Top Notch 550 Battery Install
I went to my local parts store and picked up an Interstate MTP-48H6 (the old MTP-91). It fits perfectly, nominal 730CCA, measured at 777CCA with my battery capacity tester.
To install it, you will need to undo the three 10mm nuts & washers holding the coolant overflow tank and lay it aside without disconnecting any of the hoses to the tank. Undo the battery bottom clamping bolt (12mm?), and loosen the two top battery clamp nuts (10mm) until the top clamp releases from the battery.
Now comes the might-be-for-you nasty part. Turn off the battery switch. On my car (1999 550), disconnecting either of the battery leads sets off the alarm siren (it has its own battery, the cause of other troubles, but that's another thread). That sucker is LOUD--without muffs, I can hear/feel my ears overloading-bad news. I wore earmuffs, and had the car inside my garage with the doors closed in the beginning. I kept fiddling around with the battery leads (taking them on & off) and eventually the siren stopped yelling, but I can't say exactly how I shut it up. Maybe someone else can clarify shutting up the siren. If you can't shut it up, then just do the swap with your earmuffs on.
Carefully work the old battery out and the new battery into its place (awkward and heavy--watch your back). Everything bolts up in the reverse of disassembly. Re-connect the battery leads, turn the battery switch back on--Eh Viola!, one new battery that fits perfectly, very powerful, with a good warranty, and a fraction of what the Ferrari dealer will charge you. Don't forget to give it an overnight charge--it's the best thing you can do for starting it off on a long life. I use a "CTEK Multi US 7002", best charger I've ever had.
The battery cost $164.53 + tax and a $30.00 core charge. Nice excuse to take the old battery to town in the 550 on our back-country roads to get my $30.00--with it well-strapped down of course ;)
I forgot to add--though sure it's been mentioned multiple times here before--
IF your car is behaving as if it's totally possessed by the worst Ferrari demons possible, with all kinds of nasty things suddenly starting to happen--check your battery capacity and SoC FIRST THING. I was half-terrified with $$immo$$ nightmares for about an hour until it finally occurred to me to check the almost-new Interstate high quality battery for SoC and Capacity. A damn cell had shorted out all on its own while the car was just sitting there for a week. Drove it in and shut off perfectly normally.
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