If you’ve ever bought batteries of any kind, then you know they are all different. Some are more reliable, last longer, work better in certain things, and have a better reputation. The same can be said for car batteries. Some have a reputation for quality and reliability, others should be steered well clear of. If you’re in the market for a new power source for your vehicle, we’ve researched information from Consumer Reports and Motor Trend to bring you the premier choices for best car batteries.
1.) Interstate Batteries
Interstate batteries are some of the best batteries being made today, in any line or series. The only problem is that they come at a price. In some cases Interstate seems to have taken the phrase, you get what you pay for, a little too seriously; but that doesn’t detract from the quality of the batteries. For nearly 60 years Interstate has built a reputation as one of the leaders in the automotive battery industry. They’ve become so good at making car batteries that they’ve branched into the alkaline field. The Mega-Tron line is one of the best available. Warranties range from 65 months to 85 months, leaving them behind competitors in that department, but not many others.
2.) Napa 84-Series Batteries
The 84-Series of Napa batteries has been rated one of the best batteries available by Consumer Reports and several Napa battery owners. It’s an 84-month battery with either 18 or 24-month free replacement depending on what line you choose. The Napa Legend line of battery was rated as one of the best overall values, while the Napa Select is one of the best cold-weather batteries. Napa batteries are very good in any line, but the 84 Series carries the best cranking amps and warranty. The Napa 65 Series of battery is also very good, especially if you’re looking for a good cold-weather battery at a decent price.
3.) Sears Diehard
All car batteries come with some form of warranty, but the Sears Diehard’s three-year full replacement warranty is one of the best. After the first three years there is still a 100-month pro-rated warranty. Many of the Diehards come with at least 495 cold cranking amps, and are available to be installed in any Sears that has an automotive service center. The Platinum Series is extremely good, but very overpriced. For most, the Gold Series will be the best choice. They are maintenance-free but still have removable vent caps.
4.) Duralast Gold Series
The Duralast Gold Series is available from Auto Zone and also carries a three-year free-replacement warranty. After the free-replacement period there is still another five years of pro-rated warranty. Most have a reserve capacity of at least 90 minutes or more. Since this particular battery comes from an automotive parts store, you won’t have to worry about getting one that’s been in the store longer than it should be. The standard Duralast series carries a seven-year warranty and nearly as much power, so if you need to save a few dollars it would be a decent choice as well.
5.) Exide Marathon
Exide Technologies doesn’t just make automotive batteries, but they are pretty good at them. The Marathon was launched in the United States in 2006. Since then it has become one of the best cold-start batteries available. It offers a 40-month full replacement warranty and a 108-month limited pro-rated warranty. Couple that with 40-month 24/7 jump-start assistance and you’ve got the best battery warranty available for this price range. A list of Exide dealers is available on their website at www.exide.com.