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Re: Battery Life? (thaasb5)

Car batteries are not an exact science. The life of the battery depends upon a lot of variables - some you have control over, some you don't. For instance, they don't like to be drained (esp. sealed bats) - that will shorten the life. Ideally they would operate between 80-100% and never drain it below the 80% level - that will lengthen the life. They also don't like to run out of water (exposed plates) - that will shorten the life. They do prefer distilled water - I have yet to determine if this makes a difference or not. They also like to be exercised regularly - not siting around for weeks on end - this will lengthen it's life. Depending on how long your car "sat" around before you bought it is probabaly the single biggest factor that you have (umm had) no control over. Here's why. From the time a battery is made (chemicals mixed, etc.) a decaying or calcification(?) reaction begins. This grows corrosion on the plates. The longer the battery sits without being used, the more the corrosion grows. The more corrosion, the shorter the battery life. --- In the olden days, you used to "mix" your own chemicals AFTER you bought your battery, ensuring that you have a FRESH one. But someone decided that was too dangerous for the average joes, so now we have less than fresh ones sitting on the shelf. Sorry for the digression ---
That is why you should never buy a battery that is more than 6 months old. And IMHO I'd say 2 months is my limit when buying your replacement battery. Now the trick is to be able to identify the manufacturing date of your new battery. Each battery has a date code stamped (or stickered) on it. Often a cryptic thing suck as: 0901. If you look at a few from the same manufacturer, you'll get the hang of it really quick now that you know what you're looking for.
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