7 Best Car AGM Batteries of 2020
Most people are familiar with lead-acid car batteries. They are very popular and quite inexpensive.
However, a new type of battery called AGM batteries is quickly becoming the go-to car battery by manufacturers, tuners and car enthusiasts. This is mostly because of its high-performance, durability, and low discharge rate.
The first AGM batteries were invented by the military for military vehicles and military aircraft in the early 1980s.
Since this type of battery is so much superior to the traditional lead-acid battery, both in terms of performance as well as in terms of durability, it became very successful commercially.
- High-performance: When compared to other types of batteries, AGM batteries are high-performance and deliver a lot of amperages making them ideal for demanding cars like sports cars and muscle cars.
- Low discharge rate: A good car AGM battery can idle for as long as 8 months without suffering from any discharge. This is simply not possible with a conventional lead-acid battery.
- High Cold Cranking Amps: Most AGM batteries tend to have a high CCA that makes them ideal for use in cold temperatures.
- Very durable: Since the fiberglass and wire mat inside the AGM battery is very tight, there is no movement. This makes it less prone to wear and tear and damage from vibrations.
7 Best Car AGM Batteries – Review
1. Universal UB121000-45978 (Superior Performance with 100AH of Power)
2. Odyssey PC680 (Best Overall)
3. Mighty Max Battery ML35-12 (Affordable & Value for Money)
4. Optima 8016-103 (Small but Heavy-duty)
5. Optima 8025-160 (Small & Compact)
6. ACDelco 94RAGM (Reliable & Long-lasting)
7. DieHard 38275 (Comes in Different Sizes & Power Ratings)
1. Universal UB121000-45978
(Superior Performance with 100AH of Power)
2. Odyssey PC680
3. Mighty Max Battery ML35-12
(Affordable & Value for Money)
4. Optima 8016-103
(Small but Heavy-duty)
5. Optima 8025-160
(Small & Compact)
6. ACDelco 94RAGM
(Reliable & Long-lasting)
7. DieHard 38275
(Comes in Different Sizes & Power Ratings)
1. Universal UB121000-45978 – Superior Performance with 100AH of Power
- Power: 12V/100AH
- Warranty: 1-year
Let’s face it, the AGM battery is reputed for its high performance. This is where models like the Universal Power represent the true power of the AGM battery. Indeed, with a power rating of 12V/100AH, this model is a very heavy duty AGM battery.
It should be able to provide you with the amperage necessary to power even the most demanding electrical appliances in your vehicle, whether it is a car or even a boat.
This is denoted by its long reserve capacity of 195 minutes which shows that it has a lower discharge rate.
In addition, it uses a completely tight design which means that it is spill-proof for better safety.
Moreover, this spill-proof design means that you can install this battery in any position you like and not limited to the traditional horizontal mounting.
The only caveat we have is that the manufacturer could have offered a better warranty on this product as it is limited to only one year.
However, the lifetime of this model is definitely higher than that as this is a heavy-duty battery and one of the best deep cycle car AGM battery that you can currently buy.
2. Odyssey PC680 – Best Overall AGM Battery
- Power: 12V
- Warranty: 2-year
The Odyssey PC680 looks like a traditional lead-acid battery. However, this is a full-on AGM battery that is built for heavy-duty performance in demanding vehicles like sports cars.
It is a very reliable AGM battery that will definitely not let you down even if you have a big electrical demand in your vehicle.
One of the best things about this model is that it comes with a 2-year warranty where the manufacturer will fully replace the battery in case of any trouble.
Moreover, the manufacturer also assures that you will have a long lifetime of 3 to 10 years with this battery which is remarkable.
The connector leads of this battery are small so you will need to make sure that it will fit the connectors of your vehicle.
Also, this model is non-spillable and offers very good resistance to vibrations for better security and a longer lifetime.
Despite being a little bit on the expensive side, the Odyssey PC680 is a solid performer and still remains one of the best car AGM battery on the market.
If you’re looking for a small and yet heavy-duty battery, then this is a model that you can rely on.
Just note that due to its cc a value of 170, it is not the best model for cold environments.
Additionally, the connector leads are small so you need to ensure that your battery connector terminals will fit.
3. Mighty Max Battery ML35-12 – Affordable and Value for Money
- Power: 12V/35AH
- Warranty: 1-year
Generally, the AGM battery is an expensive type of battery when compared to other types of batteries on the market.
This is a problem that the Mighty Max is here to solve as it is one of the most affordable units in this car AGM battery review.
This model has a lower power rating of 35 AH which shows that it can deliver less amperage over a period of an hour when compared to others. It is definitely not a heavy duty battery for vehicles with a big electric requirement.
However, this top-rated car AGM battery is definitely suitable only for those who do not need a lot of amperage or power from their battery. But for small and casual use, this is an excellent model to consider.
Additionally, the manufacturer will provide you with a 1-year warranty on this battery so you have nothing to worry about.
Best of all, when you factor in the affordable pricing and the reliability of this battery, then this is a good car AGM battery for anyone who needs reliability rather than power in their battery.
4. Optima 8016-103 – Small but Heavy-duty
- Power: 12V/55AH
- Warranty: 2-year
Optima is one of the best car AGM battery brands in the market. With the Optima 8016-103, we get a small and compact but heavy-duty deep cycle battery with stainless steel stud post that will not corrode over time.
Everything about this AGM battery is made so that it can withstand both freshwater and saltwater with ease. Therefore, it is an excellent Marine AGM battery of boats and other vehicles that normally come close to water.
With its power of 12V/55AH, it will have no problem powering even the most demanding electrical appliances. Moreover, the cold cranking amps of 750 CCA means that it will provide juice even during the coldest of winters.
Best of all, this model is anti-leak due to a tight seal design so you can mount it in any position you like. If price is not an issue, then this model by Optima is an excellent battery to consider.
5. Optima 8025-160 – Small and Compact
- Power: 12V/44AH
- Warranty: 2-year
The Optima 8025-160 is very similar to the Optima AGM battery we have just reviewed above. However, this model is smaller, more lightweight and compact.
Additionally, it has a smaller reserve capacity as well as smaller power when compared to the latter.
However, it is still plenty powerful for casual use and can be used comfortably on a boat or as a Marine battery, no problem.
The connectors of this battery are corrosion free and the whole design will limit vibration. Therefore, this battery is more durable when compared to a traditional lead-acid battery.
The manufacturer also made it such that the internal resistance is very small so it will have a very low discharge rate.
All in all, if you can afford the steep price of this AGM battery then it is an excellent battery especially if you require a battery for your boat.
6. ACDelco 94RAGM – Reliable and Long-lasting AGM Battery
- Power: 12V/80AH
- Warranty: 3-year
In terms of reliability and lifespan, the ACDelco is a top-rated car AGM battery.
Indeed, this model uses a high-density grease on the studs that will help improve conductivity and therefore boost the durability and efficiency of the battery.
Additionally, this AGM battery that will help limit acid leakages. Even if it is not recommended to install this battery in any position, it will still not leak when mounted in an awkward angle due to its sealed design.
Moreover, it’s called cranking amps of 800 CCA is one of the best in the industry. This means that you can use this AGM battery in very cold winters.
Its reserve capacity of 140 minutes and a power of 80 AH shows that it is a heavy duty battery that can power even the most demanding vehicle electric and electronics.
The only downside to this AGM battery is its price as it could have been better. Other than this, it is simply perfect.
7. DieHard 38275 – Comes in Different Sizes and Power Ratings
- Power: 12V/55AH
- Warranty: 3-year
The DieHard has a power rating of 55 AH which shows that it will have no problem powering the engine, a music system, and other pieces of electronics with ease.
Its reserve capacity of 120 minutes shows that it can be used for an extended period of time and has a low discharge rate.
Additionally, the called cranking amps of 775 CCA indicates that it will have no problem working in cold areas. Therefore, this is an excellent model for those who use their vehicles in the cold winter.
Moreover, the design of this AGM battery is sealed tight so as to prevent any acid leakage.
In addition, the fiberglass plates in this battery are very close together and have no problem resisting vibrations which makes it more durable and long-lasting when compared to other types of batteries.
Just make sure that it is compatible with your vehicle as this AGM battery is quite picky and does not offer universal compatibility. But other than this small caveat, this model remains one of the best car AGM battery for the money.
How to Buy the Best AGM Car Battery
Even if the AGM battery is technically universally compatible with most vehicles, you should inquire whether or not the specific AGM battery you are interested in will work with your vehicle.
Especially keep an eye out for the amperage per hour (AH) and ensure that it is not too high and suited for your vehicle.
This is because a battery with a high AH will require a bigger alternator or more time to recharge.
If you do not use your vehicle long enough or have a small alternator than purchasing an AGM battery with a big amperage per hour will be counterproductive and a disadvantage in your case.
2. Reserve capacity
The reserve capacity is one of the most important aspects when purchasing an AGM battery.
Basically, the reserve capacity is the number of minutes that a fully charged AGM battery at normal temperature will discharge exactly 25 A of current until the battery becomes ineffective and produces a voltage of 10.5 V.
When compared to a normal lead-acid battery, the AGM battery has a remarkably high reserve capacity as it is more heavy-duty. In general, you should expect an AGM battery to have a reserve capacity of at least 100 minutes.
However, this value will still depend on your usage. If you do not use that much amperage in your vehicle, then you may safely go with an AGM battery with a smaller reserve capacity.
3. Cold Cranking Amps
In short, the CCA or cold cranking amps is the battery’s ability to produce a current in cold temperature.
The higher the CCA, the more beneficial the battery is in winter as it denotes a more heavy-duty battery that is able to start the vehicle engine right away regardless of a low temperature.
In general, a top-rated car AGM battery of more than 600 CCA is enough for people who live in cold areas.
On the other hand, if your region is generally hot then you do not need to mind about the CCA value in your AGM battery that much.
Since the AGM battery is overall an expensive purchase, you will want to purchase it as least often as possible.
In most cases, the lifespan of the battery is an important consideration because it will directly dictate the amount of money that you will be spending.
Even if the AGM battery is more heavy-duty than the regular lead-acid battery, it will still require a regular change at specific intervals.
Most manufacturers display their battery lifespan directly on the battery itself. It ranges from one year to 5 years.
The longer the lifespan of the AGM battery, the better because it denotes a more heavy-duty battery with a lower discharge rate.
However, you must also take into account the CCA value if it is applicable as well as the power rating if you will need it. You should not sacrifice power or CCA for lifespan as it eventually, you will need to replace all batteries regardless of how powerful or heavy-duty they are.
When purchasing an AGM battery, it is recommended to go with a branded model. This is because brands generally have better quality control and use higher grade materials in the build construction of their AGM batteries.
Moreover, you will get a rock-solid warranty with a good brand while a no-name battery will normally not have any type of warranty.
As we have seen, the AGM battery is an unbeatable battery when it comes to performance, reliability, and durability.
One of the best things about this type of battery is that it costs almost the same as a quality lead-acid battery but is so much more superior, especially for those who drive in cold weathers.
Additionally, this type of battery is ideal for those who do not drive their car for an extended period of time since it has a very low discharge rate. A regular AGM battery should be able to last up to 8 months or more without a recharge.
Finally, our car AGM battery review above list some quality models. If you have still not found a decent battery for your car, then we recommend that you read this review again.
- The Advantages of an AGM Battery - Pep Boys
- 7 Best Car AGM Batteries – Review
- 1. Universal UB121000-45978 – Superior Performance with 100AH of Power
- 2. Odyssey PC680 – Best Overall AGM Battery
- 3. Mighty Max Battery ML35-12 – Affordable and Value for Money
- 4. Optima 8016-103 – Small but Heavy-duty
- 5. Optima 8025-160 – Small and Compact
- 6. ACDelco 94RAGM – Reliable and Long-lasting AGM Battery
- 7. DieHard 38275 – Comes in Different Sizes and Power Ratings
- How to Buy the Best AGM Car Battery