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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I am sorry if this kind of post exists, did not see it specifically.

Wife has a 2019 Crosstrek Ltd, its coming on 4 years old, only 21K miles, garaged.
I took out the voltmeter and checked the battery cold, it read 12.30 volts.

I read that a new battery should be somewhere between 12.6 and 12.8 volts, so according to articles we have about 60% of the battery left. That does not seem like a great number.

Is this battery ready for replacement?
 

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How long had it been sitting when you checked its charge?
If it has been run (for a while) within 24 hours, it is on its last legs.
If it hasn't been run in a couple of weeks or more, re-check it.

PS. Use the search feature for 'battery' and you will get some results.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How long had it been sitting when you checked its charge?
If it has been run (for a while) within 24 hours, it is on its last legs.
If it hasn't been run in a couple of weeks or more, re-check it.

PS. Use the search feature for 'battery' and you will get some results.
I started the car, then turned if off about 15 seconds later, then checked with voltmeter.
Are you saying I should check it cold in the am?
 

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SOC (state of charge) is different than SOH (state of health). The latter is what is most important, and can only be determined by a load test. Take it to battery shop (not your dealer) and they will test if for free.

True SOC is hard to measure in our cars these days because of all the parasitic draw on our batteries. Even just getting close to it with your FOB will waken more draw. If you are getting 12.3V (70%), that is probably the best you will see without completely disconnecting your battery.

What kills batteries (SOH) most often is when they are run down due to leaving hatch open or leaving interior lights on inadvertently. If the battery is not immediately recharged to full with a long drive or by an external charger, then it will lose SOH. Driving infrequently and short distances after a discharge is a sure way to kill your battery.

Also be sure to check fluid levels at least once a year, esp in hot climates. If low, fill with distilled water to about 3/4 inch from top.

My 2018 Crosstrek (purchased in fall of 2017) is still good, and with me, OEM batteries always last at least 5 years. Just need to not abuse them as described above and check the fluid levels once in a while.

There hasn't been a long thread about batteries on this forum for a while. So here is an old one. Good reading from the beginning to the last post. There have been others, but this what I found quickly.
 

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SOC (state of charge) is different than SOH (state of health). The latter is what is most important, and can only be determined by a load test. Take it to battery shop (not your dealer) and they will test if for free.

True SOC is hard to measure in our cars these days because of all the parasitic draw on our batteries. Even just getting close to it with your FOB will waken more draw. If you are getting 12.3V (70%), that is probably the best you will see without completely disconnecting your battery.

What kills batteries (SOH) most often is when they are run down due to leaving hatch open or leaving interior lights on inadvertently. If the battery is not immediately recharged to full with a long drive or by an external charger, then it will lose SOH. Driving infrequently and short distances after a discharge is a sure way to kill your battery.

Also be sure to check fluid levels at least once a year, esp in hot climates. If low, fill with distilled water to about 3/4 inch from top.

My 2018 Crosstrek (purchased in fall of 2017) is still good, and with me, OEM batteries always last at least 5 years. Just need to not abuse them as described above and check the fluid levels once in a while.

There hasn't been a long thread about batteries on this forum for a while. So here is an old one. Good reading from the beginning to the last post. There have been others, but this what I found quickly.
To that I would add that if you are using a cheap meter that may be another wildcard. While cheap meters are really great for a lot of things they are often 1-200 millivolts off. Sometimes even more. It so happens that I have good meters and a voltage standard to check them against. Even so, I don't use voltage to determine battery SOC or health. I have a load tester for that.

As was I think suggested above, if you want to use voltage to measure the battery SOC, take a 20 minute run, shut off the engine and disconnect the battery. Next day measure the voltage. Even then the caveats of cheap meters applies.
 

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The scan tool in my #6 post graphs the load test. Initially open voltage, then cranking voltage with heavy draw and finally voltage with the alternator.
 
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Remember to keep the car locked even if it is safely stored in a closed garage. The battery drains much more when unlocked as some of the computer system is in some sort of standby mode as if it is anticipating you starting the engine soon . Even then consider using a float charger in the meantime if you are going for a while without driving.
 

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Remember to keep the car locked even if it is safely stored in a closed garage. The battery drains much more when unlocked as some of the computer system is in some sort of standby mode as if it is anticipating you starting the engine soon . Even then consider using a float charger in the meantime if you are going for a while without driving.
I don't know about that... I always keep my cars unlocked in my garage and never detected any battery drain as a result. I have a BM2 on the battery, which I check once in a while (stores 30 days of data). It is when you go to your car with a FOB that it wakes up, and starts using some battery draw. Having it locked or unlocked makes no diff.
 

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The consensus here is that the OEM battery isn't that great. Also, you don't know how it was treated before you got the car. The dealer may have let it sit in a discharged state and that's very bad for SLA batteries. I replaced ours after only a year with an Odyssey extreme AGM, after some scary moments up in the mountains and no problems since.
 

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I'm retired, going until the battery failed was no harm no foul for me and the wife so I waited until it gave up the ghost. If your car is more important you might consider looking for sales and preemptively replacing when you find a decent price/rebate even without waiting for the failure to happen. Chance favors the prepared mind. I also got an AGM battery but I don't have the experience/data to say it was worth the extra cost. Good luck in any case.
 

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I'm retired, going until the battery failed was no harm no foul for me and the wife so I waited until it gave up the ghost. If your car is more important you might consider looking for sales and preemptively replacing when you find a decent price/rebate even without waiting for the failure to happen. Chance favors the prepared mind. I also got an AGM battery but I don't have the experience/data to say it was worth the extra cost. Good luck in any case.
If you have own garage, installing batttery maintainer solve many problems and save cost. Unfortunately for me, no way to plug in while the car is in stacked carpark
 

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Wife has a 2019 Crosstrek Ltd, its coming on 4 years old, ...
Is this battery ready for replacement?
Since you're concerned, you should have it tested. Most auto parts stores will do it for free.

Life expectancy depends as much on where you live as anything else. In deep blue, we get 6-8 years if not mistreated. Only 2-3 years in red, I'm told.
Ecoregion World Map Natural environment Biome
 
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