At 2.5 years and 44,000 miles my factory battery gave up.
We've had a string of four minus 20 or colder days. On the second of those days my diesel started admirably eight times. But on the morning of the third it just couldn't do it even once.
Of course the car exhibited the usual odd electrical behaviours. In my case the dash lit up with everything possible and the wipers started working even though they weren't activated. So I connected my trusty Deltran Battery Tender Plus and after six hours it still wouldn't start. so I reset the tender and left it on for the rest of the third day and all day on the fourth.
This morning the cold weather broke and I hooked up a 1970s-style six amp battery charger and tried to start it. Surprisingly it started right away. Albeit with a DIC warning to open and close the driver's window. Once that was done I was in business and on my way to buy a replacement battery.
Now I'm a die-hard (no pun intended) OEM guy. And I've always used Delco batteries all the way back to the Freedom battery days, their green eye and side terminals. But as some of you know Delco is no longer Delco and the batteries are now manufactured under an arrangement with Johnson Controls.
Since then Odyssey has emerged as the nil plus ultra battery on the market. With NorthStar a serious second place challenger.
Our diesels require what is known as a Group 94 sized battery. This size is also shared with many current Cadillacs. My factory AC Delco battery was labeled as 730 CCA and 80 AH.
However, I sadly discovered that Odyssey does not currently build a Group 94 size battery. The closest they offer is a Group 91 battery that is 1.5" shorter than a Group 94. This Odyssey battery is labelled 680 CCA and 70 AH and so is not only smaller but less powerful than the factory battery.
For comparison the best available AC Delco Group 94 battery is labeled 800 CCA and 80 AH with a three year replacement warranty.
As a result I went with NorthStar. Their Group 94 battery is labelled 860 CCA and 81 AH. Model number NSB-AGM94R. It carries the same four year replacement warranty as Odyssey. Hopefully I'll get more than that out of it. But as we all know, diesels are hard on their batteries.