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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Folks,

Recently upgraded my 2011 Civic Type S head unit and installed a small underseat subwoofer.
I owned the car for about 6 months, installed the new ICE parts around month 3/4.

In the last two weeks the cars battery has died 3 times.
1st it failed to start out on a drive, I received a jump start and drove the car 10km home, Next morning the car failed to start again.
I bought a charger and trickle charged it full, and drove the car at least 30mins/20km every day for over a week, before it failed to start again.

The battery is stock, so 10 years old at this point - my gut is telling me the battery is dead and I need a new one, but I'm concerned the ICE upgrades and additional draw on the circuit may be affecting how the battery is charging while driving (The sub itself draws 150W).

I've been combing through a number of threads on here, but havent found anything conclusive to my scenario.
So I ask, is there anything I should be checking or testing before I replace the battery? (Also what battery specs do I need to look at? Baring in mind im in the ROI and brexit is fucking up prices if the parts are from the UK).

Thanks in advance!
 

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The battery is stock, so 10 years old at this point
Your battery is about 5 years past it best, replace it. With the engine running put a volt meter over the battery terminals and check the alternator is running ok, you should be looking at 13.5-14.4 V. Best to do this with the lights on as the civic has a smart alternator that only charges when its senses the need too.
With regards to batteries you've not mentioned if its a 1.8 or a 2.2. Regardless buy the best you can afford and the higher Ah and CCA the better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Your battery is about 5 years past it best, replace it. With the engine running put a volt meter over the battery terminals and check the alternator is running ok, you should be looking at 13.5-14.4 V. Best to do this with the lights on as the civic has a smart alternator that only charges when its senses the need too.
With regards to batteries you've not mentioned if its a 1.8 or a 2.2. Regardless buy the best you can afford and the higher Ah and CCA the better.
Top tip on the running voltage, didn't even think to explore that... I was doing quite silly tests for the alternator like watching headlight lumens as I accelerated! will charge the battery (or try jump start) and measure it. I figured the battery was past is best before and replacing it regardless isn't a bad idea.

Regarding the car, its a 1.4 petrol - any tips on battery fitting? my usual online based suppliers that fit parts based on reg are UK based and battery prices are insane at the moment, so going to call a few local auto factors this week.
 

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That sounds like a dead battery yes.

Sure a battery might not totally die but they lose a percentage of efficiency every year and eventually won't hold any charge as you've just found out.

If you like your ICE then get a more powerful one.

I use this to test batteries and alternators. 12V Volt LED Car, Van, Carvan Auto Battery Alternator Tester | eBay Basically top light good, bottom light bad. Ignition off to test battery, ignition on to to alternator.

Do try and avoid using the car at all if you can help it until a new battery goes in, I've had two alternators go on different cars because I've used them from a totally flat battery. I believe on both occasions the extra load nuked my alternators...
 

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After checking the condition of your battery, if you need to change it, try to check with local dealers asking if they have any promotional sales going on, and on the internet (prices are often similar).
For the price, when I bought it two years ago I found a Fiamm agm battery at a very good price, cheaper than the Varta, and the Varta cheaper than the original Honda (which should be a varta afb).
I have successfully installed a Fiamm VR680 (60 Ah 680 A - AGM) for 2 years and for the moment I am happy with it, no problem at all.

Cheers
 

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A story ...............

Many years ago I had a similar issue with a fully charged battery that kept on dying.

An expert had a look at it and asked whether the battery had been allowed to fully discharge, yes, she left the lights on at work.

He said that a car battery has 2 stages of charge. The first small stage is done when new and then once complete the second stage can then be done. Your car charging system replenishes the second stage but cannot replenish the first stage.

The only course of action, assuming the battery isn't damaged by the full discharge, is to get stage 1 recharged and that takes a special charger.

The bottom line was that if stage 1 has gone then stage 2 will automatically lose charge, often within a day or 2 from a full charge even after a long run that completely replenishes stage 2.

In my case the battery had been damaged and he proved that by removing the screw tops, that old batteries used to have, and got me to turn the key. He could see that one of the cells was 'bubbling' under strain. These days batteries are often sealed so you can't see this. We then swapped positions and I saw this bubbling so that was that, new battery and all OK from then on.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Do try and avoid using the car at all if you can help it until a new battery goes in, I've had two alternators go on different cars because I've used them from a totally flat battery. I believe on both occasions the extra load nuked my alternators...
Didnt know that but that make sense... I've driving it to a flat battery twice... I'll look into testing the alternator, hopefully it's fine!

The only course of action, assuming the battery isn't damaged by the full discharge, is to get stage 1 recharged and that takes a special charger.
Never heard about stage 1/2 charge. To be fair I don't know a lot about them! Would that special charger just be a standard battery charger?


In any case, just been onto my local autofactor - should have a new battery in a hour or two!

EDIT: New battery in, autofactor tested and confirmed it was the battery that was shot (no surprises there). Car starts noticeably stronger with it!
 
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