Before we go ahead and jump into the optima batteries review we want to basically give an idea of what we did to decide which batteries for cars are currently the best on the market. We are huge fans of the optima red top battery series, however there are tons of other car battery brands on the market that preform similar or better than the optima battery. In this review, we reviewed various brands then we composed this list of best car battery performers. Brands included in this are Kinetic, XS Power Batteries, Odyssey, and more. We did our best to get the best review so it is not too difficult for you to make a perfect decision, such that you don’t end up with something that may not work for you.
What makes Optima Batteries different?
One important thing that sticks the optima battery out from other brands is the way the battery is built and composed. The components in the optima battery are 99.9% pure lead, this purity allows optima to undergo and conduct electricity a lot faster. When electricity in a car battery flows faster you get faster recharge as well as retention of voltage. Optima red top as well as the other series have a patented spiral-cell Technology which allows the car battery to undergo harsh conditions and be vibration resistant. This is very important especially if you are in harsh environments or conditions and trying to get your car battery to start up or power up. It is also important for maintenance as vibration resistance also allows the car battery to be maintained over a long period of time. The case of the optima red top batteries have completely sealed cases which prevents any leaks and prevents contamination. Last and most importantly the optima battery series has twice the life of an average agm battery!
How do Car batteries work, Lead, AGM, And Wet-Cell?
When it comes to car batteries there are many different makes and builds of batteries. We will go through that later in the review however in general it is important for you as the savy auto guru to know how a car battery actually works. The basic function of a lead acid battery is when lead plates inside the battery react with the acid or the electrolyte. This converts chemical energy into electrical energy. Now when it comes to the modern car battery market the best builds that seem to be taking over this hundred year old lead acid build is the AGM battery.
The Agm battery or the absorbed glass matt battery is a newer and more innovative way of how batteries produce energy. This design allows the electrolyte to suspend and be in very close relation to the plates active material. Agm batteries tend to cost twice as much more than the wet cell batteries we described below, however they are more safer to use, last longer, and more than usual are maintenance free. When it comes to versatility and longevity it is no secret AGM batteries are the way to go and will provide you with much more bang for your buck as opposed to a lead acid battery. However more often than not you may also have to purchase an additional charging unit for your battery if you decide to go with the agm route. In the current and future markets we are seeing that agm batteries are starting to go on an upward trend and are becoming more popular than the gell cell or lead acid battery. This is most likely due to the fact that these batteries have a longer lifespan and usage rate than the average non agm battery. Not only that AGM batteries are known for being able to last and deal with harsh temperatures and multiple application types. What this does is it improves and upgrades the recharge and discharge efficiency. Agm batteries are implemented in several ways and some of them include:
- high performance engine starting
- power sports
- deep cycle
- solar and storage battery
More than often users of agm batteries claim that it is best to make sure that agm batteries are discharged to no less than fifty percent of the discharge rate which usually allows for 300 or more cylces.
The wet cell battery are another version of the lead acid battery however is built in two different styles, primarily these two styles includes a maintenance free version and a serviceable version. They are both filled to the rim with electrolytes and are quite frankly the same. The only problem with a wet cell battery when it comes in comparison to an AGM battery is the fact that agm batteries most likely won’t degrade or sulfate like a wet cell battery. What can happen is that in a wet cell battery there can possibly be a small hydrogen gas explosion which I am sure not many of us would every want to experience.
What to look for when buying a Car Battery
Now that we broke down the unique attributes of optima car batteries lets look at what traits we specifically look at when purchasing a car battery. Keep in mind these are the general guidelines we follow when it comes to picking any good agm car battery, as optima is not the only batteries that we test and use. We know that with all the different kinds of batteries out there on the market finding the right kind of agm car battery is very difficult. It can get a bit confusing and sometimes not doing enough research may cause you to waste hard earned cash on a battery that may not even be compatible with your car battery.
- The make of the battery: Among-st the market and stock cars you will come to find out the most popular kind of battery make is the wet or flooded battery model. Then there are valve regulated lead acid batteries which are made up of gel batteries. Lastly there are Absorbed glass mat batteries also known as AGM batteries. There are also other kinds of batteries like the deep-cycle battery which sometimes is combined with an AGM type battery such as some optima batteries are.
- How batteries preform: There are some terms you need to familiarize yourself with when it comes to buying a battery. You need to specifically know the group size, reserve capacity, and cold cranking amps. Reserve capacity refers to the amount of time a car can run on a battery say if the alternator gives up o you. Cold Cranking Amps also known as CCA tells you how well a battery can preform in cold weather. And lastly group size is the size of the battery and its power terminals. You can always check with your make of car to see what kind of group size it requires.
- Reserve Capacity: Reserve capacity is very important as it tells us the amount of time in minutes that a fully charged battery at the regulated temperature of 80 degrees Fahrenheit will discharge twenty-five amps until the battery dips below 10.5 volts.
- amp hour: this rating is usually and most often found on deep cycle batteries with the standard ah rating being taken from twenty hours. This basically means that if a battery is rated at 100 AH, from 20 hours the battery will give you a total of one hundred amp-hours. As a result and if you do the basic elementary math you are getting about five amps an hour.
- Maintenance of battery, is a very important aspect of any car battery when you decide to purchase a good long lasting piece of equipment. Many people browse through agm battery reviews and tend to over look this aspect without having any concern as to what it is that they are getting themselves into. The thing is no matter what you do you will have to try to maintain your battery to some extent. Make sure you check out our DIY guide on how to maintain your car battery here.
- Testing your battery, testing your battery is a great thing to do upon ordering an AGM battery. It is also recommended by experts at AutoZone to periodically test your battery from time to time. The best way to test your car battery and to make sure it is up to performance would probably be by testing the battery voltage and specific gravity.
- Price if you are looking for a car battery that preforms well don’t expect anything under $100 for a quality battery.
With all these specifications, what do we recommend to you as our reader when it comes to selecting the best AGM car battery for you or for any other use? Here is what we recommend.
- Purchase a battery with a high reserve capacity and or with an amp hour rating that is high.
- If you are looking to operate your devices in harsh conditions and extreme loads we recommend to definitely go with an agm battery rather than a wet cell battery.
- Try not to purchase your car batteries used or refurbished, as the fresher a battery the better it will be and the longer it will last. You can do this by checking the date of manufacturing for the battery before purchasing it and this can be made available quite often on amazon.
- Look for battery warranties as this can not be stressed enough, simple fact is your car battery may break down and when it does there is usually no going back. Get a good battery that has full replaceable warranty. When we reviewed the best agm batteries on the market right now, we made sure to include the fact if a warranty was included or not.
- Performance and lifespan of a battery is very important, for most of the batteries we reviewed we stated this important factor, and the higher the better.
- When it comes to cold cranking amps and reserve capacity it depends completely on you as the user as to what you want to do with your application. For more extreme and harsh applications you are obviously going to want to have higher numbers in this area.
Best AGM Car Battery 2018
The optima 25 red top battery is one of the most powerful and versatile batteries out on the market at the moment. Your looking at a completely vibration free agm battery that is build to withstand harsh weather conditions as well as leakage and maintenance. The high power and starting ability is perfect for any power heavy task. It is great for all sorts of activities from hot rodding to power hungry vehicles which may have a sounds system, hydraulics and other power needy tasks. The battery has a CCA or cold cranking amps of 720 and is for the BCI group size of 25. Installing the battery is extremely simple and you don’t need to be a car expert to do so. Any beginner can install this battery and start experiencing the power of this from the beginning.
- Very strong starting burst with more than fifteen times vibration resistance than most agm car battieres.
- Built from spiral wound cells which are comprised of lead oxide coated plates with one being positive and one being negative.
- Workes well in most cars, trucks, and motorcycles without any issues and or problems.
- This battery unit is completely maintenance free with up to twice the longer lifetime than the average agm battery.
- When you charge the battery you can expect it to be done really fast as it has twice the charging speed of any battery.
- When it comes to durability it is 15x the vibration resistance and has a spill proof and can be mounted in any position desired by the user..
- Impressive delivery system that is extremely high power and resistant to factors that would cause most if not all other batteries to go completely out of commission.
- Additional Details
- The warranty on the battery is generally one year, however can be extended up to 3 years if purchased through amazon.
- Battery may or may not come fully charged upon arrival.
When it comes to the odyssey battery pc925 we may not be looking at a high CCA level (330) however this battery has massive starting power. Not only does the odyssey 925 battery have massive starting power but it also has rapid recovery and powerful deep cycling capabilities. While optima batteries have twice the life of conventional batteries odyssey pc925 claims to have twice the overall power of most conventional batteries. The battery is composed of pure virgin lead plates which allow for optimized recycling and maximum surface area on the battery. Similar to the red top optima battery the pc925 does not have an issue with spills or corrosion. We tested this battery out in a Porsche turbo and we were blown away by the power in this guy. The starting off the bat was more powerful than any conventional battery. The only downside to the odyssey pc925 is the low CCA, however if your not too concerned about cold cranking amps this is definitely a battery to look into. To read buyer reviews click here.
- Despite this being a LTV battery the Odyssey 925 was a battery we decided to review alongside AGM batteries because of the rapid recovery and massive starting system. All though you won’t get the benefits of an AGM starting battery the odyssey battery definitely outshines many batteries in its league.
- The build of this battery has several plates within it so this allows for more plate surface area which leads to more power over all.
- The battery works great with high preformance cards, off roading vehicles, modified vehicles and much much more. The high integrity seal allows it to accomplish all of these things without much hassle.
- Despite being a LTV battery it also is a hybrid of the AGM style count and lives up to both categories.
- Delivers over 40 percent more power and reserve capacity than other batteries in its category.
- Rather than using spiral wound technology like most other ltv or agm batteries the odyssey battery utilizes surface area and this allows for less dead space between cylinders and more overall power.
- Has around 400 cycles at 80 percent depth discharge which allows for long usage and less hassle.
- Plates are made of pure virgin lead which is much more effective than alloy material in many cases.
- Very long service life, around 3 to 10 years of service life paired with a 3 to 4 year full replacement warranty.
- Non spill-able design with flexibility in mounting capabilities.
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- The item cannot be returned after buying however this should not be an issue as there is a full replacement warranty upon purchase.
Similar to the odyssey 925 battery or the optima red top review battery the exide edge agm battery the exide edge battery is also AGM sealed. When it comes to the cold cranking amps we are looking at a good 710 CCA which is higher than odyssey and thus is more durable in stop and go traffic. The higher CCA level also allows this battery to outshine the odyssey battery 925 in harsh weather. All though the total life time of this battery is not comparable to the odyssey which will most likely last longer, this battery is known to protect against battery failure when needed. When it comes to the exide battery it is more costly than an optima red top series. If you are looking for a battery that packs the punch in extreme weather this would be a great battery to consider.
- One of the only AGM battery brands to feature the unique patented Surelife Graphite Technology. This allows for maximum energy capacity and enables the agm battery to preform at high levels in longer periods of time.
- Passed one of the toughest automotive stress tests to ensure that the battery is fully stable and powerful and lives up to its claimes.
- The construction is of non-spillable AGM design.
- Great capacity in order for the battery to with hold heavy loads for longer periods of time.
- When it comes to other Agm batteries the exide edge battery tends to out preform them when it comes to stop and go traffic which often requires high electrical demands.
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- No cons for this one!
When it comes to high power the Xs battery preforms extremely well in this category. The design of the xs battery is a bit different from the other agm batteries as the electrolytes in the xs battery are suspended in fiberglass. This allows for additional spill and leakage prevention as well as vibration resistance like the optima red top battery series. This is a great battery for any power hungry vehicle that has an demanding hydraulics or stereo system. The battery itself produces more than enough power, in fact more than you most likely will need. With a CCA of 1,000 you are going to have very great performance on start up as well as in extreme weather conditions. The ultra low internal resistance is a key feature that makes the xs power d3400 stand out from others and is probably one of the reasons the battery is priced a bit on the higher range. The battery is a bit heavier than conventional car batteries weighing in at 48.8 lbs. Besides the price and the weight which are a bit higher the battery is a beast in power.
- If you are willing to pay the high price tag this battery makes all the other AGM batteries including the optima series look like duracell batteries. This is one powerful battery and you get what you pay for!
- Includes an M6 terminal bolt which allows you to bolt it up right out of the box.
- Very long life span this battery is meant to last an average of 10+ years, when compared to other batteries that is a very long time!
- The battery itself is a hefty 12 Volts with a CA of 1,000 and Ah of 65.
- Advanced AGM design which we covered earlier in the article.
- Very low internal resistance which allows the battery to preform in very harsh and heavy circumstances.
- Mountable in any desired position
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- More pricier than other AGM battery models, however you get what you pay for when it comes to this model.
When it comes to price, durability, and performance it really is quite difficult for any AGM battery to compete with the optima line. Despite the optima red top preforming extremely well we sometimes forget another major player in the game, the yellow top optima battery. The D51 optima battery includes all the bells and jingles of the patented spiral cell design which allows for clean long lasting power, vibration resistance, and safety for your family. This yellow top battery is perfect for seasonal vehicles which you may not be using at all times due to the low self discharge rate. If you are a forgetful person and seem to always keep your car head lights on or leave the radio running, the optima yellow top d51 will not fail on you and start up your car like it had been turned off completely. Our recommendation to anyone with an OEM battery is to replace it immediately with a d51 battery. Why is that? From the get go your going to be saving time and money maintenance. Despite using a power hungry car or leaving lights on, or doing other activities that may drain battery power the optima yellow top is able to jump into action within Milli-seconds. Despite the CCA being on the lower end which is 450 CCA the battery still preforms exceptionally well in harsh weathers. If you live in an extremely hot or cold climate you will be blasting the AC system, this is power intensive and will take away performance from the rest of the car. However with the optima yellow top D51 this will no longer be an issue.
- The optima yellow top agm battery is one of the few batteries that we can truely consider to be a dual purpose battery. This means that it has premium cranking power that is bent on serving accessory-loaded vehicles.
- Works great with all kinds of commercial vehicles, heavy equipment, high demand electronics, and audio systems.
- Since it is dual purpose it works great with forklifts and tractors as well.
- Has around three times longer life span than the average dual purpose battery and also is maintenance free.
- When it comes to vibration resistance it is similar to the red top counterpart and has fifteen times more vibration resistance.
- Fast recharging and has about three hundred recharge and discharge cycles.
- Spiral cell technology like all the other optima batteries which allows it to be ahead of the game in its class.
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- There have been some issues when it comes to fitting this battery into a honda civic or a toyota prius so we recommend that you check your car model and pairing before purchasing this battery.
When it comes to all the batteries we have tested these five that we have reviewed do not only have popularity in the market of agm batteries but they preform exactly as they claim. While some manufacturers may actually fluff up the performance of their line of batteries the optima battery, odyssey pc925, exide edge agm battery, xs power battery, and the optima yellow top preform at user expectations if not higher. We personally recommend optima red top batteries as we have had great user experience with them in terms of performance and longevity. Not only that but to take care of the optima battery such as cleaning it and maintaining it is made easy and simple by the optima battery charger that usually accompanies it. Many car batteries will not have a good battery charger that accompanies it which can prove to make it difficult for new users to maintain. In terms of price, performance, and ease of use the optima red top series shines high over our expectations. Now with that being said, if you are more experienced with car batteries, and are looking for advanced performance the other batteries reviewed above may be better for you. For example the XS agm battery is a beast in performance. In fact this is one of the top batteries used on the nascar race tracks when it comes to power and use. However this may not be as easy to set up or maintain for someone who is new to the world of car batteries. Despite that fact the battery is much more powerful than lets say an optima yellow top battery. Again this is all based on user preference and what works best for you, the primary reason for these reviews is to give you a good starting point of where to look for your batteries and not to get a battery that under-preforms.
Which Car battery should I choose?
Like we stated above this is up to the user and what they are looking for. However any of the above batteries will not fail you in performance, maintenance, or cost. We would recommend checking out the above batteries and see for yourselves what the buyers have said after purchasing the batteries to make a purchase decision. Our reviews were based on tests we did in our warehouse and what kind of performance we got in a short period of time. However reading the reviews of the long term customers of these batteries will give you a great idea of what to expect. It all comes down to what kind of vehicle you have, what you use your vehicle for, and other factors. Feel free to brows our site to learn more about AGM batteries if you need to become well versed before making a decision.
Runner Ups: Agm Battery Reviews
The optima battery product line has a vast variety of models which serve different purposes. Here are some other models we got to test out, since there are so many models out there we decided to do a quick summary review on some of the top models from the optima battery line. These runner up models may not be as famous as the agm batteries we reviewed above however they sure give them a good run for their money!
The optima Red top 35 battery is designed from the ground up with a high withstanding to harsh weather and other conditions. This optima battery is perfect for those who are looking to do off roading with out risking any kinds of damage to the battery or leak. The battery includes the optima patented spiral-cell design which provides tough and strong vibration resistance which is great for someone who knows they will be under going harsh conditions. This also allows the family and the environment to stay safe from any kinds of damage or harm. Like other optima battery models this battery the 8020-164 red top battery has a higher reserve capacity which gives a longer shelf life to the battery when you need it. The reserve capacity on this agm deep cycle battery has a reserve capacity of 90 minutes which gives a constant and powerful performance. Unlike other agm batteries, the 35 red top model has fifteen times more resistant vibrations for longer lasting and product performance. The battery also has a 720 Cold cranking amps in order to protect the battery in the cold and extreme weather when needed.
- One of the ultimate starting batteries designed to give you a powerful burst of ignition when you need it most, and that is when you are looking for a reliable start up!
- Able to withstand hard launches and extreme corners which is really really important when it comes to having a battery that does not break down on you when you need it the most.
- Generally able to outlast most other batteries on the market and has a high recognition in the market of best agm batteries of being able to withstand and handle the powerful applications posed by trucks and other automotive.
- Like may other optima batteries we reviewed this little guy has the patented spiral cell technology which means that the lead plates are coated with a precise coating of lead oxide keeping it in pristine condition all year long.
- Completely sealed battery which means no water and being able to with-hold a large amount of charges.
- Handles extreme temperatures and weathers from extreme mountain weather to other kinds of terrible and difficult conditions.
- Versatile in its applications and the different kinds of cars it can fit in.
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- Some buyers claim that this battery did not last long, we were unable to verify if these are true or false reports as ours lasted up until now due to due diligence and care.
The Vmax agm deep cycle battery has a different build that we are used to in comparison to the optima battery build which is a bit different. The unique chemical and physical structure of this battery’s plate is alot different than most agm batteries. One of the unique differences about this battery is the Pb-CA plates which are used which allows the battery to preform at much higher levels than average AGM deep cycle batteries. The VMAX battery plates is an addition to the build which allows the battery to have much more of a higher performance than other batteries. The electrolytes within the battery are completely absorbed into the absorbed glass mat design which keeps it completely free from spilling and hazardous spillage. The tough tank seal is able to protect the plates which are tightly packed which gives you a fully hundred percent maintenance- free package. This gives the deep cycle battery a much more powerful and makes it one of the best agm batteries on the market. The heavy duty grids on the 12volt 35ah vmax battery allows for an extra margin of performance and service life either in both float or cylclic applications and are even able to be repeated over discharges. This is also a completely maintenance free battery which allows the user to not have to check the specific gravity or the electrolyte or add water to the battery during the service life. The only downside is that you will need to make sure you get a compatible vmax charger for the battery.
- One of the main things that really stood out for us when testing this hefty agm battery out was the fact that I could do whatever I wanted and not ever worry about getting any maintenence done on the battery. This battery is completely maintenance free which means you really don’t have to do anything, zero zilch. Yes you hear me that means use the battery and let it sit!
- Unlike the other gizmos we reviewed vmax has something called heavy duty grids, which are basically tin alloys which provide an extra margin of performance when it comes to cylic or float operations.
- The plates in the VMAX batteries are made of tin-lead alloy which means that the battery will last longer and require less maintenance. The metal these plates are made out of are high quality and very long lasting.
- The battery can pretty much run on inverter power for long amounts of hours. You can basically run this battery on a trolling motor for over four hours and still have more than enough power left once you are done.
- Considerabley smaller and lighter compared to other agm batteries in its price range and able to easily maneuver and fit to your liking when needed.
- When using this battery for trolling motor duty it tends to recharge and last for very long amounts of time which are paramount to anyone who gets involved in these kinds of applications.
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- With that being said despite all the positives of this battery it tends to shine mainly in doing work on trolling motors and canoes. Not the optimal battery for automotive or trucks in that case we would recommend other batteries.
Hailing from the optima blue top line this battery is one of our favorite yet higher priced optima battery models on the market. This battery is considered to be a dual purpose battery which allows for both starting and deep cycle functions. This battery is perfect for people who need a sure starting, maintenance free powersource, and strong cranking. This is perfect for a power source for people who need to use it for a boat or an RV in harsh conditions. Many times people actually end up getting a battery that is not a dual purpose agm battery which can actually end up causing alot of problems if you are using applications that require alot of starting power. For a dual purpose battery the battery has an extremely high shelf life to give power right when you need it. The design is perfect for people that need a battery for recreational vehicles, motor sports, motor boats, and large accessory loads. Another benefit for the blue top optima battery, which makes it one of the best agm battery models on the market is that it can be mounted at any angle since they are completely sealed. This means that the battery does not vent an gas like a flooded battery would. The sealed design allows the battery to prevent from being corroded and can also be used indoors with care. When under heavy load at a charge of 12 volts the battery is able to recharge much faster than most other batteries and does not heat up when charged fast. This is considered one of the best agm batteries for an RV which is why we decided to make sure to include this in our best agm battery list. We highly recommend you guys to check out the other buyer reviews on this battery if you are in possession of an RV or motorboat.
- When it comes to finding a good battery for trolling motors, RVs, and extensive electronic systems you really cannot go wrong with the optima blue top battery series. Provides phenomenal vibration resistance for these kinds of applications is able to handle any and all kinds of deep cycle applications.
- This battery also has a faster recharging time in comparison to other batteries which makes it really optimal for those of you who want to let your battery just be there and not worry about it running low or completely out of power.
- The posts don’t corrode like most regular batteries as it is completely sealed which is a really important aspect of the battery if you are looking for long term usage.
- Has great starting power even when it comes to terrible and horrible weather conditions, this is one of the most resistant and powerful deep cycle batteries from the optima series which is why we recommended this.
- When it comes to vibration resistance you are looking at a minimum of fifteen times the vibration resistance of any other deep cycle battery on the market, again this is a very important way to measure marine battery performance. The higher the vibration resistance the more you will get out of using your battery.
- Reserve capacity of 120 minutes this is very important when it comes to getting constant preformance and power, too often do we hear horror stories of people’s batteries breaking down or having to stop for a re-charge due to a low reserve capacity.
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- When it comes to ordering the battery of amazon be sure to make sure you purchase it directly from amazon or a verified seller. There are some sellers who may sell this model but it may come to you already used up and out of completely of its charge or more.
- 650 Cold cranking ampst with 12Volts of raw power
- Full with a 98 minute reserve capacity for long term usage
- A whopping fifteen times more reistance when it comes to vibration and durability
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After much research on some of the best agm batteries on the market we would have to say that we had a great experience with both optima and odyssey lines of agm batteries. However one thing you have to understand is that many absorbed glass mat batteries cost more than $150. However this is a great investment as the battery will last a long time in comparison to the average lead acid battery or lithium battery. It is much more of a better investment in comparison to any other battery however we also will be taking a look at some of the best agm batteries under $100 in the upcoming days. We want to show our readers that there is an affordable line when it comes to agm battery reviews however they do not preform at as high levels as the batteries listed above.