R4T Billet Battery Tie-Down For The 5th Gen 4Runner: Why You Need One If You’ve Upgraded To An AGM Battery – Install & Review
Upgrading your factory battery tie-down after switching to a Group 27F AGM battery is a smart decision for a couple of reasons. First, AGM batteries have different construction and dimensions compared to traditional lead-acid batteries. Due to their increased weight, they also require a more secure and flat tie-down mechanism.
The factory tie-down is not designed to accommodate the specific size and weight of some larger AGM batteries. This can cause the battery to become unsecured, damaged, or in the most extreme case, cause an electrical fire while off-roading.
Upgrading to a tie-down that is specifically designed for AGM batteries helps solve this problem. In this post, I’ll be covering the R4T billet battery tie-down.
Find it Online:
- R4T Billet Battery Tie-Down: Check Price
What Is A Billet Tie-down?
The term “billet” refers to the material used, which is typically a solid block of high-quality aluminum. These brackets are precision-machined for superior strength and durability compared to traditional stamped metal tie-downs like the factory one.
Key features and benefits of a billet battery hold-down include:
- Strength & Durability: The R4T tie-down has exceptional strength and resistance to bending or warping.
- Corrosion Resistance: Treated or anodized to provide excellent corrosion resistance.
- Custom Fitment: Designed to fit specific battery models and vehicle applications perfectly, ensuring a secure and snug fit. The R4T tie-down is suitable for 2005-2023 Tacoma, 2014-2023 4Runner, GX470, GX 460, and FJ Cruisers with AGM batteries.
- Enhanced Aesthetics: Adds a touch of style to the engine bay.
It’s important to note that while billet battery hold-downs offer several advantages over traditional sheet metal brackets, they may not be necessary for every vehicle. For standard applications, the factory tie-down is sufficient. However, for performance vehicles and off-road rigs, a billet tie-down can be a valuable upgrade.
Why Do AGM Batteries Require Flat Tie-Downs?
AGM (Absorbent Glass Mat) batteries are a type of sealed lead-acid battery that offers several advantages, including better resistance to vibration and reduced risk of acid leakage. However, like any other type of battery, AGM batteries need to be properly secured in the vehicle’s tray to ensure safe and reliable operation.
Here’s why a flat tie-down is essential for AGM car batteries:
- Safety & Protection: A proper tie-down is crucial to prevent battery and vehicle damage.
- Electrical Integrity: A secure battery ensures a stable electrical connection and helps maintain the consistent performance of the vehicle’s electrical components.
- Preventing Short Circuits: If your battery comes loose, there’s a risk of the terminals coming into contact with nearby conductive parts leading to electrical damage.
- Compliance Regulations: A flat tie-down ensures compliance with local regulations and may be required for passing vehicle inspections.
Upgraded battery tie-downs are a simple but vital component for the safe operation of AGM-equipped vehicles.
Why The Factory Tie-Downs Don’t Work
The factory sheet metal battery tie-down may not work effectively or securely with flat-top AGM (Absorbent Glass Mat) batteries for several reasons:
- Design & Compatibility: Factory sheet metal tie-downs are often designed for standard batteries. AGM batteries, especially flat-top designs, can come in various sizes and configurations, and they may not fit properly within the factory tie-down constraints.
- Insufficient Height: Since AGM batteries have different terminal designs, the factory tie-down may not properly secure the battery without modifications or additional spacers.
- Material & Strength: Factory sheet metal tie-downs are not as robust or durable as aftermarket tie-downs. Flat-top AGM batteries require this due to their design and weight.
The R4T billet battery tie-down is specifically designed for AGM batteries.
- 10mm & 11mm Sockets
- Needle Nose Pliers
First, use a 10mm socket/wrench to loosen up the bolt on the negative terminal and remove it. Wrap a rag around the terminal to avoid any contact with metal in the engine bay.
Repeat this process for the positive terminal.
Step 1. Remove Factory Tie-Down & Front J-Hook
Use the 10mm socket again to loosen the factory tie down from both ends and remove it.
Next, remove the front factory J hook.
Step 2. Remove Battery
Carefully move all the wires to the side, making space to remove the battery from the truck. This step is necessary to remove the rear J hook.
Step 3. Remove Rear J-Hook
The rear J hook is locked in place with a plastic bracket with two locking tabs.
With the help of a needle nose plier, pinch the locking tabs and push the bracket towards the front of the 4Runner.
Now, you can easily wiggle out the bracket and J hook. This is also a good time to clean the tray.
Step 4. Install Rear R4T J-Hook
Using the same plastic bracket, mount the new rear R4T J hook in place and support it with the fuse box.
Step 5. Reinstall Battery
Next, place the battery back in its original location.
Step 6. Install Front J-Hook & Billet Battery Tie-Down
Secure the front J hook and mount the new battery tie down through both hooks. Then, loosely secure the nuts on top. Make sure the battery is centered and the terminals can reach the posts. Now, center the R4T tie down and secure the nuts using an 11 mm socket.
Step 7. Connect Terminals
Lastly, connect the positive and negative battery terminals. Test the power and ignition are you are all set!
After installing the R4T billet battery tie-down, I was immediately impressed with its robust construction and design. The sleek and polished metal finish added a touch of sophistication under the hood of my vehicle.
Since installation, it has kept my battery firmly in place even during the roughest rides. Plus, the installation was a breeze, thanks to the included hardware.
I have zero regrets about my decision to upgrade my battery tie-down. It has the perfect blend of functionality and aesthetics and I highly recommend it to anyone with an AGM battery.