It has been one of those days. Those days when anything that can go wrong does. And it all started with arriving late for a crucial meeting and that in a disheveled state – despite being squeaky clean when you got into the car. Oh, yes, it actually started with the car refusing to start, right. And it was all because of something simple – the battery was dead.
And because it was an urgent situation, you settled for the nearest battery, not the best car battery on the market. And that, my friend, will perpetuate a cycle of battery trouble. If, on the other hand, you knew which battery is the best car battery, you would have made a beeline for it, saving you precious time and future headaches.
So let’s take a look at some of the best car batteries you should run for next time your battery starts showing signs of giving up. Talking about signs, how do you tell if your battery is about to let you down? If there were signs, it would be easier to be prepared right? Right. And, fortunately, there are signs and symptoms of a failing battery. Let’s take a look at them before we look for the best battery for you, shall we?
How to Tell if Your Car Battery is about to Die On You
Many drivers take battery maintenance very lightly until the battery dies on them and it becomes a costly emergency – cash wise and time wise. I know what you are thinking. You’re thinking it would better if there was a sign to show that your battery needed attention. Well, if you are driving one the new car models, it probably has. But let’s take a look at some old school symptoms that point to battery failure that are still valuable today.
1. Slow Engine Crank
One of the most notable and early warning signs of a weak battery is when the engine takes longer than usual to crank, especially in the morning. Sure it may eventually start and work well for the rest of the day but it will definitely get worse – until it eventually dies. This would be the best time for you to start looking for the best replacement battery.
2. Check Your Warning Lights
Most cars are equipped with warning lights on the dashboard that give you a heads up if anything is wrong in your car. Two of the common ones that are triggered by a weak battery are the battery indicator and your check engine light. The check engine light is usually triggered because of a low voltage in the system that confuses some of your electrical sensors. This, in turn, might cause your dashboard to light up like a Christmas tree.
3. Low Battery Fluid Level
Even the best car battery needs a bit of maintenance now and again. Although some may need more maintenance than others depending on the type you get.
One of the things you need to check on a regular basis is the fluid level. This is usually easy as most car batteries have a part of the casing that’s see through so you can easily keep an eye on your battery’s fluid level. You can also inspect your battery by removing the red and black caps (if they are not sealed that is). If the fluid level is below the lead plates, it’s best to have the battery and the car’s charging system tested. A drop in fluid levels is usually an indication of overcharging.
Still on overheating, another sign that your battery is overheating is when it starts losing its shape. It can be a subtle bump at times while at times it can be clearly evident. If your battery is losing its shape, it’s a sure sign that you’d better start looking for the best car battery to replace your current one.
4. Dead Rat, Junior, or… It’s the Battery
Ever experienced the rotten smell that you can’t explain in your car? Yep, it’s not a dead rat, and neither is it junior (cut him some slack). It’s your battery dying on you. It is sulfur build up to be exact, which is a sign of a leak. The most common place the sulfur builds up is on your battery terminals. Removing it using hot water (or coke) is a solution that will get your car back on the road again, albeit temporarily.
5. Check the Battery’s Age
As much as you may love your current battery, every battery has a lifespan. Once a battery hits the 3-year mark, you will have to pay extra attention to it. Most car batteries can between 3-5 years depending on the battery, weather conditions, and your driving habits. But the bottom line is that if your car battery has served its purpose, start looking around for a replacement now.
Don’t wait for your battery to die before you start looking for a battery, that will result in you getting a substandard one, not the best car battery for you and your car. Have a regular habit of inspecting your car battery regularly, and reading reviews on the best car battery, kinda like this one. Which reminds me, I haven’t shown you the best car batteries currently trending on the market, have I? Let’s get to it.
The Best Car Battery – 5 Awesome Ones For You to Choose From
Ready to go car battery shopping? Here are the top 5 best car batteries for you to consider as you plan for the inevitable. But before I show you the best car battery list, you’ll need to understand that there are basically two types of car batteries that serve two main purposes as far as electrical power is concerned in your car.
- Starting Batteries. These are able to deliver quick bursts of energy for the purpose of starting your car and powering light electrical accessories on your car.
- Deep Cycle Batteries. These deliver a more consistent power to your car and are useful if you have powerful accessories like competition style speakers or if your car runs more on electricity than gas.
So here is our list of the best car batteries and it contains both starting batteries and deep cycle batteries.
1. The Optima 8014-045 YellowTop Deep Cycle Battery
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When it comes to deep cycle batteries, the Optima YellowTop has been the people’s favorite for many years. This is a heavy duty battery that will not disappoint, especially since it was designed for off-roaders, campers, and heavily accessorized cars. Its main features include 870 cranking amps, 750 cold-cranking amps, and an amazing 2-hour reserve. This battery can hold a charge very well. it has also been designed with a dual cable post configuration which makes it compatible with almost any vehicle under the sun.
2. The Bosch S6585B S6 Flat Plate AGM Battery
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When it comes to batteries and automotive electronics, there’s no brand that commands a great following like Bosch. And that’s because they make quality, dependable, and reliable products. And the same is true of their batteries.
Bosch’s S6 series of batteries are sealed, absorbed-glass mat (AGM), maintenance-free batteries. Designed in such a way that they can be mounted in any position, you can use this battery in most vehicle types. The Bosch S5585B has 860 cranking amps and 750 cold-cranking amps, a 75 amp-hour capacity, and an impressive 150 minutes of reserve capacity. Being a German made battery, its AGM design gives it a deep-cycle capability for handling the heavy accessory loads frequently found in European-style touring sedans, and family minivans.
If you are looking for the best car battery, this is probably the one as it is designed for fast recharging and to withstand the high-stress start and stop driving common to urban living. The Bosch S6585B comes with a 4-year free replacement warranty and free roadside assistance. Now that’s a car battery you can depend on.
3. The Shuriken SK-BT120
The Shuriken SK-BT120 is an astounding hybrid battery designed to be a starter battery yet has the capabilities of a deep cycle battery when it comes to powering your power-hungry accessories. The Shuriken has a jaw-dropping 2600 cranking amps, has a reserve capacity of 120 amp-hours, and is powerful enough to run audio systems of up to 2400 watts. Because it uses AGM technology, it can be mounted in any position without the fear of spilling and is heat and vibration resistant – the two things that fry batteries in audio competitions. Although it is on the high-end price wise (close to $300.00), it is a worthwhile investment.
4. The ACDelco ACDB24R
If you are looking for a small but powerful car battery, the ACDelco ACDB24R is probably the best car battery for you. It is an excellent quality, maintenance-free AGM battery that is best suited for smaller cars and sports the small battery terminals common to Asian cars like Toyotas.
The ACDelco ACDB24R comes with a 24 months free replacement warranty if you are not happy with the battery. But I’m pretty sure you will more than satisfied with it, otherwise, I wouldn’t have included it in the list of best car batteries.
5. The Exide Edge FP-AGM24F
If you are looking for a compact, spill-proof, AGM car battery for a compact to mid-sized car, the Exide Edge FP-AGM24F is your best bet. This is another dual purpose battery that has been designed for both engine cranking (a starter battery) and deep-cycle applications (to power all your electrical accessories). The Exide Edge FP-AGM24F has 930 cranking amps, a massive 775 cold-cranking amps, a 72 amp-hour capacity, and 140 minutes of reserve capacity. If you don’t want the hassles of maintaining a battery, then the Exide Edge is the battery to consider as it is a maintenance-free battery. Oh, and it’s so good it comes with a 4-year non-prorated guarantee.
6. The WPS Featherweight Lithium Battery HJTZ5S-FP-IL
The WPS Featherweight Lithium Battery is an ultra-light battery, high-powered car battery designed for racing. It is a maintenance-free “sealed-valve regulated design” that eliminates spills, and corrosion on terminals. It is 50% to 70% lighter than standard batteries and has superior charging technology that makes it possible to bring it up to a 90% charge in a super-impressive 6 minutes. The WPS Featherweight Lithium Battery HJTZ5S-FP-IL has a built-in LED test gauge and it does not contain any hazardous acid or heavy metals. This is the best car battery for you if you are looking for a “green” battery that not only saves the planet but also your pockets (it only costs $78.94).
7. The XS Power S680
If you are looking for a compact, light, and yet powerful car battery, check out the XS Power S680. Although it’s not as powerful as the big boys on the list (like the Bosch), its 320 cranking amps are more than sufficient to crank over a small-block V8. Its shining moments though are when you need to power your accessories, like that power-hungry audio system of yours. The XS Power S680’s 1000-plus amps of throughput are definitely more than enough to power high-powered audio systems. And the reserve capacity of 28 minutes is still good enough.
The Best Car Battery – Your Choice
There you have it, 7 of the best car batteries for you to choose from. This time I won’t point you to a particular battery because I don’t know the exact power needs of your car, but I need to replace my car battery soon and I know which one I’m going for – the Bosch. Let me know which one you settle for.