10 Best Car Batteries ( Review + Buyers Guide)
Best Car Battery
You can get the best sound system, the best brakes, the best engine, the best paint job, and all the little things to make your car spectacular. You’ve got the kind of car that people stop what they’re doing and gawk at when you drive by.
You wash it every week and make sure it looks great and ready for the road. It’s your baby and you’d do anything to make sure it’s ready to go.
But then, it doesn’t start. You hear the engine trying to turn over but it just can’t. Great, your battery is dead. Nothing else matters about your car if your battery is dead. At that point, it’s just a nice lawn ornament or garage decoration.
Choosing a great car battery shouldn’t be a difficult process for anyone. You want something reliable and that will fit your needs. That’s why we’re going to be going over the best car batteries out there and covering what you need to know before making a purchase.
Let’s go ahead and get started then to help you find the best battery out there!
It’s hard to talk about batteries without at least mentioning Optima. They’ve been around for quite some time and have plenty of experience making high-quality batteries that are known to be durable and last for quite some time.
The RedTop is no different and shines from the start due to its specs and track record.
This battery comes equipped with a 720 CCA rate which is powerful enough to start your engine immediately even when the temperatures start dropping. This makes it a great battery for all types of vehicles, including trucks, SUVs, and cars.
We also really liked the 90-minute reserve capacity which is good for 3X longer battery life which is definitely going to come in handy. In addition, we loved the spiral-cell technology that, according to Optima, makes it up to 15 times more reliable when going across rugged terrain.
While all this is great, the only downside we found was that the battery didn’t fit in many battery trays. It wasn’t that it was too big, it’s that it was too small.
Overall, this is a solid battery that can withstand the rugged terrain and keep you running during any situation.
- Spiral-cell technology
- 12-volt battery
- 3-year warranty
- Performs well in low temperatures
- Users have noted many times this battery has arrived dead
- Too small for some battery trays
With a brand name like Odyssey, you’d hope this battery could take you on a long journey around the world. This battery doesn’t disappoint, with reports coming in saying that this battery has lasted people up to a whopping 10 years. Impressive!
It has 170 CCA, which isn’t a lot for your everyday vehicle but has been used by plenty for racecars or track cars. It is a compact battery that can easily fit into tight spaces and is built to withstand all sorts of vibrations or shocks.
If you’re someone looking for a rugged battery for your special-use car, then this is perfect for you.
It is also protected from acid spills, has higher conductivity, and is quite easy to install. It regularly puts out 100% use over hours, meaning you can enjoy this battery for large portions of your day without worrying about recharging.
We do have to repeat, however, that this isn’t an ideal battery for an everyday car. Don’t expect to use it for your family car day in and day out.
- 2-year warranty
- Comes fully charged and ready to use
- Compact size, easy installation
- Doesn’t perform well in cold weather
- Not ideal for everyday use
At first glance, it might be confusing how a car battery can be solar, but the explanation is actually pretty easy, it can be recharged using solar power, an ideal choice for those looking to cut down on their carbon footprint.
This battery is fitted with 12 volts and a 35 amps per hour reserve capacity. This means that the battery is quite versatile, not only being ideal for electrical cars but also golf carts and some motorcycles.
Going back to the solar-charged ability, you are going to save a lot of time and money when recharging. But, it does come with a real downside. In order to be able to charge via solar, you are going to have to purchase a bit of extra wiring and mounting accessories in order to make sure everything is working properly.
It is pretty easy to install however and can withstand vibration and somewhat rugged terrain. You’re probably not going offroad with your electric car anyway, so that shouldn’t be too much of a worry.
Despite its low power, we found that it does perform well when the temperatures start to drop. Don’t expect it to start immediately in freezing weather, but it’s still going to come in handy for your vehicle.
- Solar-powered battery
- Easy installation
- Performs well in cold temperatures
- 1-year warranty
- Need extra wiring to be able to charge
- Runs for a short time
We already had a look at the RedTop, so it’s time we take a look at the YellowTop. No word on if we’re going to see a GreenTop and complete the stoplight cycle.
This battery has optimal deep-cycling ability and brings lots of power to the table. With 620 CCA, this battery is a beasty. It’s 12-volt which means it’s going to work for the majority of cars out there.
Plus, it has 100 minutes of reserved capacity for constant, high-quality performance.
It does have a rather unique design but nonetheless gives you a constantly clean and powerful power source that is quite adaptable and durable.
It tested incredibly well in freezing temperatures and performed equally well in higher temperatures that had us sweating. It also resists vibration incredibly well thanks to its hard plastic exterior.
People have also found this battery can work on a number of boats, meaning it’s great for both your everyday travels and the summer weekends at the lakehouse.
- 620 CCA is more than enough
- Very durable and weather-resistant
- Adaptable, can fit into many applications
- Risk of overcharging
- Some users have reported shorter than expected battery life
This battery isn’t overly flashy and VMAXTANKS set out to make a battery that was going to be a great value and provide great performance.
They put a lot of effort into making sure this battery could withstand just about anything, like shocks, vibrations, high temperatures, and freezing cold temperatures. It’s a small and light battery that is 12 volts and is advertised as being maintenance-free.
Its size might surprise you, as the battery is quite small and lightweight, coming in at just 25 pounds. It is best used for small vehicles and shouldn’t be used to power anything larger than a compact car, however. If you’ve got a demanding truck or SUV, then you should take your shopping elsewhere.
A nice plus is that this battery can be used for watercraft as well as any of those regular land vehicles.
- Lightweight and small, quite easy to carry
- Can be used for cars and boats alike
- Extremely durable, can withstand anything you throw at it
- Can’t be used for cranking
- A bit limited on power
Even if you’re not a car battery aficionado, you’ve probably heard of Interstate Batteries. They’ve been making batteries for quite some time and have made continually sound products that have proven to be durable and reliable, no matter the situation.
This is a 12-volt battery that is ideal for vehicles that don’t require a ton of power. It comes with 35 Amp/h and is ideal for those who aren’t looking to tinker with their engine. The sealed enclosure means you won’t be dealing with regular maintenance (although this doesn’t mean you can ditch regular maintenance).
It’s quite stable too, made of high-quality plastic that will make sure to keep a stable voltage for quite some time.
Make sure your vehicle has the right dimensions for this battery and if it fits, you’re probably good to go. This battery can also be used for water vehicles so don’t fear when this battery has to face the elements.
Installation, however, can be a bit tricky. It has a bit of a unique setup that may take a bit of tinkering to get right, especially if you’re not experienced in mounting car batteries. But after that, it’s all smooth sailing and you won’t have to worry about a thing.
- 12 volt
- Deep cycle battery
- Adaptable to many different vehicles
- Can be used for water vehicles
- Installation can be a bit tricky
This is a sealed AGM battery that’s going to keep any and all acid leaks far from the inside of your engine. It’s a pretty powerful battery that needs little maintenance and is generally hazard-free.
We found that many users turned to this battery for their sound systems. If you’re someone that likes to have the bass pumping and warn pedestrians of your presence from miles away, then this is a great battery for you. It’s going to give you enough juice to power your amp and much more.
It’s also great at resisting vibration and extreme heat, so if you’re someone that likes to get into the rough and rugged with your vehicle, then this battery will be with you every step of the way without missing a beat.
Installation is pretty easy and we had no problems mounting it. It can fit inside most vehicles without too much hassle, so we recommend checking it out.
- Extremely durable, resistant to vibration and extreme heat
- Ideal for those who want to upgrade sound systems
- 3-year warranty
- Easy to install
- Pricey, very pricey
It’s hard to go through a list of car components without having someone mention ACDelco. They make just about everything from spark plugs to your car’s battery, and their AGM battery is a great feat of accomplishment.
It comes with 325 CCA and 45 Amp/h, meaning this ACDelco model packs quite a punch despite its small size. This AGM battery is durable as well, resisting corrosion, coming with a calcium positive and negative power unit, and resisting vibrations.
With its design, you won’t find any acid leaks even after multiple road trips. Many users have praised it for how it’s handled harsh weather conditions, whether that be driving rain or snow.
We also like that it’s completely maintenance-free, so you won’t have to worry about constantly popping the hood to double-check on your battery.
Just make sure and check the measurements of your vehicle before you decide to purchase this battery as it’s not always an exact fit.
- 2-year warranty
- Very durable
- Enclosure makes it acid-leak proof
- Installation is tricky
- May not fit in all vehicles
We know how much audiophiles love their sound systems, so we found another battery that will bring all the power necessary to keep your car running and keep the tunes pumping along.
This high-powered battery is quite affordable and does plenty for your vehicle. With 600 CCA and 12-volts along with an 18-hour amp rating, you’ll find that this battery is more than enough for your car audio system.
In terms of durability, this battery stands the test of time as well. It’s 100 leak-proof, meaning you’re not going to find any acid lying around when you pop open the hood. It can also withstand extreme temperatures in either direction and large amounts of vibrations thanks to its reinforced ABS plastic case.
It also will store energy so you’re not going to need to invest in a capacitor for your system. Lastly, this battery is quite cheap, making it the cherry on top for those looking to build up their audio systems on a budget.
- Ideal for car audio systems
- Comes packed with 600 CCA
- Built to withstand the toughest conditions
- A bargain price
- Users have reported charging issues
- Often arrives dead
John McClane has never used another battery besides this one, we (not really..) guarantee it. No matter what vehicle he was using (or destroying), you can be sure that that vehicle had this DieHard in it.
We kid, but with a battery name like DieHard, you’ve got to do your part in order to live up to the greatest Christmas movie of all time (that’s right, we said it).
But this battery is amazingly sturdy and tough. We’ve found that this car battery can withstand roughly 20X more vibration than the average battery without withstanding any sort of damage. This is an ideal battery for those who are traversing across rough terrain and need something that’s as tough as they are.
Looking at the specs, this battery is meant to pack quite the punch. Fitted with a 650 CCA rate and a 100-minute reserve capacity, you’ll be using this battery for quite some time without any issue. It’s powered at 50 amp/hour and has a much longer life cycle when compared to other similar batteries.
With a sealed enclosure, you’re not going to see any acid spills either.
With all these benefits, there has to be a drawback, right? Unfortunately, there is. This battery only has posts at the top of the battery box which may make it incompatible with your vehicle. For vehicles with side posts, then this battery just isn’t going to work.
Also, we found that the power unit drains a bit quicker than other batteries in the same class so you may need to perform a bit more maintenance.
But overall, those complains are small and this battery is a stellar choice.
- 650 CCA
- Incredibly durable
- Resists vibrations better than almost any battery
- 3-year warranty
- May not fit in all vehicles
- Needs more frequent charging
Battery Buying Guide
Now that we’ve looked over all the batteries on this list, it’s time to remind you that there are plenty of things you should be considering when purchasing a car battery. As seen above, not all car batteries are created equally but that doesn’t mean that finding the ideal car battery should feel difficult or like a huge chore.
Below, we’re going to go over some things you should consider as well as answer some important questions that you may have about car batteries in general. Let’s go ahead and get started.
What to Consider
Here, we’re going to look at some of the specifications and acronyms that were tossed around so freely above to see which ones you should be focusing on and which ones should be important for you.
That way, you can find the one that is perfect for you and your situation. Obviously, your needs will change depending on the kind of car you own and what you are doing. If you’re someone driving an electric car here and there on an occasional basis, then you’re going to need a different battery than someone driving a big truck through rugged terrain on the weekends.
You saw this floated around in just about every review above, but what does it mean? CCA stands for cold cranking amp and it refers to how well your engine will start in freezing cold weather. CCA starts from 0 Fahrenheit or -17 for your Celcius users.
Here, bigger is better. So the larger the number, the better it will be for your car. This can be directly impacted by what kind of fuel your vehicle needs. Those with diesel need a lot more power to get started.
So if you buy a battery with less than the recommended amps, you’re still going to be able to start your car but your battery’s lifespan is going to be considerably less. Be sure to take that into account when making a purchase and be willing to spend a little extra. It’s better to spend $50 extra today instead of having a dead car down the line.
You will often see this written as RC, but we primarily used the full name for our reviews. After CCA, this is probably the most important number you’re going to want to look out when you’re out battery shopping.
But what does this mean?
Essentially, this shows how long this battery can supply energy without being replenished by an alternator. It’s easier to think about it this way: this is the amount of time you have before your battery goes completely dead.
With all car systems being computerized these days, they draw power from the battery on a more consistent basis. With a longer RC, you’re going to be able to keep those functions going for a period of time before everything just goes kaput. This also helps if you are running a class D amp and some 12 inch subs.
The best thing is to find a nice balance between the two for optimal car battery use.
One thing we haven’t talked about yet is battery power. This is defined by Amps per hour, written above as A/h or Amps/h. Depending on your manufacturer, you might even see it written in a completely different way.
This represents how long you would be able to use your battery before it went dead. So if you were sitting in your car using the overhead light to read, that number represents how long you could read with the light before the battery called it quits.
Out of all your car’s functions, the most power-hungry thing is starting the car. These amps are crucial for telling you how many times, more or less, you can turn the ignition and get your car running. That’s why it’s often better to stop and let your car run than stop your car and turn it on again in short succession.
But, if you’re someone who is driving around and making a lot of stops per day, like a singing telegram, then you’re going to need a battery with higher amps since it’s going to need to power on your car multiple times a day.
Let’s say you’re noting your car is having a “lazy” start. Then, that issue is probably pointing to an issue with the car itself and not the battery.
The Battery’s Date
You might have thought to yourself that batteries that hang out on store shelves lose their power over time. You are, in fact, correct!
That’s why you need to check the shipping code on the box. If you see it was shipped last month, then that’s no big deal. But if you see a date that’s more than six months in the past, then you should move onto another selection. While that battery might get your car started, it’s not going to last for very long.
Batteries are coded by letters and years. So E2019 would be May 2019.
You’re going to want to purchase a battery with at least a one-year warranty. That’s pretty standard and can protect your battery in case it was shipped to you dead or wears out on you quickly.
You’ve gone to all this trouble to find a battery, now you should make sure it lasts you for the long haul, right?
Battery maintenance isn’t very hard and is essential to the overall health of your car. Finding issues early can save a huge headache down the road.
You should be checking your battery terminals on a regular basis for corrosion and any buildup. It’s pretty easy to clean off with a brush or even pouring a 2-liter bottle of coke.
If you’ve got a multimeter, make sure you’re using that on a regular basis. These items can check the battery life and see if it’s dead or just needs a recharge.
Batteries that go unused for long periods of time go bad and in turn, can ruin your car’s alternator. Make sure you’re charging batteries that have been left untouched to protect your car from any damage.
Generally speaking, you will probably need a new car battery once every three years. Until then, you can look for signs like slow cranking, regularly dim lights, or unresponsive computer components. If the voltage is low, a jump-starter may be needed to get it started so the alternator can recharge it.
In the end, there is going to be an ideal battery for you but one that isn’t ideal for your friend down the street. Make sure you’re reading the product descriptions and checking reviews as much as possible. If you’re unsure, ask a mechanic to make sure you’re doing everything right.