Austin, love your site man. Got a quick question for you if you have time to reply. My Toyota Corolla probably needs a new car battery, it was dead this morning and is about 4 years old now. I was wondering what brand name you would recommend I buy? I want the best I can get because I use this vehicle for work and can not afford to be stranded in the middle of no where. If that is possible 🙂
I would probably concur with your bad battery diagnosis, 4 years is about the most you are really going to get out of one these days. As far as what is the best car battery, humm that really depends on a few things.
I personally like A/C Delco batteries because they are well made and totally sealed and will not leak acid and resist terminal post corrosion pretty well. They are not cheap, but they have a good warranty and I have sold them in my repair shop for many years with little to no issues.
Your vehicle probably came with an A/C Delco battery from the factory as well, and I prefer to use the OEM battery replacement when possible. BUT, with that said, there are many good batteries on the market these days, and probably made in the same factories as the top of the line ones as well.
What is most important is the WEIGHT of the battery, pick it up and compare it to another similar battery on the shelf, and/or your old battery. You want a heavy feeling battery with as much lead in it as your old one…or as much as you can get. This is a simple test, but is a really good rule of thumb. A quality battery will be HEAVY to pick up.
Second, you want to make sure the replacement battery has as many Cold Cranking Amps (CCA) as your old one does, or as much as the vehicle manufacturer recommends. In layman’s terms the CCA number is how much power the battery can give to the engine under a heavy load. When it’s really cold outside, it takes more energy from the battery to turn over a stone cold engine, with cold and thick engine oil.
As far as brand names go, here are a few good ones with good quality and warranty history.
- A/C Delco (found in GM vehicles as well as some Toyota’s)
- Motorcraft (found in Ford products)
- Duralast (from Autozone)
- Truestart (a Toyota replacement brand at the dealer, could very well be a A/C Delco with a different name)
- Autocraft (sold at Advance Auto Parts stores) Double check the weight and CCA though
Brands I don’t really care for that much are:
- Diehard (from Sears, fine for lawnmowers and garden equipment but in my opinion not a great automotive battery)
- Everstart (from Walmart, again same as Diehard reasons)
But in defense of these two brands, you can find a Walmart or Sears store in just about every city which makes the warranty replacement nice.
The best way to check your battery life is to perform a “load test” and here is a simple video showing you how you can do it yourself.
Please share this with your friends,