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Talk to Optima

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by jangleguy, Oct 23, 2009.

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  1. Katuna
    Joined: Feb 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,809

    from Clovis,Ca.

    Incidentally, look at damn near every battery, no matter who's name is on it, and you'll find a Johnson Controls logo on the label.
  2. Steves32
    Joined: Aug 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,280

    from So Cal

    I do have a AGM battery in the roadster. Not an Optima. It's from CarQuest.

    It's this one. 5 year replacement warranty & it's made in Lyon Station, Pennsylvania. That's USA baby!
    Almost 2 years old. No trickle charger on it- it has sat as long as 4 months w/o an issue.


    So- I googled CarQuest NGT extreme battery problems. 13,000 hits
    Again, lots of praise, most are complaining about price.

    It was about 50 bux cheaper than the Optima yello top when I bought it.
  3. 553964spd
    Joined: Jun 30, 2007
    Posts: 23

    from bristol tn

    Optima use to be the best battery around.Would take serious abuse, fit in tight spots, would not leak or corriod everything ,the cost wasn't terrible and MADE IN THE USA.Now just total shit!!!!! with a high price tag.Their would have to be some big changes for me to ever buy another one.
  4. jangleguy
    Joined: Dec 26, 2004
    Posts: 2,668


    Thanks, Fuel! You won't regret this, I promise. I can start right after SEMA. Um, will it be possible to work my way up to mechanic after a few years in marketing?
  5. 553964spd
    Joined: Jun 30, 2007
    Posts: 23

    from bristol tn

    Steves32 could you tell me the cca and the reserve time on that battery.The warranty sounds killer.I need to find something to replace the last 3 optimas I bought.Or if anyone else knows of a killer battery.Then I can let optima will know where my money will be going.
    Stu Padasso likes this.
  6. Steves32
    Joined: Aug 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,280

    from So Cal

    Don't recall but here's a PDF on the battery
  7. lostforawhile
    Joined: Mar 23, 2008
    Posts: 4,160


    remember the odysseys are rated for their CCA at 0 degres vs. 32 degrees for most batteries,so the CCA is actually higher on them if you compare apples to apples. I don't mind getting one of the special compact chargers if i accidentally run one down. If you look at the cost of the battery vs how long they last, vs several regular batteries, they are cost effective. As soon as i get a little money up a pc 625 is going in the box behind the passenger seat.
  8. I've had several Optima Red Top batteries in my vehicles. That was years ago, and I never had a problem and I praised them and tried to convince everyone I knew to switch to Optima. I had one Red Top that gave me shit on a weekly basis, it was maybe 2 years old, but it got replaced with a Deka and had no problems after that. I put a pair of Yellow Tops in my diesel daily driver, and they didn't make it a year. I tossed them in favor of a cheap pair of Autozone batteries and have not had a problem in almost 3 years of daily driving. I think I've lost the faith in what was once a good battery.
  9. Spity
    Joined: Dec 20, 2008
    Posts: 438


    I was a diesel mechanic for the US Army for over 4 years. If a vehicle wouldn't start or hold a charge the first thing I would ask is what color are the batteries? I swapped out literally hundreds of optima batteries for the crappy lead acid variety that had to be manually filled with distilled water/acid crap. It got to the point where my unit but a ban on the mechanics ordering them.

    On more than one occasion optima batteries left me stranded in some pretty shitty places in Iraq. I couldn't count on them then, and I WONT count on them ever again.
  10. yorgatron
    Joined: Jan 25, 2002
    Posts: 4,228

    Member Emeritus

    when I bought my '54 Oldsmobile it had a red-top Optima in it,about 10 years ago,so I guess it might have been one of the "good ones" that everybody's talking about.
    after I rebuilt the generator and bought a new voltage regulator I gave up on it and bought a regular battery,and never had a problem since then.
    now that I know they screwed a bunch of people out of their jobs so they could move to Mexico so they can pay almost nothing and pollute all they want,I say

    BTW,the whole point of shipping jobs OUT of America is so we'll be glad to work for nothing and let'em pollute our backyards.
    P.S. quit buying Chinese crap! :mad:
  11. i sure miss having a battery factory close by. knew a guy that worked there and could get me batteries dirt cheap! used to have them dropped off by the pallet load as everyone i knew always needed one. even though they were usually odd sizes you could make them work. pretty amazing looking back and recalling what you would do to make a $20 battery work.
  12. First Optima battery I had took a shit and left me high and dry. Second seems to be holding up for now.( Too damn much money though in my opinion) Moving the manufacturing to Mexico just plain pisses me off. If Optima is TRULY reading this thread I would "LOVE "to hear a response to all the comments. When will a company have the balls to admit it fucked up and care about the American people that made them in the first place. I am so sick of this shit. Scotty, Will you please have someone from Optima respond to this thread if they have thick enough skin.( or balls) I for one will never buy another Optima battery for any of my future projects until they come forward and address the previous mentioned problems.
  13. HemiRambler
    Joined: Aug 26, 2005
    Posts: 4,140


    I bought one a couple years ago for my dragster. I didn't like the price, but I had my reasons for buying it - I felt is was safer than a lead acid battery for my application. It has given me good service - no complaints. However with all the recent issues I've "seen" here on the HAMB I would think long and hard before buying another one.

    Also the price alone has prvented me from even considering one for any of my other cars - Hot Rods or OT Daily Drivers.

    I very much respect a company that keeps it's production domestic - seems like quality suffering is a given when it's taken offshore - makes no sense to me & I've seen it first hand many times.

    Kudos for soliciting input, but I suspect you already know the issues.
  14. oj
    Joined: Jul 27, 2008
    Posts: 6,148


    As i stated on another recent thread about optima, i felt that the quality was getting back to where we expect it should be and i am feeling more confidant in using the optima again. I had problems starting a couple years ago and had projects under construction to where had to use the optima. I have replaced those with recent optima batteries and have no problems as yet.
    I hesitate to buy the optima only because they purposely have moved the plant to mexico. We at the very least need to employ the mexicans we have here!
  15. I don't care if it is made mexico, russia, or on venus. The only things I care about are quality and value.

    Here is what I would like out of a 200 dollar battery:
    1. A 20 year lifespan. I can buy a damn good battery at the local farm store for 60 bucks, and it lasts a long time, 4-5 years in a rod.
    2. That 20 year lifespan needs to be backed up by a damn good warranty.
    3. That warranty needs some customer service to go along with it.
  16. 6inarow
    Joined: Jan 24, 2007
    Posts: 2,165


    Looks like I am gonna take it in the shorts - I bought one about 6 weeks ago. Damn. I suppose I deserve a whack upside the head (from the hamb) or a medal and christmas card (from Optima)
  17. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,110


    "On more than one occasion optima batteries left me stranded in some pretty shitty places in Iraq. I couldn't count on them then, and I WONT count on them ever again." Spity-post #159
    That tells me all I need to hear. <!-- / message --><!-- sig -->
  18. barnescole
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 138


    Damn! i bought a red top recently from advance auto for my 50. i bought it specifically because i had designed a frame mounted box for it early in the project. This one is still working fine (about 6 mos. old), but i've never had is fully discharge.

    That said, i'm kinda pissed after reading all of the negative comments. I would have never bought it if i had known that it was made in Mexico. ESPECIALLY at the full retail cost i paid. I sure as heck wouldnt have built a box for it that wouldnt fit a standard battery of same specs.

    Hopefully this thing will hold up, i built my truck to be a reliable driver. And as far as warranty goes, how are the stores getting away with not honoring them? They SAF better honor it if mine goes.

    PS: like mentioned above....a black case would have been preferred, the bright color was the main reason the battery was hidden.
  19. kenagain
    Joined: Dec 15, 2005
    Posts: 820

    from so cal

    hey they dont know anything they just ride. ask the chauffuer(showfur) they probably know
  20. kenagain
    Joined: Dec 15, 2005
    Posts: 820

    from so cal

    another crack at this if ya want a battery made in mexico, go to walmart. about $72 bucks 2 year free replacement 5 year total warranty. I wont say they are the best but they give ya a new one no questiions asked. inverter in my motor home used to cook em dry and all batterys I bought failed. only walmart gave me new ones. Just replaced an carquest exide in my 67 F250 that was new in 2000, dont get much better than that. only optima I had would go dead and would not hold a charge, and was hard to charge on a small battery charger. made a good trade in for core tho
  21. redlinetoys
    Joined: May 18, 2004
    Posts: 4,302

    from Midwest

    Well, I will add my two cents.

    Mine has kept me in good shape for about 4-5 years with a new one wire alternator doing the charging and a peak charger on it over the winter.

    Based on my own experience I would buy another in a heartbeat.

    Based on what I have been reading, I doubt I will follow my own experience when the time comes...
  22. optimas are of such poor quality advanced auto parts corporate told us to stop warrantying them and tell the customers to send it back to optima.
    optima told us that they only take them back if the battery was under a 1 year old
    even they dont have any faith in their product.
    if they spent as much money on quality control as they spent on marketing they would make the best battery on the market.
  23. I have two yellow tops sitting in the garage that will not take a charge. One is a group 31, I think, It is charged by a solar cell and at night by an intelligent charger if necessary. It just died in one day. I bought it because I hate checking the water in my well battery, guess I am going back to checking.

    I have two new red tops in my pickup and my 49 Plymouth street cruiser. They both are pretty new, let's see how long they last.


  24. wow. :eek:
  25. Diavolo
    Joined: Apr 1, 2009
    Posts: 805


    I think it boils down to the use for me. If I was building an off road 4X4, a dragster, or a hunting rig or running a big diesel with lots of accessories, I'd see spending the money on agm tech. My battery is going in a car, with just a little power, driving on a flat road most of the time. Even my daily with 4WD and some off road use can't justify AGM cost.

    That being said, there are MANY manufacturers of this technology now. Optima is not a unique manufacturer and they are not gold standard according to what many say. I think Optima sat on their reputation while the industry left them behind. Make something new or make something better or stop charging so much for what you make.

    I saw a thing on the History Channel about what is, apparently, Odyssey Batteries. I really liked the fact they use pure lead, and their manufacturing process was very nice. I think I will see if I can buy one of them suckers if I decide to go better than conventional. Mostly their manufacturing process and that they are American.

    From their website:

    ODYSSEY batteries are manufactured to strict quality standards in two facilities globally: Warrensburg, Missouri USA and Newport, Wales United Kingdom.
    Joined: Jun 2, 2002
    Posts: 9,635

    Classified's Moderator

    I don't think it matters much at this point. I have one they can have back. If they gave me a replacement, I wouldn't use it.

    Tired of being stranded with a battery that requires "special care"....
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2009
  27. Bought 3...1 dead as door stop....they went to Mexico....I'm out. Never buy another.
    I'm dang sure not gonna sit here and give 'em new ideas for products.
  28. We were considering an Optima for our bellytank cause we thought it would be safer in a rollover situation. Not now. They should just sell the remaining stock for ten bucks each and re-badge them as "MINIMA"
    I'm sure they have no idea what a big mistake they made when they pissed off Denise!
  29. Mason
    Joined: Jul 21, 2007
    Posts: 21


    Have ran them for years, didn't know they went to Mexico! Another company I will blackball!
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2009
  30. Wow.

    There's been a lot of good posts in this thread, but this one hit home.

    Nothing like being out in the field and wondering whether your vehicle is going to start in a life-or-death situation.

    I wonder if the good folks at Johnson Controls/Optima who made their decision to move the manufacturing to Mexico will feel any sense of shame when they read this gentleman's post? Or did they stop reading after the first page, since it's not what they want to hear?
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