Last Sunday afternoon, I planned on driving the motorhome (V-10 Ford) the 15 miles to its winter retreat, in one of my cousin's 40'x100' machine sheds. I'd already performed all of the necessary winterization, it was down to just driving it out to the farm, and backing it into the shed.
Unfortunately, I discovered that the AAP Autocraft Gold 34/78 dual terminal battery under the hood had dropped a cell. It wouldn't even spin the starter, and was at 10.7 volts with a multimeter. It had a "7/11" sticker on it, so it had been in service for 5 years. I would assume that the previous owner had put it in before heading down to Florida, in late 2011.
We have a regional farm supply store (Rural King), that sells Exide batteries with a 1 year free / 5 year pro-rated warranty for $49, which is the same price as the Wal*Mart Value batteries (with 1 year free replacement only). RK also offers a 34/78 dual terminal (650CCA) at this $49 price (Wal-Mart doesn't).
Even though the 34/78 dual terminal is not the OE fitment here (a group 65 is), I prefer the DT units whenever one fits. Once can always pull it out, and drop it in something else in an emergency. Even though I have a mix of GM, Ford, and Chrysler, that 34/78 DT would fit in everything that I own.
So, I went and bought one, and installed it. The V-10 quickly roared to life, and it is now in winter storage. The stickers on it indicated that it was manufactured 9/16, and shipped 10/16. Plenty fresh, as Rural King probably sells a lot of them at that price point.
So, for $49 with a 5 year warranty... I'm willing to see how long it lasts (even with it being an Exide). The motorhome is not used during periods of extreme temperatures. It is never used in temperatures above 90 degrees, or below 50 degrees, and it isn't exposed to high underhood temperatures.http://www.ruralking.com/battery-650-cca-34-78-dt.html