Everything You Need to Know About Replacing Your Car Battery. Aaa battery replacement car

Everything You Need to Know About Replacing Your Car Battery

Certain items can slip through the cracks when you’re trying to keep your vehicle maintained for the long haul. For some, car batteries are no exception, despite playing a pivotal role in your car’s ability to function.

Part of the issue is that a car battery replacement is a reactive service that occurs after your existing battery dies, rather than being proactive like oil changes, tires, or brakes. Without knowing the signs of a dying battery or other important facts, you’re more likely to have your car battery die unexpectedly instead of preventing it in the first place.

If you’re looking for answers to some common car battery questions (plus a few curveballs), we’re here to help cover the gamut so you can avoid the frustration of a dead battery.

How long does a car battery last?

One of the most important things about your car battery is how long it lasts. And yet, according to AAA. there is no set life expectancy for a new battery. The general rule of thumb is that it can last between three and five years, but the total lifespan varies based on multiple factors, including climate and usage.

Suppose you’re reading this from somewhere in the southern United States or anywhere in the world with a subtropical or arid climate. In that case, your car battery is likely to be replaced sooner than someone in a cold-weather region. You may not think the difference would be significant, but car batteries in hotter locales only last about three years, compared to five or more years in a colder area.

Regardless of where you live, it’s essential to consider replacing your car battery after the first three years are up. Local mechanics offer free battery testing to ensure it’s working correctly before potentially recommending a replacement. By being proactive and checking in with your car’s battery, you can avoid the inconvenience of needing to use your vehicle only to find out the battery has unexpectedly died.

How long can a car battery last without driving?

Even if you live somewhere cooler, your car battery can die earlier than expected due to how you use your vehicle. Or, rather, how you don’t use it.

That’s right; your car battery is susceptible to dying from a complete lack of use. While not uncommon, it was an issue made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in a surge in dead car batteries from people staying home and letting their vehicles sit for too long.

need, know, replacing, your, battery

According to Nationwide. the standard car battery can last about four weeks without driving. Before you let your vehicle sit that long, it’s important to understand that the actual length of time will vary depending on the age of your car and battery. That time frame can be shortened by hotter temperatures, making it crucial to start your vehicle routinely if you live somewhere warm.

The leading cause of dead batteries from a lack of use can be attributed to lead sulfate crystals, which naturally form from lead-acid car batteries. Lead sulfate crystals will form naturally when you drive before dispersing in between uses. While these crystals are a standard reaction from using your car, they are made worse by too little use and higher temperatures.

If your car battery dies from a lack of use, it was very likely to have formed lead sulfate crystals that hardened to the point where your battery has a reduced capacity. That may mean it struggles to start or can’t hold a full charge, or it can be a sign that the battery cannot function at all.

Do EVs have different batteries than gas-powered vehicles?

As EVs. hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and all-electric vehicles. become more mainstream, many drivers are curious about the mechanical differences from a car with an internal combustion engine (ICE). And with good reason, there are some crucial differences beyond how each vehicle is powered.

When you dig deep under the hood, you’ll see that EVs and ICE vehicles rely on different types of car batteries. As previously mentioned, ICE models use lead-acid batteries, while EVs rely on lithium-ion batteries, commonly used in electronics like smartphones and laptops.

Lithium-ion batteries are more energy-dense than lead-acid, prolonging the overall lifespan and ensuring greater energy efficiency. They also have a higher performance in higher temperatures than lead-acid batteries.

An added benefit of EVs and lithium-ion batteries is that they have a much more extended warranty period than most batteries. Federal regulations require automakers to have a minimum warranty period of 8-years or 100,000 miles (whichever comes first). On the other hand, a lead-acid battery is only covered for five years at most.

What are signs your car needs a new battery?

If your car battery has been kicking for a couple of years, it may already be on its last legs. Fortunately, there are a few identifiable signs to look out for before it’s completely dead.

  • Struggles to start: This sign is the most common and obvious, but it’s easy to ignore. If you notice that your car is taking too long to crank and start, your first guess should be that you need a new battery.
  • Check engine light: Another common sign is the presence of your check engine light. If the voltage provided by your battery is too low, that light will illuminate as a goal-line defense before it finally dies.
  • Battery corrosion: This one is tricky to tell since it requires a look under the hood. If you notice any crusty-looking substances on the and. ends of the battery, then your battery is likely leaking and needs to be replaced.

These warning signs work in conjunction with your battery’s age to inform whether or not you need a new battery. It would be best if you didn’t ignore them, lest you be forced to handle the frustrations of a dead battery that needs to be replaced.

Can I install a new car battery myself?

It’s entirely possible to replace your car battery on your own, as plenty of vehicle owners can attest. Whether you take pride in doing things yourself or just like getting your hands dirty, installing your own replacement battery isn’t rocket science. It does, however, require some effort that most drivers aren’t willing to endure.

Before you begin, it’s essential to make sure that your car’s engine is cool enough for you to work without the risk of burns. Assuming that the engine is cool and you have a replacement ready to go, then the process of replacing your car’s battery is surprisingly straightforward.

Removing Your Battery

  • Before starting, ensure that you have appropriate work gloves and a socket wrench with 8, 10, and 12mm sockets handy.
  • Pop the hood, locate your battery, and identify the positive and negative terminals. (Note: the positive terminal has a red plastic cover)
  • Using the socket wrench, loosen the nut on the negative terminal first to detach its cable from the battery, ensuring it’s not touching the battery.
  • Repeat the process for the positive terminal.
  • Remove the bolts and any clamps or fasteners keeping the old battery secured, and pull it out from its handle. (Note: your vehicle battery is heavy, so use precaution when removing yours.)

Installing the New Battery

  • Ensure all parts under the hood are dry before continuing with the installation.
  • Secure the new battery into place and remove the terminal covers. If you have an anti-corrosion solution, such as Permatex. spray it onto the terminals to prevent corrosion from forming over time.
  • Attach the positive cable to the positive terminal and secure it with the socket wrench.
  • Repeat step 9 with the negative terminal, and confirm that both terminals are secured.
  • Cover the positive terminal with the red plastic cover and close the hood.
  • Start the engine to test the new battery.

Can I recycle my used battery?

Once you’ve completed the replacement process, you may wonder what to do with the old battery. Since you likely have a used lead-acid battery, you must dispose of it properly. Both lead and acid are hazardous materials that can lead to serious environmental issues if handled irresponsibly.

Fortunately, the vast majority of vehicle batteries are recycled to keep them out of landfills. Your local municipality is likely to offer battery recycling at waste management facilities, which can take the used battery off your hands with ease. You can also bring your old battery to your local AutoZone and get a gift card for the trouble!

Drive Confidently with Convenient Battery Replacement Services

You can’t go wrong with pursuing maximum convenience as you look to get your car battery replaced.

Our team at Spiffy is eager to expand our mobile car care services to include battery replacements for our customers. Stay tuned to our website and social media channels to learn when this exciting service is available near you!

Written by Jackson Balling

Jackson was Spiffy’s Content Marketing Manager from January 2019 to July 2022 and brought over five years of professional experience in creative copywriting, audio production, and video editing to the Spiffy Marketing team.

Get Your Car Battery Checked and Replaced Today

Pep Boys is an industry leading car battery service provider. Last year, our ASE-certified technicians installed more than 425,000 new car batteries made by brands you trust like Champion, Bosch, and Optima. Use our online appointment scheduler today to have your car battery installed by an expert mechanic near you.

Every Car Battery Replacement Service Includes

Pep Boys Professional Car Battery Installation Service

Pep Boys’ car battery installation service is performed by technicians trained to service all types of vehicles – from a simple installation to navigating complex starting and charging systems. Our new car batteries are made by the industry’s most reliable brands and our technicians go farther to help you go further.

  • Champion car batteries
  • Backed by 30-month free replacement warranty
  • Optimized for consistent power for life of battery
  • Built to stay strong in extreme temperatures
  • Positive and negative grids minimize corrosion
  • Long-lasting performance even under demanding applications
  • Designed to recharge quickly after powering vehicle electrical systems
  • Limited 3-year free replacement warranty
  • Highly resistant to failure from vibration
  • Tolerates repeated deep discharges and provides long overall service life

Pep Boys Car Battery Protection Service

The Pep Boys Car Battery Protection Service helps keep your newly installed car battery corrosion free throughout every season.

  • Chemical cleaning of car battery cable connectors
  • Installation of acid-neutralizing felt terminal post washers
  • Application of anti-corrosion sealant to car battery terminals


On average, a car battery remains reliable for about three years. There are few factors that can lead to shorter battery lifespan. Things like taking an excessive amount of short drives, extreme temperatures of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit or below 10 degrees Fahrenheit and loose or corroded battery cables will drain your vehicles battery. If your vehicle’s battery is three or more years old, have your car battery tested to determine whether it’s time to replace. We recommend being proactive, so you’re not left stranded.

The Pep Boys Car Battery Protection Service is designed as a preventative countermeasure to remove corrosion on your battery cables and terminals when you install a new battery. Corrosion makes a car battery less efficient and can lead to a no start.

Corrosion on the negative terminal is typically the result of your car battery undercharging. Finding corrosion on the positive terminal is likely due to hydrogen gas produced by the acid in the car battery. The acid mixes with other atmospheric elements under the hood of your car, truck, or SUV and produces the corrosion.

Yes, in many cases. Schedule an appointment a Pep Boys near you to have your car battery terminals cleaned.

1 Battery Installation is 14.99 with a battery purchase for most vehicles excluding the following:

a. High Voltage primary batteries in electric hybrid vehicles

b. Batteries that require installation time longer than 30 minutesBatteries that require installation time longer than 30 minutes will accrue a 10 charge per tenth of an hour required.

c. Vehicles that require that the battery be electronically reset to the vehicle computerSome batteries may not be offered for some vehicles

A shop supply fee will be an additional charge (except in NY CA) of 9.99% up to 35.00. Each individual work order will identify and apply any applicable shop supply charge.

Questions? Call 1-800-PEP-BOYS (737-2697) 1-800-PEP-BOYS (737-2697)

Sign Up for Text Alerts

Enter your mobile number below or text PEP to 737-269 to receive exclusive offers, communications, and 30% OFF your oil change service.

By submitting, you agree to the terms and conditions listed. By providing your mobile number, you will be signing up for Pep Boys text alerts. You will receive recurring autodialed messages to the number you provided. Message and data rates may apply. Text STOP to cancel, text HELP for help to 737269. Available on all major carriers. Providing consent to receive text alerts is not a condition of purchase for any goods or services. Privacy Policy and Terms Conditions.

How can AAA Help in case of Damaged Battery

Battery-related malfunctions continue to be the leading cause of the failure of an automobile. When traveling short distances, using a lot of additional power puts a stop to periodic fully saturated charge which is crucial for a lead acid battery’s longevity. The battery is still a weak point in 1.95 million vehicles that are six years old or fewer.

Either you are stuck in the middle of a Strange Road with no help from anywhere or you are at your home, either way you can get stuck due to battery issues of your car, but luckily if you have AAA membership then you can either get your Car toed to a safe place, get your battery checked or get a completly new battery.

Below we have compiled some of the most common questions, people have about AAA Roadside Assistance with Batteries.

Can AAA replace my Battery

Yes, they can replace your battery (at cost to the customer). For stranded members, AAA has been sending out mobile equipment to test and install new truck and automobile batteries for 20 years. The AAA Car Battery Replacement Service (available in most locations) sends a qualified auto technician to your location to perform a free diagnostic test on your car’s battery, starting and charging systems, and other components for optimum convenience. If required, and with your consent, the technician can immediately install a new, premium AAA-branded battery.

Replacement services provided by AAA

  • a report describing the results of an electrical system and battery diagnostic test (printed or emailed)
  • On the majority of cars, delivery and battery installation at your location (home, workplace, or side of the road).
  • AAA battery with a top brand that is reasonably priced.
  • A 72-month limited warranty with a free battery replacement term for cars of three years
  • All changed batteries are disposed of and recycled properly.
  • Fresh batteries are carried in AAA auto battery service vans (less than 150 days after factory activation).

Can AAA test my Battery

Yes, If you are an AAA Member then you can contact AAA roadside assistance and they will test your battery and other chargining systems potentially responsible for battery not working.

This service is completely free to AAA Members up-to 4 times a year.

Do I get a free Battery with AAA

No, You will not get a Free Battery, If for any reason your battery is not working and AAA technician states it as dead, then they will offer you a battery at a discounted price (Since you are an AAA member) usually between 70-120 and the battery they provide comes with a 6 year warranty and 3 Year of Free Replacement warranty.

I.e. If for any reason the battery installed by AAA fails within 3 years, the AAA will Install a completely new battery at either no extra cost or a minimal fees depending upon how long you have the battery with you.

An AAA technician will arrive at your location and check if you need a new battery, you can either choose to purchase one then and there or to be towed home and purchase the battery of your choice and install. it

need, know, replacing, your, battery
  • Include 6-year warranty
  • Members can have a discount of 25
  • AAA will recycle the battery
  • On purchase of battery, this will not be considered as one of the service calls allowed each year.

How long does AAA Battery last

Depending upon the location and the usage of your battery, your battery can last anywhere between 3-5 years. The majority of automobiles utilize standard flooded lead-acid batteries, but a rising number of more recent models with high electrical needs require an improved flooded battery or absorbent glass mat design. The functionality of the electrical system and battery life might be negatively impacted by installing the incorrect type of battery.

The original equipment manufacturer (OEM) battery standards for your vehicle must be met or exceeded for the battery you purchase from AAA. This will guarantee a good fit and top-notch performance.

Can AAA charge my Battery

No, AAA will not completely charge your battery, but they can jump start the battery and charge the battery enough to get you out of any situation, and so that you can reach a residential area or your local mechanic. The technician has tools to replace and jumpstart your battery but they cannot charge your battery the best option is to visit AAA service stations for complete charging of the battery.

Can AAA change my Battery

Yes, AAA Can Change your battery, if You are an AAA member and you r battery is completely damaged and unrecoverable then AAA will Install a new AAA certified battery in your car at a discounted price and it has a 6 year warranty and 3 year replacement warranty. When you call for roadside assistance and after inspection, your technician will suggest you get a new battery if your battery is dead, if you want to replace the battery the technician will immediately install the brand new battery they have. The pricing for the batteries varies accordingly to the vehicle.

Is AAA Battery service free

Yes, AAA Battery Services like Jump Starting, Testing are completely Free as long as you are an AAA member and you have not used all the 4 calls in one year. If you do not have a membership you can ask for assistance but they will charge you accordingly if you have used your 4 calls charges will be applied to the next service.

Although Battery replacement is not free, but they do offer a discounted price to AAA members i.e. up-to 25

Can I replace my friends battery with my AAA membership

Yes, You can replace your friends battery with your AAA memebrship but there are a few thing you have to keep in mind:

  • You must be present there with your AAA membership Card
  • You will have to pay for the battery replacement but the testing and jump starting battery is completely free

Along with your friends, you can also use your membership to replace the batteries of your family members but service like delivery and installation is free for up to 4 times a year after such you would have to pay for these services

Does AAA Replace Batteries on site

Yes, AAA replace batteries on site, they usually have common batteries of different car models in their truck and they can replace the battery (At cost to customer) on the spot within minutes. Replaced batteries are not covered by AAA roadside assistance. The option to purchase an AAA-branded battery from a service technician is available to AAA members. But AAA will cover the delivery and replacement of the battery at the scene of the breakdown, which can save time

Can AAA jump start my battery

Yes, AAA can Jump start your battery and the service is absolutely free. If your automobile battery is entirely dead and unable to be jump-started, AAA Mobile Battery Service is beneficial. In this situation, you can save time and money by calling AAA to send a technician to the scene to check your battery and electrical system. if necessary purchase a brand-new AAA battery that is compatible with your car.

How much warranty is there of the Battery

You get total 6 years of warranty with the battery out of which 3 years are replacement warranty, i.e. AAA will replace your battery after testing it by either charging you a minimal amount or completely free (depending upon the time you have used the battery for). The warranty offers a prorated battery purchase for the remaining three years.

Transferable warranties: The warranty provided by AAA is transferable to another AAA member along with the transfer of ownership of the vehicle but If the battery is relocated to another vehicle or the ownership of the vehicle is transferred to a party who is not a AAA Member, the battery warranty will not be transferred

Does AAA replace battery cables

After the inspection of your automobile if the service technician finds the problem with any battery-related problem they will replace it. As long as the cables are necessary for starting the battery and hence the car, they will replace the battery cables, but if they are not needed to start the vehicle they wil not replace it

How much is the aaa new battery

AAA’s Mobile Car Battery Service bypasses the parts store and garage when it’s time for a new battery. Members can contact AAA for battery issues and a service technician will come to test. If possible, we will replace it on the spot. AAA mobile car battery service is one of the best on-the-go deals. Our AAA car batteries are competitively priced (the average price is around 139) and each comes with a 3-year replacement warranty.

You can check the battery price using this calculator provided by AAA: https://calstate.aaa.com/automotive/roadside/mobile-battery

How to Contact the AAA for Battery Assistance

You can contact the AAA’s roadside assistance by either calling them or through their app or their website. But, you should note that AAA road side assistance depends on county you are in. so you need to visit the correct website.AAA is known for the roadside assistance they provide to their members. Help is available 24/7.

Call the helpline 1-800-AAA-HELP, and wait for an operator to pick up

Provide your AAA membership number to the operator, if you don’t have your card let them know. They can look up your membership details some other way

Report your current location and the trouble you are facing

Give detailed information like license plate number or the type of car for easy identification

Wait in the car till the technician gets there.

Getting help from the App

Open the AAA Mobile app

Request roadside assistance and share your location

Watch in real time the location of the technician

You can also cancel if you have a change in mind

Request help from the website

Visit aaa.com and input your zip code

Login with your AAA membership details

Submit a formal request asking for roadside assistance, select the option and provide your current location

AAA Member Login http://www.aaa.com/drrweblogin

AAA App (Apple Devices) Click Here

AAA App (Android Devices) Click here

AAA Road side Assistance Number: 8002224357

You can also Text APP10 to 86792 to receive a link to download the app.

In Short

Above we have compiled some of the most common questions people have about AAA battery roadside assistance. AAA has been dispatching mobile equipment for testing and installing batteries in new trucks and cars for over 20 years, AAA Car Battery Replacement Service (available in most locations) dispatches a qualified automotive technician to perform a free diagnostic test of your vehicle’s battery, starting and charging system, and other components to optimize your convenience become If required, and with customer approval, the technicians can immediately install a new premium AAA branded battery at a discounted price and offers a 6-year warranty and a 3-year replacement warranty. AAA battery services such as jumpstart and tests are free 4 times a year

I hope we were able to solve all your questions, if you have any other questions, then you can comment down below or call AAA directly.

The TRUTH about AAA Roadside Assistance: Review

The best way to plan ahead for a roadside emergency is purchasing a roadside assistance program. There are many different options available whether you decide to sign up through your personal auto insurance company, subscribe to a roadside mobile app or buy an auto club policy from an organization like AAA. Each roadside assistance program will offer different pricing packages which include a variety of benefits and service offerings.

Let’s explore the features of AAA’s roadside assistance plan in comparison to other popular auto club providers.

How Much Does AAA’s Roadside Assistance Cost?

Unlike many other roadside assistance providers, AAA has multiple membership levels, which can cost anywhere between 7.62 to 23.16 per month.

To give you an idea of AAA’s different pricing, check out the costs below for a Colorado resident.

TermClassicPlusPremierPlus RV/ MotorcyclePremier RV/ Motorcycle
Monthly Fee 7.62 11.83 15.16 17.25 23.16
Annual Fee 79.50 130 170 195 266

Keep in mind these fees can vary depending on your home state and the number of drivers covered within your household.

Also, if you choose to be billed monthly, AAA will add a fee of 1 per month, which is represented above.

What Each AAA Membership Level Includes

AAA’s roadside assistance programs provide up to twenty different services. Depending on which membership package you select (Classic, Plus, or Premier), you’ll have access to a predetermined number of their roadside resources with a maximum of 4 roadside calls per year for each auto club cardholder.

Use our AAA Membership Level grid below for a better understanding of what types of coverages are available for the different price levels.

4 Incidents Per YearClassic – 79.50Plus – 130Premier – 170
Towing Up to 7 miles Up to 100 miles One 200 mile tow 100 mile tows after that
Fuel Services Free delivery, retail price for fuel Free delivery, Free fuel Free delivery, Free fuel
Jump Start Free Free Free
Battery Delivery Installation Free, retail price for battery Free, retail price for battery Free, retail price for battery
Minor Mechanical Adjustment Free Free Free
Emergency Electric Vehicle Charging Free Free Free
Winching/ Extrication Free if not overly complicated Covers a 2nd truck and operator for 1 hour Covers a 2nd truck and operator for 2 hours
Flat Tire Service Change to spare tire, or tow Change to spare tire, or tow Change to spare tire, or tow
Rental Car Discounted Discounted One day free
Bicycle Breakdown (transport of you bicycle) Up to 7 miles Up to 100 miles One 200 mile transport 100 mile transports after that
Car Locksmith Up to 50 Up to 100 Up to 150
Trip Interruption Reimbursement Up to 250 Up to 500 Up to 1500
Auto/Stereo Theft Reward 500 auto/ 200 stereo 1000 auto/ 400 stereo 1600 auto/ 600 stereo
Legal Defense Reimbursement 50 – 300 100 – 1000 300 – 2000
Identity Theft Protection Free Free Free 10,000 Extra Protection
Passport/ ID Photos Minimal fee Free Free
Products/ Services Discounts Extensive Discounts Extensive Discounts Extensive Discounts extras
Concierge Services Free
Travel Accident Coverage 300,000
Home Locksmith Up to 100
Vehicle Return Coverage Up to 500

What Can I Expect From Each AAA Service Benefit?

Although AAA Roadside Assistance Insurance does cost more than most other roadside policies, it’s clear that AAA offers substantially more benefits than many of their competitors. To give you a better idea of what you’ll be getting for your money, let’s take a closer look at each of AAA’s service and benefits.

Flat Tire

The AAA service provider will come out to your vehicle and put on your spare tire so you can continue your journey. However, if you don’t have a spare then the service representative will tow your car according to your membership’s towing benefit.

AAA will also take care of flat tires on your RV and motorcycle as long as you purchased the optional coverage for those types of motor vehicles.


Most roadside assistance programs will transport fuel to you for free as long as you ran out of gas during your drive. Of course, you will be charged the market rate for the gasoline but no charge for the service. However, under AAA’s Plus or Premier plan, you will receive a gallon or two of free so you can get the nearest service station.


According to Angie’s List, 109 is the average nationwide rate to tow a disabled car. Of course, that median towing rate can vary depending on the towing company and location. However, if you are a AAA roadside assistance cardholder then you may have your vehicle towed up to seven miles for Classic members or up to 100 miles for Plus and Premier members.

Those AAA clients that opted for RV and Motorcycle Roadside Assistance coverage may have their vehicle towed up to 100 miles per disablement.

Some roadside programs will provide towing but only as a reimbursement benefit. This means you’ll have to pay for the tow and then submit your receipt to the provider for a refund. Always check the fine print on any roadside assistance program you’re considering.

Vehicle Lockout

AAA will dispatch a provider help you gain entry if you accidentally break your car key in the lock or misplace your key fob inside the locked car

If the first attempt at getting into your automobile is unsuccessful then AAA will immediately send out a professional locksmith to assist.

Your AAA Roadside Assistance Insurance covers locksmith parts and labor services as follows: up to 60 for Classic members; up to 100 for Plus members; and up to 150 for Premier members.

Battery Jump Start

Turning your car key only to find the battery is dead can be a bit frustrating. That’s why AAA includes a battery jump start service. They also offer a battery replacement program as described below.

Battery Delivery Installation

AAA Mobile Battery Service is beneficial if your car battery is completely dead and can’t be jumped. In this case, you can avoid wasting time on a tow and instead have an AAA Mobile Battery Service technician come to the scene, test your battery and electrical system. If you so desire, purchase a fresh AAA battery that meets or exceeds your car’s original specs. All auto batteries come with a 3-year free replacement warranty.

Keep in mind AAA only provides this mobile battery replacement service in select areas. You’ll have to consult with AAA to be sure you can take advantage of this benefit.

Extrication/ Winching Service

Bad weather, like rain and ice storms, causes many drivers to lose control and end up in a ditch along the road. Should you find yourself off road, AAA Roadside Assistance Insurance does cover extrication and winching services.

Rental Car

Once each year an AAA member can get a replacement automobile at a special discounted rate from one of AAA’s participating rental car providers. Plus members enjoy a complimentary upgrade (by one car class) along with their discounted rate.

Concierge Services

AAA Premier cardholders may utilize 24/7 concierge travel assistance prior to departing on a domestic or international trip or while they are in the midst of their journey.

AAA’s robust list of concierge resources includes:

  • Event tickets
  • Restaurant/spa/health club recommendations
  • Travel referrals
  • Destination and tour information
  • Gift basket and floral delivery
  • Business services
  • Golf tee time reservations

Product Discounts

Unlike some other roadside assistance plans, AAA members get other perks such as AAA discounts for more than 100,000 locations across the U.S. Save on things like popular restaurants, entertainment, retailers, and travel specials. Purchases can also earn you reward points that can eventually be applied to future shopping. Most discounts are available at all membership levels.

AAA Discounts Rewards Over 10,000 discounts at Restaurants, Hotels, Retailers, Travel Entertainment Over 10,000 discounts at Restaurants, Hotels, Retailers, Travel Entertainment Over 10,000 discounts at Restaurants, Hotels, Retailers, Travel Entertainment
CARFAX Vehicle Report 20% discount 20% discount 1 Free Per Year 40% off additional reports
AAA Approved Auto Repair 10% off parts 10% off parts 10% off parts Free 40 point inspection
Auto Club Driving School Discounted Rates Discounted Rates
Full Vehicle Inspection 45 off 86 point inspection
Hertz Rental Cars 10% Domestic / 25% International 10% Domestic / 25% International 10% Domestic / 25% International

AAA claims money saved from cardholder discounts can actually off-set the full price of membership fees. This may be true as long as you utilize AAA discounts frequently since they typically account for only 5% to 10% off a purchase.

Feel free to browse the discounts offered in your state at AAA.com/discounts.

If you are one to be diligent about using and tracking a discount card then you may find AAA’s auto club to be your best option. That extra cash in your may very well help you earn back the AAA membership fee. Plus, it’s rare that you’ll find any other auto club program offer such a reward program.

How Does AAA’s Basic Roadside Assistance Compare to Other Providers?

Even though AAA’s basic membership costs much more than most providers, it does include much richer benefits. In fact, AAA’s roadside insurance package has double the benefits offered by their closest competitors. Maybe you simply get what you pay for?

It’s always recommended that you look closely at each auto club’s plan and decide if their services will meet your particular needs. For example, if you travel far from home often then you will definitely want to buy a roadside plan with generous towing miles.

The below table is a great tool for determining if AAA is the right fit for you.

AAAState FarmAllStateFarmersProgressiveGEICOYearly Cost79.504825232314
Towing 7 miles Nearest, no limit 100 150 15 miles 100 miles
Winching/ Extrication Free if reachable from road Free if reachable from road 100 10 ft 100 ft 1 hr
Car Locksmith 50 1 hr 100 150 1 hr 100
On-Site Mechanical Adjustment Free if possible 1 hr 100 150 1 hr 1 hr
Fuel Delivery
Jump Start
Flat Tire Service
Battery Delivery Installation
Trip Interruption Reimbursement Up to 250
Auto/Stereo Theft Reward 500 auto/ 200 stereo
Legal Defense Reimbursement 50 – 300
Emergency Electric Vehicle Charging
Bicycle Breakdown
Identity Theft Protection
Products/Services Discounts

Many of the large insurance carriers, like Allstate and Geico, do have their own roadside assistance programs but it’s not wise to select your car insurance solely based on the cheapest roadside assistance plan. The most accurate way to figure out which company is really offering the most competitive insurance premium is to compare quotes that reflect identical coverages, including roadside services.

How Does AAA’s Classic Plan Compare to AllState’s Similarly Priced Roadside Advantage Plan?

Allstate’s Roadside Assistance program is similar to AAA in a number of ways. A noticeable deviation is that Allstate’s highest level of coverage is priced the same as AAA’s most basic plan. That’s quite a pricing differential.

Many drivers are surprised to learn that joining Allstate’s Roadside Assistance Membership plan is possible even without being an Allstate insurance customer.

AAA Classic – 79.50AllState Roadside Advantage – 99
Calls Per Year 4 Calls 3 Calls
Towing Up to 7 miles 150 limit
Jump Start Free 100 limit per call
Minor Mechanical Adjustment Free 100 limit per call
Winching/ Extrication Free if near road 100 limit per call
Flat Tire Service Change to spare tire, or tow 100 limit per call
Car Locksmith Up to 50 100 limit per call
Trip Interruption Reimbursement Up to 250 Up to 1500
Auto/Stereo Theft Information Reward 500 auto/ 200 stereo 5000 Theft Hit-and-Run
CARFAX Vehicle Report 20% off 3 Free Reports
Legal Defense Reimbursement 50 – 300 50 – 400
Fuel Services Free delivery, retail price for fuel Free delivery, retail price for fuel
Rental Car Discounted Discounted
Products/ Services Discounts Extensive Discounts Extensive Discounts
Emergency Electric Vehicle Charging Free
Battery Delivery Installation Free, retail price for battery
Identity Theft Protection Free
Passport/ ID Photos Minimal fee
Bicycle Breakdown (transport of you bicycle) Up to 7 miles

As you can see right off the top, AAA costs less per year. They also allow one more service call per year than AllState. This difference can be significant if you’re stranded on the side of the highway. In addition to the number of service calls allowed, we also uncovered 5 benefits at the bottom of the chart that AllState lacks including unique perks like Identity Theft Protection, Bicycle Breakdown, and Emergency Electric Car Charging.

On the other hand, AllState offer’s more generous Trip Interruption Reimbursement, Theft Rewards and CARFAX reports.

Which Roadside Assistance Plan is Best?

The majority of roadside assistance plans are pretty similar so you’ll have to consider your own needs and budget when comparing programs.

We listed for you a few of the main points consumers take into consideration when shopping for a roadside assistance policy.

How far do you drive?

If you rarely travel far from home or infrequently get behind the wheel then the most basic roadside assistance plan should be sufficient. For example, AAA’s Classic membership that covers 7 miles of towing would do just fine. There’s no need to pay extra for a plan that includes as much as 200 miles of towing because if you’re unlikely to use the service.

What is the age of your vehicle?

According to recent statistics, most drivers only use their roadside assistance about once every three years. If the driver has a new automobile then that number drops even lower. In fact, if your car is brand new then you can probably just rely on the roadside plan provided under the manufacturer’s warranty.

Below are examples of how long some popular car manufacturer’s offer free roadside assistance on new vehicles:

  • Ford Chevrolet: 5 years or 60,000 miles
  • Dodge: 5 years or 100,000 miles
  • Toyota: 2 years or 25,000 miles
  • Volkswagen: 3 years or 36,000 miles

Always check the details of your manufacturer warranty or talk with your auto dealership for specifics. Of course, if you’ve surpassed the vehicle warranty then it makes good sense to purchase a roadside assistance insurance policy.

Do you need coverage for your vehicle or for you?

Roadside assistance coverage comes in two different forms, vehicle specific or driver specific. Vehicle roadside insurance is only useful when driving a named car and is best for families with multiple drivers all using the same car.

On the other hand, driver specific plans mean your roadside coverage follows you – no matter which vehicle you drive. Driver specific coverage is best for business travelers, families that share multiple cars, or if drivers that use rental cars.

What services will you actually use?

It’s easy to go with a pricey plan that includes lots of frills but if they are not features you’ll realistically use then you’re simply overpaying. Consider the age of your car, the average distance you drive, and how frequently you travel. For auto clubs, like AAA, that provide additional perks like discounts, trip planning, and identity theft monitoring, it’s important to decide if you’ll actually take advantage of these benefits or will you just be paying for something you don’t need.

Beyond everything we’ve advised in our review, we also recommend that you periodically evaluate your roadside assistance needs because they will certainly change over time. When your current roadside plan isn’t working for you any longer then begin shopping for a new plan that will.

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