How to Choose the Ideal Car Battery Sizes for Your Vehicle
Car battery sizes refer mainly to the actual, physical size of any given car battery. These values are determined through the standardized Battery Council International group size (BCI). The BCI has established a set of standards for car battery sizes that can differ greatly between any two different vehicles. Basically, even if you have a similar size car to that of your neighbor, your car batteries might not be compatible based on their physical dimensions, the positions of their terminals, and their polarity. In the United States, specific codes are assigned to all car battery sizes in order to help determine the precise size and specifications required for any battery replacement. Learn which battery is right for your vehicle.
Basic Information on Car Batteries and Sizes
Batteries can be grouped by physical size, the terminals’ placement, mounting type and the types of terminals they possess. The BCI codes, assigned to each car battery based on the aforementioned measurements and factors, were established by Battery Council International, and they represent the battery’s length, width and height in inches and millimeters, battery polarity – which determines how the terminals connect to the correct connectors once the battery is mounted – and the assembly type, which is usually assigned its own unique code, such as 11F or 24. Some batteries can have two specific assembly types. Scroll down to view common BCI sizes.
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Details to Remember When Choosing a New Battery
Selecting a new car battery is not a straightforward task. In order to make sure your new battery fits your vehicle and your needs, it is essential to keep track of the size-related details that will impact its performance and get it to physically fit into your vehicle and mount properly in the vehicle’s battery tray. You have to be sure to get the right car battery sizes and correct terminal locations, as specified in your car’s owner manual. Also, the battery’s given AH (Amp Hour) rating will determine how long the battery lasts overall. This value can be illusive, especially in the case of lead-acid batteries.
BCI Codes and Battery Sizes
BCI codes for car battery sizes are usually in line with the sizes themselves. Basically, a higher value will be assigned as the specific code for a type of battery that is wider, taller or generally larger. As a result, the size of a BCI type 22F battery will be 9.5 x 6.9 x 8.3 inches (LxWxH), while a BCI group 94R will correspond to a size of 12.4 x 6.9 x 7.5 inches. Charts featuring all BCI group numbers and their respective size specifications can be found online or at your auto parts dealer, and your owner’s manual should contain some or all of the information specific to your vehicle.
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Essential Requirements Regarding Car Battery Size Numbers
Not all car battery sizes are used solely for cars. All vehicles that require car batteries, including trucks, special commercial utility vehicles and even golf carts, have their own special type and size of battery. Keeping track of the BCI group codes is essential, since no two codes are 100% the same. Even though in some instances similar battery sizes and mounts can be adapted, this is neither recommended nor legal in terms of keeping your vehicle compliant with the necessary automotive standards.
A Note on Battery Capacity
Even though the sizes and specifications expressed by BCI numbers don’t directly determine AH values relating to battery life, there is a close connection between the two. The size of the battery can give you an indication on the AH rating. Particularly when it comes to deep cycle batteries, the size of the case will be nearly directly proportional to the battery’s capacity. Amp hours are closely related to battery capacity, and are therefore also dependent on car battery sizes, provided that we’re talking about the same, classic lead acid batteries that most vehicles use.