The service life of every car battery is limited. Even if it serves us well for many years with good care – at some point the moment has come when a new starter battery is needed. But with the large selection of different battery types, the choice is often not easy.
Depending on the vehicle, special battery types must be installed, while in other vehicles you can choose between different types of starter batteries. We want to take a detailed look at which battery is best suited.
First of all, the correct size of the battery should be selected, as it must fit into the battery holder in the engine compartment.
The easiest thing to do is to make the new battery the same size as the old one.
In addition, the electrical values must be right. The best way to do this is to look at the old battery, which usually contains all the data. Because only with the right voltage (V), the right charging capacity (Ah) and the corresponding level of cold start current (A) can the car later be reliably made to run.
These batteries are the standard among the batteries that are installed in the vast majority of cars. The big advantage: They are extremely cheap and now also maintenance-free.
If you used to have to top up with distilled water at regular intervals, this is no longer necessary today and in principle you don’t have to worry about anything else.
Unfortunately, the low price also has its downsides. Lead-acid batteries self-discharge more quickly and are therefore less suitable for people who drive their car very little and often leave it idle for several weeks or months.
The service life of these batteries is also limited, as they do not have as high cycle stability as other types of batteries. In addition, lead-acid batteries are relatively sensitive to vibration. So if you drive your car mainly off-road, the lead-acid battery is unsuitable.
This is also a lead-acid battery, but the acid is absorbed in a glass fleece and thus bound. This is where the name comes from, because AGM is the abbreviation for Absorbent Glass Mat. The batteries are heavier than standard lead-acid batteries, but they are also more powerful.
With these batteries, a very high current consumption is possible, which is why AGM batteries are mainly used in newer cars with automatic start-stop systems, as these have a particularly high energy requirement.
Thanks to very high cycle stability, these batteries also have a longer service life, so that the purchase is not only worthwhile for newer cars, but for anyone who values a long-lasting and reliable battery.
The downside: They cost a lot more money than a standard lead-acid battery, but the many benefits can still make it worth buying.
The EFB (Enhanced Flooded Battery) is the cheaper variant of the AGM battery. They possess almost identical characteristics in terms of their performance. However, unlike AGM batteries, these batteries are, as the name suggests, flooded. They are mostly found in cars with start-stop systems, since these vehicles generally require more energy.
There is a poly fleece material on the surface of the positive plate, which ensures a longer battery life. That is why it is not only used in start-stop vehicles, but can also be installed in any other car as an alternative to conventional lead-acid batteries.
Another plus point: Less sensitivity to heat. It is therefore particularly suitable for drivers who like to drive their vehicle in warmer regions.
Lithium Ion Batteries
The ultimate starter battery for anyone who wants to get the maximum amount of energy out of their vehicle. Thanks to the extremely low internal resistance, this battery delivers very high currents, so that the alternator can recharge the battery within a very short time while driving. A big advantage: the weight saving.
Lithium-ion batteries are real lightweights – this means that a weight of up to 80 kilograms can be saved compared to conventional lead-acid batteries!
This is also the reason why these are often installed in sports cars where weight has to be saved to optimize performance. Thanks to its very high cycle stability, this battery has a much longer service life than all other battery types.
In addition, it has a low self-discharge of at most 1 to 2 percent per month. The battery capacity can be used almost completely, so that the car will start even if the battery is already half empty. You shouldn’t completely over-discharge them, but there are protective mechanisms that prevent this.
The only disadvantage: the very high price. But if the advantages mentioned are particularly important to you, you should definitely think about this investment.
Once you have decided on a type of battery, it is advisable to compare different providers on the Internet, because the price differences are often enormous. If you prefer to get advice on site, you should try to go to a specialist market instead of a car repair shop, as these are much cheaper. Depending on the vehicle in question, savings can also be made during installation.
Does the battery have to be trained first? Then you should definitely go to a workshop for it. But this is often not the case with older cars in particular, so that you can easily replace the battery yourself.
Important: Pay attention to quality! Although a cheap battery is not automatically inferior, they often have a shorter life expectancy.