Car Question

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I am not sure if this forum responds to car questions? I do not know of a newsgroup car site.
I just bought a new car battery, and have an install issue. The battery's negative post is smaller than my Toyota battery clamp can be compressed. Is there a way I can adapt my existing clamp, to securely connect to that smaller battery post?
I hope I am not flamed, for an off topic question. I sure have read many valuable posts/ responses here.
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On 2015-11-05 12:19 PM, Rob snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

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Froz...

Quando omni flunkus, moritati
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On Thu, 5 Nov 2015 12:24:19 -0500, FrozenNorth

cable?? The pos cable clamp is larger than the Neg, and the neg clamp CAN be stretched to fit the Pos, but the Pos can't be clamped tight enough to fit the neg.
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On Thursday, November 5, 2015 at 8:10:55 PM UTC-5, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

He's disappeared. He was last seen in a car going backwards to return the battery.
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On 11/05/2015 12:19 PM, Rob snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Return the battery and get your money back before you hurt yourself...then tear-up your Man Card.
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On 11/5/15 12:19 PM, Rob snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

After double checking you got the correct battery, take a look at this YT video and if it shows your problem.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v
OxEvVUuPM
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I bought the Interstate Battery at Costco, whom sell _?_ Thousands of batteries. I have since confirmed, with another Costoc auto departmaent manager that I have the Interstate recommnded battery. Another call (most UNHELPFUL phone agent), to the Interstate customer Service desk, further confirms that my battery size is correct.
The above, noted youtube video does show my specific problem, less I am not using that battery post cap "filler". Alas it does not offer a solution.
Thanks to the many responders. to my off topic question
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On Thursday, November 5, 2015 at 12:19:33 PM UTC-5, Rob snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

First step is making sure you bought the correct battery for your vehicle.
Once you are comfortable that your battery will fit your requirements, you can look for ways to make your terminals fit. There are several options, ranging from shims to terminal converters.
Some examples:
http://www.quickcable.com/products.php?pageId
(I bought a battery for SWMBO's car last week. When I got it home I found that the Pos and Neg posts were reversed compared to the battery that was in the car. I looked up various battery options for that car and found that even within the same manufacturer's options, some batteries had Pos on the right, other had Pos on the left. The cables were long enough that I could simply turn the battery around to line up the posts with the cables, but it seems like there is no standard, even within the same manufacturer's lines.)
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On Thu, 5 Nov 2015 10:05:05 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

Did you just say "Once you are comfortable that your battery will fit your requirements, you can look for ways to make your terminals fit?" If it fits your requirements the terminals WILL fit. Period.
Anyone that would consider using shims or terminal converters instead of getting the correct battery for that make and model car is only going to make a bad situation worse.
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On Thu, 5 Nov 2015 10:05:05 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

This (that both kinds of battery will work in the same car) may be true for your wife's car, but it's not true for many or most cars. Not my 3 Chrysler LeBarons or my Toyota Solara, for example.
It's been 27 years since I've had anything else and I don't remember details of my Pontiacs or my Buick. My '50 Olds had a place on the other side for a second battery, maybe for really cold climates, but no wires. But I've worked on other cars.

If by that you mean that some batteries have the + post on the left and some on the right, I agree with you 100%.
If this is the reason we have been arguing, there's no need for me to reply to your other post. If OTOH you're saying the same model battery will come with the + on the right and also with the + on the left, we still have a disagreement.
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On 11/5/15 1:05 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Maybe rotate the battery 180 degrees in the tray to reverse the right and left terminal positions? Of course, this will move the terminals to the opposite side of the tray too...
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On 11/6/2015 2:18 PM, Wade Garrett wrote:

If that doesn't work, ask Clare if it's OK to turn the battery upside down.
- . Christopher A. Young learn more about Jesus . www.lds.org . .
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On Thu, 05 Nov 2015 12:19:20 -0500, Rob snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

On all car batteries, one post is bigger than the other, to keep people from connecting the battery backwards. Perhaps the other post was bigger than it should have been, but you were able to get the cable on it anyhow. It just didn't need any tightening. So now the remaining post is 2 sizes smaller than the remaining cable, and the clamp won't get small enough.
About those battery post shims, it says: Tighten up connections to worn battery posts with these shims. But your posts aren't worn, they're brand new.
At least one time, a store sold me a battery with the posts reversed. I was still in their parking lot so returning it was especially easy.
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On Thursday, November 5, 2015 at 1:18:34 PM UTC-5, Micky wrote:

Worn or brand new, they are smaller. The purpose of the battery post shims (or any shims for that matter) is to fill the gap.
Do you think the shims can tell if the post is smaller because it is worn vs. because it is new? I think not.

I had no need to return the "reversed post" battery. It had better specs than the OEM battery and I got a great deal using the "buy on-line, pick up in store" service at my favorite auto chain's website.
I followed my standard process:
1 - Know what you want and find it on-line 2 - Engage in a chat session with one of the on-line CSR's 3 - Nicely ask a simple question about the product to build rapport 4 - Nicely ask if there are any additional discounts available or if there is a sale (or better sale) coming up soon. Basically you want to delay/hesitate in actually placing the order.
I have never failed to get an additional 10-20% off the price, even after all club-member discounts and web-based discounts have been applied. I assume the CSR's are incentified to get to the sale and have the authority to offer promo codes during the chat sessions.
On rare occasions I've been told "I can give you another 10% off now, but if you add another $X to your order, I can make it 20%." The $X amount is always small enough that is well worth spending it on something I'll use any way, like washer fluid or a couple of cans of brake cleaner, etc. The CSR will even look up the part number for you. :-)
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On Thu, 5 Nov 2015 10:48:56 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

I used to have a girl friend who told me she hated it when I asked stupid questions. I was caught off guard and didnt' know what to say about that, but as time went on, mostly without her, I noticed that I would first ask a simple question, like with a utility guy working at a hole in the street, and I realized I did it because he would be more likely to answer harder questions later. IIUYC, this is more or less what you say you do. It's probably too late to tell my ex-girlfriend, however.

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On Thu, 5 Nov 2015 10:48:56 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

Maybe my point wasn't clear but you missed my point. He shouldn't think that the fact that they sell such things mean it's normal for posts to be too small sometimes, and therefore he doesn't have the wrong battery. Because they only** sell them for worn posts.
**I was wrong about "only", at least if he had pencil posts (though that would also be the wrong battery), and I posted my correction before I saw your post.

But there was probably a battery with the same specs as your new one that had the posts the same as the original.

All well and good, about getting a low price, but we were talking about whether the battery fits.
Earlier you said.

You drew this conclusion from one car of one make? Believe you me, in many, most, or almost all cars, you can't reverse the battery posts without installing longer cables. With some cars you can cut the ties that hold the cables neatly in place. It's an advantage to have the cables short so that someone else doesn't accidentally connect them backwards.
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On Thursday, November 5, 2015 at 2:25:41 PM UTC-5, Micky wrote:

Nope. Just as an example, let's take any car that uses a Group 51R battery. That's a pretty common battery with lots of choices available, from various manufacturers and with all sorts of CCA and reserve capacity specs.
Here are 2 examples of Interstate Group 51R batteries with "reversed posts" when you view the batteries from the "front" based on the labels: (sorry for the long link, I can't get to tinyurl at this time. A slightly shorter image only link follows.)
51R Battery Option #1:
http://www.interstatebatteries.com/Products/RT/PID-MT-51R (Automotive+Truck).aspx?dsNavigation=Ns~product+Type%7C101%7C1%7C%2CNrc~id-4%2CN~2147384794&Title=Mega-Tron+51-R+Automotive+Battery+++75+months+++500+CCA
Image:
http://www.interstatebatteries.com/AppCode/Helpers/GetScaledImage.ashx?pn=MT-51R (Automotive%20Truck)&mw60&mhE0&sz=L
51R Battery Option # 2
https://www.batteriesexpressinc.com/Interstate_Batteries_I_51R_Automotive_Battery_p/auto-int-i-51r.htm

Anyone not paying attention could easily hooked up those batteries backwards *because* of the "short" cables.
If one is not paying attention to the post polarity they could take out the 51R Option #1 (facing forward) and install the 51R Option # 2, (again facing forward, just like the other one was). They could then easily hook up the wrong cables because the posts are physically in the exact same position. (whoops!)
In my case, I flipped the battery front to back and attached the cables to the proper posts - because I was paying attention - and they had enough give even though the posts were now closer to the front of the vehicle.
Had I installed the battery facing forward simply based on the labels, the cables would have easily reached the *wrong* posts, even easier than they reached the correct ones with the battery flipped front to back.
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On Thu, 5 Nov 2015 13:08:46 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

You said you were paying attention. Had you really been paying attention you would have noticed you didn't have the correct battery for your car and you would have taken it back and exchanged it for the correct battery.
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On Thu, 5 Nov 2015 13:08:46 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

I just posted what might close the conversation, but then I looked at a page I'd opened before but not looked at.
https://www.batteryweb.com/bci.cfm
It shows two groups:
Group     L"     W"     H"     Figure     Polarity     Terminals 51     9.40     5.10     8.80     10     L/H-POS     TOP - SAE AUTO 51R     9.40     5.10     8.80     11     R/H-POS     TOP - SAE AUTO
I couldn't find where the figures were listed, but it appears that either this chart is wrong or the battery above should be group 51, not 51R.

Hardly. If you have the right battery, cables too short to reach the wrong posts mean you CAN'T hook the battery up backwards.

People don't order the battery by option, but by model number and they are different. I-51R and MT-51R (which should probably be MT-51)

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On Thursday, November 5, 2015 at 11:12:47 PM UTC-5, Micky wrote:

I am going to partially apologize for the statements I made earlier, although they are not completely wrong. It's been a month since I swapped the batteries and my memory was faulty, but not entirely. I retract my statements related to stretching the cables to the front of the battery and will amend my statements related to reversing the battery during installation. In a sense, the reversing of the battery did occur.
I popped the hood on SWMBO's vehicle last night to refresh my memory and also looked at the battery choices at advanceauto.com, the site I used to purchase the battery.
I don't know if this link will work since it specific to my saved vehicles. If it doesn't, simply search for batteries for a 2003 Honda Element. You should get 3 choices. 2 AutoCrafts and 1 Optima, both Group 51R.
http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/c2/batteries/15000?isAllVehicle lse&showTitle=&vehicleIdFromReq2724&vehicleIdSearch2724
You can't tell the POS vs. the NEG post from the pictures of the AutoCraft batteries on the main page, but if you click on the battery itself, there is a top view which shows the POS post on the left rear of the battery as viewed from the front, based on the labels. (The labeling is key to this discussion.)
Now look at the Optima battery. The POS post is located on the right front when viewed with the labels facing the reader. In order to install this battery with the POS post at the left rear, it would have to be installed "backwards" as far as the top label is concerned. In other words, the text on the top would be upside down and the front label would be towards the rear.
I purchased the Gold AutoCraft battery and when I popped the hood last night, I saw that the battery is installed "facing forward" according to the labels. i.e. POS terminal at the left rear, the top text facing me and the front label facing me. That got me wondering why I thought I had "reversed" the battery. The subsequent trip to advanceauto.com helped to jog my memory. Here's is what I believe happened:
First, let me state that I don't recall what brand battery was in the Element previously. I can state that it was not the Optima but it was some off brand that I was not familiar with. We just bought the E a couple of months ago I wanted to replace the battery before winter just to be safe.
What I do recall is this:
I had the new AutoCraft sitting on the workbench with the labels facing forward. I removed the old battery and carried it over the workbench, placing it next to the AutoCraft, with the labels facing forward. That is when I noticed that the posts were reversed from a left to right perspective. At first I thought that I had bought the wrong battery, until I realized that the previous battery had the posts in the front (based on the labels) while the AutoCraft had the posts in the rear, based on the labels. if you "reverse" the previous battery, the posts end up the same locations. You can see that by "reversing" the Optima battery shown at advanceauto.com.
I then realized that the previous battery had been installed "backwards" from a label perspective, i.e. the text was upside down when viewed from the front of the vehicle. I didn't notice that before I pulled the battery, but once they were sitting next to each other on the workbench, it was obvious. So, when I said I flipped the battery "front to rear" in my earlier post, I really had, in comparison to the previous battery. In reality, it was the previous battery that was installed with the front of the battery facing the rear of the vehicle, just like the Optima would need to be installed.
In all cases, the POS post ends up at the left rear where it belongs. I mis-remembered the stretching of the cable to the front of the battery and for that I apologize.
Bottom line: There is inconsistency in battery construction and labeling, such that certain brands of batteries have to be installed "backwards" in order to get the posts in the correct position.
I apologize for all the confusion caused by my previous statements.
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