Optima vs Interstate: Which AGM Battery should you Prefer?

optima vs interstate

The two popular battery brands that exist are the Optima battery and the Interstate battery. So we will do well to compare both of these batteries to help you in a more informed decision. 

Failing to invest in a good car battery can cause your car to grind to a halt when you least expect. So, getting a good battery should be among the top on your list. 

Searching for a car battery can be a stressful process because there are a lot of brands to choose from. None of the brands will ever say anything negative about its battery brand. By the time you are through with reading this article, you will know which of the batteries works for you. 

Optima Battery Life Vs Interstate Battery Life

A battery’s life is measured by how long it can hold in a charge. Optima and Interstate remain the two most popular batteries among users but one has a higher battery life than the other. Optima can’t stand in comparison with Interstate when it comes to battery life.

Why? Because even when it is not in use, Optima has a fast discharge rate of about 2 hours more. So if you care about the battery life, you should go for an Interstate battery. It will work for you and can be used over extended periods.

Interstate Battery in relation to Traditional Batteries – Overview and Key Features

Interstate battery types are well known and have been in existence for a very long time. The Interstate is a private company with its headquarters in Dallas.

Their batteries are considered to be reliable and can serve virtually any model of car. Interstate is well an example of traditional batteries. They are somewhat a reminder of batteries that were in existence before the lithium batteries came on board. 

Examples of some Interstate models are : 

  • Interstate Batteries 12V 35AH
  • Interstate Batteries 12V 35AH deep cycle DCM 0035

They commonly exist in hybrid and solar off-grid energy storage and some other common applications. This arrangement will result in an increase in the minimum voltage of the battery. If your choice of the vehicle battery is a battery that is portable and compact, you should go for an interstate battery. It can even be used in a trolling vehicle because of its lightweight. This is a major advantage. 

Another advantage is in its physical appearance. It has a thick exterior that is made of plastic material. The thickness is to protect from vibrations and external shocks.

The Pros and Cons of an Interstate Battery

There is nothing that is so good and appears so perfect without a disadvantage. This is the case of an Interstate battery. Highlighted below are the Pros of an interstate battery

  • It is easy to transport because it comes in a portable and compact form.
  • The battery life is good because it doesn’t discharge easily and so it is reliable.
  • The battery is durable because of its hard plastic exterior and so can handle bumps and scratches well.
  • It is easy to mount into a vehicle. It is also easy to dismount when you are done using
  • It is very easy to maintain because the absorbent glass mat (AGM) is the main technology being used in it. So it can be used over a long period of time.
  • The price for an interstate battery is fair enough and so it is affordable.

The Cons of Interstate Battery

  • There are different types of interstate battery and some of the types might be of poor quality. A case of a bad egg amongst good eggs
  • The batteries come with unclear terms of warranty in most cases.

Comparing the Pros and Cons of an Interstate battery, it is clear that the pros very well outweigh the cons. This deduction leaves us with no other choice than to agree that an Interstate battery is good enough.

Optima Battery in relation to Traditional Batteries – Its Overview and Key Features

The Optima battery performs much better than the traditional lead-acid battery because they make use of strong and clean power sources. The working mechanism of the Optima battery is like that of traditional batteries. 

A regular car battery set up has very fragile lead plates contained in vats of acid. In the case of an Optima battery, it has the fragile lead plates wound into spiral tubes.

This setup allows the Optima to have a greater advantage over the regular battery type. One of such advantages is that the Optima battery type is less prone to vibration issues with the design less prone to leaking.

Optima batteries will work best when they are charged with a low current or are operated using 1 or 2 amps. Optimas are prone to deep discharge. When deep discharge happens, the battery plates will go through sulfation. Charging at 1 or 2 amps will not work in this situation and you will have to charge at 10 amps to get rid of the sulfation in the battery plates.

The battery types that exist in the Optima range are the BlueTop, YellowTop, and RedTop batteries.

BlueTop Batteries

The uniqueness of these types of batteries comes from their assessment of some very good quality characteristics that are absent in the other two – YellowTop and RedTop batteries. BlueTop batteries have 

  • A faster recharge rate compared to the other Optima battery types
  • A higher durability. It will serve much better if they are used in water vessels like RVs and Boats.
  • A higher efficiency when handling with applications that tends to drain other batteries of their power.

YellowTop Batteries

The YellowTop Batteries also come with their own uniqueness. Their uniqueness is in their high cranking power and their quick cycling rates. With this uniqueness, it has the ability to meet your high performance and has a quick recovery and this makes it come in as a versatile battery type. It will work well in commercial vehicles, trucks that come with winches. They are also very good with vehicles that come with large stereo systems. This is because of its low resistance that in turns gives way for greater power output.

RedTop Batteries

RedTop Batteries due to their design is able to meet the cold cranking needs of a vehicle. With this ability, they are strong enough to provide the ignition with high power charges. In just say, 5 seconds of turning the ignition key, your engine starts. Its design also allows for the avoidance of common car battery failure. They are widely used in SUVs, off-road cars, trucks, and street rods.

You have the information above to help you choose from the Optima battery types. If you ask, we will say the best of the three is the YellowTop battery type. The RedTop batteries are good too but they have a high discharge rate. So consider this when making a choice.

Let’s go ahead to check the overall pros and cons of Optima Batteries. We will have the Pros first. They are as pointed out below.

  • Optima Batteries have a long reserve capacity, they do not get to discharge for up to 90 minutes
  • Their starting mechanism is powerful
  • The battery capacity of 12V is an advantage
  • Because of the Spiracell technology, they have an increased efficiency
  • They have strong resistivity against vibration
  • They are easy to mount
  • They have longer lifespan 
  • Easy maintenance
  • Challenging weather has no effect on the performance of the battery

The Cons of an Optima Battery

  • They are on the costly part as they are most costly as compared to other battery types
  • They come in low quality packaging.

Just like the Interstate Battery, the Pros are way greater than the cons. This is why it is popular and classified as one of the qualities and reliable battery types you can use for your vehicle.

Below are answers to some Frequently Asked Questions

What battery has the best reserve capacity?

Any battery type that will work perfectly in cold weather conditions has a good reserve capacity. Optima batteries perfectly fit into this description. The Optima Batteries 8002-002 34 RedTop is the best Optima battery with the best reserve capacity. Its reserve capacity is 800CCA and 50 amp. It will perfectly start your vehicle no matter the weather condition.

What is the best battery type for a daily driver?

The best battery type for a daily driver is the Optima battery. Optima has a high discharge rate when not in use and the only way to stop this is to use it on a daily basis. Optima batteries in addition have high efficiency and have long reserve capacity and this is all a daily driver needs.

Does Interstate make Duralast Platinum battery?

No! Interstate does not make Duralast Platinum batteries. The major producers of Duralast batteries are Johnson Control, East Penn, and Exide. The most common of the three is Johnson Control.

Which of the battery types is best referred to as marine batteries?

Separate cranking and deep-cycle batteries are the kind of batteries that will work perfectly in a marine vehicle, e.g boat. The YellowTop Optima batteries are best referred to as marine batteries as they can serve the purpose well.

Can a dead battery be made to work again?

Yes, a dead battery can be made to work again. A prepared mixture of baking soda mixed in distilled water is all that is needed.

Final Words

Even though the interstate and optima battery manufacturers have their power output to be similar, they have other separate key features. If you won’t be using your vehicle on a daily basis, then Interstate is the best and reliable option for you.

If you are a daily driver and won’t be leaving your car battery unused, go ahead with Optima.

Optima vs Interstate: Which AGM Battery should you Prefer?

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