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  #41 (permalink)  
Old 01-12-2011, 07:18 PM
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Default Optima Batteries

I'm right up there with yea, I'm on my 3rd Optima (red top) battery in 14 months.
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  #42 (permalink)  
Old 01-12-2011, 07:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SP01715 View Post
The older Optimas seem to be good. It appears from what I have read they started having problems when they moved manufacturing to Mexico.
When mine died it took 3 weeks for my dealer to get mine replaced. My dealer told me, there made in a bad part of Mexico and transporting out of there is sometime hard.
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  #43 (permalink)  
Old 01-14-2011, 12:55 PM
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tigerplk, I'm sorry to hear about the problems you've been having and I'd like to help. Can you tell me more about the vehicles you are having issues with, they symptoms surrounding your battery issues and the types of tenders or maintainers you are using?

JWilly, some units will have a “Gel/AGM” or “Gel” charger setting. These should be avoided, as gel charger settings (even if they also include AGM) will not fully-charge an Optima and could damage it over time. A “standard” setting will work just fine on our batteries, but some units have “AGM”-specific settings, which will also work fine. Badrich & wetdog, I'm glad to hear your Optimas are providing excellent service for you. We're always looking for great Optima stories, so feel free to share yours with us.

Tim, I have not heard of such an issue before, but I will certainly forward your comments to one of our engineers. As snakebittexan indicated, many batteries are not properly-maintained, which is the most common cause of low-voltage situations. This has been problematic enough for some companies that they have simply begun voiding the warranty on batteries they deem to be “overdischarged.” We felt a better option was to be pro-active in helping folks better understand their batteries and proper maintenance. Our YouTube channel has a lot of very informative videos.

SP01715, the quality of our batteries has always been excellent and building an entirely new facility from the ground up, featuring more automation and subsequently, more precision, has only served to improve the quality of our products. You can watch a video of production facility here.

Bxx1, I'm glad to hear your YellowTop is performing well for you. Unfortunately, sometimes information conveyed at the retail level is not always accurate. I have heard comments from customers whose retailers discouraged them from buying one brand over another, even though both brands were manufactured by the same company in the same facility and the only diffference between the two batteries was the label on the case.

tmareina, if you know your vehicle will be in storage for two to three months at a time and regular use of a tender or maintainer is not possible, another viable option is to leave the battery fully-charged and disconnected from your vehicle.

SMOKNAC, I'm sorry to hear about the problems you've been having and I'd like to learn a little bit more about your application. Is this vehicle driven daily and if not, what kind of battery tender or maintainer are you using? What was the voltage of the batteries when you had issues and the circumstances surrounding those issues?

Jim McIlvaine
eCare Manager, OPTIMA Batteries, Inc.
www.facebook.com/optimabatteries
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  #44 (permalink)  
Old 01-14-2011, 01:22 PM
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Jim,
You're to be commended for having a presence here and investigating in detail any problems users are having. Passing on the data and getting help is a great way to keep customers.

Being on my second Red Top in 8 years, I'm happy to know you're here.
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  #45 (permalink)  
Old 01-14-2011, 01:23 PM
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OptimaJim...Thanks, appreciate the info.

JWilly
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  #46 (permalink)  
Old 01-14-2011, 01:28 PM
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OptimaJim, thanks for chiming in here. It is appreciated.
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  #47 (permalink)  
Old 01-18-2011, 11:35 AM
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I appreciate the kind words guys. I'm always happy to help, but monitoring several hundred boards, I don't catch every conversation. If anyone ever sees a conversation where I can be of assistance on this board or any other, please don't hesitate to let me know.

Jim McIlvaine
eCare Manager, OPTIMA Batteries, Inc.
www.facebook.com/optimabatteries
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  #48 (permalink)  
Old 01-21-2011, 09:43 AM
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I bought the yellow top Optima about seven or eight years ago. Still going strong. I have it isolated by master switch when not in use. I have charged it during long winter in garage with low power pulsing charger from NAPA.
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  #49 (permalink)  
Old 05-31-2011, 04:35 PM
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I have had an Optima in my car for almost 9 years and it has been bulletproof. I know that the clock is ticking and I am thinking ahead to when I have to replace it. The posts here alerted me to do some research. A parts dealer here told me they were horrible after production moving to Mexico-something about bad separators. They fixed the problem in early 2009 and they are now good-not sure if as good as the US made ones of several years ago though. Apparently the magic build date is Feb 2009 since there is a different warranty situation before and after that time. Another thing I learned is that if you buy one from Amazon and there is a problem you are out of luck. Also, regardless of where you buy it Optima won't honor the warranty if it has been damaged or overcharged. Before they settle up they weigh the returned unit, which apparently tells them if it has been overcharged.
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  #50 (permalink)  
Old 05-31-2011, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jon@harrison.ne View Post
Also, regardless of where you buy it Optima won't honor the warranty if it has been damaged or overcharged. Before they settle up they weigh the returned unit, which apparently tells them if it has been overcharged.
If you get yourself a Battery Tender instead of a Battery Charger you will not have a cooked overcharged battery problem.
Highly recommend them on anything you want to stay 100% charged. Hook it up and leave it over the Winter too.

Battery Tender - Home of the Battery Tender Jr. - Batterytender.com
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  #51 (permalink)  
Old 06-02-2011, 10:11 PM
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jon, I'm glad to hear your Optima has performed so well for you. Contrary to what your parts dealer told you, the quality of our batteries has always been excellent and has continually improved under Johnson Controls' ownership. Visiting as many forums as I do, I constantly come across theories about when our batteries were good, when they weren't and why. Frankly, the claims are all over the map, frequently contradict each other and have no basis beyond an individual's personal experience or heresay.

I am glad you brought up the point about purchasing batteries online, as that is a legitimate concern for manufacturers and consumers alike. I would encourage anyone considering an online purchase to review the following information:

Any retailer from which you purchase a new Optima should provide warranty service for you, for the full duration of your warranty. However, there are some online retailers that do not. We strongly recommend that you find out the warranty procedures before making a purchase. If the seller’s procedure is to contact the manufacturer or if they do not provide a customer service phone number that they answer (not the Optima batteries customer service number) we recommend looking elsewhere.

For same-day purchases and service we recommend visiting your nearest Optima retailer, as online purchases can take multiple days to arrive. Likewise, in the event that product support service is needed, online purchases must be shipped back to the original seller and can take several days to be processed and returned.

OPTIMA-authorized online retailer requirements:
• Ship Optima products in approved shipment packaging
• Answer a toll-free service phone number during business hours
• Adhere to and honor the Optima factory warranty policy
• Provide an in-house warranty program

Like most manufacturers, our warranty covers manufacturing defects, not abuse or obvious misuse. As a result, if someone elects to cut off their top posts, drag their battery behind their car, charge their battery with a 200-amp shop charger until it resembles the Superdome and vents acid like a volcano or abuses their battery in some other obvious fashion, their warranty will be voided. Even if you accidentally drop your battery down a flight of stairs and crack the case open like a melon, we are sympathetic to your situation, but not responsible for your actions. I would also encourage anyone who is in the market for a new battery, to review the manufacturer's warranty of any battery they are considering, prior to making a purchase. You can view ours here- Optima Product Support : Warranty Info

If anyone has any questions about our batteries, I'll do my best to answer them.

Jim McIlvaine
eCare Manager, OPTIMA Batteries, Inc.
Optima Batteries | Facebook
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  #52 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2011, 05:59 AM
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Hi All,

I`ll be honest, I did not read all 4 pages so if I am repeating what others wrote I am sorry.

For what it is worth, here it is.

These cars unless you have a/c and other accessories do not draw alot of power from the batter. Your basically using the battery to start the car and thats it.

I have had my Optima red for amost 7 yrs with no problem.

I have a master cut off, battery tender and thats it.

I have not load tested my battery but it starts the motor everytime. The way I see it, as long as it has enough juice to start I'm good.

I think these batteries are pretty good but what we use them for.

I would throw a battery tender on it like the others have mentioned and forget about it.

If you have electrical problems the master cutoff would solve that problem. But I would still try to resolve you electrical issue if one exist.

Hope this helps
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  #53 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2011, 07:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OptimaJim View Post
jon, I'm glad to hear your Optima has performed so well for you. Contrary to what your parts dealer told you, the quality of our batteries has always been excellent and has continually improved under Johnson Controls' ownership. Visiting as many forums as I do, I constantly come across theories about when our batteries were good, when they weren't and why. Frankly, the claims are all over the map, frequently contradict each other and have no basis beyond an individual's personal experience or heresay.

I am glad you brought up the point about purchasing batteries online, as that is a legitimate concern for manufacturers and consumers alike. I would encourage anyone considering an online purchase to review the following information:

Any retailer from which you purchase a new Optima should provide warranty service for you, for the full duration of your warranty. However, there are some online retailers that do not. We strongly recommend that you find out the warranty procedures before making a purchase. If the seller’s procedure is to contact the manufacturer or if they do not provide a customer service phone number that they answer (not the Optima batteries customer service number) we recommend looking elsewhere.

For same-day purchases and service we recommend visiting your nearest Optima retailer, as online purchases can take multiple days to arrive. Likewise, in the event that product support service is needed, online purchases must be shipped back to the original seller and can take several days to be processed and returned.

OPTIMA-authorized online retailer requirements:
• Ship Optima products in approved shipment packaging
• Answer a toll-free service phone number during business hours
• Adhere to and honor the Optima factory warranty policy
• Provide an in-house warranty program

Like most manufacturers, our warranty covers manufacturing defects, not abuse or obvious misuse. As a result, if someone elects to cut off their top posts, drag their battery behind their car, charge their battery with a 200-amp shop charger until it resembles the Superdome and vents acid like a volcano or abuses their battery in some other obvious fashion, their warranty will be voided. Even if you accidentally drop your battery down a flight of stairs and crack the case open like a melon, we are sympathetic to your situation, but not responsible for your actions. I would also encourage anyone who is in the market for a new battery, to review the manufacturer's warranty of any battery they are considering, prior to making a purchase. You can view ours here- Optima Product Support : Warranty Info

If anyone has any questions about our batteries, I'll do my best to answer them.

Jim McIlvaine
eCare Manager, OPTIMA Batteries, Inc.
Optima Batteries | Facebook
I have used Optima batteries for years in my Cobra and even have one that I use to run my auxiliary water pump and fan for cooling the car in the pits.
Any problem I have had with the battery has been of my own doing for example my MSD 6AL was leaking battery current and running the battery down while in the trailer. I installed a master cut off switch and have had no problems since. I do not even have a trickle charger, the battery started the car after sitting all winter in storage without charging it, what more could you ask?
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  #54 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2011, 08:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OptimaJim View Post
Contrary to what your parts dealer told you, the quality of our batteries has always been excellent and has continually improved under Johnson Controls' ownership.
Johnson also makes Delco batteries and they too, like Optima batteries, are junk. Both USED to be a quality battery you could count on but not now.

Our auto parts store quit carrying Optima batteries because of all the warranty returns, over 50%.
Delco's are junk as well. My truck had 4 of them in 3 years, all replaced under warranty. The service manager said they get them buy the pallet full and not a day goes by that they don't replace one that is less than 1 year old.
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  #55 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2011, 11:05 AM
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I think that different reports, some good and some bad, about Optimas may well be due to manufacturing problems in Mexico in the interval of Feb 2009 and going back a few (I don't know the exact number) of years. I'll bet if we did a survey of owners battery dates we would find excellent in the pre Mexico days (those made in Mexico should have a label saying so), poor for Mexico made up until Feb 09, and better (I don't know if they would be excellent) after Feb 09. The battery date would have to be the manufacture date (which should be identifiable from numbers on the battery) not when it was purchased. I believe my dealer when he says there was a period of bad units. In effect he is doing a survey. Hopefully more data will come in on the new batteries by the time I have to get one. Right now I am skeptical. This same sort of thing is happening to lots of products. Companies like Black and Decker, Millwaukie, Timken, and on and on used to have unquestioned quality. Then they offshored manufacturing to Mexico, China, or wherever and they have lost their luster. Sometimes the only thing that is similar to the previous products is the name and that slowly gets tarnished as we consumers catch on to the fraud.
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Old 06-03-2011, 01:12 PM
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I have one in mine and it is like a champ too, however, I do have a trickler charge of 2amps constantly connected to the car battery, this keeps the battery from going dead. I f you have a portable battery charger, set it in manual 2amps connect it to the battery and you battery will never go dead.
Hope it works
Lou
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  #57 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2011, 05:12 PM
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Default Try a CTEK charger

I also have gone through a number of Optima batteries over the years, while trying various chargers. The last time my Redtop in my Cobra starting acting up I went to this charger and it brought it back to life.

CTEK Battery Chargers | The World's Smarter Battery Charger

A little pricey, but it saved a $200 battery.
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Old 06-07-2011, 01:10 AM
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It looks like Optima batteries are going to be with us for a good while yet.

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  #59 (permalink)  
Old 06-07-2011, 04:34 AM
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Though I purchased my Optima Red Top in 1997 it lasted 14 years. I kept a small battery tender on it during the Winter and when it was parked. I used the side terminals to hook to and the posts for the tender as that way I didn't have to take the tie down loos and move it out, since it was located in the trunk. I have read a lot of negative posts abut them since they moved to Mexico and I hope they get better as I like the idea of a solid core battery with no acid to spill in case of something happening. Do any of you have a breakdown of the numbers that tells when and where it was manufactured? I get them locally or did until NAPA bought the store. I think they still carry them but haven't been to that store for a long time.

Thanks,

Ron
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