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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi,

After nearly eight years the battery in my regular driver 164 LS went out. The battery's life was cut short because I was too lazy to disconnect it when I stored the car earlier this year. The next time I have to store the car, I am planning on using a "smart" Battery Tender with a quick disconnect.

I used to use Interstate brand batteries with great success. Some lasted over 10 years! However now I understand that Interstate batteries are made "south of the boarder" and their quality is not what it used to be.

This time around I replaced the battery with a Car Quest Farm/Commercial grade version which is made here in the USA. The vent tube fits perfect, right through the securing bracket, and the battery bolts right in without any mods. Photos attached for reference.

Anyway, it will be interesting to see how long of a productive life this Car Quest battery has.

Here is the part number and cold cranking amps:

Car Quest Part No: 31HDP30
1000 CCA @ 0°F

Hope this helps.

Best regards,

Tim
 

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Consumer Reports tested Interstate batteries several years ago, and said that there were two versions of the size 31. One was good, the other not. You had to get the correct one.

I got away with using Kirkland (Costco) size 27. Turns out they were made by Interstate. Now all the Costco batteries are Interstate by name.

Will be interesting to see a review of that CarQuest battery.
 

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IIRC there are 4 main battery "makers" in the US. Ciao jc
 

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Discussion Starter #4
IIRC there are 4 main battery "makers" in the US. Ciao jc
Hi JC,

Interesting. I believe a company called Johnson Controls is one of the major producers of automotive batteries here in the USA. I don't know about the other three, another one may be Exide Technologies?

In Italy and Europe, how many different battery makers are there?

All the best,

Tim
 

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Hi JC,

Interesting. I believe a company called Johnson Controls is one of the major producers of automotive batteries here in the USA. I don't know about the other three, another one may be Exide Technologies?

In Italy and Europe, how many different battery makers are there?

All the best,

Tim
Johnson Controls owns Interstate. They still make the best batteries in my opinion. There are multiple grades in their line. Over 90% of batteries sold in the U.S. by Interstate are made here. The Mexican made ones have a sticker saying "Made in Mexico"
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
...Over 90% of batteries sold in the U.S. by Interstate are made here. The Mexican made ones have a sticker saying "Made in Mexico"
Really? I shopped at three different outlets, including two different repair services, here in the San Jose, CA area, and all the Interstate batteries they are currently selling are made in Mexico. In fact one of the repair shops told me they are in the process phasing out their inventory of Interstate batteries and are switching to a brand X. This is due to having issues with the latest offering of Interstate batteries. Over the past two years I have shopped for four different sizes of car batteries, and each of the four different Interstate batteries I found was made in Mexico.

Where can I find brand new, USA made Interstate car batteries for sale?

Thanks,

Tim
 

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Might look at Costco to see if their Interstates are made here or down south.
 

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I'm in San Diego and the largest independent Interstate distributor is less than a mile from me. That's where I get mine.
 

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Johnson controls bought up Optima and moved production south of the border. Google Optima quality and you'll see how that worked out.

The only batteries made in the US are East Penn and Exide AGM.

I think you could check out the Deka Battery store in San Jose.
 

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in Italy and Europe? Man I have no earthly idea. Not sure why but I wanna say Varta is the biggest and they make for other labels as well. In Rossa I put an Interstate I got thru our PX/BX. RC Mostro I don't recall but I'm fairly certain it's made by Interstate or whoever makes them for Interstate. My DD has a cheapo from the local Casa Del Batteria. I used to like Optima but no more as their quality seemed to drop off a few years ago.

My spin on batteries is simple. If I get 4 years from one I'm happy. Ciao jc
 

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My spin on batteries if it is in the wife or daughter's car change it after 4 years before winter hits in full-force. Money well spent. I think I got caught this past winter on 09 Bu's factory installed battery (4 1/2 years). Lucky our BJ's Wholesale Club one block from our house and wife was not trying to go somewhere when battery said no more.
 

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Johnson controls bought up Optima and moved production south of the border. Google Optima quality and you'll see how that worked out.

The only batteries made in the US are East Penn and Exide AGM.

I think you could check out the Deka Battery store in San Jose.
The last one I bought was about 2 1/2 years ago. Maybe they are all made south of the border now.
 

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Out here where the weather is generally pretty benign, you can get by with using the same battery for 10 years or more. The Milano battery has been in the car for 9 years now, and still works fine. It is a Kirkland, which I've been told is an Interstate made for Costco. Same for the one in the 91S.

Sounds like it could end up being possible that the new versions won't last as long.
 

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after my battery spilt its guts and ruined the trunk, then out its way being recycled burned some more
I went to a sealed optima. its easier to buy batteries than replace trunk parts. I hate battery acid
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
This is the Interstate battery that is in my # 2, non daily '95 164 LS. When I bought this car back in 2013 this battery was already installed, so it is at least two years old. Since I don't drive this car as much as it should be driven, I decided to install a quick disconnect for using a "smart" Battery Tender.

The other day when I removed the CD player/cover to install the quick disconnect lead, I noticed that one of the vent holes in the battery was properly plugged with a little red cap. The other hole at the opposite end of the battery was just left wide the open. The exit hose that vents through the trunk floor board, was not connected to the battery.

All I had on hand was a little white nylon "T" fitting that just so happens to fit perfectly in the one open vent hole on the battery. I used this T fitting along with a vacuum cap to plug one end of it. The vent exit hose was attached to the other side of the T. Now at least the battery is vented better than it was before I started messing around with it.

This particular Interstate battery is made in the Czech Republic.
 

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The battery I use in the 91S, Costco (Kirkland, made by Interstate) size 27, doesn't have those vents. Never had a noticeable problem. Neither does the smaller Kirkland (also Interstate made) in the milano. Actually, neither does the size 31 Interstate in the LS. That vent line is unused.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The battery I use in the 91S, Costco (Kirkland, made by Interstate) size 27, doesn't have those vents. Never had a noticeable problem. Neither does the smaller Kirkland (also Interstate made) in the milano. Actually, neither does the size 31 Interstate in the LS. That vent line is unused.
Battery venting is important for trunk mounted batteries or any enclosed area where fresh air does not circulate freely. This battery vented directly to the trunk of the LS (under the battery cover) for over two years and there were never any issues. Battery vent and breather kits are available.
 

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Czech that out!! new one on me - the venting thing. ciao jc
 

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The trunk is vented in the 164, as there are rectangular openings in the lower rear fenders behind the wheel wells, under the cladding as I recall, for the hvac system air to exit the car when the fan is on or when the car is moving.

The air in the trunk is refreshed satisfactorily I suspect.
 
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