Batteries and LP Lights - Ford F150 Forum - Community of Ford Truck Fans



1987 - 1996 F150 Still running strong! Talk about your 8th and 9th generation Ford F150 trucks.

Batteries and LP Lights

Reply
 
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 09-07-2015, 01:39 AM   #1
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 60
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Batteries and LP Lights

For those following my "Buying Suggestions" topic, I've decided to create a new topic.

I went to a gas station earlier and the battery that was already in the truck when I bought it died. The radio would come on and so would the lights, but the engine just wouldn't crank over. In the end I had to call my dad and have him come jump me as I didn't have any jumper cables (yes, I know - every car should have one.) But as soon as we got everything connected the engine turned right on over, and I drove home without any issues.

I know very little about vehicles - I know (although crudely) how one runs, including the electrical system (alternator, etc.) The truck is a 1989 Ford F-150 XLT Lariat.

So, I'm going to just ask the question. What battery is the best for the money. I've only got about $120-$140 to spend on a battery, but I want something that won't leave me stranded at a gas station (yes, I've learned my lesson and I will be buying jumper cables) and will start on a somewhat cold day.

What battery is the best (preferably to be bought at my local Wal-Mart or NAPA) for the application, and what cold-cramp amps is the best? I'd know the higher CCA the better, but I don't want to go overboard and spend too much for something I don't need. The owner's guide does not mention anything about the recommended CCA rating for a replacement battery.

Before I forget, I also have a question about the license plate light on the rear bumper. Mine doesn't work. I understand the bulb will burn out over 26 years of hard and faithful service, and a replacement bulb shouldn't be too expensive. The only thing puzzling me is how to replace the bulb. And it isn't like the Ford engineers were having a brain fart in 1988, either. Because my dad's 2003 Ford F-150 is also puzzling me as it, just like my '89 XLT, has no screws that you can unscrew to access the bulb to replace it. I'm probably overthinking it and it is so simple that I'll be saying "doh!" in the end.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank You.

Last edited by Garrett99; 09-07-2015 at 02:33 AM.
Garrett99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 03:39 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
justintendo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: western pa
Posts: 271
Thanked 18 Times in 18 Posts
Default

get as high crank amp as you can, that still fits the battery physical size your truck takes. napa batteries are mostly made by deka which are good. after that you need to verify if your charging system is indeed taking care of your battery.
start carrying jumper cables with you. dont be that guy. carry the tools needed to change a wheel too. some rags, gloves, and perhaps someday you will need them or someone else will
justintendo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 03:42 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
justintendo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: western pa
Posts: 271
Thanked 18 Times in 18 Posts
Default

yes you are overthinking the light. sometimes you just need to look at things...get on the ground and look at the back of the light, you will see the plug, it just unscrews 1/4 turns and is removed. put a new bulb in the plug and reinstall. after you know how it works you can do it just by reaching around the bumper.
justintendo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 03:45 PM   #4
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 60
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

I ended up buying a "Country Tuff" battery from my local Orschlen's - which is a farm & home store (very similar to Tractor Supply Co. and similar stores) in the midwest. I installed it but the battery actually is much smaller than the old one, so we had to use some bungee cords to keep it in place. The CountryTuff battery came with a 60 month warranty and it started the truck right on up (although the smaller size is a bit concerning.)

On my instrument panel, however, the voltage gauge won't move. The black thing that fits over the needle (where it is attached to the motor shaft) fell off and is preventing the voltage meter from moving. Should I worry about fixing that?

Lastly, I'm still puzzled about the license plate light.

The windshield wiper **** has been fixed (letting the SuperGlue set over night did the trick) and the windshield wiper motor works okay, although the windshield wiper blades themselves should be replaced soon. I was shocked to learn that the windshield wiper motor was only two speeds. This truck is very basic - manual locks, manual windows, two-speed wiper motor, etc. It does have an automatic transmission, though. But the more manual, the better.

I'm really trying to not stress out as much. The inspection is tomorrow, and I'm so worried it may not pass the inspection. But I've been told it should pass, especially since the brakes are in excellent condition and everything else is in good condition, too. Just need to get that license plate light fixed.

Another dumb question: but can you buy the license plate bulb at Walmart? The local NAPA is closed today (Labor Day) and my inspection is at 9 AM tomorrow morning, and I'm hoping to have it fixed before then.

Last edited by Garrett99; 09-07-2015 at 03:48 PM.
Garrett99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 08:52 PM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 66
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Default

I've started buying all of my batteries from Walmart. They have a 3 year free replacement, and prorated after that.

http://wm6.walmart.com/Battery-Finder.aspx

As far as the tail light, I saw a video about removing them. It was for the generation newer than yours but they used a flat blade screwdriver to gently pry on the light assembly from the part closest to you and then it pulled out. I looked on Oreilly auto parts and there are 2 different types of bulbs. You will have to remove the old one to see exactly what you have in there. Have you tried to look underneath the bumper and grab the light assembly? The base of the assembly should quarter turn counter-clockwise and come out.

Yes, Walmart should sell the bulbs once you figure out which type you need.
Pwaho is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 08:55 PM   #6
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 60
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

I may just go to NAPA before having it inspected tomorrow and let them take it off and find a suitable replacement. They're very helpful.

The only issue with crawling under there is that the ground is wet, since it has been raining all day. And I also don't want to risk breaking anything.
Garrett99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 10:23 PM   #7
Martin
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Lehi, Utah
Posts: 2,153
Thanked 153 Times in 130 Posts
Default

Costco carries Interstate batteries and also has 60 month warranty, the first 36 are free replacement. The nice thing about Costco is they don't have test equipment, so no BS, bring in the battery and they give you a new one.
sdmartin65 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 10:30 PM   #8
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 60
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

We don't have a Costco near where I live. I mentioned that in my "Buying Suggestions" thread when asking about tires.
Garrett99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-2015, 12:48 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
justintendo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: western pa
Posts: 271
Thanked 18 Times in 18 Posts
Default

do not pry from the outside, you do not need to do this to change the bulb. you will likely ruin the assembly doing this unless you want to remove the whole thing. as said above, just reach around the bumper, turn quarter turn, pull out socket, take bulb from socket, replace bulb.
it really is the simplest thing changing this bulb.
depending on the inspector, they may fail it for having bungee cords holding in the battery. these are a very common battery size, why not get the bigger correct size?

Last edited by justintendo; 09-08-2015 at 12:50 AM.
justintendo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-2015, 12:54 AM   #10
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 60
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

Yes. If it becomes an issue, I'll just return it to the store I bought it at.

I couldn't find a size on the old battery or in the owner's guide, so it is literally a guessing game. We also stuck some big nails in there to stop the battery, but I'm worried those may fall through sometime and give me a flat tire. And since I (right now) don't have a spare, that would be a nightmare.
Garrett99 is offline   Reply With Quote
 
 
Reply

Related Topics
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Incredibly bright Led Mirror Puddle Lights Burke484 Lighting 20 08-19-2017 12:51 AM
Southeast: Sct x3 SC_Titan 2009 - 2014 Part Sales 12 09-19-2015 09:59 PM
Southeast: Sct x3 SC_Titan General F150 Items 2 09-16-2015 10:34 PM
1997 F-150 Vehicle Speed Sensor Intermittent KnightIRD 1997 - 2003 Ford F150 2 09-05-2015 06:15 PM
Electronic modules and "learn" modes River1 1997 - 2003 Ford F150 7 09-04-2015 12:05 AM


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:29 PM.


Copyright 2006 - 2017 F150Forum.com We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: