A diesel engine is likely to consume more power than a smaller car engine. Hence the best battery for diesel truck may not be the same battery as your sedan. Understanding the proper requirements for your vehicle is of primary importance if you want a smooth and hassle free experience.
Since diesel engines and petrol engines are quite different, the batteries required to operate with them are also very different. This guide will help you find the best battery for your diesel truck in 2020.
What is the difference between a car battery and a truck battery?
You may think that a truck battery is just a bigger car battery, right? Well, you wouldn’t be entirely wrong. In reality, a diesel engine is much harder to start than a gasoline engine you may have in your car. The reason is that the compression capacity is way higher in diesel engines.
As a result, a lot of electrical power is required for cranking. Some diesel trucks even use two batteries for that reason. Diesel engines usually have a stage even before starting when the combustion chamber is preheated electrically for faster cranking. Cold weathers make it even harder to start diesel engines. ‘
That is why, batteries performing in cold conditions need even more cranking power to bridge the gap.
Other than power, trucks such as Ford F150 require batteries that are also generally tougher when it comes to durability and vibration resistance as they are more likely to be used in rough terrains.
Truck batteries also need a fair amount of deep cycling capacity to power the stronger lights or other electronics they may have.
On a general note, it can be said that a truck battery can be sufficient for a car but the vice versa is not true.
This is why it is even harder to make a proper choice. But whatever may be your requirement, this guide will help you find the optimal battery for your truck.
Here are the best Battery for Diesel Trucks in 2020
One of the best batteries in the market, this is the best option for you if you have power intensive electronics in your truck.
The Absorbed Glass Mat technology makes it fundamentally spill-proof meaning you don’t have to worry about spillage or maintenance of any sort. You can easily mount it in any position of your convenience and it’ll work just fine. Although handling can be a bit difficult as it has no handles for installation. Moreover the advanced vibration resistant technology is one of the best in the market.
All these features make it the best AGM battery for diesel trucks in the market.
In terms of power, the battery exhibits amazing deep cycling capacity with a whopping 1000 CCA and 135 minutes of reserve capacity.
So if you’re looking for something with the best features and you got some money to spend, this is undoubtedly the best option for you.
Perfect for both trucks and cars alike, the Optima RedTop is one of the bet starting batteries in the market.
Optima batteries are known for their excellent spiral technology. The RedTop series batteries are known for their excellent cranking power, even in harsh conditions. Comparatively lighter than its competitors, the RedTop features an excellent 800 CCA of cranking power along with a reserve capacity of 100 minutes.
The AGM technology guarantees a robust, spill-proof design. The battery also has internal lead oxide plating for extra vibration resistance.
Although one of the drawbacks of this particular series is that it’s not great with handling extra electronics. So that’s one thing to keep in mind if you’re considering buying this battery.
Other than that, it is one of the best choices in the market.
If you’re looking for an affordable and efficient secondary battery for your vehicle the PC680 is the best option for you. This is a lightweight and cheap option for consumers with a little space in their cars who maybe just want an extra battery for powering up some accessories.
The temperature resistant design makes it a good option for enduring cold and harsh temperatures. The battery is completely sealed and does not require any maintenance whatsoever. It has an excellent recharge rate and can charge up in a matter of 4-6 hours from 0 to 100%.
The AGM technology offers exceptional vibration resistance and spill-proofing so that you do not have to worry about rough terrains. Although this may not e the perfect battery for you if you’re looking for cranking power.
It has a considerably low CCA rating of 170 only with a reserve capacity of just 25 minutes.
But what it lacks in terms of performance, it makes up in terms of durability. With a warranty of 2 years, this battery assures a high battery life of 3-10 years.
One of the most durable batteries out there, the key feature of this battery is that it claims to have 20 times better vibration resistance than its competitors.
The sealed AGM technology makes the battery spill-proof and maintenance free.
In terms of power, the battery has an amazing 800 CCA of cranking power with a reserve capacity of 140 minutes.
It also comes with amazing corrosion resistance with a sealed housing which is an added bonus. Moreover, the AGM technology is one of the best amongst its competition and is a great choice for the 94R battery group. Moreover it has excellent user reviews and is a product you can rely on.
Best Lightweight Diesel Truck Battery: Optima Batteries 8014-045 D34/78 YellowTop Dual Purpose Battery
The YellowTop’s main strength is the deep cycling capability and if you want a small, lightweight option for your truck, the YellowTop is the way to go.The YellowTop series is best for handling electronics in your truck.
Optima is known for their amazing spiral winding technology they implement in their batteries which gives them an edge from other products by fitting more power in a smaller space.
Although the YellowTop takes a blow when it comes to cranking power. Rated at 750 CCA which is pretty decent for normal conditions, the Yellowtop may not be the optimal choice for super harsh climates. The RedTop would be a better alternative if power is what you seek.
But the YellowTop, just like the RedTop comes with a spill-proof design with one of the best AGM technologies which makes the battery extremely durable and spill-proof.
This battery is an excellent choice if you like having power electronics in your truck and no not face harsh conditions normally.
Just like the last Odyssey product on this list, the PC925 is an extremely durable battery and can provide peak performance irrespective of the terrain and temperature.
It has excellent vibration resistance and the amazing AGMtechnology makes it spill-proof and maintenance free just like its counterpart.
Rated at a slightly higher cranking power of 330 CCA, it still is pretty low for your diesel engine but is an excellent choice if you need a battery for deep cycling. According to specifications, this battery provides 70% longer cycling life than conventional deep cycle batteries and thus is an excellent choice for powering accessories your truck may have.
The battery is highly durable and a battery life of 3-10 years can be expected along with a 3-4 year warranty when bought from an authorized dealer.
All in all, this battery is a perfect choice for smaller trucks or even big ones if you just need a secondary battery.
One of the most durable batteries on our list, the 94RAGM is an absolute powerhouse with 800 CCA of cranking power combined with an amazing AGM technology.
The spill-proof design lets you mount the battery in any position without having to worry about spillage or maintenance.
The 80Ah rating gives it decent deep cycling capabilities meaning you can rely on it for longer journeys and powering power hungry electronics your vehicle may have.
The battery has some amazing user reviews and the quite affordable and reasonable price makes it one of the best options for regular consumers.
The battery is composed of durable alloys that offer longer battery life and durability. To top it all off, the battery even comes with a 36 month warranty when bought from authorized dealers.
If you’re looking for a battery with good deep cycling, this is the one for you.
With a 75Ah rating, this battery is a good option for a secondary battery.
The battery is completely sealed and you need not worry about spillage or anything. This can be mounted in any position and will still work just fine.
In terms of quality, the product comes with a one year warranty when bought from an authorized dealer.
The only battery with Lead Acid technology on our list, this battery is safer and can perform well and handle severe discharges.
If you’re on a budget and looking for a god battery, this is a good option for you.
Just the other version of the RedTop on this list, this product assures quality and performance.
The spiral winding technology is one of the best out there and the AGM technology is equally as noteworthy as the other one.
The only difference is that this battery is rated at 720 CCA unlike the 800CCA of the other battery. But being a starting battery and having the name of Optima to back it up, the 8020-164 35 RedTop is just as reliable as the other products by Optima.
This battery is best for people looking for a starting battery on a budget. This is probably not the best option if you have heavy accessories in your ride but if you have a truck that does not demand much, this battery is definitely a good choice as it’ll save you some money for virtually no consequence.
How to choose the best battery for diesel truck?
Just like any other product, before buying a battery, you must know about a lot of details regarding the battery so that you can get a battery perfect for your needs. Batteries come with various features and certain models have their own advantages and disadvantages. Keep in mind the following features before you buy your next battery.
In simple terms, the reserve capacity of your battery is the number of minutes your battery can supply a standard current without needing recharging.
Diesel engines are a lot harder to crank than regular gasoline engines and hence it is a good idea to look at the reserve capacity of a battery before buying. A Higher RC will make sure your battery does not fail you under harsh circumstances. Chances are, a battery with low cranking power and high RC will perform better than if the conditions are reversed.
Batteries work on volatile chemical principles. Even if the battery you are buying has excellent user reviews, there still is a chance that your battery might be faulty. Most good brands offer a warranty on their batteries. It is always a good idea to have a warranty on the battery you are buying as it keeps your money safe in case something goes wrong.
Size turns out to be an important element too. Not all trucks have the same specifications and the battery you buy may not be compatible for your truck. Make sure you double check the compatibility of the battery before you invest in anything.
Some battery types are maintenance free, like the AGM type or the Gel type batteries. Maintenance free batteries are a good investment as maintenance for batteries can be a real hassle. Maintenance free batteries do not need water refilling and are fundamentally spill-proof.
Almost all the batteries are repairable/ restorable provided correct steps are taken for the same. Battery restoration is an effective way to save some bucks but a small percentage of batteries don’t fall under that category.
Sealed Or Unsealed
This property depends on the battery type too. Sealed batteries are generally maintenance free and can be mounted in any position without having to worry about spillage. It is always a good investment to get sealed batteries.
CCA or Cold Cranking Amps is the measure of the cranking power of your battery. Diesel engines usually need higher power to crank and hence you should always look for a battery with a good cranking power. Especially, if you live in an area with cold weather, it becomes even more important for you to look for high CCA in your battery as cranking becomes harder when it’s cold outside.
Types of Diesel Truck Batteries
Diesel truck batteries, just like other batteries can be divided into a few types based on the technology they use. The common ones are, Lead Acid, AGM, Gel and so on.
AGM Batteries: AGM technology is the most popular as they provide a maintenance free design with good performance at reasonable prices.
Gel Batteries: Gel based batteries are sort of more expensive and hence not that popular.
Lead Acid Batteries: Lead Acid batteries have to be the cheapest but some of them are not sealed and hence a lot of maintenance is required to keep them in perfect shape.
How to use a battery in a diesel truck?
Most diesel trucks use two batteries as diesel engines require additional cranking power. The combustion chamber is preheated in some models to aid combustion. This preheating is done from the power from the battery and hence a lot of power is required. Usually, some deep cycle functionality is required as well as powerful cranking. Hence most trucks use a dual battery system to take care of everything.
While this is all well and good, here are some points to ease your life. You’re welcome.
- If your battery is not of the sealed type and requires you to constantly refill the water, make sure to keep the battery filled as lower water levels will affect battery life. Just remove the caps and take a peek. Refill if you see fit.
- Try not to use the battery unnecessarily Use the ignition set whenever you feel like using electronics.
- Regularly check your battery condition. Optimally, batteries have a definite charge level when fully charged. If you see your battery falling below the desired level, consider consulting a mechanic.
How to clean a diesel truck battery?
While some batteries may claim to be maintenance free, it is always a good idea to keep you battery clean as the terminals are prone to corrosion. Corroded terminals affect the overall performance of the battery and also its battery life.
You can take care of your diesel truck battery in two simple steps:
- Cleaning the terminals: Cleaning the terminals is easy. If you see even a bit of corrosion on your battery terminals, just remove the battery and lean the terminals with baking soda solution. If there’s too heavy corrosion, use a sandpaper or similar material to rub it off. Do this regularly and do not let corrosion build up and your battery will be fine.
- Cleaning the battery: Other corroded regions on your battery, if any, can be cleaned in the same process. It is recommended to try to keep your battery dust-free as dust will attract corrosion in presence of moisture.
Keeping the car battery clean and tidy is not really a great or troublesome task. Little efforts can yield really good results when it comes to maintenance.
Best Diesel Truck Battery FAQ’s
Can a diesel truck run on one battery?
Yes, a diesel truck can be made to run on one battery However, that battery has to be immensely powerful to be able to handle the load of the entire cranking process as well as the preheating and running the electronics, which is a pretty heavy task.
How long should a diesel truck battery last?
There is no specific answer for this as this will depend on how you use your battery. Usually batteries that recharge fast and discharge slow are preferred.
What are the best batteries for a f250 diesel?
There are a lot of good batteries and opinions vary but we think the Optima RedTop batteries are a good bet. Other than that, if you really want something high end, the best option will be the XS Power D3400 XS Series 12V 3,300 Amp AGM High Output Battery. However other factors such as weather and terrain will also be a deciding factor but these batteries will perform well under unfavourable conditions too.
Why does a diesel truck have 2 batteries?
Diesel trucks have demanding engines that require a lot of power. Hence two batteries are used so they can share the load. You can pair up a deep cycle battery with a cranking battery so you can use one to start your car and the other to perform other tasks.
How many CCA do I need for diesel?
There is no specific answer but for diesel trucks, anywhere between 700-900 CCA is a safe range. Although, if you need a battery for cold weather, higher CCA is required to counteract the unfavourable weather questions. The diesel engine is pretty hard to crank as it is and the cold just adds more pressure on the battery.
Although the XS Power D3400 XS Series 12V 3,300 Amp AGM High Output Battery seems like a clear winner it must be noted that it is quite pricey and may be an overkill for most users. Having said that, it is important to note the requirement of your truck before deciding on a battery. Different batteries have different perks and you need to choose which one suits you the best.