the battery lasts longer, thrice as much, when compared to other batteries in the market. The battery dimensions are 7.9” x 7.8” x 3.8” and it weighs 15 lbs.

Pros

  • The battery comes with a two-year full replacement warranty and 3-10 years of service life. This saves consumers time and money.
  • The battery has one of the highest recharge efficiencies in the market. It is capable of 100% recharge within 4-6 hours.
  • Vibration resistance is one of the battery’s best features. It protects the car against any shock or vibrations.
  • It has a long-standing life when compared to other batteries in the market.
  • It is smaller in size compared to other designs and fits into most cars easily.

Cons

  • Installation might require assistance. Professional help might be required.
  • There are very rare cases of cranking amp issues.

Where to Buy?

This product is available on Amazon.

Verdict

The battery keeps up to its promise. The battery has received really good reviews and has been appreciated by a lot of customers.

Most consumers have been extremely satisfied with this product. Certain consumers have also stated that they have been using the battery for over five years without any hassles.

Mighty Max ML35-12 SLA Battery

Mighty Max ML35-12 is one of the best solar batteries in the market today. Its state of the art AGM design has been created to withstand heavy duty and avoid spillage.

Mighty Max Battery ML35-12 - 12V 35AH U1 Deep Cycle AGM Solar Battery Replaces 33Ah, 34Ah, 36Ah Brand Product

The calcium-alloy grid in this product provides the battery with longevity and great performance. The battery measures 7.68” x 5.16” x 7.13” and weighs 24 lbs (shipping weight).

The battery is not only fit to power vehicles but also consumer devices, emergency devices and other devices for outdoor recreation like camping.

Pros

  • It is easily portable. The lightweight and compact design makes it easy to carry.
  • Its unique AGM design has been classified as a sealed lead-acid rechargeable battery, which is maintenance free.
  • Compared to other batteries in the market, it has a very long service life.
  • Its wide operating temperatures permit the owner to use it in regions with moderately hot or cold weather conditions.
  • It can withstand shocks and vibrations.

Cons

  • Although it is suitable for a wide temperature range, it cannot be used in extremely hot or extremely cold climates.
  • It is a very powerful battery. It might not be suitable for cars that require huge power to function its electrical components.
  • Its lead plates are likely to break in extreme conditions. This is the only situation where spillage might happen.

Where to Buy?

This product is available on Amazon.

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Verdict

Not all cars can be powered using this battery. The battery is only suitable for cars that do not require a powerful battery.

It is mostly compatible with electric cars and RVs. Being a solar battery, it comes with a lot of limitations for broad vehicle usage but is more useful for recreational purposes.

Kinetik HC600 Blu Series Battery

The Kinetik HC600 Blu is an AGM design battery that is usually used to power sound systems. The battery can, however, be used as an alternative to a vehicle’s standard battery.

Kinetik (HC600-BLU) Black Power Cell Battery

The battery has good cranking amps that can withstand extreme heat conditions. The brand, Kinetik has equipped this battery with additional plates for stronger energy density.

It measures 7.13” x 3.01” x 6.57” and weighs 11.9 lbs.

Pros

  • The AGM battery is designed to withstand strong vibrations, reduce maintenance and increase durability.
  • With a power of 600 Watts, it is the best battery to power audio systems.
  • The battery is designed to avoid any leaks or spillage.
  • Ultra-low ESR ensures strong energy density and the tightly packed cells facilitate higher voltage underload.

Cons

  • An AGM battery charger is required to regularly charge the battery. This could affect its performance.
  • Since the battery is basically designed for audio systems, it can have an impact on other electronic features such as the lights and horn.

Where to Buy?

This product is available on Amazon.

Verdict

Although a powerful battery, this car battery is best suitable only as a backup battery. It is designed to power the stereo systems.

However, for consumers who require a better than average battery for their car, this could be a good choice.

Optima 8040-218 D35 Yellowtop Dual Purpose Battery

The 8040-218 D35 from Optima is a battery designed to take heavy loads. Unlike other batteries that make use of traditional flat sheets of lead, Optima makes use of 99.99% pure lead.

Optima Batteries 8040-218 D35 YellowTop Dual Purpose Battery

The spiral-cell technology of the battery guarantees vibration resistance, powerful output and longer lifespan.

The battery measures 6.75” x 9.38” x 7.69” and weighs 39.7 lbs (shipping weight).

Pros

  • It lasts twice as long as other traditional batteries.
  • It is completely maintenance-free.
  • The battery is designed to avoid spillage and leaks.
  • It is temperature resistant and avoids cranking.
  • It is a dual purpose battery.

Cons

  • The size of the battery is very small compared to the others in the market. This could cause issues with fitting in certain cars.
  • It is not compatible with all cars.

Where to Buy?

This product is available on Amazon.

Verdict

With its dual-purpose functions, Optima D35 is one of the best car batteries in the market. It can power stereo systems and other electrical features of the cars excellently.

Final Thoughts

It is always good to buy a car battery in advance, especially when it starts to give trouble to the engine.

Constant monitoring with your local garage or mechanic would help ascertain the life of the battery. The brand of batteries listed above are the best batteries in the market currently.

Choose from them wisely based on your usage to ensure that they last longer. If well maintained, the batteries can last for several years.

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