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Old 10-18-2019, 06:40 AM #1
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Need a new battery... but which one?

I’ve started reading various threads about batteries but there are so many options it’s hard to know exactly where to start.

My 06 (197k miles) used to be my daily driver, but now it’s mostly used around town on the weekends and every afternoon for day care pick up

The problem is these short trips around town are probably hard on the old battery. Even worse is when I would sit and listen to the radio waiting for the bus to come. Wel, it finally happened and the battery died on me a couple days ago.

The current battery is a Toyota 84 mo battery, installed in way back in 2012, and it has lasted great. I’m hoping to get five more years out of this car as I’m not really in a financial position to buy a new one right now (did I mention kids in day care? Haha). I don’t do any off roading and live in MD so no desert/tundra extremes to worry about

Wondering what battery would be recommend. Something dependable. I don’t mind spending another couple dollars for quality since you get what you pay for, but I probably don’t need another 7 year battery.

(Looking for brand/model recommendations, but also specs. I’ve looked around the online auto parts stores and there is no way all 80 options are for my car)

OR- is it my new driving style that would kill any battery. Perhaps I need to start driving it one day a week on the highway.

Thanks!


———————————————
AAR:

Since my old 84mo Toyota battery was still under warranty (it’s only been five years) I decided to go back to them since it would only cost me about $100 for the new battery/part. Well, after getting there, I learned they won’t warranty it unless they install it (at a total cost of about $260 something). I guess there’s a reason they call it a stealership.

Ended up getting an everstart max 24f from Walmart- like someone points out in this thread, there is a Walmart everywhere if I ever have problems (I’ll just need to keep the receipt in my car).

Warning: (heads up)
Instal was easy, but afterwards, my automatic windows wouldn’t work (driver and rear tailgate). Despite initial concerns, I found it’s a common problem which is easily remedied. I just held the button in question all the day down (engaging the auto feature) until the window reached the bottom. Then did the same to bring the window up. I’m told you only have to do this once, by I did it twice out of caution.

More details here since it’s a common problem:
https://www.toyota-4runner.org/3378411-post3.html
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Last edited by CelticRunner; 10-27-2019 at 08:22 PM. Reason: After action report
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Old 10-18-2019, 10:05 AM #2
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I use a battery tender on a car I don't drive much. It's a Battery Minder brand tender. It keeps the battery charged and healthy.
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Old 10-18-2019, 10:37 AM #3
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Interstate. Get it at.costco.
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Old 10-18-2019, 10:39 AM #4
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I find most battery's last around 4-6 years or so, its definitely time to replace it. Especially having kids you don't want a dead battery randomly happening.

I usually buy from Sears and get their highest cranking amps i can fit.

I'm sure there are tons of good cheap battery's you can get that will do the job that others may suggest.
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Old 10-18-2019, 10:46 AM #5
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interstates are not very good & way overpriced... ive had 2 of them die in 5 years or less, not driven much & kept in climate controlled garages during peak of summer & all winter. i keep my batteries charged & do a few discharge cycles as well.

ive got close to 10 years on an autozone gold brand battery & 11+ years on an oreilys brand battery & its still going strong! all used in the same circumstances on 3 classic cars i own.

your treatment of the battery may not be helping & high heat or super cold when not kept fully charged will shorten the life a lot. buy a real battery charger & charge it for a few hours if it sits for more than a few weeks, & if you listen to teh radio for a long time charge it up afterwards. or buy a tender if it sits for a month or 2. driving it will charge the battery too. & if its not a maintenance free type, check the water level periodically & top off with distilled water.

ive heard of OEM toyota batteries lasting 10+ years... adjust your battery care procedure & you should be able to get a lot more than 5 years out of a battery.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:14 PM #6
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ALL lead acid batteries in the US are only made by 3 manufacturers in 3 plants. All you are paying for are different stickers on the outside of identical plastic cases.

My recommendation is to not buy one made in the US, since they are generally junk. I would go Panasonic if it was my car.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:48 PM #7
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I doubt it's your driving style, unless you truly are making really short trips (like less than 3 blocks or so.) Basically, any 7 year old battery is suspect, and if it gives you trouble, replace it with a decent battery and the chances are very good your troubles will be over for another 5-6 years. If not, then you can start looking into more technical (and expensive) solutions like battery tenders, intelligent chargers, etc. But I seriously doubt you need that, so don't go there just yet.

In my experience, 95% of all "no-start" problems are either (1) an end-of-life battery, or (2) dirty/corroded connections. Address those issues before you even think about spending money anywhere else.

As far as what battery to buy, I've had good luck buying mid-upper range batteries at the auto parts stores. Never had one die early on me. (by early I mean < 5 years). In the grand scheme of things, $100 for a battery every 5 years is insignificant in the cost of vehicle ownership. Don't overthink it.
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:03 PM #8
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Thanks all for the info. I didn’t even know what a battery tender was. I don’t think it will work for because we don’t have a garage and I drive it almost every day, just short distances. I’m just going to have to drive it once a week or so to keep the battery charged.

Any idea what size? I see 34R, 35, and 24F as options but don’t know what that means or how/where to measure.

I’m also reading that higher cold crank amps (CCA) means lower reserve capacity (RC). I may not need a lot of CCA if I’m not running a lot of electronics, right? I’m wondering if higher reserve capacity is better because I may still want to sit and relax while listening to music/radio

Edit: however, some of the batteries don’t seem to represent any sort of “balance”. In fact if they have a higher CCA they also have a higher RC

Thanks All!
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Last edited by CelticRunner; 10-18-2019 at 03:07 PM. Reason: Detail
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:09 PM #9
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The size number is related to what will fit in your battery case, and terminal configuration. Your auto parts store will be to tell you which battery is a drop-in replacement.

I don't know where you live. If you have to do below zero degrees F starts in the morning, cold cranking amps are important. Otherwise, not so much.
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:33 PM #10
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If u live in extreme weather. Just warranty it before the "free" replacement timeframe ends.

Put a load on it let it discharge. Leave it like that for a while.
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Old 10-18-2019, 05:35 PM #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duffdog View Post
ALL lead acid batteries in the US are only made by 3 manufacturers in 3 plants. All you are paying for are different stickers on the outside of identical plastic cases.

My recommendation is to not buy one made in the US, since they are generally junk. I would go Panasonic if it was my car.
yes im aware of that, im not sure who made the AZ & oreillys batteries but they must be one of the good ones because they lasted a lot longer than a few other brands ive owned over the years, especially interstate. & they are priced lower than other big names like diehard etc.

AZ & oreillys are good batteries based on the time they have lasted for me. these are in the 750-800cca range, pretty close in physical size to whats in my 4runner.
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Old 10-18-2019, 05:43 PM #12
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go with either a 27f or group 31 battery, but if the truck sits alot, be sure to put it on a maintainer. i wouldnt suggest you go agm battery, unless you have a battery maintainer.
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Old 10-18-2019, 06:09 PM #13
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why not just stick with the toyota branded battery? solid choice, quality product.
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Old 10-18-2019, 06:43 PM #14
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Iíve had great luck with Costco batteries. If they fail, return for a refund. Or pro-rated towards purchase of a new one.
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Old 10-18-2019, 06:54 PM #15
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Interstate - Costco
EverStart Maxx (Yellow) - Walmart

Those are me two go-to for regular automotive batteries... quality is good, price is right.
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