8 year battery - normal or fluke?

Had to replace the original battery on my '98 Stratus after 150K miles. Was I lucky it lasted so long, or is this now considered normal lifetime?

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On Tue, 02 May 2006 21:29:21 -0400, Elko Tchernev

On an American vehicle, it is much better than average.Some Japanese batteries make 8 years with some regularity. ***

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wrote:

"normal" lifetime is closer to 4 years. I'd say you probably live in a battery-friendly climate and drive the car regularly...

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I just last week replaced the original equipment battery on my '99 LHS.

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Elko Tchernev wrote:

The original battery on my 1998 Stratus lasted 7 years. The Autozone replacement *Duralast* in my 1990 Dodge Spirit is going on 9 years.

It used to be that 4 to 5 years was the max for original batteries.

-Kirk Matheson

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Depends on climate and a lot of other things. I think behavior like that wasn't uncommon when I was in Seattle; it would be unheard of for me now in the desert.

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Joseph J. Pfeiffer, Jr., Ph.D. Phone -- (505) 646-1605
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Joe Pfeiffer wrote:

Thanks to all who replied. So it's not such a rare thing then, provided the climate is not extreme. Well, since the car has been living between Baltimore and New York, I guess that's the case, and battery life of 6 to 9 years is not surprising. Joe, are you saying that heat is detrimental to batteries in the long run? I was thinking cold is bad just for the moment (decreased capacity only while it's cold), but didn't know what effect heat has (if any).

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writes:

Both heat and cold are very hard on batteries. I would suspect that 4-5 years is still pretty much the rule for OEM batteries and that you got one of the good ones.

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Heat definitely reduces battery life. I googled around for a while and found http://www.mpoweruk.com/life.htm#arrhenius which shows the effect pretty graphically (I don't know what a "tubular ironclad" lead-acid bettery is, and it's pretty clearly either something very different from what we put in our cars or else the X-axis should be labeled in months rather than years, but the graph shows the qualitative effect anyway).

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Department of Computer Science FAX -- (505) 646-1002
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My '95 Concord battery lasted 5 yrs., the typical battery life span for me over many years of driving. It's replacement is still going strong, at 6 yrs. I bought a much better replacement for the original, as large a capacity battery as the holder would take. Original batteries are usually a fairly small size.

My wife's Sebring battery is soon 5 yrs., but since she drained it to nothing twice due to leaving the trunk open, I don't expect much from it. The Sebring trunk doesn't pop up when unlocked and the driver warning is very poor- the CD player msg panel says "deck"! We won't know till the end if it even looks clean on top, it's hidden in front of the left front wheel. An ugly location for a battery, but better that those cars that have it in the trunk. I had 3 VW Beetles and never did like having the battery under the rear seat. I occasionally could smell fumes from those batteries.

Letting a battery go dead and leaving it dead for some time is not the best for it's life. When we bought a '97 Daytona it had been sitting in the dealers back lot and the battery was very dead. I requested a new battery and caught them not replacing the dead one as I had identified it. Their replacement "new" only lasted 4 yrs, so I expect they put another drained one in it.

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I always ripped the back seat out and put in a big American car battery in a plastic vented hot rod battery box.

The trunk is the best place for a battery IMO.

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wrote:

When the battery on my '49 VW died in Zambia, I crank started it for a month or so until the battery on the big Leyland lorry died. It had one bad cell on the one end, so I hacksawed the post off, and fastened it to the center cell link so I had a good 6 volt battery. Pulled out the back seat and stuffed THAT in it's place. That monster must have weighed pretty durn close to 100 lbs!!

Never had any cranking problems from then on -------

***

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I am still running the original battery in my 97 Intrepid. Climate is South Eastern Ontario so it does see the cold! Mark

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On Tue, 02 May 2006 21:29:21 -0400, Elko Tchernev

Here in southern Nevada battery life is short. Winter parking up in the mountains for snowshoeing drop the battery temp to the 30's and the summers in town take it up into the 110+ range. I got 2 years max on OEM batteries.

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