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Discussion Starter #1
I've been dealing with voltage issues the last week or two as temperatures have hit -40F with wind chill, and I'm certain it's a combination of issues with the battery (didn't know to maintain it and many of the bays were near empty, and some were partially to fully frozen as a result from the cold temps), so I've just relegated to getting a portable battery jumper until I get a new battery (and since I'm not too worried about the extra weight of carrying a jumper around in the winter).

As I'm looking into battery replacement options, I'm trying to find something that:
  • isn't worse with cold weather starting than a maintained OEM battery
  • doesn't require a battery tender (as I don't garage it or have access to an outdoor plug for the time being)
  • won't cut parking mode recording short (automatic shut-off with low battery voltage) as I have my dual dash camera hard-wired
  • is maintenance-free

I'd rather not have to drive it around the block more than once every few days to keep it charged (if I'm not already driving it), but I'm more worried about it not be able to start even just parked overnight (which is currently what I'm dealing with). I see a Group 51R battery mentioned around here as a suitable replacement that's lighter, fits stock mounting, has sufficient power, etc -- but I'm not sure if there's any specifications I should be looking for, or if any battery as such would suffice, as well as whether it would be fine with the aforementioned personal requirements.
 

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I've seen a few threads on here where replacement battery options have been discussed. As long as it provides decent cranking amps (for cold weather starts), and actually fits (the bigger challenge), you should have a few reasonable options available. The OEM battery replacement is insanely expensive, but there are decent priced alternatives. Any chance you're getting parasitic draw from your hard wired dash cam? So long as the rest of the electronics are turned off, you shouldn't have to worryabout the battery dieing after a few days of non-use.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've seen a few threads on here where replacement battery options have been discussed. As long as it provides decent cranking amps (for cold weather starts), and actually fits (the bigger challenge), you should have a few reasonable options available. The OEM battery replacement is insanely expensive, but there are decent priced alternatives. Any chance you're getting parasitic draw from your hard wired dash cam? So long as the rest of the electronics are turned off, you shouldn't have to worryabout the battery dieing after a few days of non-use.
Fair enough -- I'll probably find a 51R like some other members here then. I'm pretty sure it's the battery not being maintained / battery damage / cold weather, as I had the dash cam hardwired for months prior and never had issues. I disconnected my dash cam and boost gauge the last two nights to test this out / to see if it'd make a difference, but still no luck, and I think my current battery just needs replacement. It's an original battery from a 2017 model year and judging by the low amount of water before I added some, it doesn't look like the previous owner ever maintained it.
 

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Personally, I like having a battery I can/must maintain. Why, because I can maintain it. It's there for me so I'm there for it.

The cold temperatures (windchill does not affect the car, just its driver), the ill-maintained battery, outside storage, possible multiple days in said (hopefully shortlived) extreme temps without being run, extra taxing of the battery during shut down... yep, sounds like a recipe for electrical failure.

You can't stop the cold, and that list of items would cause havoc for any vehicle. A new battery may not be the end of the story. The car can't take care of itself, it's our job to go above and beyond in the extreme conditions to care for it.

As I've said before, take care of the car and it will take care of you. I'd recommend a battery you need to maintain. Why? So you can maintain it.

Steve.
 

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I believe an important concern with the battery, and why the OEM is so heavy and large, is that after shutting down the engine, the battery often continues to pump coolant through turbo.
 

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Help is near.....read "124 Spider Basic Ownership Rules....some of where we have a UK recommended replacement Exide battery including number so you should be able to match Stateside, you have most likely "buckled the plates" at the bottom of the OEM old fashioned battery by letting it run dry so the new "No Maintenance" battery will work for you.
I see you have no access to trickle charging so try this.......Once every few (2/3) weeks start the Spider up and run the engine (no revving) until the BLUE cold light goes out (10 mins approx) at least, I run it 15 / 20 mins and the alternator will have time to recharge your battery for you, if you can move the Spider (even a few inches) do so to avoid flat spotting the tyres. Cheers
ron
 

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I believe an important concern with the battery, and why the OEM is so heavy and large, is that after shutting down the engine, the battery often continues to pump coolant through turbo.
Same is true for the Alfa Giulia, with which owners have had many battery issues. Maybe both cars are also more fussy about voltage than their peers?
 

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I am going into my 5th summer with the original battery, and if someone knows anything about the 124 battery, you can include me in. :cool:
I have no issues with winter cause she hibernates. Next battery, it has to hold the charge cause the 124 does drain a battery.
A battery minder is a must for car owners, a 3 AMP is good enough, the slower the charge the better cause it will not put stress on the battery while charging. I use this to charge my batteries.
I personally charge the battery TWICE a year, Spring and before Winter.
My 124 I notice that when comes autumn, I use the car less thus in 3 weeks I notice the car coughs when starting. So I charge it and then I connect the battery minder when winterizing and start it every 4-5 weeks.
My Murano, holds the charge longer, but I do the charge before the winter(make sure car is full energetic) and in spring cause summer I use less this car.

I have to say, my batteries last longer then what they suppose to last. I apply this same method to my life. LOL, I go 2 months south to energise my life battery except this year due to Codiv, I had to stay in the NORTH. I must say I take my 3km or 30min walk rain or shine every day.
 

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I've been dealing with voltage issues the last week or two as temperatures have hit -40F with wind chill, and I'm certain it's a combination of issues with the battery (didn't know to maintain it and many of the bays were near empty, and some were partially to fully frozen as a result from the cold temps), so I've just relegated to getting a portable battery jumper until I get a new battery (and since I'm not too worried about the extra weight of carrying a jumper around in the winter).

As I'm looking into battery replacement options, I'm trying to find something that:
  • isn't worse with cold weather starting than a maintained OEM battery
  • doesn't require a battery tender (as I don't garage it or have access to an outdoor plug for the time being)
  • won't cut parking mode recording short (automatic shut-off with low battery voltage) as I have my dual dash camera hard-wired
  • is maintenance-free

I'd rather not have to drive it around the block more than once every few days to keep it charged (if I'm not already driving it), but I'm more worried about it not be able to start even just parked overnight (which is currently what I'm dealing with). I see a Group 51R battery mentioned around here as a suitable replacement that's lighter, fits stock mounting, has sufficient power, etc -- but I'm not sure if there's any specifications I should be looking for, or if any battery as such would suffice, as well as whether it would be fine with the aforementioned personal requirements.
I replaced my 3 year old factory battery with this Mopar Stop Start one as recommended by Abarth Dealer. It fits the space with only the insulating jacket getting ditched.
Hope that may help?
IMG_20201002_180405.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #11
As I've said before, take care of the car and it will take care of you. I'd recommend a battery you need to maintain. Why? So you can maintain it.
See, the whole point of me wanting a maintenance-free battery is specifically to avoid issues like these, and also because I don't want to be dealing with checking battery levels in freezing temperatures with the poor circulation I have in my hands.

I believe an important concern with the battery, and why the OEM is so heavy and large, is that after shutting down the engine, the battery often continues to pump coolant through turbo.
I've seen a lot of mention of that, and I've also seen a lot of mention saying that as long as the battery can still start the next day, then the battery is sufficient -- in other words, I think the amount needed is overstated? Unless someone can provide a concrete answer either way.

Help is near.....read "124 Spider Basic Ownership Rules....some of where we have a UK recommended replacement Exide battery including number so you should be able to match Stateside, you have most likely "buckled the plates" at the bottom of the OEM old fashioned battery by letting it run dry so the new "No Maintenance" battery will work for you.
I see you have no access to trickle charging so try this.......Once every few (2/3) weeks start the Spider up and run the engine (no revving) until the BLUE cold light goes out (10 mins approx) at least, I run it 15 / 20 mins and the alternator will have time to recharge your battery for you, if you can move the Spider (even a few inches) do so to avoid flat spotting the tyres. Cheers
ron
I read a bit of that, and I'm confused by the Braille battery mention; I've seen at least one member here state that the Braille (B2015) was suitable for daily use / didn't need a tender, and also worked in cold temps. I don't mind keeping a battery jumper handy for REALLY cold days, as it's not a bad idea for me to have handy for when it happens to friends' cars too, but I don't want to be carrying it year-round.

And with the charging, that's what I ended up doing before winter, and when it got closer to winter, I would run it every 2-3 days just to be sure -- although I think here the bigger issue was the battery health / maintenance. During the summer it's a non-issue as I drive it almost every day.

I replaced my 3 year old factory battery with this Mopar Stop Start one as recommended by Abarth Dealer. It fits the space with only the insulating jacket getting ditched.
Hope that may help?
View attachment 81761
I've seen the stop-start model mentioned as an alternative to the original one that's discontinued. How much did it run and is it maintenance-free?
 

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See, the whole point of me wanting a maintenance-free battery is specifically to avoid issues like these, and also because I don't want to be dealing with checking battery levels in freezing temperatures with the poor circulation I have in my hands.


I've seen a lot of mention of that, and I've also seen a lot of mention saying that as long as the battery can still start the next day, then the battery is sufficient -- in other words, I think the amount needed is overstated? Unless someone can provide a concrete answer either way.


I read a bit of that, and I'm confused by the Braille battery mention; I've seen at least one member here state that the Braille (B2015) was suitable for daily use / didn't need a tender, and also worked in cold temps. I don't mind keeping a battery jumper handy for REALLY cold days, as it's not a bad idea for me to have handy for when it happens to friends' cars too, but I don't want to be carrying it year-round.

And with the charging, that's what I ended up doing before winter, and when it got closer to winter, I would run it every 2-3 days just to be sure -- although I think here the bigger issue was the battery health / maintenance. During the summer it's a non-issue as I drive it almost every day.


I've seen the stop-start model mentioned as an alternative to the original one that's discontinued. How much did it run and is it maintenance-free?
Should not be any confusion over the Braille...it's best suited as a Track Day special.....does NOT hold it's charge for every day use as reported by a few members here. Unfortunately the fact that you did not know to check the distilled water plate levels indicates a lack of any knowledge in the battery department so....the advice is there if you want it, otherwise, hope you sort it, Cheers
ron
 

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See, the whole point of me wanting a maintenance-free battery is specifically to avoid issues like these, and also because I don't want to be dealing with checking battery levels in freezing temperatures with the poor circulation I have in my hands.


I've seen a lot of mention of that, and I've also seen a lot of mention saying that as long as the battery can still start the next day, then the battery is sufficient -- in other words, I think the amount needed is overstated? Unless someone can provide a concrete answer either way.


I read a bit of that, and I'm confused by the Braille battery mention; I've seen at least one member here state that the Braille (B2015) was suitable for daily use / didn't need a tender, and also worked in cold temps. I don't mind keeping a battery jumper handy for REALLY cold days, as it's not a bad idea for me to have handy for when it happens to friends' cars too, but I don't want to be carrying it year-round.

And with the charging, that's what I ended up doing before winter, and when it got closer to winter, I would run it every 2-3 days just to be sure -- although I think here the bigger issue was the battery health / maintenance. During the summer it's a non-issue as I drive it almost every day.


I've seen the stop-start model mentioned as an alternative to the original one that's discontinued. How much did it run and is it maintenance-free?
C. £160 and maintenance free. The Stop Start element is to have sufficient power for turbo cooling when you switch off. G
 

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@steve6225 how is the Braille B2015 holding up at this point? I was reading your thread before I came across this
I see there's a B3121 that's even bigger but still half the weight of the stock battery
 

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I drive my car spring through fall. I only pull those battery caps a couple times per season, adding a little distilled water as needed. There is a whole thread on maintaining your battery here on this board.

The charging process separates water into oxygen and hydrogen, venting some portions off to atmosphere (I'll admit to not being fully knowledgeable in this). In a battery that can be maintained, I can replace that missing water and extend the life of the battery. A maintenance free battery- 3 or 4 years on average, esp. in more extreme climates, and it's dead, mainly from loss of water that you cannot replace.

Some research on how maintenance free automotive batteries work may be in order (maybe by me, too!).

Steve.
 

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Here's a great article that talks about how they gradually die on us. Why don’t lead acid batteries last forever? – BatteryGuy.com Knowledge Base
It's a really good artilce and worth the read.

Here's the Reader's Digest Condensed Book version of what they're saying: What happens is that a maintenance free battery, when stored at optimal conditions, will still lose about 3% of it's charge every month and needs to be regularly topped up. So your altenator is looking after that side of things for you, so long as your drives are long enough to accomplish that recharge. But, over time sulfation will occur. Sulfates from the acid will begin to leach from the electrolyte and attach to the copper battery plates forming lead sulfuric crystals... which has two detrimental effects. The first is that the lead plates cannot do their job as efficiently, and the second is that the electrolyte is weakened from the loss of sulfur.

That said, there is a piece of equipment that I swear by. Not hugely expensive (cost being a relative thing). Made by an outfit called NOCO, it's called the Genius 10, and it sells for around $100 USD. On one hand, it's a very small but functional trickle charger, but, it also has a battery reconditioning cycle you can run that will literally bring a battery back to near perfect condition again. I've used this on four year old SLAs that were so depleted that they couldn't sit for more than a couple of days in the winter without dying to the point they couldn't perform an engine start anymore. After running the reconditioning cycle on it (which takes about six hours), it was like having a new battery again. Well worth the investment IMHO. My recommendation is to search for the product on Amazon and read the reviews associated with it. That way you'll get a more rounded sampling of people's impressions of the product and how it performs. Then you can choose to buy it from Amazon, or from NOCO directly. Here's the link to the item on the NOCO site, in case anyone wants to read more about it or order it directly from the manufacturer. NOCO - 10-Amp Smart Battery Charger - GENIUS10
 

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In the periphery of my life, several people have recently purchased, and used (sometimes to rescue other drivers) the NOCO GB40 lithium jump starter, an alternative to jumper cables for dead battery rescue. It is one of 4 or 5 versions, the GB40 being the second model up from the basic model. Shelf life between charging sessions of the device is up to a year. One friend has it with him in whichever if his vehicles he's driving, incl. motorcycles. Compact and light. Amazon and other retailers sell the GB40 for $100-130.

Steve.
 
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In the periphery of my life, several people have recently purchased, and used (sometimes to rescue other drivers) the NOCO GB40 lithium jump starter, an alternative to jumper cables for dead battery rescue. It is one of 4 or 5 versions, the GB40 being the second model up from the basic model. Shelf life between charging sessions of the device is up to a year. One friend has it with him in whichever if his vehicles he's driving, incl. motorcycles. Compact and light. Amazon and other retailers sell the GB40 for $100-130.
Steve.
They make some great, and really small, products. My first NOCO product was a GB70 booster, which I purchased to replace an older "thing" that was larger than my actual SUV battery. The NOCO, like you've noted, holds a charge for a really, really long time, and you can get quite a few boosts out of it before you need to recharge it again. I was using it to deal with the nearly dead battery issue I mentioned earlier, but then bought their trickle charger/reconditioner product (the Genius 10), and haven't had any need for the GB70 since then. But then I solved the whole problem by purchasing the most expensive battery replacement I could find... a new SUV. lol Yup, can't say enough good things about NOCO products. My only real complaint, and it's a minor one, is that unlike the GB70 which came with a storage bag, the Genius 10 does not... and it has a lot more loose bits. So, side purchase of a small Pelican case to hold it in.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
As an update to this topic: I ended up going with a Group 51R AGM battery that I installed this past Friday, and it's been working well so far. The first morning after with subzero temperatures, it had a little difficulty starting, but later in the day when it had warmed up a little it worked fine. Had to tighten the battery tie-down a little bit tighter to make sure it wouldn't slide around in the tray, and haven't noticed any movement even with some spirited driving since then.

I'm going to hold on to the battery jumper I bought earlier for another few weeks just in case temperatures get really low again, and return it to re-purchase a better one come winter so I don't have to deal with a year of the battery jumper losing capacity until I'll need it again. On one hand, I probably should have just gone with a full-size battery and/or a maintenance-required battery for the higher CCA rating, but on the other hand, I'd probably want to keep a battery jumper for winter on hand moving forward anyway, and a 3lb battery jumper for a car battery that's about 15lbs lighter than stock isn't a bad trade-off. Plus, I should have a garage available by next winter to alleviate cold temperature starting issues.
 
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