Whether you use it for work or play, your ATV delivers a dependable ride on multiple types of terrain. But to keep it going, you need the right parts – especially a high-quality motorcycle battery. While automotive and power sports batteries share some basic traits, they’re different in a few key ways. So how do you select the best battery for your ATV? This quick guide explains power sports batteries so you can understand and sort out your options.
How To Pick Power Sports Batteries
With so many options out there, shopping for power sports batteries can feel a little overwhelming. Your goal is to select a model that delivers the power and performance you need at a reasonable price. ATV batteries typically come in three different styles:
- Conventional: also called “wet” batteries and contain bulk acid and distilled water
- AGM: absorbed glass mat batteries with fiberglass pads that absorb electrolyte acid
- Gel cell: contains a gel cell electrolyte immersed in a silica-like substance
Each of these styles has its advantages and drawbacks. Conventional batteries are inexpensive, but they’re prone to spilling and unsuitable for off-road riding. You must also regularly check water levels to ensure your battery doesn’t dry out. AGM batteries are more expensive, but they’re sealed tight. Durable and shock-proof, AGMs are ideal for off-roading. Gel cell models are also leak-proof and mountable in nearly any position. But gel cells are more expensive and require careful recharging.
What’s The Difference between Power Sport Batteries and Auto Batteries?
If you’ve browsed both auto and power sports batteries, you’ve probably noticed some key details. Your average car battery features a lead-acid composition. It also uses six cells, with each one producing 2 volts of energy. That’s why most automotive batteries are the 12-volt types. Many commercial trucks also use 12-volt batteries.
Maybe you’ve seen some 12-volt power sports batteries. But that doesn’t mean you can just drop an auto battery in your ATV and expect it to work. Automotive models are typically stronger than those made for motorbikes, so there’s a good chance you’d fry your ATV’s electrical system. Most car and truck batteries are also larger, so they may not even fit inside your ATV’s battery tray.
Another factor to look at is the number of cold cranking amps a battery has. Why is this important? Cold cranking amps equals the number of amps a 12-volt battery generates at 0°F for 30 seconds while maintaining at least 7.2 volts of power. Most versions for automobiles have CCA ratings in the high triple digits, ranging between 550 and 900 CCA. Power sports batteries tend to have lower CCA ratings – usually in the double or low triple digits. On average, they range between 45 and 330 CCA.
A Few Last Words About Batteries
Now that you better understand power sports batteries, it’s time to go shopping. And if you’re looking for car batteries, this quick guide on how to tell if car battery is dead can help you figure out if it’s on its last legs. Choose a trusted parts dealer to get the perfect blend of quality, dependability and value.