Car Battery for 99 Honda Civic

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  #1  
Old 05-22-14, 07:44 AM
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Car Battery for 99 Honda Civic

So, I bought a commuter car a few months ago to drive to the train station and back (2 miles each way)

99 Honda Civic w 112k miles on it.

I had my neighborhood mechanic give it a once over, and he was thrilled with the condition with two exceptions: exhaust is original and about to fall off (he wants $700 to replace from the cat back)--think I'll bring it back to the dealership to get this addressed under warranty (family friend owned place)

He also said I should replace the battery--dated 2005

I just looked at NAPA, and battery ranges from an $85/$90 average to a yellow topped 'optima' model that is flirting with $200??!! Sears is well over $100 as well

Maybe I've been out of the car game a while (living in NYC), but this seems really pricey for a battery!

Does anyone have suggestions for the best place to buy a decent battery at a fair price (preferably in north/central NJ)? Also, what should I be looking for in a battery? Most cold cranking amps at 0 degrees?

Thanks in advance! I am rusty on this stuff!

--K
 
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Old 05-22-14, 08:02 AM
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Batteries differ greatly even among the same brand. Consumer Reports does tests and lists the best batteries in each specific size group. Some were the big names...some were Wally World ...and some were store brands. You might look at their website for a How to Choose article. Top Car battery Ratings | Car battery Buying Guide

Yes, cold cranking amps is important...as is reserve capacity.

Yes, they have gotten expensive if you haven't priced them in a while.

Sometimes it comes down to convenience. Is the place you buy nearby? Do you want to do it yourself or have them install and dispose of the old one.

I have the opposite issue that you do...extreme heat (which I have read is worse than the cold for battery life) and I bought a WM brand for about $65-75 3-4 yrs ago. Still going fine in my Suzuki Verona and it's mostly used for short trips, which is also tough on them. And it's actually undersized for the vehicle...mine takes an odd size which few places carry.
 
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Old 05-22-14, 09:55 AM
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Unfortunately, it seems that batteries have gone way up in price during the last 3-4 years. This is especially the case with MC, ATV, and other odd and/or "undersized" types (that often retail for more than an auto batt that's 4+ times the size).

Meanwhile, I too have had great luck with the auto batteries that WM sells.

I'll also mention that I very recently replaced a NAPA auto batt that was well over 5 years old and still working within reason (I'd have to charge it up a bit if it sat for more than 2-3 weeks). I decided to change it just to be on the safe side (we see both hot and cold weather around here).

Btw, you might consider the periodic use of a 2 amp trickle charger on whatever battery you buy for that Civic. I say this because short trips can be tough on a battery (like Gunguy45 wisely mentions).

Anyway, good luck with your "barely broken in at 112K miles" Civic! They're truly a great little car imo.
 
  #4  
Old 05-22-14, 11:57 AM
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thanks for the responses! Yeah, its a car that really feels like its raring to go when you put it in gear
 
  #5  
Old 05-22-14, 01:14 PM
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And another thing sirk98; I'd change the engine oil according to Honda's "severe" or "heavy city" use guidelines due to the short distance driving.

Have a good weekend!
 
  #6  
Old 05-22-14, 08:05 PM
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Since you only drive a couple of miles each way, the alternator won't have much time to charge the battery. On an old battery this would become an even more predominate issue. It is probably a good idea to change it. Battery prices vary on a few things, one is based on the size and output of the battery. Usually though the difference between the $85 and the $200 ones are the warranties. The more expensive ones usually carry a 3 year warranty, some even up to 5 year. The cheaper ones are usually 1 year warranties.

Whether this is important to you is up to yourself and your own peace of mind, is 2x the price worth a possible 3x lifespan. Is paying 2x the price worth the possibility that the cheaper one might last 3 years itself?

On the subject of exhaust, unless your exhaust is rusted out and has leaks $700 is too much. Although I am basing that opinion on my location, it may be fair in your area. If it's not broken/rotted/whatever, all you probably need are hangers which aren't very much. For 3 joints you would need 6 brackets which are then connected by a rubber block that absorbs vibration so the exhaust doesn't make a rattle in cab while engine is going. So 3 for pipe, 3 for body. In my area you can get those welded on for maybe $50. That is, IF that's the problem.
 
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Old 05-23-14, 04:09 AM
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Running AutoZone batteries in both personal car and the wrecker. I agree with SMB42 on the "severe" service. Does your temp gauge even get into the normal range during the colder months?

As a general side note on quality of batteries, some of the large national motor clubs sell and install their own "branded" batteries. It's been my experience that they are overpriced junk. Better to simply take the jump start and drive to nearest garage/parts store.
 
  #8  
Old 05-24-14, 11:02 AM
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Over the last few years , I have bought batteries at Walley World . Expect to pay around $ 100 .

I agree , put a trickle charger on it .

I can not see anything on a 99 being under warranty ? Did I mis-read you ?

Go by 2 - 3 muffler shops and bet pricing . I would not go to a dealer , for anything , unless I had no other choice .

God bless
Wyr
 
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