Knowing the construction, capacity, and components of a battery is the key. We have explained everything you need to know about the best heavy duty truck battery and what factors make it best.
Buying a battery for your truck by only seeing the word ‘Heavy-duty’ written on it can’t be a logical decision. There are a few parameters for all batteries to rate them. And, that rating indicates whether a battery is right for your truck or not.
So, we’re here to explore some of the best heavy duty truck batteries. These are the batteries with high ratings on CCA, RC, and some other factors. If you don’t know those parameters, don’t worry as we’ll explain them one by one.
|Our Top Pick Heavy Duty Batteries for Truck||Reserve Capacity||Battery Types||Price|
|Odyssey 31-PC2150S Heavy Duty Commercial Battery||205 min||AGM Deep Cycle||Check Amazon|
|XS Power D3400 AGM High Output Battery||135 min||AGM Deep Cycle||Check Amazon|
|DieHard 38217 Group Advanced Gold AGM Battery||170 min||AGM Deep Cycle||Check Amazon|
What is a Heavy Duty Battery?
Heavy-duty batteries are like normal batteries but with higher CCA rating, more capacity, and more durability. You know that the trucks use a large diesel engine that requires more power than usual to start. Moreover, other electrical appliances are used when the engine isn’t running. As a result, such batteries are needed to support intensive discharge and charge separation. Considering all of the above, the only type of battery that is capable is called the heavy duty batteries.
Types of Truck Batteries
The batteries for heavy automobiles are called SLI because they can provide extra power at starting and help for better light and ignition. There are mainly 2 types of batteries for trucks that are most widely used among many.
Lead-acid batteries are used in most of the diesel-engine trucks. Despite being way less efficient than many other types, lead-acid batteries are the first choice for the truck owners. It’s simply because these batteries can deliver high surge currents which are vital to start heavy commercial vehicles.
Also, its low cost and availability play an important role in decision making. But there’s a thing or two to consider. The first one is that this type of battery can’t provide the necessary power for long. Also, a full discharge of the lead-acid battery can degrade its life very quickly. However, this isn’t an issue if you don’t use the truck’s heavy power-consuming devices when the truck is parked.
To save the day, Absorbed Glass Mat batteries come into the play. These are a type of VRLA or valve-regulated lead-acid battery. Some people recognize them as sealed lead-acid batteries or SLA batteries. The AGM batteries remove all the disadvantages of lead-acid batteries but come with very high pricing. So, you can expect to keep using all the electronic devices in your truck when the engine is off. Also, the number of charging and discharging cycles are way more than the previous type. There are more benefits of using AGM batteries and we recommend you to buy one if you have a flexible budget.
Truck Batteries Top Brands
There are many battery manufacturers and almost all of them make excellent batteries. It’s because the technology has become mature enough. With good intentions and good-reputation concerns, any company can have a good name on the market. So, here we’ve listed a few top brands that make heavy duty battery for trucks.
The brand is owned by General Motors and makes batteries mainly for GM vehicles. You can rely on their batteries because every battery passes a vigorous test before appearing on the market. Think about the performance of the GM vehicles and you’ll understand as batteries are an important factor for better performance.
DieHard is what you call a premium brand for batteries which is marketed by Sears Holdings retailers. They are making heavy-duty and general-purpose batteries for more than 50 years. With the good build quality and reviews, you can rely on DieHard batteries for many years.
It’s another big name in the industry as they operate on 6 continents with more than 170,000 batteries worldwide. With a longer lifetime and better performance, many truck owners around the world love to use EverStart heavy-duty batteries.
It has a team of researchers and engineers who have almost perfected the lead-acid battery chemistry. As a result, Optima batteries are maintenance-free, shock and vibration proof, lightweight, and durable. You can consider their batteries as it doesn’t leak even after the case is broken.
Bosch has a reputation in the hardware tools industry but they have grown their name on other industries. Among lots of competitors, they are standing out from the crowd by making very consistent and reliable automobile batteries.
The batteries are manufactured by the company named EnerSys Energy Products Inc. which is a well-known manufacturer in stored energy solutions for automobiles. With their worldwide reputation and 100 years of experience, you can rely on Odyssey batteries.
This is the last brand on our list but doesn’t underestimate them. It’s because they have access to world-class battery testing facility and their batteries appear on the market once they have passed very tough tasks.
Truck Batteries Pricing
You can divide the price range for heavy duty batteries into 2 groups. The first one ranges from approximately 90 to 200 bucks. Here, you’ll find mostly basic lead-acid batteries and some heavy-duty ones as you’ll increase the budget.
On the other hand, the best heavy duty truck batteries are mostly cost above 200 bucks. These batteries have all the characteristics that keep you going on long and cold nights.
The Might Have Features of Heavy Duty Truck Batteries
Cold Cranking Amps (CCA)
While driving with your truck or any heavy vehicle, at the outside, it can be hot as 100° to cold as 0°. Cold cracking Amp is a very important feature in extremely cold situations where normal car batteries tend to go down. Higher cold cranking amp (CCA) rated means that your truck can easily start even when the temperature is below 0-degree Fahrenheit. It indicates the amount of current the battery can supply at 0° for the time period of 30 seconds where the amps should be 7.2 amps. Batteries for heavy vehicles must have the cold-cranking amps over 800.
Reverse capacity indicates the amount of time it will take to discharge a battery which is fully charged at 25 amps until it is below 10.5 volts. It also represents how much time the battery can supply power after the engine has shut down. More reserve capacity means the battery can deliver power for longer hours.
Moreover, a heavy-duty vehicle needs more accessories to charge while the battery is off. Reserve capacity also works here. Reserve capacity should be higher in heavy-duty cars because it needs more power than normal cars. If the reserve capacity is higher, the vehicle performance will be more consistent.
While buying a good heavy duty battery, it is important to check whether it fits your vehicle properly or not. the truck battery comes in different sizes. To find the right one for your truck search by the year, make, model and engine of your vehicle into a compatibility generator of the webpage from where you want to buy the battery.
You can also buy your battery by comparing it with OEM battery; both should be in the same size. Plus, the battery should properly fit the vehicle; it should never touch the hood of your car. The recommended distance of the hood and battery is 3.4 inches.
Group size is as important as measuring the right size of the battery. The group size generally is based on your truck’s model and engine type. It specifies the orientation of the battery terminal and the measurements of the case of your vehicle’s battery. All the batteries come with a group number and the original accumulator also has a number. Both should be matched for the exact fit. Make sure your new truck battery will fit the proper CCA according to the manufacturer’s specifications.
20Hr Nominal Capacity or Amp Hours (Ah)
Amp Hours or Nominal capacity is also known as the rated capacity of a storage component. It indicates the amount of energy that can be withdrawn from it at a particular constant current. It also specifies how much current it will provide for 20 hours. If the Amps Hour is rated 100 for a battery, that means it will provide 5 amps current continuously for 20 hours (100/20=5amps).
It can be started when it is fully charged. The current used to rate batteries varies manufacture to manufacture. As higher amp hours mean higher capacity, a heavy duty truck battery should have higher amp-hours (Ah).
Dry cell batteries are recommended for heavy-duty vehicles. Those batteries are sealed and spill-proof. Plus, it needs no maintenance and safer than a wet cell battery. On the other hand, wet sell batteries need constant maintenance. It is not suitable for a heavy ride.
Starter vs Deep Cycle
Starter batteries have a greater number of thinner plates and designed to provide a quick, short burst of energy to start engines. Starting batteries are used only for starting, lights and lite accessories.
Where deep cycle batteries have less instant energy but greater in long-term energy delivery for traveling distance. So, for truck or other heavy-duty vehicles, you need to buy deep cycle batteries.
Carry handle makes the installation and removing process much easier as the battery tends to be heavy like 25 kg to 60 kg. So, it is preferable and recommended to have a carry handle so that you can have an easy time in putting the battery or taking it out.
Vibration Proof: For a heavy-duty battery it must be vibration proof. Most of the heavy duty battery malfunctions because of the loose setting and the vibration it gets while a heavy ride. So, make sure the battery is vibration proof and take the intense shock.
Spill-Proof: In a long ride with a heavy vehicle, there will be not much time for battery maintenance. So, the best choice for a heavy-duty vehicle is to select a spill-proof battery that needs zero maintenance. According to the nature of heavy-duty cars, wet cell batteries are going to spill and it can severely damage the car. Make sure the battery is spill-proof before you buy one.
Recharge Time: Charging time mostly depends on the charger you are using. A low amp charger will take 24 hours or more to charge a car battery. As heavy-duty batteries tend to have more voltages so you need to use a higher amp charger for it. For example, if you use a charger of 40 amp the battery will be charged within an hour or less.
Life Cycle: Manufacturers often indicated the life cycle of a battery. Make sure you are satisfied with that. It indicates the amount of charges and discharges the battery can take before it dies. It mainly depends on the discharge of the battery and the condition of it.
Best Heavy Duty Truck Battery – The Review
After testing about half a hundred of heavy duty batteries, we have found these batteries that we think are the best among the heavy vehicle batteries we have tested. Our selecting and testing process was not that much easy. We needed to invest countless hours on our hand-on experience to find out the best one.
Here we are, presenting you with the best truck batteries that are powerful and have all the necessary features that you need in a heavy duty truck battery.
|Top Pick||Runner’s Up||Best Budget||Other Considerations|
|Features/Product Name||Odyssey 31-PC2150S Heavy Duty Commercial Battery||XS Power D3400 AGM High Output Battery||DieHard 38217 Group Advanced Gold AGM Battery||ACDelco 78AGM Professional AGM Automotive||Optima Batteries 8004-003 34/78 RedTop Starting Battery|
|Reserve Capacity||205 min||135 min||170 min||120 min||100 min|
|Nominal Capacity||100 Ah||65 Ah||92 Ah||55 Ah||44 Ah|
|Battery Types||AGM Deep Cycle||AGM Deep Cycle||AGM Deep Cycle||AGM Deep Cycle||AGM Starting|
|Size||13″ x 6.8″ x 9.41″||13″ x 6.8″ x 9.41″||13.9” x 6.9” x 7.5”||11″ x 6.94″ x 7.5″||9.38″ x 6.75″ x 7.69″|
Top Pick – Odyssey 31-PC2150S Heavy Duty Commercial Battery
Highest CCA rating, Amazing reserve capacity, excellent nominal capacity and the perfect size for your truck – these are the things that have made us choose this battery as our top pick.
The company advertises it as the heavy-battery for commercial use and it does everything excellently that will make you please definitely. However, you can use this battery as the deep cycle battery as well as the starting battery.
Now comes to what you have got with this battery.
We have seen that this battery has 1150 CCA rating which is very rare and it’s amazing also. You do not need to worry about running your truck or any heavy vehicle at any cold weather. Using this battery, you will not face any issues to start your truck as well.
Talking about the reserve capacity and the 20Hr nominal capacity,
This battery has the highest number than other heavy-duty batteries we have tested. The Odyssey 31-PC2150S has 205 min of reserve capacity which makes sure the battery can provide power about 3+ hours even after the engines have shut down. And the nominal capacity has 100 Amp-hour (Ah) which is also higher than any other truck batteries.
The group size of this battery is 31 and the battery size is perfect to fit your truck or any heavy vehicle. We have tested other heavy-duty batteries that have a smaller size which gets contact and becomes damages by frictions of the walls where the battery was placed. So, you do not have to worry about that as this battery will completely fit the battery place of your truck.
Another important thing that,
You might consider for a battery for your heavy vehicle is whether the battery is dry or wet. We have said above that for heavy-duty batteries we prefer dry cell batteries as it sealed and spill-proof and needs almost no maintenance. These batteries are also safer than wet cell batteries. The Odyssey 31-PC2150S is a dry cell battery and you do not need to worry about its maintenance.
We would like to mention that this battery has a very less amount of recharge time comparing to other heavy-duty batteries (4-6 hours). The case material of the body is ABS plastic which is durable enough.
You can find another battery from this company named Odyssey 34/78-PC1500DT Automotive and LTV Battery but we do not suggest it this time as it has lower CCA rating, lower 20Hr nominal capacity and we were not satisfied its size for a heavy vehicle.
- 70 percentage longer cycle life
- Vibration and shockproof
- Has Carry handle
- Good life cycle
- Good Customer feedback
Runner’s Up – XS Power D3400 AGM High Output Battery
Over the internet, you may not get much suggestion for this one as the heavy-duty battery but we have found it really amazing in our test result and the specifications are also great.
The XS Power D3400
It’s an AGM High output deep cycle battery that is fully capable to run the accessories of your truck and give your truck a better starting. It has also a very higher CCA rating (1000) but has not so great reserve capacity (135 min) and 20Hr nominal capacity (65 Ah) comparing to the first one. This is the only reason that has made us put this battery in the 2nd position.
However, we are satisfied with its size (that fits your truck very well) and all other features that you need in a heavy-duty battery. It has a dry cell battery which prevents any spill out and requires almost no maintenance. The case is made from ABS plastic like the first one and makes the outer body sturdy and long lasting.
The battery can be recharged within 4-6 hours which is very time-saving. However, if you worry much about battery life, you may get disappointed as this battery has a life expectancy about 3-6 years. But that is not a huge issue for us because most of the batteries start downgrading after 3-4 years. And there will be upgraded which you wish to get and will make you replace your current one.
We have also liked the user ratings of this heavy-duty battery from most of the popular online marketplaces. Probably it is the highest rating heavy-duty battery in Amazon and we have found it a very powerful, suitable battery for your truck or heavy vehicle. If nominal capacity and battery life cycles are not that much issue for you, you can definitely go for the XS Power D3400.
- Ultra-low internal resistance
- Can be mounted in almost any position
- Vibration and spill-proof
- Has Carry handle
- Great customer feedback
- Highest rating heavy-duty battery on Amazon
Best Budget – DieHard 38217 Group Advanced Gold AGM Battery
While testing DieHard 38217, the thing that caught our eyes that its price and amazed that how could they offer such features and quality with such price range.
We have found this battery as the best value for money. Better than average CCA rating (850), adequate reserve capacity (170 min) and great 20Hr Nominal capacity (92) – all these you can get just less than $200 and we think it’s one of the best deals who are searching for a heavy-duty battery for their truck at a budget price.
However, the 850 CCA rating may seem lower to you comparing the first two batteries, but it works great if you are not driving in extremely cold weather.
But the other two things –
The reserved time and the nominal capacity of this battery are the top thing you have to praise. Actually, these two numbers are better than our runner’s up has got. But yet, it lags behind if your first priority is CCA rating.
It lags behind in one more thing. The case material of this battery has made with Polypropylene. But we prefer ABS plastic as it has better comprehensive properties than Polypropylene plastic. So, it can be another con for this heavy-duty battery.
Other than that, it is an AGM deep cycle battery, the battery cell is dry and the recharge time is not high (need 4-6 hours only). It has the right size which will be a perfect fit for your truck or heavy vehicle. And the life cycle of this battery is also great we must say.
Considering all these features and the value for money, the DieHard 38217 has become our best budget heavy-duty battery for truck.
- Great life cycle
- 20x more vibration proof
- Spill-proof design
- Has Carry handle
- Optimized power that prevents electrical shorts
- Can be used in marine, RV, trucks also
Other Heavy-Duty Battery Considerations
In case if you want to learn about more heavy-duty truck batteries, these two can be in your consideration. Both the ACDelco and the Optima are very good and well-known brands though, at this time, we have not picked the batteries from these two brands as our top pick for several good reasons. Read our explanations below:
Why Didn’t We Choose ACDelco 78AGM Professional AGM Automotive?
CCA, Reserve capacity and 20Hr Nominal Capacity – all these three must-have features for heavy-duty batteries are not worthy in the ACDelco 78AGM. It has 760 CCA rating, 120 min reserve capacity and just 55 Ah nominal capacity. All of the numbers were not up to our expectations and in some cases this battery is not suitable to use in a truck or heavy vehicle.
Another thing is that it is not a deep cycle battery rather you can use it only as a starting battery. It takes also more time to get recharged fully comparing to the top 3 on our list. The user rating and feedback were not much satisfactory. And for us, we didn’t like its price too. With a lower price than it offers, you can get a better truck battery for you. So, for heavy-duty truck battery, this is not our choice for this time.
Why Didn’t We Choose Optima Batteries 8004-003 34/78 RedTop Starting Battery?
You may have seen this battery a lot recommended by many websites. But we were surprised why this battery is recommended as a heavy-duty battery for truck!
Yes, it is a good battery for car or small vehicles or it is suitable for you if you are driving in the summer or not too cold weather. There is a tip How To Protect Your Car Battery In Summer.
Because it has below average CCA rating for a heavy-duty battery should have. Besides, we are disappointed with its lowest reserve time and 20Hr nominal capacity
Other than that, this battery is a wet cell battery and has a smaller size, which is not recommended for trucks or heavy vehicles. And finally, we were not pleased with its recharge time, price, case material, and user rating. We cannot recommend this one as one of the best heavy duty truck battery.
Why Buy Heavy-Duty Battery for Your Truck?
One can simply say that why he/she should buy a heavy-duty battery where a normal one can do the job. Also, the price difference is significant and you can save a lot of money buying a normal battery. To understand, why you should buy a heavy-duty battery for your truck, you need to see the variance between them.
Heavy-duty batteries are not much different than regular designed batteries. The first dissimilarity is in their battery capacity. The logical conclusion is that heavy-duty batteries have a higher charge capacity. It means that these types of batteries provide power for more hours than the normal ones.
After that, there comes the rating for cold-cranking amps. With a higher rating, you can rely on your battery on a cold morning. But buying a traditional battery will not come even close to providing the power your truck needs at a cold temperature.
Also, these long-lasting batteries are used in heavy vehicles and made in such a way that they can withstand continuous vibration. A normal battery can’t handle rough situations as a heavy-duty battery can. Construction-wise, this is another difference between a truck battery and a normal one.
Thus, you don’t have any other option than choosing the best heavy duty truck battery. With advanced battery design and premium craftsmanship, your truck won’t stop because of a dead battery.
How to Change a Truck Battery
Changing your truck’s battery isn’t a big deal. But it may lead to accidents if you don’t follow some common rules. Here, we’ve described the process step-by-step for your convenience.
- Firstly, locate the battery location and put some safety gloves on. Those insulated gloves will protect you from getting shocks.
- Secondly, disconnect the cables from the battery carefully so that open ends of the wires don’t short any connection.
- Thirdly, remove the old one and replace it with a new one matching the size and other requirements.
- Finally, make sure the screws are tight and the new battery is tightly and securely placed. Also, grease the terminals and reconnect the wires.
Must-Follow Tips:: You should do the changing in an open area or a well-ventilated space. While disconnecting the positive and negative wires, you must disconnect the negative one to avoid any chance of accidents.
Our top picks for the heavy-duty truck batteries may not match with the other recommendations you have found over the internet. But we do guarantee we have published the list after adequate review and in-depth testing period. However, if you have any queries or suggestions, feel free to comment us below. Happy driving.