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The 12 Days of Christmas Gadgets

December 22nd, 2014 by

Interstate Batteries offers 12 great Christmas gift ideas

You know the old song, “12 Days of Christmas?” We thought it might be a bit outdated and unbalanced. Think about it: 12 drummers, but only 11 pipers? And with the seven swans, six geese, four calling birds, three hens, two doves and a partridge… well, that’s a lot of birds. And a lot of mess to clean up.

Merry Christmas from Interstate BatteriesAt Interstate Batteries, we thought it was high time to update the classic Christmas carol, so we asked our communications intern Madison to write something up about batteries and gadgets. We figured with all the great Christmas gifts and stocking stuffers available at our online store and at Interstate All Battery Center locations, what could go wrong?

We may regret that decision after her caffeine-fueled essay.

Check it out: The All-Electronic 12 Days of Christmas

Posted in All Battery, Tips having no comments »

Classic Christmas Movies Saved by Batteries

December 18th, 2014 by

Clockwise from top left: A Charlie Brown Christmas (Warner Bros. Pictures), You've Got Mail (Warner Bros. Pictures), It's A Wonderful Life (Paramount), and Elf (New Line).

Clockwise from top left: A Charlie Brown Christmas (Warner Bros. Pictures), You’ve Got Mail (Warner Bros. Pictures), It’s A Wonderful Life (Paramount), and Elf (New Line).

If you’re like us, you love curling up during these cold winter months to watch classic Christmas movies. At Interstate Batteries, we realized that many of our favorite Christmas movie plots depend heavily on battery power.

It’s true! Even It’s A Wonderful Life features an important battery.

That’s why we’re paying tribute to these unsung Christmas movie heroes with our own awards ceremony. There’s no red carpet (batteries can’t walk, of course) and nobody’s expected to give a speech.

Read on to learn How Batteries Saved 5 Classic Christmas Movies.

 

Posted in All Battery, Tips, Video having no comments »

How to be a Power Packer for Christmas Vacation

December 16th, 2014 by

Hacking the Packing: Interstate Batteries offers holiday packing tips for the savvy traveler.

Does the notion of packing for that holiday trip to the in-laws’ house drive you a little nutty? We don’t mean the trip itself (though that could present its own challenges) — we’re talking about the vacation packing.

What do you bring? Where do you put it? And how can you make sure you didn’t forget the essentials?

Interstate Batteries offers a few holiday vacation packing tips that can make life a little easier. From choosing a color palette and fashion accessories to deciding which electronic accessories to take, Interstate’s list could be an essential part of your planning.

Read, then relax. You’ve got this.

Hacking the Packing: Holiday Packing Tips for the Savvy Traveler

 

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Interstate Batteries Voted Overall Best in Auto Battery Market

December 10th, 2014 by

Image

Frost & Sullivan has recognized Interstate Batteries, Inc. with the 2014 United States Frost & Sullivan Award for Product Leadership.

Every year since 2007, at least 50 percent of automotive technicians have chosen Interstate Batteries as the overall best brand, while the nearest competitor has never been granted the top ranking by more than 12 percent of the technicians.

Another finding: 93 percent of technicians whose shops primarily install Interstate Batteries’ products rate Interstate Batteries as the top brand.

“While quality and maintenance appear to be the backbone of Interstate Batteries’ success, the company’s belief system also plays a major role in its success,” said Frost & Sullivan Global Director, Tonya Fowler. “For instance, Interstate Batteries recycles more batteries than it sells, helping the environment support future generations of automotive battery consumers.”

The high level of ownership has given Interstate Batteries a strong reputation among auto technicians. Even technicians who don’t work in shops that install Interstate Batteries regard the products highly – so much so that 19 percent of those who don’t primarily install Interstate Batteries selected them as the overall best.

About Frost & Sullivan 

Each year, Frost & Sullivan presents this award to the company that has demonstrated product and implementation excellence to increase market share – recognizing vision alignment, process design and operational efficiency, as well as the technological sophistication and favorable culture within the company. It also lauds the value, reliability and quality of the product/service and its relevance to the needs of the industry in terms of value and design.

Posted in Automotive, Battery Industry, News having no comments »

Buying Christmas Gifts is Easier, Thanks to Technology

December 9th, 2014 by
Two great gift ideas are the Antigravity Micro-Start XPS, which can power your phone and jump-start your car, and  the Soundlogic XT Brick Bluetooth speaker.

Two great gift ideas are the Antigravity Micro-Start XPS, which can power your phone and jump-start your car, and the Soundlogic XT Brick Bluetooth speaker.

The kids these days…

Ever shake your head and mutter that phrase? I saw a commercial recently where an older man shook his head and lamented that “the kids these days” only cared about electronic gizmos and gadgets.

If you’re shopping for Christmas gifts for those young whipper-snappers, however, that’s a very good thing. Why? Because if everyone wants high-tech web gadgets and the accessories that go with them, your shopping chore just got a lot easier.

That doesn’t mean you have to buy a pricey electronic toy. No, you can get something better. You can gift the power that fancy toy needs.

Interstate Batteries has tips for making your Christmas gift shopping easier, all the while making you the favorite friend/aunt/uncle, etc. Read on.

Posted in All Battery, Technology, Tips having no comments »

How your battery affects your fuel economy

November 25th, 2014 by

The federal government aims to double present the average fuel economy of a manufacturer's new cars to 54.5 mpg by 2025.

Everyone’s talking about fuel economy these days.

Even as gasoline prices fluctuate, drivers are trying to get the best fuel economy possible. And auto manufacturers are racing to hit the federal government’s new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, which aim to double present the average fuel economy of a manufacturer’s new cars to 54.5 mpg by 2025.

Those standards were started in 1975 when the American economy was disturbed by an oil embargo, and now it’s one of the most important numbers car buyers consider.

Your battery’s supporting role

mr-battery-web-300x300Did you know the battery plays a part on how many miles per gallon you get?

It’s all about the horsepower.

An alternator rated at 100 amps requires about 2 horsepower. When a battery is undersized compared to OEM starting and reserve requirements, it requires the onboard charging system to draw more horsepower more often.

If the battery has too large of a capacity and becomes severely discharged, the vehicle’s charging system is working harder and longer – drawing more horsepower.

Penny wise, pound foolish

Let’s take a vehicle that requires a 600 CCA, 120-minute RC battery, as rated by the manufacturer.

To save money, a car owner decides to purchase a 400 CCA, 90-minute RC battery. The starting system requires 500 amps for 4 seconds on an extremely cold or hot day. Due to amps needed to start the vehicle, the battery discharges down to a much lower voltage and power availability, requiring further recharging (i.e. horsepower) for an additional time.

At that point, the battery is already affecting the mpg since the alternator has to draw more horsepower to recharge a weak battery.

The money the car owner thought he saved now goes into gasoline – and another battery because he shortened the life of the first one.

With many vehicles experiencing electronic-laden overload, having the quality battery with the proper power rating can reduce horsepower needs and result in slightly better fuel mileage.

In fact, to ensure the best fuel mileage, CAFE testers always charge the battery before running their tests.

That’s how closely your CCA is related to your mpg.

For the best gas mileage, choose a high-quality battery that’s the right fit. Then test it regularly and replace it at the first sign of deterioration.

Got a question for Mr. Battery? Send him a note at interstatebatteries.com/mrbattery.

Posted in Automotive, Battery Industry, Mr. Battery, Tips having 4 comments »

Interstate Batteries Goes Six for Six in Workplace Survey

November 17th, 2014 by
Interstate Batteries is one of just 12 companies to make the Top 100 Places to Work list all six years. Photo via The Dallas Morning News

Interstate Batteries is one of just 12 companies to make the Top 100 Places to Work list all six years. Photo via The Dallas Morning News

The Dallas-Fort Worth area may be under a cold spell at the moment, but Interstate Batteries is riding a hot streak.

For the sixth straight year, Interstate has earned a spot in The Dallas Morning NewsTop 100 Places to Work listing.

Top 100 Places to Work 2014 - The Dallas Morning NewsThis year, Interstate Batteries came in 17th. We were also recognized as a member of the newspaper’s Dynamic Dozen — 12 companies that have made the Top 100 every year since 2009, the survey’s inception.

The Dallas Morning News partnered with WorkplaceDynamics to survey workers at 315 companies. Using 22 statements about the workplace, job, work/life balance and other topics, companies receive a ranking. According to The Dallas Morning News, this year’s top-ranking statement was “This company operates by strong values and ethics.”

Want to work for a company that’s consistently recognized among the Dallas-Fort Worth area’s best? Visit our careers page today.

Posted in Culture, News, Workplace having no comments »

Team Interstate: A Thrilling End to the 2014 Season

November 17th, 2014 by
Team Interstate's Denny Hamlin led 50 laps in Sunday's Ford EcoBoost 400. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images

Team Interstate’s Denny Hamlin led 50 laps in Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images

Team Interstate’s Denny Hamlin was just eight laps away from his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship, but a series of late cautions proved too much to overcome.

Kevin Harvick was able to use fresher tires to make his way to the front to win Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway and with it the 2015 championship. Meanwhile, Team Interstate’s Matt Kenseth finished in sixth place, and a broken axle left Kyle Busch back in 39th.

Denny Hamlin's No. 11 pit crew was nearly flawless all night. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images

Denny Hamlin’s No. 11 pit crew was nearly flawless all night. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images

“We gave an amazing effort today and left it all out on the track,” Denny said on Twitter after the race. “I’m proud of what we accomplished getting to this point.”

Denny would lead five times for a total of 50 laps over the course of the race. He was up front late when the team made the call to remain out to maintain its track position with 18 laps remaining. Denny would restart second and would grab the lead, but two late cautions allowed several other teams that had come down pit road for fresh tires on the earlier stop to gain ground. Denny got caught three-wide in the middle on the final restart and ended up finishing seventh. He completes his season officially third in the standings.

Matt finished the season seventh in the standings, while Kyle closed out the 2014 campaign 10th in the final standings.

Race report (Joe Gibbs Racing)

NASCAR Nationwide Series

Homestead-Miami Speedway

Note: In 26 Nationwide Series starts this year, Kyle had seven wins and 25 top-4 finishes.

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

Homestead-Miami Speedway

Next Races

  • The 2015 Sprint Cup season kicks off Feb. 13-22 with the traditional Speedweeks at Daytona International Speedway.
  • The 57th Daytona 500, the first points-paying Sprint Cup race of the season, is scheduled for Feb. 22.
  • The 2015 Supercross season begins Jan. 3.

Posted in Racing having no comments »

7 Steps to Keep Your Battery From Leaving You Out in the Cold

November 11th, 2014 by

Cold Interstate BatteryHere’s a chilling fact: Cold weather affects auto batteries more than any other engine component. That’s because they’re filled with fluid containing mostly water and are susceptible to freezing when the battery is not fully charged.

Expert Advice

mr-battery-web-300x300“In colder temperatures, engines require more cranking amps and batteries are less efficient,” explained Interstate Batteries engineering services manager Gale Kimbrough, also known as “Mr. Battery.” “That reduces the battery’s charge acceptance and ability to start an engine. If not properly maintained, it could create a big damper on your travel plans.”

Seven Steps to Staying On the Road to Safety

To help you keep your vehicle battery running in cold weather – and know what to do when it’s time to replace it-consider these seven tips for winter battery maintenance:

  1. Have the vehicle’s starting and charging system tested every three months or every oil change.
  2. Use a battery charger to maintain charge levels and keep the battery in good condition.
  3. Inspect the battery cables, posts and fasteners. Cable corrosion prevents power from flowing freely from the battery, reducing the power available to start the car.
  4. Clean the battery terminals with a wire brush or battery cleaner spray.
  5. When possible, keep the vehicle in a garage overnight or plugged in, especially in extremely harsh weather conditions. If garage storage is not possible, it may pay to invest in a battery heater.
  6. If the battery is not a sealed model, check the fluid levels, using distilled water to fill any cells that appear low.
  7. You can drop your old batteries to be recycled at any Interstate Batteries or Interstate All Battery Center retail store. While you’re there, you can get a free winter battery check.

Learn more

We love helping customers learn more about battery maintenance (it’s kind of our thing). Brush up on your knowledge at Mr. Battery’s page, or ask a question.

Posted in Automotive, Maintenance, Mr. Battery, Tips having 4 comments »

Team Interstate: Denny Advances to Finale

November 10th, 2014 by

 

Denny Hamlin brings his car in for a pit stop during Sunday's race at Phoenix. He is one of four drivers eligible for the championship. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images.

Denny Hamlin brings his car in for a pit stop during Sunday’s race at Phoenix. He is one of four drivers eligible for the championship. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images.

Denny Hamlin will represent Team Interstate in the Championship Round for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup next week after battling through some early-race struggles Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway.

The driver of the No. 11 Toyota Camry started Sunday’s Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 from the pole and led the opening 24 laps before relinquishing the top spot on lap 25. A caution on lap 32 would bring the leaders down pit road, but Denny suffered a flat rear tire after the round of pit stops, forcing him to pit again and restart in the back of the field. Denny would eventually go a lap down, but some well-timed cautions helped him get back on the lead lap. He finished fifth, giving him enough points to claim his place in the finals.

Kyle Busch's Banfield Pet Hospitals/Interstate Batteries scheme before an accident. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images.

Kyle Busch‘s Banfield Pet Hospitals/Interstate Batteries scheme before an accident. Copyright 2014 Autostock Images.

Teammate Matt Kenseth ran strong all day and earned a third-place finish, but it wasn’t enough to advance to the championship round. Kyle Busch also showed strength early on with his No. 18 Banfield Pet Hospital/Interstate Batteries Toyota, but an accident on lap 212 left his car badly damaged and two laps down to the leaders. He would go on to finish 34th.

Kevin Harvick won the race and also advanced to the final round. Kevin and Denny will be joined by Joey Logano and Ryan Newman.

The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion will be crowned next Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway, and whichever of the four Chase finalists finishes first wins the championship.

How does your Chase grid look?

chasegames_print_bracket_final

If you’re participating in the Chase Grid Battle, check your progress and make your Championship pick. Who did you choose before the Chase? Who do you choose now? Let us know in the comments.

Go there now.

 

NASCAR Nationwide Series

Phoenix International Raceway

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

Phoenix International Raceway

This Week

  • NASCAR: Homestead-Miami Speedway

Posted in Racing having no comments »

About The Outrageously Dependable Blog

Interstate Batteries® sells more than 16,000 kinds of batteries—from AA alkalines and automotive batteries to critical power solutions, and everything in between. Combine professional battery services, recycling programs and the largest battery distribution network in North America, and you’ll find Interstate has EVERY BATTERY FOR EVERY NEED®. Learn more about Interstate Batteries or shop online!