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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Optima Yellow Top Deep Cycle Battery

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32 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 31 January 2001 - 11:51 PM

Well along with my waxing project this past weekend, I got a new battery....old one kept dieing on me.

I am very pleased with the optima battery. I noticed improvements in my stereo system right away. It sounds alot better...or like it used to. There is more bass, louder with less volume, no more clipping at higher volumes, mids and highs are alot more defined, the system sounds like a new system. I think mainly because the power delivery is sooo much smoother and cleaner.

Also car idles smoother, I think there is a little more power, especially under load, like a hill. I guess I got pissed that I replaced my old battery after only 2 years, and the fact that my one uncle talked me out of the optima battery last time. It wasn't too cheap... $171 from summit racing www.summitracing.com , $178 w/ shippin&handling, which was the cheapest I found.

But if you're looking for a GREAT battery, and can afford it I'd HIGHLY recomend this one.

For those that may not know....the optima batteries are spirical gel batteries, they are dry batteries, so they are maintance free....and sealed, you can mount this battery in any direction anywhere you want, upside down, sideways etc...you can find out more on their website www.optimabatteries.com

It's a little wider than the stock one, I used the little platform that was with the old battery to raise it up, to clear the trans fluid cooling lines, other than that it fit right in.

If anyone has any questions feel free to drop me a line.

here's some pics (if you can't tell I was playin with my new dig camera.....me likes :) )

Old Battery
Posted Image

New Battery
Posted Image

*** moderator edit-- fixed a URL for the archives-SmashPDX***

#2 Guest_qman_*

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Posted 31 January 2001 - 11:58 PM

I've been considering that type of battery due to offroading requirements. The price is the hardest thing to deal with though. Qman

#3 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 01 February 2001 - 12:03 AM

Yeah It's a little hard to bite off at first<img src=http://www.ezboard.com/intl/aenglish/images/emoticons/ohwell.gif ALT=":\"> ....but I guess it all depends on your needs, and what you're goin to use it for

#4 Guest_hodakarider_*

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Posted 01 February 2001 - 03:25 PM

Whatever you do KEEP THE RECEIPT! I've only seen one of these things fail, and it just happened to be the guy who threw away his receipt- no warranty without receipt!

#5 Guest_mile hi sub_*

Guest_mile hi sub_*
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Posted 01 February 2001 - 10:08 PM

The price might not be real steep if you can get the service that I have with the Optima red top battery. My first was purchased in 1990 as a "second" at a good price and now is in my Brat. I purchased another at full price for my Impreza. They seem to keep going and going and going.

#6 Guest_EQUALIZERplus_*

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Posted 01 February 2001 - 10:34 PM

How long is it supposed to last and is it prorated, etc?

I had an interstate battery in my ol 83 GL which, I think was a 5 yr rated, which ended up lasting nearly 10 yrs. Most of my driving was hwy., and the air cond didn't work, so it didn't get stressed much. Anyhow, when the 97 gives up the ghost, I might just go interstate, however, if this dry cell will out last it by a double margin, (life of the car and then some), one would be further ahead going w/the yellow top. Is it a regular 12v and did you check it before installing and while under load? Just curious as to the readings.

Best regards,


#7 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 02 February 2001 - 01:01 AM

Well I'll tell you what I have heard and experienced....this battery is pretty much the cream of the crop....it's got a 950 CCA rating @ 32 degrees F. 124 min of reserve capacity. It will most likely last the life of the vehicle and then some....if you don't do a lot of cycling....charging and discharging....it's a deep cycle so if you drain it dead and charge it back up again...it will have the full power it had when new.

This is something I think a lot of people don't know....once you drain a normal lead plate battery below a certain point...and charge it back up.....it never fully recovers to it's original charge....so you never get that full life back....and if it goes down again...the cycle continues...untill it can't start ****.......a good comparison is like turning rotors.....you take the material away from the rotor to true it...but you also take away the material that gives the rotor the ability to dissapate heat....you're better off gettin new ones....

I did not test it with any meters or anything....I can check the next time I get to my uncles....he has a battery load meter....we used it to test my old one...which was in the weak category...

Well here's the technical specs on the Optima yellow top deep cycle battery if anyone is interested

Battery Model: D34/78-950
Part Number: 8014-021
Nominal Voltage: 12 volts
Description: High power, sealed, lead acid deep cycle battery.
Physical Characteristics:
Plate Design: High purity lead-tin alloy. Wound cell configuration using utilizing proprietary SPIRALCELL technology.
Electrolyte: Sulfuric acid, H2SO4. Specific gravity: 1.342
Case: Polypropylene
Color: Case: Light Gray
Cover: "Optima" Yellow
Group Size: BCI: 34

Standard Metric
Length: 10" 254 mm
Width: 6.8" 172.2 mm
Height: 7.8" 198.1 mm(height at the top of the terminals)
Minimum Weight: 43.8lb. 19.89kg
Terminal Configuration: SAE / BCI automotive and GM style side terminal (3/8" - 16 UNC - 2B, threaded nut).

Performance Data:
Open Circuit Voltage (full charged): 13.2 volts
Internal resistance (fully charged): .0028 ohms
Capacity: 65 Ah (C/20)52 Ah (C/2)
Reserve Capacity: BCI: 124 minutes
(25 amp discharge, 80o F (26.7o C), to 10.5 volts cut-off)

CCA (BCI 0o F): 750 amps
MCA (BCI 32 o F): 950 amps
Battery Power (C/2) 8.4 kW
412 W/Kg
955 W/L
Battery Energy (C/2) 624 Wh
30.6 Wh/Kg
70.9 Wh/L

Cycle life:
Cycle Life - deep cycle (BCI): ~ 350 cycles
J240 Life Cycle (BCI): 10,000 - 12,000 cycles
EV, C/2 discharge to 10.5 volts, cycle to 80% retained capacity: > 220 cycles

Recommended Charging:
The following charging methods are recommended to ensure a long battery life:
(Always use a voltage regulated charger, with voltage limits set as described below.)

Model: D34/78-950
These batteries are designed for cyclic applications and for use in vehicles with large accessory loads.

Recommended charging information:
Alternator 13.8 to 15.0 volts
Battery charger 13.8 to 15.0 volts, 20 amps maximum
Float charge 13.2 to 13.8 volts, 1 amp maximum
Rapid Recharge (Constant voltage charger) Maimum voltage 15.6 volts. No current limit as long as battery temperature remains below 125F. Charge until current drops below 1 amp.
Cyclic or series string applications 14.7 volts, temperature <125F, no current limits. When current falls below 1 amp, finish with 2 amp constant current for 1 hour.

#8 Guest_coolb72_*

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Posted 02 February 2001 - 02:07 AM

while i dont have a gel type battery in my battle wagon, i can attest to their durabilty. i worked as a snow removal foreman a few years back in my hometown of jackson wyoming and had a cheap boss. well instead of upgrading his alternator and running two batteries in his plow truck, he decided to try the gel battery. and despite the tremendous load of running an 8 ft plow(yes we get over 200" a year there) the battery never died nor did the alternator seem to mind. and mind u we talking about a lot of plowing for a pretty well used 3/4 ton 4x4 chevy.
but for my purposes i bought a cheapo battery from the local parts store and even though im running over 500watts with my dual amp setup in my stereo, i never get any headlight dimming or clipping even when the stereo is on and the car is not running. not too bad for a car thats 13 years old and 175k miles. peace

#9 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 02 February 2001 - 09:36 AM

Just curious....do you know the max combined amperage draw, what type of battery is it, and what amps and speakers you using?

#10 Guest_Commuter_*

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Posted 10 February 2001 - 09:09 AM

This is what I love about a board like this. One finds out about all kind of neat stuff.

After reading this topic, I did a little surfing. It appears that there is an Optima sized to exactly fit the vehicle. I don't know the car that you have, but it looks the same as my 97 OB which has a Group 35 size battery. The one you purchased is a Group 34 size which is bigger.

Optima's site does not list the Group 35 size under the products area, but it did come up when I entered my vehicle info. No. 75/35-925. I also found it on some other sites. It looks like it runs about 80% of the price of the 34/78-950 battery.

If anyone is in Ontario Canada, these batteries are handled by Interstate. Optima's site lists dealers for other areas of Canada too. The price they gave me was directly in line with the price mentioned above (Canadian of course). Roughly double what one would pay for a good quality "normal" battery.

My car is just over 4 years old. I really don't know how long the battery will last. My past experience has been anywhere from 4 years to 9 years. Did you know that battery life in warm climates is considerably less than battery life in cold climates? Interesting statistic that came out of a big study Delco did not too long ago.

I also came across an article which would refute the "memory" aspect of lead-acid batteries. It's not that they don't fully recharge. It's that cycling, especially deep cycling does a little bit of damage each time (shedding of the plates, etc.) and this leads to gradual loss of performance.

I will certainly keep the Optima battery in mind for when I need one!


#11 Guest_rigfennid_*

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Posted 19 March 2001 - 05:21 PM

I just bought one of these based on Josh's info, and the fact that I needed a new battery for my Integra. My Outback's battery went in to the Integra, and the Optima in the the Outback. I lucked out and found a guy in New Mexico that sold it to me for $145 shipped to my door in Baltimore, MD!! They're working on a website, but you can find him on ebay or sometimes yahoo's auctions. The guy I dealt with was Tom and he was INCREDIBLY helpful and super nice. Got my order processed and shipped the same day, and even emailed me the tracking#!! If you want one of these, buy it from him, just for the quality of service (and saving a couple bucks never hurts either!) Here's his info:


(i'll post the phone # later)

#12 Guest_coolb72_*

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Posted 19 March 2001 - 11:11 PM

im running polk audio 1"dome tweeters along with 6.5" midranges with the passive xover. also have alpine bandpass 10" box i got at the local audio shop on close out for $100. running one alpine amp(dont remember the model #)it was free, my dad gave it to me and running a pos urban audio works amp and also some junky rear door speakers that the car came with......dont know the amp draw as i havent measured it but the battery was one of the el cheapos i bought at the local auto parts store...
the stereo system is nothing to write home about, but its clean and i have enough bass for my needs. it wont win any awards for installation precision or sound, but its loud enough to drown out the various squeaks and rattles that the old wagon has now. peace

#13 Guest_remarcable_*

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Posted 20 March 2001 - 12:06 PM

Think I'd benefeit from this battery?

My lights dim when I touch the brake pedal :( and I don't even have anything but the factory stereo running.

#14 Guest_Commuter_*

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Posted 20 March 2001 - 12:12 PM


Which model did you buy, the 34/78-950, or the 75/35-925?


#15 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 20 March 2001 - 02:10 PM

Remarcable: It's hard to say, You may notice a difference in how the car runs idles mainly. But I wouldn't expect a huge difference. How old is the battery that's in it. I'd say if you got the money, why not...but if you don't....wait until your battery craps the bed. As for the light dimming thing when you hit the brakes....I seem to remember mine doin something weird like that occasionally in the past. I don't seem to notice it now. One thing could be that your alternator is slowing down and your battery could be a little week and not a good recepticle to keep a good charge....just a thought...

Commuter: I know I got the D34/78-950. It was the same price, and I figured why not get both sets of posts. What model is the other one you listed? Is it also a deep cycle with only the standard posts? I couldn't find that reference number on optima's website.

#16 Guest_dacKampf_*

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Posted 20 March 2001 - 04:34 PM

Not to put a damper on what looks like an awesome battery...but the thing weights 43lbs!

I'm not sure how much a normal lead-acid battery weighs, but it can't be more than that.

Are there any dry-cell batteries out there worth looking at? 8.0:1 compression in my turbo doesn't require much CCA, and my stereo is mild. Perhaps if i upgrade the ignition system, i'd go for something beefier...

My car is heavy enough as it is.

#17 Guest_Commuter_*

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Posted 20 March 2001 - 06:12 PM


The 34/78-950 is a group 34 size battery. The version without the GM style screw 'posts' is called the D-750S by Optima (assuming I'm reading their info correctly).

My 97 OB has a group 35 size battery which would be the 75/35-925 model. This one is a bit smaller physically, and hence a bit less on the specs too (925 vs 950 in the MCA spec). I believe the mate to it (with only the one type of post) is the D-720(S).

Incidentally, the '750' and '720' seems to be the CCA values.

This one doesn't show on Optima's site under products for some reason, but it did turn up as the proper match when I entered my vehicle info on their site. That's how I came to know of it. (See prior post.) I have also found it at dealers in my area. That is, in their catalogs. They usually have the larger one on their shelf.

When I inquired about pricing, it was about 80% or so the price of the larger unit (eg $200 Canadian vs $250). This corresponds with what I've turned up on a couple of dealer web sites as well.


#18 Guest_Commuter_*

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Posted 20 March 2001 - 06:15 PM

Make Subaru:Model Legacy-w/AT:Year 1997-95:

Battery Type Number - 35
Recommended Cold Cranking Amps for this vehicle - 490

Type of Optima Battery that will fit this vehicle - 75/35-925
Optima Cold Cranking Amps - 720

This is a dimensional comparison only. In many cases a vehicle will accept a battery of a slightly different size. Always allow enough height to prevent shorting terminals on hood. Do not stretch battery cables. Installation brackets must hold battery securely in place.


#19 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 20 March 2001 - 06:33 PM

hmmmm. Are you sure it's even a deep cycle battery? The optima batteries....yellow top are wider than the stock subu ones. But they are shorter. As far as weight goes...I didn't think it was that much heavier that the battery I had in.....I could be wrong though ;)

#20 Guest_Commuter_*

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Posted 21 March 2001 - 05:47 PM

Ok... had to get the scoop right from Optima.

Good catch Josh. Turns out that this "smaller" battery is indeed a Red Top. The Interstate Battery site fooled me since they used nomenclature that suggested it was a yellow top.

For others: The Red Top is a 'Starter' battery, or SLI they call it (Starting, Lighting and Ignition). The Yellow top is a Deep Cycle battery for use where there is heavy draw on the battery, eg, lots of accessories. For 'most' (I use the word loosely), the Red Top is sufficient. And the Group 35 size is less weight. :)

Optima also makes Blue Top batteries for Marine use.

I also discovered that they now have Orange Top batteries for "European" cars. This is a Red Top (Starter) with reversed terminals. Josh, did you have any trouble stretching the cables to the posts? I'm not sure that I would have that extra bit of cable length in my car to use the Yellow Top (without mods).

Alright... I'm off this rainbow now!


#21 Guest_Commuter_*

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Posted 21 March 2001 - 06:03 PM

I got curious...

This site has a full list www.rtpnet.org/~teaa/bcigroup.html.

Comparing 34 and 35 size...
Same width (ok, a 1/16" difference).
34 is 1" shorter in height.
34 is 1-3/16" longer.


#22 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 21 March 2001 - 10:57 PM

Well I added some spacers at the bottom to raise the battery up. The Positive terminal is definitely at it's limit as far as being stretched, negative is fine. I just hooked them up before I tightened down the battery. If the new cables are shorter than mine, then yah you're goin to have a problem connecting them to the battery.

#23 Guest_rigfennid_*

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Posted 22 March 2001 - 12:43 PM

I have a 97 Outback and yes, the positive cable is stretched about as far as it'll go, but the negative has plenty of slack in it still. I got the 34/78-950 b/c it was only $5 more for the one with 2 sets of terminals. My lights are a bit brighter, but i'm looking to upgrade to one of the high-current harnesses i've heard about on this board.

#24 Guest_subyroo_*

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Posted 10 June 2001 - 08:18 AM

After reading the posts on this site and checking out Optima's Homepage, I found a dealer right here in tropical Nth Queensland - Australia.

My 2000 Liberty (Loyale) 2.5 RX sed. was a "bitch" to kick over, 2 - 3 cranks eveytime hot or cold. When I looked under the bonnet, I found a "piss fartin' " battery that looked like it would be stressed out running a sewing machine.:lol: I asked the Subaru Dealer if that was the right sized battery for the vehicle and he assured me it was, "all subaru's are that hard to start" was his comment. Believe me, after coming over from a 1986 VL Holden Commodore (Nissan 3.0L 6cyl with 386,815kms) that fired at the first click of the key, this was a big let down. What happened to advances in technology over the past 14yrs?? :evil:

The Optima agent confirmed my suspicion, the battery was of sufficient size to get the car from the factory, onto the ship and off the ship to the dealers. No wonder my headlights went yellow when stopped at the lights and would come up on take-off.

The Aussie $$$ is not strong against the $US, so my battery cost me $A395.00, BOY, does it kick the my "babies" butt now, 1 hit and she is purring, hot or cold, lights stay white ALL the time too.
Now all I need is 10yrs service to justify my $$$ to the "little lady" :evil: :lol:


#25 Guest_BadDogg2001_*

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Posted 10 June 2001 - 02:16 PM

Man oh man, where were you guys when I ran my battery company? Firstly, the expense of this gelled electrolyte battery is unjustifiable, more than twice the cost of a premium product, secondly the most common battery size of all the 24c fits perfectly into my 90 legacy
I live in Edmonton (that's way north of Calgary) and a 480cca (this is important.....the rating by the BCI group is at -17 F, a lot of what I consider to be unscrupulous dealers only rate them at 0) has lasted me 3.6 years so far. The more cca the less electrolyte, which equals more cranking but less cranks if you follow. Anyways, the deal is you can by a very good battery for your subaru for waaaayyy less than what you guys appear to be willing to spend and pick it up at the local parts place.
Peace out.

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