OT: Car batteries

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Hey, you guys - if anybody would know, you would!
I think I've been had by my nabe mechanic. Would appreciate your wisdom about battery brands and prices.
My battery (2-1/2 years old ) went out. Got a jump from road service and drove it to nabe mechanic. He put it on tester; showed me only 6-1/2 left out of 12. I let him go ahead replace it. It's called "Advanced", which is a new brand to me. He said he's been using it for 30 years.
He charged me $125 for battery, plus $35 for cleaning contacts. With tax, it came to $175. Warranty printed on battery said 5 years, but mechanic said 3 years, plus pro-rated after that.
I think price is too high, and am contemplating change of mechanics.
I called Sears for quotes. $84.99 for high-end Diehard , 72 mo. warranty. $14.99 for installation. No charge for cleaning up contacts & testing for related problems.
$104.99 for Diehard Gold. 100 mo. warranty, lst 3 years replacement. I presume rest pro-rated? didn't ask.
So even if I bought their top of the line Gold, total w/tax would still come to approx. $130+ or $45 more than I paid.
Was I foolish or gullible, or simply misinformed and hasty, by letting nabe mechanic go ahead? (Note this is a relatively expensive So.Cal coastal small city.)
Also, IMPORTANT: Has anybody ever heard of Advanced batteries? I couldn't find them on the Web.
TIA - Your input valued.
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Higgs Boson wrote:

Hmm, Replacing car battery is typical DIY job. Is your charging system working properly?
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The battery he supplied is probably no better than the $85 Sears battery or many other replacement batteries that you could have bought at autoparts stores and put in yourself. You certainly could have gotten it done for substantially less elsewhere. Or as Tony pointed out, DIY. But, if you didn't want to risk driving the car, getting stuck, etc, because he was the only option nearby, it could be worth it. I hope for that price he checked the charging system and made sure it is working OK. Some of the national autoparts stores will test a battery and charging system for free.
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For most cars it is, but at times it is a real PITA. With all the electronics and security systems, in some cars, it is recommended to plug a 12 volt battery into the lighter socket while taking out the battery. Otherwise you have to enter a code in the radio for it to work again.
The battery in my Buick is under the rear seat, another PITA to remove, along with the battery codes. I had a local battery shop do the replacement on that one.
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My Bonneville's battery is also under the rear seat. Once I found it it was very easy to replace. But it was expensive because it's a special "vented" battery. I believe it was around $100. The battery in my minivan was mounted under a fuse box and looked like a PITA to get at so I took it to local shop and the guy installed it for $25. Well worth it.
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On Nov 21, 6:24�pm, "JimmyDahGeek@DON'T_SPAM_ME_gmail.com"

Some vehicles have batteries in poor locations........
like remove front left wheel, remove inner fender liner, remove frame brace, now disconnect and remove battery, then replace everything.....
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On Sat, 21 Nov 2009 15:59:34 -0800 (PST), " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

I once had to loosen a motor mount from the frame just to get a spark plug in a 307 Chevy engine. ( 67 Impala )
What a dang problem it was. The exhaust manifold, fender wells etc.
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Oren wrote:

About 50 years ago I read a road test report in a UK newspaper of a then-new Rolls-Royce model. The reviewer commented unfavorably on the need to remove each front wheel and a bunch of bolts holding a cover plate in place to get at four of the eight spark plugs. He had contacted RR about this, and they replied, "But Sir, doesn't your chauffeur do this for you?"
Perce
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-snip-

You'll be happy to hear that GM kept the tradition alive in their/my 2001 Impala. There is even a factory loop installed on top of the engine to hook your come-along to.
Up side is that I changed them in 2006 at about 100K - and wouldn't have except my mechanic was telling me a horror story about a car they had that had a plug that got corroded and bonded itself to the block. Jim
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Good tradition. Like my 89 Chevrolet S-10 Blazer, where you have to take the wheel off, to get at the #5 spark plug. One time I got a five plug tune up at the dealership "it's in there pretty tight and we didn't want to break it". Next tune up, I did myself and #5 was actually rather loose, and spun out no problem.
--
Christopher A. Young
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On Sun, 22 Nov 2009 09:22:15 -0500, "Stormin Mormon"

You want to own a 3.8 Pontiac Trans Sport or a 3 liter Aerostar if you want fun changing plugs. (or a V8 Monza, or a 428 "Stang)
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On Sat, 21 Nov 2009 15:59:34 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Hmm, yeah... I used to have to pull the PAS pump on my Triumphs to get to the battery (thankfully I could leave the hoses connected and haul it out of the way rather than draining the steering system...)
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On Nov 21, 5:24pm, "JimmyDahGeek@DON'T_SPAM_ME_gmail.com"

Our '01 Buick's battery is under the rear bench...and it's the original Delco. (another thing that helps battery-life is energy management. If the battery is being drained (engine off) for ten minutes...the power shuts-off.)
bob_v
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Prolly.
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On Sun, 22 Nov 2009 17:33:14 -0800, David Nebenzahl

It's not an English class, but I am aware of writing being useless if it can't be read.
--
32 days until the winter solstice celebration

Mark Lloyd
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On Sat, 21 Nov 2009 11:45:05 -0800 (PST), Higgs Boson

We have Advanced Auto parts stores around here selling Advanced Auto batteries. I've had two fail in the past 4 years but were replaced free of charge. And they tested the charging system finding no problems. Alternator capable of 90 amps at 600 rpm idle and 13.9 volts after the new battery charged for a couple hours.
You need to determine if your voltage regulation is sufficient to reach and hold the battery's target voltage of 13.8 volts with engine running at different speeds and at idle.
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That is not happy-making news!
And they tested the charging system finding no

Hoo boy! I'm not up to that. Will have to go back & face mechanic and ask that q.
Re: price of nabe mechanic $175 and Sears quote (top of line) $130, any input on that?
TIA
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On Sat, 21 Nov 2009 12:25:03 -0800 (PST), Higgs Boson

I've used Sears and Die Hard batteries for years and years. Some locations will test your battery and charging system for free. They have drive-in express lane just for this (here).
I'm in the Mojave Desert and get about five years from the batteries. (that's a long time) out here in the heat.
I've used the same brand in the Adirondack mountains in dead of winter and they worked like a charm.
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Higgs Boson wrote:

    Do I think you paid too much for the battery and installation? Yes. If you use him regularly, I would be looking for a new place.
    Do I think you had a better option? It depends upon where you are and when it is that the repair is required.
    Do garages charge as much as they think they can? Yes, particularly in some high income areas.
    Also there is a auto parts store chain called Advance Auto Parts. I suspect the branded battery might be one of theirs. Since the makers of batteries make for several retail names, I would not be worried about the brand. I looked at Exide recently and they make batteries for about twenty different sellers.
    For what it is worth, I just bought a new battery because the battery I had was seven years old and I feared being vulnerable to the same situation you were in. Even though I did not have a failing battery, a failure on the road could have been very costly. Unfortunately, it does not sound like you had this option if your battery failed. Let's hope your charging system is OK like another poster suggested. If it is not, RUN, do not walk, from the person who installed the battery.
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On Sat, 21 Nov 2009 11:45:05 -0800, Higgs Boson wrote:

Hmm, sounds like you either had a bad original battery or there's something up with the charging system - I'd get the latter tested just in case, as you don't want to kill another battery in a short time...
Location (i.e. weather) seems to play a big part in how long batteries last, but 2-1/2 years doesn't seem like a lot at all (the one in our car is on 12 years now and still going strong!)
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