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Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...

Old 06-06-2007, 07:41 AM
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Default Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...

Last week I searched the Audio/Video section for a few hours, cyphering through almost 60 threads trying to educate myself on the Optima Yellow Top battery specifically. You see, I was looking for this battery specifically because it fit all the criteria I was looking for. Deep cycle, weight was not a factor, the ability to be discharged 100% with little risk of battery damage, ability to run over 1000 watts of audio equipment with the vehicle off, & ease of swap with the OEM battery. What I found was the Optima Yellow Top model D35.

I have created this thread so others that have questions about this battery, what it looks like, and how it's installed do not have to go through all the trouble I did. Hopefully this thread will take all the guess work out of the purchasing and installation process.

Updates 4/15/2014:
As of last summer my new Yellow Top died after only a few months and only being discharged 2 or 3 times. Personally I don't believe the quality is there anymore, especially with the price hike on these batteries. I settled for a nice Die Hard Gold this time around. It seems to be doing just fine. Now I also keep a battery tender on it as well...

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Old 06-06-2007, 07:58 AM
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The 1st thing that has to be done is the purchase. The best deal I found was at Low Cost Batteries.

http://www.lowcostbatteries.com/product_p/d35y.htm

For $169.00/shipped, you can't beat that price. They shipped it on Friday and it was here the following Monday. Here's a few pictures of what comes with the purchase. If you notice, the battery comes with 3 sets of brackets. I've included close-ups of the bracket we will be using. It's the one the raises the height of the battery about 1 inch.

I've also attached a close-up of the top of the battery. This pic lists the model# as well as the battery's specs.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2313.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2319.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2318.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2315.jpg  

Last edited by VO...; 06-06-2007 at 08:03 AM.
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Old 06-06-2007, 08:20 AM
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One last thing you'll have to purchase are battery shims. They're under $2.00 and you can find them at any autoparts store. The shims are made of lead and placed over the battery's terminal post to make them thicker. The Yellow Top's post are just a hair slimmer than the OEM's post.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2322.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2326.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2324.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2323.jpg  
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Old 06-06-2007, 08:26 AM
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Now for the fun part. Prep your car how ever you feel comfortable. I like lots of light and drop cloths placed over the fender to avoid scratches. You'll have to remove the 2 rubber thingys that line the battery cover plate. They peel right off. After you remove those, you'll have to remove the pop rivets to get the entire cover off. The last picture is what the battery bay looks like after the cover plate is removed.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2312.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2327.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2330.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2331.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2333.jpg  


Last edited by VO...; 06-06-2007 at 10:40 AM.
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Old 06-06-2007, 08:44 AM
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1st thing we do now is unfasten the battery terminals. Always remove the negative terminal 1st, then the postive last. If you've noticed, after I removed the positive terminal I used the red plastic terminal protector that came with the Yellow Top battery, to cover the OEM battery's positive post. This keeps unwanted sparks from flying around while you working on the battery removal.

Next step is to remove the front nut that fastens the battery latch down. You'll need a 10mm deep socket for this one. Notice in the last picture there is a 2nd nut holding the latch down at the rear of the battery. Don't worry about this one. Leave it alone.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2334.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2335.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2336.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2337.jpg  

Last edited by VO...; 06-07-2007 at 09:34 AM.
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Old 06-06-2007, 08:57 AM
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Next we are going to clear all cables and obsticles that are in the way. Do yourself a favor and don't skip this step. You can probably manage getting the battery out without pulling back all the junk that's in the way, but it's not worth it.

You'll have to unplug the windshield fluid wiper hose. The little connector pulls off of the black hose real easy. Unplug it then pull it back and lay it next to the plenum.

Remove the black fuse box by wedging a small screw driver in the little securing tab. The fuse box will not totally come out of the engine bay, but you can slide it out of the way once you'll removed it from the bracket.

Last, pull the postive cable back. But first you'll have to pull the rubber bushing out of the frame.(refer to picture). I use a zip-tie to hold it back and out of the way.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2339.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2341.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2345.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2342.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2343.jpg  

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Old 06-06-2007, 09:04 AM
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OK, one last thing to do before we remove the battery. This step is important. You won't be able to wedge the battery out of the cubby hole unless you perform this step. We have to pry up on the black plastic panel that sits at the base of the windshield. All you have to do is remove 2 snap rivets. Once you remove the rivets you can see how much I was able to pry the panel up without actually removing it. This gives you an additional 2 inches to work with, which is all you need.

In the last 2 pictures you'll notice I wedged a screwdriver handle under the panel. This is to create the 2 inch gap you'll need to get the battery out, and not have to worry about prying the panel up while you're pulling the battery out.

After all this is done, just slide the battery to the right and pull it out.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2346.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2348.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2351.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2352.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2353.jpg  


Last edited by VO...; 06-06-2007 at 10:57 AM.
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Old 06-06-2007, 09:17 AM
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When I performed my previous search, I found a wealth of info but it was hard to tell what was what. So many opinions, so many different statements, and web searches didn't help much either. It seemed every other website had a different weight for the battery.

They say pictures are worth a thousand words, so that's just what I did. In the pictures below you can see the Yellow Top compared directly to the OEM battery. You'll notice their length and width are almost identical and the positive/negative post are on the correct side also. The only difference is the height. But once you attach the spacer, the Yellow Top sits exactly as high as the OEM battery.

The very last picture clarifies the weight of the Yellow Top. My scale doesn't lie.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2360.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2357.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2354.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2355.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2356.jpg  

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Old 06-06-2007, 09:29 AM
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Once I was ready to install the new battery, I performed a test fit of the battery latch. As you can see, the latch is a bit wider than the Yellow Top. It doesn't matter though. It will still secure the battery down very firm.

Make sure to extend the longer portion of the latch towards the front of the battery, when securing it to the car, as seen in the picture.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2361.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2362.jpg  
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Old 06-06-2007, 09:46 AM
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Next we have to tie down the terminals to the battery. This will take a little patience so don't rush it. We start off by placing the battery in the cubby hole. After this is done, get some old T-shirts and wedge them in between the battery and the cubby hole sidewalls. We do this because chances are you're going to drop a nut down into the cubby hole. If you don't have the T-shirts there to stop it, it'll fall under the battery platform. You don't want this to happen because you'll have to remove the battery and bottom platform to retrieve the lost nut/fastener.

Place the shims on the terminal post, then start by fastening the positive terminal 1st. I had to use a rubber mallet to beat the terminals down, on account of the fit being so tight. I suppose you could use a hammer, but you might risk damaging the soft lead post.

For the positive terminal, I needed to get the terminal wedged down futher onto to battery's post. The way I accomplished this was by placing a 22mm socket on top of the post and using the mallet to wedge it down. The last picture shows how far I was able to wedge the positive terminal down.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2363.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2367.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2368.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2369.jpg  

Last edited by VO...; 07-06-2007 at 05:33 PM.
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:00 AM
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Finish up by securing the battery down with the top latch, removing the T-shirts, refastening the windshield wiper hose and black platic panel, then reinstalling the top cover panel.

As you can see in the pictures, the fittment is perfect. Both terminal cables reached to the battery's terminal post with no problem. There are no modifications needed to the OEM terminal cables.

I included a picture of my audio system's circuit breaker incase anyone wanted any ideas on where one show go.

The last picture is what the charge looks like once the car is started. Of course, the alternator has alot to do with the 15volt reading, I thought I'd add the picture for visual effect.

I might add that the car started up in about a tenth of a second!! There's alot of power in that Yellow Top.
Attached Thumbnails Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2371.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2373.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2374.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2372.jpg   Step-By- Step Instructions on Replacing OEM Battery With An Optima Yellow Top...-imgp2375.jpg  

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Old 06-06-2007, 10:01 AM
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Finished!
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:04 AM
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damn.. i didn't realize that piece that comes as a cap on the top of the battery is meant to be used as a base. d'oh!
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:10 AM
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NICE write up!

Is the larger ground wire part of a Big Three upgrade or is that a direct ground from the audio system?
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:28 AM
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Nice!
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by DVFlyer
NICE write up!

Is the larger ground wire part of a Big Three upgrade or is that a direct ground from the audio system?
Yes, part of the Big 3.
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by THE TECH
Nice!
Thanks!
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Old 06-06-2007, 01:48 PM
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I would highly recommend following the procedure as outlined in the precautions section of the Nissan service manual and remove the ground (black (-)) terminal first. This presents a smaller exposure of high current discharge. When the wrench is connected to the negative terminal first the only thing you have to avoid contact with is the positive terminal which is normally protected with the red plastic boot cover. Do not short between the battery posts, this is a once in a lifetime mistake. If done positive first your wrench is connect to the positive terminal and you have to avoid contact with the entire car which is grounded to include the too easy to hit battery mounts, the fender, motor parts, and the top of the firewall.

I most highly recommend doing negative first. I've learned to respect the dangers that unprotected (fuses) high current sources present. Be careful out there.

Paul
Master Chief Electrician's Mate USN (retired)

[edited to be more nicer sorry I don't mean to offend, I'm just that way after so many years in the Navy]

Last edited by Paul350Z; 06-07-2007 at 02:16 PM.
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Old 06-06-2007, 02:44 PM
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Wouldn't work both ways? If the ground is disconnected and you are spinning your wrench around on the positive side and hit a metal spot, wouldn't that still ground itself?

Maybe I misunderstood.
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Old 06-06-2007, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by DVFlyer
Wouldn't work both ways? If the ground is disconnected and you are spinning your wrench around on the positive side and hit a metal spot, wouldn't that still ground itself?

Maybe I misunderstood.
If ground is disconnect and you are touch bare metal while removing the positive terminal, nothing will happen because there is no continuity from the point where you touch the vehicle back to the negative side of the battery. This is the point Paul is making, and it is a very good point. My logic is more of a personal safety issue. When working with heavy current, you always want to have your power source grounded, as to avoid passing current through your body accidentally. This is why I personally always have what ever I'm working with grounded as long as there is a power potential on it. This has held true during my years of working atop telephone poles, near power lines, and maintaining aircraft electrically systems.

But I do see where Paul is coming from, given the DC voltage application we are dealing with. I can not say that I prefer his method, but I do see the validity to it.
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