Typical Car Battery Prices to Expect: Know What You're Paying for

February 10, 2012

Car battery prices are literally through the roof. But you will find that the car battery cost is literally worth it. When you are buying a battery, you have to understand what you are paying for and what you are supposed to get for it. For example:

Type of Battery

The most common type of car battery are low maintenance batteries. These maintenance-free batteries usually have lead calcium formulation that requires very little preventive repair. As a result, you save on the maintenance charges, but you do have to pay extra for the battery. The usual cost of a maintenance free battery is about $170 to $300 depending on other factors.

Typical Size

Car batteries come in sizes that you can choose from according to your car model. Cheaper batteries come usually in smaller car sizes. The usual car battery sizes are size 24, 65 or 75. These are the most commonly used and the price for them can vary from $45-$90. Larger batteries will cost much more.

Cold Cranking Amps and Reserve Capacity

Most batteries are sold according to the car model number and the battery that is usually used with them. That means for the same price, you can buy a bigger battery with more Reserve Capacity than the battery you are currently using. However, you have to make sure the battery fits in the space you have in the car. Currently however, manufacturers have come up with universal batteries that replace several group sizes and fit more than 75% of cars. These batteries however may cost slightly more and are difficult to replace.

Warranties

Batteries usually come with a three year warranty. But if you are going to be buying extended warranties, you will have to pay more up front. The average price for an extended warranty is about $40-$50.

Installation Charges

Please remember that most car batteries will have free installation. That means the cost of the installation is included in the price you are paying up front for the battery. Please make sure you check though, as companies like Wal-Mart, Target and Sears do sell batteries but they do not provide installation with the batteries. The cost of the batteries at these stores is very low, but they do not include delivery and installation.

Additional Costs

Usually when you are buying a new battery you have to turn in your old battery to be recycled. That means you should make sure the old battery is handed over to the same dealer. A few stated will charge you $10 for recycling the battery. States like California do charge a recycling fee for old batteries.

Please make sure you read the fine print when you buy batteries. Be more careful when you buy online as you will not have delivery and servicing included in the purchase price. Another important point is that there is no "best Car battery" as such. You can choose any one you want so long as it's compatible with your car and provides power to run it.