UniEnergy Technologies » Duralast vs. Diehard Battery: Which is Better?

Duralast vs. Diehard Battery: Which is Better?

Duralast and Diehard are both reliable brands for car batteries, so you might not know which one to pick. In this article, we’re going to look at their features and advantages to help you find the right fit. So let’s get started on this battle between the Duralast vs Diehard battery. We’re going to focus on the typical 12-volt car battery, focusing on battery life and ratings.

Duralast Vs Diehard Battery

Understanding the Jargon of Car Batteries

Before we look at the differences between a Duralast and Diehard battery, let’s touch on the shopping experience. Whether you check online, browse the battery aisle at Walmart, or visit your local auto shop, you’ll notice that car batteries have a lot of numbers on them. This can be confusing to the average car owner, so we’ll tell you what they are and why they matter.

But first, let’s dig into a bit of history. Cars were invented in 1886, and they had big wheels and smaller wheels, just like the Penny Farthing bicycle. Back then, you’d use a crank to start your car. But by 1920, the automotive battery was invented to run the electric parts of your car e.g. headlights, horn, radio, power windows, and the ignition system that starts engines.

When you look at a car battery, you’ll see lots of numbers and letters, and they can be quite puzzling. Let’s look at the most important specifications.

Generally speaking, the CCA is less than the CA. But for both figures, the higher the number, the better the battery performs. You should also check whether they’re flooded lead-acid batteries or sealed AGM batteries.

CA – Cranking Amps

When you turn the key or press the ignition, an electrical current is pushed into your engine to start the car. CA measures how much current your battery releases in 30 seconds when the surrounding temperature is 32°F (that’s 0°C). This electricity comes in high-voltage spurts.

CCA – Cold Cranking Amps

In winter conditions and cold weather, the air is chilly so the car takes longer to warm up. This means your battery – and your engine – have to work harder to ignite. CCA describes the amount of current produced in 30 seconds when the local temperature is 0°F (-17°C).

RC – Reserve Capacity

Ordinarily, your car battery recharges while you drive. That’s why you should hit the road for at least 30 minutes a week to keep it healthy. Either that or recharge it manually! But as the charge depletes, the RC shows how long (in minutes) the battery can release 25A and 80°F.

Amp Hour

Unless you’re a college kid that hosts street parties in your car, it’s unlikely you’ll leave your battery running for an hour. But in case you ever need to, the ampere-hours (or amp hours) show how long the battery can produce 1 amp per hour, especially on deep-cycle batteries.

Group Number aka BCI (Battery Council International)

This organization of car battery brands and stakeholders developed a system to streamline battery shape and size. BCIs or group numbers show where the terminals are. They define the physical proportions of your battery (length, width, height) to ensure their universal fit.

Battery Freshness Date

This is a number pair like 2/21 or 10/89. It shows when the battery left the factory. The first number is the month, and the second is the year. Buy a battery that’s 1 to 6 months old. If the battery spent too much time in shipping or waiting on the shelf, it’ll die soon after you buy it.

Quick note – lots of drivers don’t realize the battery gets used up by your lights, power parts (e.g. windows), and radio. So even if the car is parked, if your lights, AC, or car radio are on, the battery is still draining. It’s something to be aware of if your car is often in standby mode. Another purchasing point? Standard batteries need occasional watering. Sealed ones don’t.

All About Duralast’s Car Batteries

Johnson Controls International is the company that manufactures Duralast batteries. That said, the brand is exclusively distributed at AutoZone Stores. These batteries come in four grades, though the last one is a backup battery model that’s not intended for mundane use. But even when you know the size of your battery tray, which Duralast battery suits your car?

Duralast Regular

This is an entry-level Duralast battery, and you’ll see the words ‘Proven Tough’ beneath the brand name. It’s considered a starter battery, which means it produces power in spurts to start your engine, then slowly recharges as the car stays on the road. You can use it to replace the battery in a car that has no fancy features or accessories. Below are some typical specs:

  • Type: Flooded Cell
  • CA: 710
  • CCA: 575
  • RC: 90
  • Warranty: 2 years

Duralast Gold

If you live (or drive) in extreme temperatures, Duralast Gold is a better option. It works in higher heat and lower chills than its standard sibling, and it has a longer warranty. This extra functionality comes from the additional lead plates in Duralast Gold, which give it superior performance. Not all Duralast Gold batteries have the same settings, but here’s an example:

  • Type: Flooded Cell
  • CA: 765
  • CCA: 640
  • RC: 100
  • Warranty: 3 years with free replacement

Duralast Platinum

This is AutoZone’s answer to marine battery requirements. It’s a deep-cycle battery, which means it can release lower amounts of current for a prolonged period. Initially, they were built for military vehicles and boats, which is why they’re generically described as marine batteries. Today, they’re good for off-road cars and vehicles with lots of electrical accessories.

  • Type: Sealed AGM
  • CA: 885
  • CCA: 710
  • RC: 120
  • Warranty: 3 years with free replacement

Quick Note: Because car batteries and marine batteries have different functions, you can’t always interchange them. If you want one that can start your car with a surge then buckle down to operate your AC, get a dual-purpose battery. Duralast Platinum batteries are dual-purpose, but if you’re buying another deep-cycle brand, ask the staff about it, just to be sure.

All About Diehard’s Car Batteries

DieHard batteries are manufactured by Clarios LLC. In 2019, Clarios took over Johnson Controls, the makers of Duralast. That same year, Advance Auto Parts acquired DieHard. Today, Clarios manufactures most battery brands in the United States. So Duralast and DieHard now come from the same factory, and they’re both distributed by AutoZone.

It’s also curious that both brand names mean the same thing – they last long (duralast) and are hard to kill (diehard)! DieHard batteries also have a similar naming system to Duralast. They come in gold and platinum, but they also have silver and red variants. Overall, they make close to a dozen battery styles, but we’re going to focus on the relevant car varieties.

DieHard Red

This is their entry-level starter battery. It’s mainly for ignition, so you can use it to replace the battery in an ordinary car that has no major bells or whistles. As with other brands, the specs can differ between sizes, but below is an example of what you can typically expect:

  • Type: Flooded Cell
  • CA: 810
  • CCA: 650
  • RC: 93
  • Warranty: 1 Year Free Replacement

DieHard Silver

If your car has basic accessories, the DieHard Silver is a smart selection. They count as dual-purpose batteries because they can both start the car and power a few add-ons. It can run your AC and lights, but if your car has fancy features, the battery may struggle to keep up.

  • Type: Flooded Cell
  • CA: 1000
  • CCA: 800
  • RC: 115
  • Warranty: 2 Years Free Replacement

DieHard Gold

While DieHard Gold batteries have superior performance, they’re built for older car styles, so they may not have the power for the high-powered accessories on newer car models. But the output is 60% higher than DieHard Red, and its stamped grid technology reduces corrosion.

  • Type: Flooded Cell
  • CA: 800
  • CCA: 640
  • RC: 100
  • Warranty: 3 Years Free Replacement

DieHard Platinum

Like DieHard Gold, DieHard Platinum batteries have stamped grids. They work in extreme temperatures, with 60% extra output. They use 20% less energy and 20% less in emissions. They can handle mid-range accessories, but don’t have sufficient power for start-stop cars.

  • Type: Flooded Cell
  • CA: 1000
  • CCA: 800
  • RC: 115
  • Warranty: 4 Years Free Replacement

DieHard Platinum AGM

The DieHard AGM Platinum has Absorbent Glass Mat technology. They have fiberglass to soak up the electrolyte and keep it from sloshing around inside the case. They can handle high-demand accessories, last twice as long, and have at least 94% recycled material content.

  • Type: Sealed AGM
  • CA: 950
  • CCA: 760
  • RC: 120
  • Warranty: 3 Years Free Replacement

Apart from these four, DieHard has battery sub-categories for golf carts, boats, lawnmowers, landscaping equipment, power sports, and hybrid vehicles. Their marine, power sports, and lawn batteries have similar specs to their gold car batteries, so ‘gold’ is listed on the label, as well as a small drawing to show what type of vehicle the battery is best for (bikes, RVs, etc.).

Comparing Duralast vs Diehard Batteries

When you weigh a Duralast vs DieHard battery, you’re working with similar scenarios. Their names align, so you can pit a Duralast Gold against a DieHard Gold for a clearer comparison. They’re made in the same factories and sold by the same supplier. They’re both solid brands.

For areas with scorching summers and sub-zero winters, get gold or platinum. But DieHard is gentler on the environment because it has lower emissions and uses recycled components. Do you use Duralast or Diehard batteries? Tell us what you like about your favorite brand!

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