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Discussion Starter #1
OK did a search for battery replacement suggestions for 05 Element. Got going around in a circle. Someone suggests Interstate, another Optima, another Die Hard. So I decided to do some research of my own. On the top of my battery it says manufactured by Johnson controls.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Did a google for Johnson Controls battery. Seems Johnson Controls makes batteries for just about everyone, including Interstate, Optima.

Johnson Controls has emerged as the largest automotive battery manufacturer in North America. Johnson Controls now supplies original equipment batteries for leading automakers, including DaimlerChrysler, Ford, Honda, Nissan, and Toyota. A stable of leading battery brands, including DieHard, Duralast, Interstate, ProStart, and Everstart, along with others, all bear Johnson Controls signature. Aftermarket service is also important, and customers represented in this segment of the market include AutoZone, Interstate Battery, Sears, Wal-Mart, and Costco. Of course, it is not just automobiles that need batteries to start. This may be the biggest market, but Johnson Controls also produce batteries for other applications such as marine, lawn and garden, commercial, motorcycle, wheelchair, and golf cart use. Johnson Controls also produces a battery under the brand name OPTIMA.

Read thru the different posts such a replacing with the Optima, also read the post where Interstate bought the Optima brand but I find it odd that Interstate is really just marketing batteries made by Johnson, so did they really buy Optima, more misinformation in some of the posts.

So basically it comes down to finding a a bit bigger battery with more CCA and going to a retailer or dealer with a good return policy.
 

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Went shopping for batteries, first stop Walmart. Original is Group 51 - 430CCA. Walmart carries Energizer, on the battery it says the name Energizer is licensed by Johnson Controls. They carry 2 models, regular Energizer and Energizer Max 500CCA. Max is 10 year warranty, 3 year full replacement. $96Cdn. Next stop Canadian Tire, carry the 51, Eliminator Can Tire house brand $99 10yr and 3 year replacement. 500CCA. Also says Johnson Controls on battery. Then over to Costco. Look at the catalog, printed by Johnson Controls. 51 - 500CCA for $69, 100mth warranty 3 year replace. Bought the Costco battery. May be difficult to find any batteries made by anyone other than Johnson, so unless I work in the Johnson plant and see what goes in the battery I'd be hard pressed to make a suggestion to anyone as to what battery to buy. Only other way would be to go to one sized for a Honda Pilot or with an Optima (double the price) or deep cycle Marine battery.
 

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While most batteries are probably coming from this plant it is important to remember that each one will be built to the customers spec of internal components. Similar with ordering anything out of china, the device will look identical but will have different internals which either make or break the dependability of the battery.

Interstate Batts are expensive but you are buying the ability to warrant the battery at over 10000 shops in the U.S. so if you are on vacation and it goes....no problem. Interstates are great batts!

Napa maint free batts carry a similar easy swap warranty and come in at almost have the price. Great batts!

Duralast......I have seen too many bad batches over the years
Valuecraft.......Too many bad batches and weird cell issues
Die Hard......An all american name with decent dependability
 

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I actually think interstates suck, particularly in cold weather, but thats my personal opinion. That said my E was purchased with an interstate in it which thus far has not had any problems....

Anyone of the better Johnson Controls batterys are fine for most people.

I like the Die hards myself, and Fords motorcrafts have never failed me.
 

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Costco has the Kirkland Signature battery with great warranty. Works like a charm and low price too.
 

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battery choices

Costco has the Kirkland Signature battery with great warranty. Works like a charm and low price too.
Consumer Reports just did a test on Automotive batteries: Costco Kirkland brand got very high ratings, and "best buy"
When my original battery bites the dust, I'll be borrowing someones costco card to get one of those.
Josh:cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
While most batteries are probably coming from this plant it is important to remember that each one will be built to the customers spec of internal components. Similar with ordering anything out of china, the device will look identical but will have different internals which either make or break the dependability of the battery.
Its like the great urban myth. As I mentioned before, unless you work in the plant or have insider knowledge how can you possibly know this to be a fact. If its custom built it will be more expensive. In all probability Johnson has maybe 2 or 3 standard designs to choose. Not likely that Walmart or Costco are going to suggest custom designs.
 

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Its like the great urban myth. As I mentioned before, unless you work in the plant or have insider knowledge how can you possibly know this to be a fact. If its custom built it will be more expensive. In all probability Johnson has maybe 2 or 3 standard designs to choose. Not likely that Walmart or Costco are going to suggest custom designs.

It is no different than the big tire companys making off brand tires for smaller companies. They may look like the same tire but you get lower quality along with the lower price.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
That may be the case for companies that sell competing tires under their own brand name. Goodyear. Firestone. Kumho. Again do you work in the factory? Have you seen any Johnson batteries? Have you taken apart any tires and compared them, likewise any batteries dissasembled to check.
 

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That may be the case for companies that sell competing tires under their own brand name. Goodyear. Firestone. Kumho. Again do you work in the factory? Have you seen any Johnson batteries? Have you taken apart any tires and compared them, likewise any batteries dissasembled to check.
I don't work in a factory. Never have....likely never will.

Have i seen johnson batteries? Yes i have. I handle them every day. Interstate is the batterie supplier for Honda Canada. Have you ever looked in the interstate catalog to see how many different batteries they make? It is more than a few. I will be the first to admit i am far from an expert....But after over 20 years in the parts business dealing with batteries,tires and anything else related to a car on a daily basis you tend to learn a few things along the way.
 

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WE ARE OFF AND RUNNING !!

Another topic, that like oil, and tires will produce many passionate responses.

I don't like Royal Blue oil because my car's engine blew the day after I put it in! Those tires are junk! My car slid across 27 lanes of heavy traffic, jumped the guard rail, then went over The water falls before hitting the black cat next to the cop car !!!

We have all had a bad experience with one thing or another. That's why I like to read the posts from OUR Element Owners. The quality of any given part, is reported by our members. The good as well as the bad. I have found that, If you take the time to sort through it all, it pays off.

I have had good luck with the Allstate brand ( Sears ). Others have not! We are now looking to replace Patty's Battery in her 05 E. So I have been reading all the related threads. I have also spoken to several members in person over the last 8 months knowing that this was coming.

The results of my research, in this instance, has been much like that of mariekonkins ! Confusing at best. It has narrowed down to Sears, or Walmart.

Why those ? Availability of warranty locations within my wife's range of travel.

For me that is more of a factor than the overall longevity of the battery. I want my wife to be able to get a replacement easily, in the event of failure. That in view of the fact that I may not be with her in her travels.

Dom
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Excellent Dom.five, easy to get caught by marketing. My yogurt is better than theirs because we have B.S. Regularis and the name is trademarked so that means its better. I had an Interstate battery in our 91 Camry that conked out and was replaced under warranty, but it was $125 and has the same warranty as the one I just picked up from Costco for $69. Double the price? Sorry I'll take the $69 battery because Costco has an excellent return policy.

Lizzurd, think you missed the point about Johnson selling batteries under the Johnson brand name. Interstate is not a Johnson brand. Interstate buys batteries from Johnson. I haven't seen any Johnson batteries. They sell Optima, Varta in Europe and LTH in Central & South America. Here is an interesting pdf about the LTH brand.

http://www.johnsoncontrols.com/publ...7247.File.dat/LTH Fact Sheet_FINAL_1-5-09.pdf

Notice LTH designed for original equipment customers and better than basic warranty. Seems anything with a 10 year warranty is probably the same battery off the assembly line. If it has a longer warranty then it is probably LTH Hi Tec or Heavy Duty. I have yet to see Walmart, Costo, Sears, Canadian Tire or Interstate with more than a 10 year warranty.
 

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johnson control makes many different levels of batteries for interstate and other companies. have i looked in them, yes. weighed them, talked to johnson control people and major battery recyclers.
if you are interested in made in america, jc has some factories in the states, some in mexico. look at the higher end interstate for made in america.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Go to interstatebatteries.com and look up batteries for your Element. I did, for 2005, Megatron 51R, 75 Month 500CCA. List 115.95USD, Sugg Retail. 96.95.

No higher end choices.

Tried 2008 Element - 2 choices. 1 low end, 1 higher.

Interstate - 65 Months - 425 CCA
Megatron - 75 Months - 500CCA.

All of the batteries I looked at had better warranties, at Walmart 10yr, Costco 100 Months, Cdn Tire 10 years.

Of course Made in America. I'm sure Johnson wouldn't want to pay for shipping from out of country. What does a battery weigh 50 - 100 lbs minimum.

I'm on the road right now. Charged the battery after I picked it up from Costco. Tested it when I got it home and battery tester showed 3 cells in the red and 3 in the white, no green. After a day of charging, couple cells just out of the red. Decided to install
it and test it after I get home. Trip of about 600 miles.
 

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OEM battery finally kicked the bucket.... 4 yrs, not bad. I went with the Auto-Start from Wlly world. A) 60 month warranty and, B) theres a wally world just about every where so if theres a problem.... Any who.. $70.02.
 

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Why would you want me to post the catalog?
I wouldn't ask you to do anything of the sort. But when I see a list of battery types "compared" using only marketing verbiage, it makes me wonder why the manufacturer chose not to include objective (i.e., useful) info.
 
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