There are two methods to measure cranking batteries (commonly called starting engine batteries).
- Cold Cranking Amps (CCA): CCA is used to determine the ability for a battery to start an engine in cold temperatures. CCA is measured at -17.8oC. The higher the CCA rating, the greater the starting power of the battery.
- Cranking Amp (CA): Measured at 0oC, CA determines the power the battery has to start a vehicle in most climates. Vehicles like boats typically use CA as the temperatures rarely drop below 0 degrees and don't need as much power to start.
Many batteries have both ratings for comparative purposes.
What's in a cranking battery:
Cranking batteries have more and thinner plates than a typical deep cycle battery. More plates equal more surface area. In turn, this means more CCA or CA.
Unlike a deep cycle battery where you want reserve capacity, starting batteries are more interested in the amount of power it can deliver for 15 seconds. With more plates and more surface area, this provides a larger burst of power to start your vehicle successfully.
Cranking batteries are not designed for deep cycle applications. If you do use it as a deep cycle battery, it will greatly shorten the life of the battery. The plates are thinner and a different paste in the active material is used.
The CCA rating is an important consideration for cold winter climates. Always remember, replacement batteries should equal or exceed manufacturer specifications of your vehicle. Using a battery with lower CCA specified may result in poor performance.
Check out Canadian Energy’s extensive selection of batteries: https://www.cdnrg.com/batteries
Or come into your nearest branch to ask what works best for you and your vehicle: https://www.cdnrg.com/locations/branches