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Battery Life #5075786 04/15/19 12:49 PM
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borgward Offline OP
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2013 Ford Fiesta SE 5 speed. The battery has been in my car since I bought the Fiesta new. It is almost 6 years old. No problems. Beginning to get a little corrosion on the negative post. How do I assess the health of the Battery (Motocraft BXT-96R-500) How can I tell when the battery needs to be replaced short of it refusing to work. That exact battery is no longer available. Back in the day I learned to disregard paying for many year batteries, and just buy the heaviest one of the same physical size (lead acid ones). Is that still the way to go, or has technology of lead acid batteries changed quite a bit. There is a peep hole on the top of the battery, but I don't know how to interpret what it displays. Nothing in the owners manual about it.

Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5075792 04/15/19 12:55 PM
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bdcardinal Online Content
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That same battery is readily available. They have the 96R in a 500 and a 590 cca, BXT-96R-500 and BXT-96R-590 respectively. They will have the red label to indicate they are a replacement as opposed to the black label that comes on the batteries installed at the factory.


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Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5075839 04/15/19 01:41 PM
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JMJNet Offline
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You can load test the battery to determine the health of the battery.

Unfortunately, most of us do the test when the battery is already bad.

As far as availability, you just need to go the part store when the battery needs changing.
They have an application guide that can match your current battery size with what they have.
2013 is not considered an old car by today standard.
Unless this is a hybrid car battery, then that is a different story.

Last edited by JMJNet; 04/15/19 01:43 PM.

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Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5075889 04/15/19 02:30 PM
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StevieC Offline
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The proper thing to do is clean up the corrosion first and then have the battery load tested.
Most oil change places and auto-parts stores will do this for free for you.

If the battery is 60% or less that what it's rated for, given its age I would replace it.

A weak battery can put excess stress on your vehicles charging system and wreak havoc with electronic systems in high load situations.


Last edited by StevieC; 04/15/19 02:32 PM.

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Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5075904 04/15/19 02:38 PM
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If you have a multi-meter you can test the battery. Car off, it should read 12.6 volts of above. Car on, you're reading the alternator charging the battery which should be 13.7-14.7 v. Baking soda and water should take the corrosion off. Six years is pretty good for a battery in Texas.

I think you have a size 96R in that car. If the lead acid battery lasted 6+ years, I see no reason to look at AGM or other options.

Re: Battery Life [Re: StevieC] #5076322 04/15/19 11:47 PM
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Panos Offline
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Originally Posted by StevieC

If the battery is 60% or less that what it's rated for, given its age I would replace it.
A weak battery can put excess stress on your vehicles charging system


That is not true.A worn battery has reduced capacity ,which results in less amperage flowing from the alternator to the battery.The battery reaches the desired voltage sooner (because it cannot store as much energy as it would when new).It's like a smaller battery got installed instead of the original.

Problems do arise with weak batteries (my car gets into limp mode and you cannot control the throttle pedal at all despite the fact that the starter can engage quite normally) but charging system stress is not one of them.

Unfortunately,it is not an easy task to determine how much life a battery has in order to get the full potential from it.
My batteries last 7 or more years with occasional charges or long trips (plus a solar maintainer on the car).Never got stranded anywere from a dead battery yet,but sometimes cell shortage occurs and that's it.Now you start your car normally, half an hour later you have no battery power at all.I guess if someone is afraid of this matter to happen,he could get a portable lithium-ion battery to jump start his car if needed.They are reasonably cheap very lightweight and pretty small in size.


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Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5076469 04/16/19 07:03 AM
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StevieC Offline
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I disagree. I've seen enough alternators screwed up from a weak battery especially Honda's where they like to run undersized (IMO) batteries.

It's especially problematic in smart charging systems that depend on specific voltages to keep the battery properly charged.

Last edited by StevieC; 04/16/19 07:06 AM.

'18 Caravan - 45k KM - AMSOIL SS 0w20, Fram Ultra, TC-W3 500:1
'06 Santa Fe - 535k KM (Retired)

There is no such thing as "lifetime" fluids! mad
Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5262020 11/08/19 06:38 PM
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borgward Offline OP
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Time for a new battery. Autozone said they do not load test battery. They only check to see how much voltage it has. I load tested it my self. I took a VOM to read the battery. The voltage was OK (engine not running, ignition off) I then had somebody start the engine. At first the voltage dropped to 9.6 volts. Supposed to be 10.5 or higher. Is that a good way to load test the battery. Will pick up new motocraft from the dealer tomorrow. $129. $159 at Autozone.

Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5263610 11/10/19 07:25 PM
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Donald Offline
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Originally Posted by borgward
Time for a new battery. Autozone said they do not load test battery. They only check to see how much voltage it has. I load tested it my self. I took a VOM to read the battery. The voltage was OK (engine not running, ignition off) I then had somebody start the engine. At first the voltage dropped to 9.6 volts. Supposed to be 10.5 or higher. Is that a good way to load test the battery. Will pick up new motocraft from the dealer tomorrow. $129. $159 at Autozone.


I think the AutoZone person who said they do not load test and only measure voltage misspoke or was uninformed. They may no longer have a true load tester that puts a 100 amp load or 1/2 the CCA on the battery. But they almost certainly have a Midtronics conductive battery tester.


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Re: Battery Life [Re: borgward] #5266848 11/14/19 09:23 AM
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alarmguy Online Content
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6 year old battery? I wouldn't think twice about it if it is good or bad. I replace batteries around every 4 years at the most, southern heat closer to 3 years, whether is needs it or not. :o)
Its just a battery, a strong battery makes life easier on your vechicles electric system. Wouldn't keep a battery in my flashlight for 4 years either :o)

Last edited by alarmguy; 11/14/19 09:25 AM.

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