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Discussion Starter #1
Just had my battery tested. I bought it a bit over 4 years ago. It tests 400 Amps at 45 degrees outside. Should it be replaced immediately, or can I wait?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
But 400 Amps is still a lot, especially for the Honda's planetary gear starter. Would it last another year? It cranks strong.
 

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Just wait for the white walkers... Your good sitting there knowing your missing 300 CCA's ? Your call ... I also have a 4 year old battery but i'm also running a 100 miles on the highway daily so its always tanked up :)
 

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But good of you to check it now unlike many people, myself included in the past, who just wait for it to not start some frigid winter morning when you've got to be somewhere, or when it's been sitting all day in your workplace parking lot during an arctic vortex and the only person left you can get a boost from while the blizzard winds bite your cheeks and freeze your knuckles is your "favorite" colleague who'll look at you with smug superiority all the way until the Canada geese fly back up north in the spring.
 

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But 400 Amps is still a lot, especially for the Honda's planetary gear starter. Would it last another year? It cranks strong.
That 400 CCA rating at 45° equates to about 270 CCA on a 0° day when it's also much harder to start your vehicle.
Based upon when and where you drive, ask yourself what's the most inconvenient situation in which your battery could fail and would you rather buy a new battery now to help avoid it?
 

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But good of you to check it now unlike many people, myself included in the past, who just wait for it to not start some frigid winter morning when you've got to be somewhere, or when it's been sitting all day in your workplace parking lot during an arctic vortex and the only person left you can get a boost from while the blizzard winds bite your cheeks and freeze your knuckles is your "favorite" colleague who'll look at you with smug superiority all the way until the Canada geese fly back up north in the spring.
The alternative is to join the auto club, but they may take an hour or two to respond since they're busy servicing everyone else who has a dead battery.
 

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The alternative is to join the auto club, but they may take an hour or two to respond since they're busy servicing everyone else who has a dead battery.
Yup, if you're lucky, on days when you're most likely to need it.


Even though I'm a member I can't wait that long when there's a nice hot lasagna for dinner waiting for me at home.
 

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I've never trusted load battery testing (especially if done by a shop selling batteries) - I've had a shops recommend a battery for replacement that tested poorly that then went many years working just great and I've had electric system problems where the battery tested fine, but a new battery completely solved the problems. It's the first thing I replace if I notice any electrical weirdness in a vehicle or any hint of slow starting.

Batteries are cheap consumables that are about the easiest to replace major part on a vehicle. Depending on climate and how long the car sits at a stretch, 3-6 years is a good replacement interval (three years for a cold climate where the battery might sit in an airport parking lot for a few weeks at a stretch and/or be driven for very short distances with lots of starts - six years for a battery in a mild climate that is used each and every day for long enough to completely reach full charge.) If in doubt or the car is displaying any symptoms of a weak battery, just replace it (unless the battery is very young). We're talking perhaps $20/yr in battery replacement cost, not enough to try and stretch things out and save money.

- Mark
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Are AGM batteries worth looking into or are they that tricky as some on the web point out in terms of charging?
 

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Are AGM batteries worth looking into or are they that tricky as some on the web point out in terms of charging?
If you're talking charging with a supplemental smart trickle charger (in the garage), it just needs to be newer one that has the appropriate charging schedule for AGMs which most do.

If you're talking about charging in motion with the car's electrical system, I've never heard of a problem.

Whether AGMs are worth the extra cost is debatable. I personally don't think so. A conventional Costco battery (typically an Interstate) works just fine, is a pretty good deal for $75, lasts easily 5+ years in normal use, and has a great warranty. There is no problem to solve by spending more with a boutique-brand AGM battery.

- Mark
 

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You got the useful life expectancy out of the battery. Just replace it instead of having to wonder when it’s going to leave you stranded.
 
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4 years is good for a battery. I replace mine proactively at exactly 4 years, no matter what the CCA tests out at.

You got the life out of it. Replace it. Or, accept that it will die at the worst possible time.

As to AGM, a traditional Johnson Controls Lead/Acid battery runs right around $94 with a 3/2 warranty. The AGM equivalent is $149, some of which show a 3/2 warranty, while others show a 5 year free replacement on the sticker. If the AGM battery last 6 years, it is a wash.

I installed the AGM as an experiment about 1 year ago, but realized soon after that we will only keep the vehicle 3 more years, so in my case it was a waste.
 

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When the first storm hits with snow and we don't see Can online we know what happend ! :p
He's got Canadian Tire roadside on speed dial :p
 
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Discussion Starter #16

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You might need to have your alternator tested to see if you are overcharging the battery and thus damaging it

Do you know that the battery actually delivered 700 cca when new? It is also possible terminal corrosion is limiting the battery delivery. Did you test it with terminals attached, or removed?

Id say at 4 years, you are close to the end in any event. If your cca delivered is 1/3 of what it should be, save yourself trouble and replace it now. Id advise you buy the Interstate battery that CostCo sells. Not sure what make yours is, but likely inferior.
 

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You might need to have your alternator tested to see if you are overcharging the battery and thus damaging it

Do you know that the battery actually delivered 700 cca when new? It is also possible terminal corrosion is limiting the battery delivery. Did you test it with terminals attached, or removed?

Id say at 4 years, you are close to the end in any event. If your cca delivered is 1/3 of what it should be, save yourself trouble and replace it now. Id advise you buy the Interstate battery that CostCo sells. Not sure what make yours is, but likely inferior.
The more likely scenario is the weak battery causing early failure of the alternator. Replace the battery now, or you may get to do the alternator too, when they both fail.
 

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One thing to understand about Interstate batteries at Costco. They aren't made by Interstate. They are simply marketed as Interstate brand, the last ones I checked out were all made by JCI (Johnson Controls) which also supplies batteries to WalMart. They are not higher quality, and any allegiance to previous Interstate batteries should not be transferred to these, as they are different. The Everstart MAXX line at WalMart is basically the same battery. I buy those because they are cheaper, easy to swap out if needed, anywhere you happen to be.... and come with a longer warranty (2 additional years prorated)
 
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