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BJ8 Batteries

Legal Bill

Jedi Knight
Well, after 13 years, my battery is dead. I guess they don't make them like they used to. :rolleye:

So before I just run out and find one that fits, I thought I'd come here and ask the cool kids what they are using these days. My car is pretty original so I'll probably end up with a black case lead acid battery, but I'm interested in hearing your experiences. I noticed my old battery was rated for 700 CCA. That seems high, but I can't really argue with the experience. The battery really did its job. SO what ya using and what do ya recommend?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

PS, yes, I did a search. I stopped looking at the results after page 3.
Last edited by a moderator:
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Re: BJ-8 Battery discussion

I'm impressed--and delighted--whenever a parts house actually lists parts for Austin-Healeys. I've had the X-Power AGM shown here in my BJ8 for several years:


The main issue is leaking; I've had to pull my gas tank and flush my boot with baking soda due to leaking batteries twice; once was due to my voltage regulator overcharging. The AGMs are pricey, but should last a long time and are less inclined to leak (I hope).

I had a discussion about batteries with Mike Martinez, who owns Star Electric. He said almost all batteries are now made in Mexico--likely due to little/no environmental restrictions and cheaper labor--and are, in a word, crap. He used to recommend Optima, but said they've gone downhill since they're now made in Mexico. Interstate used to be a go-to brand but now, you guessed it, Hecho en Mexico, and I had a couple in my old Mustang that only lasted a couple years (though I have a couple Interstate golf cart batteries in my BN2 and they've been OK for several years). He did recommend Odyssey AGM. The one brand I know of that's still made in the States, and recommended by Mike, is Deka. I put one in my old Mustang a couple years before I traded it in and it worked well, and have a 6V in one of my tractors. They are made by a family-owned business in Pennsylvania and sold by some parts house chains, 'Parts+' for one and a local battery store. I use Group 24 in my BJ8 and 17H--no one seems to make/sell 17L anymore (supposedly Antique Auto Battery was resurrected but I don't know its status)--in my BN2/100M.

I keep my Healey batteries on 'smart' chargers when not in use. I like Battery Minder (they have one especially for AGMs). I feel they pay for themselves in the long run.

Legal Bill

Jedi Knight
Re: BJ-8 Battery discussion

Thanks Bob. My old battery is a group 27. I was going to stick with that for the extra cranking power. But maybe a 24 with a three year warranty would be better than a 27 with a two year warranty.
Country flag
Re: BJ-8 Battery discussion

The AGM in my BJ8 spins the engine over quite nicely, and it has good compression (170psi +/- on all six).

Edit: It has 840CCA and 5-year 'free replacement' warranty (presumably not pro-rated).


Great Pumpkin
Country flag

ID have to wait on SS to afford one today----LOL


Jedi Warrior
Country flag
My two cents on batteries in the boot: A group 27 fits the original tray and will have the posts to the far side, away from the original metal bracket. Harder to reach with jumper cables, but overall where they should be. If the polarity for grounding has been changed on your car, and you want to maintain that orientation, a group 27f is what you need.

The negative post on the 27f will be at the rear and away from the metal bar.

People using the original metal bar with the posts on the near side run a risk of a major short circuit, should the bracket loosen and contact both posts. Regardless of the battery selected, please consider a possible short circuit, with the mounting hardware and also any loose trunk contents.

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