How to Check If a Car Battery Is Under Warranty
Having a warranty on all different aspects of your car can end up saving you quite a bit of money in the long run. You may be wondering how to check if a car battery is under warranty. Maybe it’s a new car or maybe you’ve had it for a while and can’t quite remember but this is where we come into the equation.
You can check whether your battery is still covered under warranty by locating a small sticker on the battery that will show the month and date your battery was manufactured. If you aren’t able to find that sticker there will also be a 4-digit code stamped on the battery that will show you the month, year, and plant that it was manufactured in – most batteries are covered under warranty between 1-4 years.
Let’s take a look at how to know if you’re covered but also all the things that could go wrong that would be covered under this warranty.
What Is a Warranty and Why Do You Need It?
To put it simply, a warranty will ensure you don’t have to pay for any repairs if something goes wrong with your battery. But there will be some terms and conditions to it.
This can cover an array of things from manufacturing errors, to damage, or if it simply won’t hold a charge. All of these things tend to be covered under your warranty which will save you the extra unnecessary stress of whether you can afford to replace your battery after you’ve realized it’s not doing its job correctly.
A singular car battery can have many different warranties that cover different things. Retailer and manufacturer are the two most common although if your vehicle is new, a new car warranty might also be in place.
Is Your Battery Still Covered?
The easiest way to check if your battery is still covered is by checking the battery itself. Now there are a huge number of ways that your battery could be date stamped and we are going to look at a few here.
Open up your hood and locate your battery, here you should be able to find a small sticker with a date printed in M/YY format. For example, if this sticker says 4/16 then this would mean your battery was manufactured in April 2016. It may also consist of numbers and letters. The letters would be the month and the numbers would be the year.
Be sure to keep any receipts when you purchase a new battery as this will ensure you can claim your warranty. Most batteries are covered anywhere from 1 to 4 years but a retailer warranty will be added on top of this.
If you can’t seem to locate the sticker then take a look for a four-digit code. It will usually begin with a P or S with the following two digits representing the month, then the year, and lastly the plant in which it was manufactured. This is a great way to help you figure out if you’re still covered under warranty if you can’t find that handy little sticker.
Here’s a quick video to show you the different ways batteries are date stamped
What’s Included in a Standard Warranty?
What’s covered under your warranty will vary depending on which company you choose to go with but many of the standard things will be covered under most.
The most basic thing you will be able to claim under most warranties is any damage that was caused due to a manufacturing error. This can be caused by workmanship or simply the materials used for that specific battery.
Warranties tend not to cover things like:
- Sulphation happens when your discharged battery is left to stand for a prolonged period of time.
- Wear and tear due to daily use.
- Deep cycling.
- Overcharging causes electrolytes to evaporate due to extreme heat.
- Physical damage.
- Incorrect application.
Warranties won’t cover anything that was caused due to consumer fault.
Are There Different Warranties Available?
There are certainly different warranties available depending on what you’re looking for. Every different manufacturer’s warranty will look slightly different from each other as they are all trying to offer you something different so simply take a look at all your options.
Here are some of our favorites!
Costco Car Battery Warranty
Costco offers a brilliant warranty that will cover your battery for up to 36 months. This is, unfortunately, a limited replacement warranty meaning if the damage caused was in any way your fault then you might not be able to claim so always double-check the terms and conditions.
Walmart Battery Warranty
You will need to find a Walmart with an auto shop attached in order to claim your warranty. Here the technician will check whatever the issue is with your battery and they conclude whether or not you are covered under your warranty.
Most of the company’s batteries are covered for up to 3 years but if you’re interested in a specific model’s warranty then head to their website where all the necessary information is listed.
Autozone Battery Warranty
Autozone is a great place for all your car needs including your battery warranty. Not only can you purchase new batteries but they will also take your old batteries and dispose of them correctly. Although they do offer this great service, their warranty is rather strict when compared to others.
If you do need to get a new battery due to an error on your current one then you will not receive either a refund or exchange, instead, you will be given a credit. This credit can then be put towards a new battery but there is no guarantee it will cover the price of a replacement.
Amazon Battery Warranty
Amazon offers many name-brand car batteries but due to the fact they come from different sellers, warranties will vary. The description will have any details you need about what’s covered and what isn’t but if you have any extra questions then you can always contact the seller.
Amazon is a brilliant and convenient way to shop with many products to choose from and incredibly quick shipping.
How to Claim Your Warranty
Simply take your battery back to the retailer you purchased it from as soon as you notice any issues. You will need the receipt from when you purchased it as well as an idea of how old it is. A technician will then take a look at any issues and decide if you are covered under your warranty.
From there if it is decided you are then you will either receive a refund or an exchange for a new battery.
So as you can tell, it’s pretty simple to check whether your battery is covered under warranty. Take a look at that little date sticker and you should be able to figure out whether your warranty is still in date.
Remember that consumer-caused faults tend not to be covered under most warranties and receipts from purchases are required. Take a look at some of our favorite warranty providers listed above!
Here are some articles that might interest you:
Need a new car battery? AAA delivers on the spot
The Approved Auto Repair Facility Locator is a powerful search tool that gives you easy access to information on over 7,000 Approved Auto Repair facilities across North America.
With AAA’s Mobile Car Battery Service, you can bypass the parts store and repair shop when it’s time for a new battery. Members can contact AAA with your battery issue and a service technician will come to you to test it. If possible, we’ll replace it on the spot.
AAA’s Mobile Car Battery Service.- https://www.aaa.com/carbatteryquote/is one of the best deals on the road. AAA car batteries are competitively priced and each comes with a three-year replacement warranty.
A new battery will last, on average, three to five years, but driving conditions, climate and maintenance will affect its lifespan. You can get the most out of your battery by following these tips from AAA. Just remember to wear eye protection and gloves while working on your battery, and never smoke near a battery or allow it to be near sparks or an open flame.
Keep your battery clean. Periodically pop the hood and look for corrosion on the battery terminals. If you see any, clean it off with a small, stiff brush and a solution of baking soda and water. After removing the corrosion, rinse the battery with water.
As your battery begins to age, have it tested occasionally by a AAA Approved Auto Repair shop near you. Testing equipment today can often give you a good sense of how much life a battery has left. That way you can replace it when necessary and avoid being stranded.
Car Mobile Battery Service is one of AAA’s most popular membership benefits, with service techs replacing more than 2 million batteries a year. Since 1999, AAA has recycled more than 18 million batteries. Laid end to end, they’d stretch from Miami to Seattle. Old and defective batteries are recycled, saving resources and keeping hazardous waste out of landfills.
Ways to Love Your Vehicle Battery
When you think of romance, your car battery probably doesn’t come to mind. But it’s worth showing your battery some love! You don’t realize how much you need it until it dies! Here are some ways to give your battery some TLC.
All the Electric Vehicle Perks That Come with a AAA membership!
Electric vehicles (EVs) are not new to AAA. Over the past decade, we have committed to learning, developing, and servicing EVs as their popularity has grown. We offer a variety of benefits specifically for those interested in EVs.
How Much Does It Cost To Replace Brake Pads?
Brakes can wear down quickly. Learn how much it costs to replace brake pads, as well as warning signs to look for so you can continue driving with confidence.
Bad Alternator vs. Bad Battery: A Quick Guide
If your car doesn’t start, it could be a bad alternator or a bad battery. AAA explains the different signs for each so you can get it fixed and back on the road.
O’Reilly vs AutoZone Batteries: Which Battery Is Better For Your Vehicle?
If you are looking to purchase a new car battery, then you may want to start your search at your local auto parts store. Both O’Reilly Auto Parts and AutoZone offer their own line of private-label batteries. But which one is best for your vehicle?
Both O’Reilly and AutoZone offer excellent-quality batteries. If you are shopping strictly on price, then you may want to consider the O’Reilly battery. If you have a higher-end vehicle or want a better quality private label battery, the Duralast battery from AutoZone is the better choice.
This post will compare the line-up of batteries offered by both O’Reilly Auto Parts and AutoZone.
- O’Reilly batteries
- AutoZone batteries
- How do O’Reilly and AutoZone batteries compare?
- Sum Up
- Battery fitting mistakes
Before you pull the lever, check out the battery buyers category for comparisons on quality batteries.
Before fitting a new battery, check out the most common battery fitting mistakes below, some of which are spendy to fix.
O’Reilly Auto Parts is one of the largest auto parts retailers in the United States. Currently, O’Reilly Auto Parts have over 5,600 locations in 47 states. The company sells its auto parts products to professional mechanics and do-it-yourself customers.
O’Reilly Auto Parts offers its own line of Super Start Batteries for vehicles. Currently, there are four subbrands under the Super State private label brand from the auto retailer.
Super Start Economy
Super State Economy is the most affordable private-label battery offered by O’Reilly Auto Parts. These batteries are ideal for those on a budget and who have an older vehicle. These batteries tend to be about 30% less expensive than the average battery.
Super Start Premium
Super Start Premium is the mid-level battery offered by O’Reilly Auto Parts. Whether you have a newer or an older vehicle, Super Start Premium will provide the best value in the O’Reilly batteries line-up.
Super Start Extreme
Super Start Extreme is designed for those who have high-use vehicles or those who take their vehicles off-roading. These batteries tend to be tougher, longer-lasting, and provide excellent starting power. Super Start Extreme batteries are priced higher than Super Start Premium batteries.
Super Start Platinum
Super Start Platinum batteries are the high-end model in the O’Reilly Auto Parts Super Start brand. These batteries are designed for luxury vehicles and high-performance vehicles. Super Start Platinum batteries will have the best warranty as well as the best build construction.
AutoZone is the largest auto parts-only retailer in the United States. The company has over 6,000 locations across the country and services professional mechanics as well as the consumer market. The company is known for providing just about all types of auto parts, including aftermarket parts.
AutoZone offers its own line-up of private-label batteries. Like O’Reilly Auto Parts, AutoZone offers four sub-brands of batteries for vehicles. Each sub-brand provides a different level of pricing.
The Econocraft line-up of batteries is the most affordable from AutoZone’s private label brand. This content is owned by moc.sotuaytsur. These batteries are ideal for those who need basic starting power from an older vehicle. Econocraft batteries are about 30% less expensive than the average battery cost.
Duralast is the standard battery brand from AutoZone. In most cases, a Duralast battery will be sufficient for most vehicles. Compared to non-private-label batteries from Diehard, Optima, and ACDelco, these batteries are affordable.
Duralast Gold is the premium private label sub-brand from AutoZone. These batteries are ideal for high-use or luxury vehicles. Duralast Gold batteries will have better build construction, offer better starting power, and last longer than Duralast batteries.
Duralast Platinum batteries are the highest quality batteries offered by AutoZone. These batteries are ideal for high-performance vehicles or those who take their vehicles to extreme-weather environments. Duralast Platinum batteries will last longer than any of the other batteries offered by AutoZone.
How Do O’Reilly and AutoZone Batteries Compare?
Here, we will compare both battery brands in terms of selection, quality, pricing, longevity, performance, and warranty.
Both O’Reilly and AutoZone offer you four sub-brands that offer different pricing and quality levels. With both brands, you will likely find the battery that will fit your needs and your budget. In this case, both brands tie in this category.
AutoZone’s selection of Duralast batteries has a better reputation and sells in a higher volume than the private label batteries offered by O’Reilly Auto Parts. If you are picky about battery quality, then you will want to opt for AutoZone.
Both O’Reilly and AutoZone offer four different sub-brands of batteries at different price levels. However, it appears that O’Reilly’s line-up of batteries tends to beat AutoZone’s Duralast line-up of batteries in most cases. Here O’Reilly gets the edge.
Both O’Reilly and AutoZone offer batteries that can provide you with a long life. However, if you want to get the maximum life from your battery, you will want to go with the Duralast Platinum battery from AutoZone. These high-end batteries are known for lasting longer and performing well in extreme weather conditions. The edge here goes to AutoZone.
When it comes to performance, the clear winner is going to be AutoZone. Their line-up of Durlast Gold and Duralast Premium are among the best private-label batteries that you can find on the market. If you want a great battery for your high-end car and don’t want to spend more on a Diehard or ACDelco battery, then going with AutoZone batteries is going to be your choice.
AutoZone’s Duralast battery comes with a two-year warranty, while AutoZone’s Duralast Gold and Duralast Platinum battery come with a three-year warranty. O’Reilly Auto Parts offers a two-year warranty on its Super Start Premium battery and a three-year warranty on its Super Start Extreme and Super Start Platinum battery. Here, both brands tie in when it comes to warranty coverage.
The bottom line on O’Reilly and AutoZone Batteries
So which battery brand is best for you? Shopping strictly on price, you may want to consider O’Reilly Auto Parts. However, if you own a higher-end vehicle or simply want a better quality private label battery, you will want to look at the Durlast brand of AutoZone batteries.
Overall, both O’Reilly Auto Parts and AutoZone offer excellent choices when it comes to private-label batteries, but do check out Amazon.com for great deals before you pull the lever.
Battery Fitting Mistakes
Can you fit your own battery? You sure can. But you should know three common battery fitting errors.
1 Removing car’s computer power – Some cars won’t like to have their batteries removed. It causes the computers to lose track of the sensors they use to manage various systems.
2 Connecting a battery up backways – This is a really common issue and can be spendy to fix.
Anyway, we will avoid these common issues because we will follow some basic battery fitting tips.
3 Failing to calibrate the Battery control module
1 Removing the car’s computer power
This doesn’t tend to be an issue with regular family cars, but the more sophisticated the car, the more computers, and the more likely removing the battery will cause issues.
What type of issues? Mostly irritating type stuff like inop HVAC systems or erratic window controls and poor quality gear changes. And in most cases, these issues fix themselves by just driving the car. (my favorite type of problem)
But sometimes, you have an erratic idle that won’t fix itself and may require a visit to a dealer to set it straight again.
I advise folks who are going to change a battery to use a KAM (Keep Alive Memory) tool; it sends a small voltage to the car’s computers to keep them alive while the battery is disconnected.
2 Connecting up the battery backways
In many cases, connecting up backways just blows a fuse, no biggie, right? And hooking up backways is an easy mistake to make, and it often stems from trying to fit a battery that isn’t suitable, poles on the wrong sides, etc.
But for some unlucky folks hooking up backways can result in some spendy repair bills.
I wrote a post about hooking up your battery backways, and you can check that out here – “Battery sparked now won’t start.”
I also wrote a post about battery terminal identification, and you can check it out here Unmarked car battery terminals.
3 Battery Control Module
Modern vehicles use a computer specifically to manage your battery health; when you replace the battery, the battery control module (computer) should be calibrated – You tell the computer, ” Hey, I’m a new battery, and you don’t need to charge me at the same rate you did the old battery.
If the control module isn’t notified of the battery change, it may overcharge your new battery, which will shorten its life. Anyway, I wrote a post about swapping out your battery, it covers all of the above in more detail, and you can check it out here – “How hard to change a car battery?
About the Author
John Cunningham is a Red Seal Qualified automotive motive technician with over twenty-five years of experience in the field. When he’s not writing about car repair, you’ll find him in his happy place – restoring classic cars.
Batteries drain and fail for many reasons, including old age, alternator issues, battery drain, or simply loose battery terminals. And below, I’ll list some posts I wrote on common battery-related issues, from troubleshooting repairs to buying advice.
- Battery issues
- Alternator issues
- Unmarked car battery terminals
- How hard to change a car battery?
- Car won’t idle after battery change?
- Car battery dead car won’t unlock
- Tools to replace car battery
- How long to charge a car battery driving?
- Car battery drain
- Is ground same as negative?
- Battery troubleshooting blog section
John Cunningham is an Automotive Technician and writer on Rustyautos.com. He’s been a mechanic for over twenty-five years and has worked for GM, Volvo, Volkswagen, Land Rover, and Jaguar dealerships.
John uses his know-how and experience to write fluff-free articles that help fellow gearheads with all aspects of vehicle ownership, including maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting.
Hey, I’m John Cunningham, a technical writer here at Rustyautos.com.
I’m a Red Seal-qualified Auto Service Technician with over twenty-five years experience working on Classic and Modern Cars.
I’ve worked for GM, Jaguar, Land Rover, Volvo, Audi, and VW main dealers.
Yep, I’ve skint my knuckles on them all!
The Best Place To Buy a Car Battery
Finding yourself in need of a new car battery can be frustrating, so knowing ahead of time where to shop for the best price can be a big help.
In this article, I’ll take a close look at a few of the best places to buy car batteries. You’ll find and information for Advance Auto Parts, Costco and NAPA among others. I visited each of the stores’ websites to see current on car batteries, the length of warranties and whether the installation is included in the purchase price.
Where To Buy a Car Battery
When it comes to deciding where to buy a car battery, there are a few things to keep in mind: Make sure that you’re shopping for the right size battery, be sure to compare prices, familiarize yourself with the warranty and see if the installation is included. You should also take the time to check the ratings and reliability of a certain brand or battery model before buying.
If you do all those things, you’ll likely find the best deals on car batteries at a store near you instead of at online retailers. On top of great prices, you’ll also typically find longer warranties (compared to online stores) and free installation.
I’ve found that Costco, Walmart, Sam’s Club and Advance Auto Parts are great places to buy a car battery. AutoZone and NAPA are also worth checking out!
Below, you’ll find more detailed information on these retailers including where to find the best price.
The Top 6 Places To Buy a Car Battery
To see where I could get the best overall deal, I compared the prices, warranties and installation fees for similar lead-acid 24/24F car batteries. This size battery fits several Acura, Honda, Infiniti, Lexus, Nissan and Toyota models including the car I drive.
Here’s what I found in December 2022.
Warranties may vary based on the original date of purchase.
As you can see, you’ll have access to low prices, reliable warranties and free installation at stores you can visit in person.
Overall, I found the lowest overall price at Costco. However, Costco doesn’t offer installation, which means I’d either have to install it myself or pay to have it installed somewhere else. But Walmart will install a car battery, no matter where you buy it for only 15.
Walmart offered the second-lowest price including free installation and a great warranty. Plus, you can use your Walmart rewards card to get 5% cash back by ordering the car battery online.
Sam’s Club offered the next-best deal. followed by NAPA, Advance Auto Parts and AutoZone.
You can also find a wide variety of car batteries at Amazon for reasonable prices, but you won’t get the best deal. The warranties vary by battery, and in many cases, they aren’t valid because you’re buying through Amazon instead of a dealer certified by the manufacturer. And of course, installation is not included.
For the best overall deal, be sure to check out these top six places to buy a car battery.
Price Range: 109-179 Available Brands: Interstate
If you’re a Costco member, you won’t be surprised to hear that this is where you’ll find some of the lowest on quality car batteries. Costco carries only Interstate Batteries. which are highly rated in several sizes and models by Consumer Reports (subscription required).
While you can’t order a car battery online from Costco, you can use the store’s online battery finder to see which batteries will fit your car and how much they cost. From there, you can visit your nearest Costco to make your purchase.
Costco offers a 36-month limited warranty on most batteries. but unfortunately, you won’t be able to get your battery installed here. Again, keep in mind that Walmart offers installation for batteries bought elsewhere for only 15. That still means you’ll most likely be saving big with this purchase compared to the at stores with free installation.
Price Range: 59-215 Available Brands: EverStart and Optima
Based on my research, Walmart offered some of the lowest in addition to great warranties and free installation if you buy your battery from the same location. Be sure to make your purchase online and use your Walmart rewards card for an additional 5% cash back.
You’ll mostly see EverStart car batteries at Walmart. That brand has several models that get high ratings from Consumer Reports. EverStart Value automotive batteries are available from 59 and up.
To get started, visit the website and enter your car make, model and year. This will filter your results by batteries that will fit. From there, you can browse the selection and order the battery online to be picked up in-store nearby.
Price Range: 102-238 Available Brands: Duracell
Sam’s Club is a good place to find car batteries at a good price, but of course, you have to be a member. The warehouse carries Duracell brand batteries, which Consumer Reports labeled “Best Buy” options.
Sam’s Club locations with Tire Battery centers offer free car battery installation. Batteries are also covered by a free replacement warranty for three years from the date that you buy them.
While the car batteries are available only in-store, you can still browse the available selection online. This is a great way to compare prices, read reviews, and check availability.
Advance Auto Parts
Price Range: 109-359 Available Brands: DieHard, Optima, AutoCraft and more
While it may not seem like it at first glance, you can get some of the lowest available on car batteries from Advance Auto Parts.
When you visit the website, you can enter your email address to get a 20% discount on your first purchase. Even if you’re not a first-time Advance Auto Parts shopper, you can usually find an active promo code on the website. Finally, be sure to return the battery later to collect your 22 refundable core charge (be sure to save that paperwork!).
You’ll find DieHard, Optima and AutoCraft batteries among the brands at Advance Auto Parts. Warranties vary by product, but in general, expect to see a 2-3 year free replacement guarantee for most batteries Advance sells. Advance Auto Parts also offers i nstallation and testing at no additional charge.
Price Range: 79-528 Available Brands: Duralast, ACDelco, Optima and more
While AutoZone offers average for highly-ranked battery brands like Duralast, ACDelco and Optima, you can find great on value batteries such as Econocraft and Valucraft.
Generally, AutoZone’s car battery warranties range from one-and-a-half to three years. but for the value brand batteries, expect to see warranties as short as three months.
If you purchase your car battery from AutoZone, installation is free You can order a battery online to pick up nearby or shop for a battery in-store. You can also have the battery shipped to you.
Price Range: 129-273 Available Brands: NAPA
When you visit the website. you’ll find four different categories including Power, The Legend, The Legend Premium and The Legend Premium AGM. These categories range from the most budget-friendly to the highest performance, respectively.
NAPA batteries are highly rated by Consumer Reports. In fact, the NAPA Legend Premium 8424F is the highest-rated car battery in the group 24 24F category.
According to NAPA’s limited warranty policy. you can expect to see a warranty ranging from 18 to 36 months on automotive batteries. Installation is free when you buy the car battery from NAPA.
If you’re a Costco or Sam’s Club member, you’ll likely find the best deals on car batteries at your favorite warehouse store. If not, Walmart is a great place to shop for car batteries. All three retailers offer three-year warranties, and the latter two offer free installation.
Additionally, you can find some of the lowest total on car batteries at Advance Auto Parts if you use promo codes. Also, remember to collect your 22 refundable core charge.
Finally, be sure to check AutoZone, NAPA for other competitive and free installation. If you still haven’t found what you’re looking for, feel free to check out the wide variety available on Amazon. Just be mindful of warranty information and have a plan for installation.
No matter where you decide to make your final purchase, be sure to comparison shop so that you know you’re getting the best, most current deal.
Have you shopped for a battery at any of the places listed? Let us know in our Clark.com Community!