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Old 10-12-2009, 04:17 PM   #1
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AGM and gel batteries.

Hey There:
Need some info from current users of AGM batteries. Why and what size to fit into the battery compartments of 03 31' airstream. Any info or comments would be appreciated and need some info on where to purchase.
As usual, thanks for your help.
Bob
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Old 10-12-2009, 04:22 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rochar3 View Post
...AGM batteries. Why and what size...
group 27s...

skip the GEL cells...

as 2 "why" read some of these (and the links) to decide...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ies-32463.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ind-40614.html

then pic a brand, price, warranty, reputation...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ima-33611.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ery-40049.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ine-38802.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ine-48992.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ies-49584.html

cheers
2air'
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Old 10-12-2009, 05:35 PM   #3
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I've got a Universal AGM series 4B. This is the 2nd biggest battery in the product line and it is BIG. About the size of 2 series 21s. 200 amp hours. Got it because of no off gassing, no spills and no maintenance. Costs 2x more than flooded cells, but lasts 2x as long.
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Old 10-12-2009, 05:57 PM   #4
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Two group 27 Lifeline's fit our Classic's compartment....they ARE heavy though and needed a custom lift strap to ease getting them out. Ten days boondocking with a non-working new Zantrex wouldn't have been possible without them, IMHO well worth the extra expense.

Gene,

Just saw your response, after the new Zantrex took a dump ealier this season I went back to the OEM with no problems, I just haven't kept it plugged in for more than a day. SFSG, but I still plan on changing out in the Spring, just don't know with what yet.
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Old 10-12-2009, 05:57 PM   #5
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I read two things—do not use a single stage charger with an AGM battery as it will ruin the battery. Or, I've used a Lifeline AGM for 3 years with a single stage charger and no problems (2air).

Is the first statement "conventional wisdom" or is 2air's experience "anecdotal evidence"? Not a fair comparison, but more fun to write. This has me confused.

It seems a lot of people have added a 3 stage charger to their OEM converters, but a quick look on the internet leaves me with the impression they cost as much as a new converter—maybe I'm still confused.

Gene
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Old 10-12-2009, 08:06 PM   #6
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6 volt AGM

I put two of these in our 25' 07 Safari:
Lifeline Batteries - Marine & RV Deep Cycle Batteries

They were the biggest batteries that would fit, width wise,
and I had to make a 3/8" extension ring for the compartment
for the additional height to work. We have a front bedroom with
twin beds, and the storage door still opens over the battery
compartment. The 220 AH served us well recently on sub freezing
days.

Terry
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Old 10-12-2009, 08:15 PM   #7
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good 4 you! hope you love them...

but the 6VOLT vs 12VOLT debate is NOT part of the o.p.

PLEASE lets not turn this into one of those threads, there are MANY already on that issue.

and they all become electrically charged mud wrestling.

the o.p. has 2 battery boxes BUILT IN to the front SHELL (not on the tongue) of his classic.

only the group 27s, OR smaller batteries will fit there.
____________

1 other notion to the o.p.

lifeline batteries are also sold UNDER another brand name (concorde) for a TAD less money...

my understanding is the warranty is not a good but it is the SAME battery...

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene View Post
I read two things—do not use a single stage charger... I've used a Lifeline AGM for 3 years...and no problems...maybe I'm still confused...
some things are a given...

and we recently covered the 1-2-3 stage thing (4 modern units) here...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...eam-57228.html

the o.p. has a classic, BUT it's a 2003, so he/she needs to check the owner packet 2 determine WHICH p-lax model was used...

IF it's still functioning, good news! but then again MOST of them are still functioning at 5 years.

MANY 'streams are humming along FINE on single stage gizmos, they are generically called univolts.

g...

YOU have a safari and a NEWer p-lax...

see ken's post (and FOLLOW the links) in the thread noted, above.
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now the 2nd pt (of confusion) is WHAT type charger is IDEALLY matched with WHAT type battery and why???

that isn't the o.p.'s question, unless "what and why" are widely interpreted.

this issue is WELL COVERED in older threads, with all cross combinations addressed, as in...

((((water/gel/agm>--<6v/12v>--<3stage/2stage/1stage (univolt))))

and with as many views (opinions) as there are brands and owners.

here are 2 of those threads that run the gamut of these variables (including confusing posts about # of stages)...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f206...yet-17326.html

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...wer-35590.html

the FIRST STICKY for this section also provides good reading, especially on older traylas...

a few imaginary or incorrect take home bullets...
  • agms are expensive, but require LESS maintenance and have better specs/profiles..
  • boiling over or drying OUT traditional wet cells HAPPENS under continuous charging with ANY charger, but...
  • 3 stage chargers are LESS likely to boil/dry out traditional wet cells, still y gotta check/add water.
  • GEL cells are not ideal in our application and require UNIQUE charge schedules/programs...
  • cost aside, most of us with agms LIKE them and may have SOLAR panels mixed into the equation...
  • it is important to CONSIDER THE ENTIRE SYSTEM and use in ANY given trailer, they are NOT all the same...
  • FOR EXAMPLE, match the charger RATING/capacity to the amperage NEEDED to charge the BATTERY BANK...
  • answers are NOT generalized to ALL years/models and so on, KNOW YOUR OWN unit b4 wasting cash...

the 3rd confusion, which is NOT addressed in this post is...

"what is a charger and what is a converter and which part am i upgrading or changing?"

the answer is OUT THERE...

and finally...

confusion+posting-reading=spending 2 much money....

cheers
2air'
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Old 10-12-2009, 08:31 PM   #8
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2air,

Really don't want to go down the 6 volt/12 volt debate path; I chose
these because of their capacity and discharge characteristics.
And, there is nothing else out there with this capacity that will fit in
my compartment. BTW, I have upgraded to a 3 stage converter, and it
really is a worthwhile investment. I never had to add water to my Interstates
in 3 years, which worked quite well for the first two years, a little less
so this year. We mostly dry camp, and I like being able to run the generator
for only couple of hours to regain most of the batteries charge. We monitor
the charge state closely and never go below 50%.

Terry
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Old 10-12-2009, 08:53 PM   #9
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2air, I was wondering why you were ok with AGM's and a one stage converter when everyone else I can remember from reading what feels like 1000's of battery threads, says not to do that. This is part of the OP question because AGM's may presuppose a 3 stage charger. If a 3 stage is unnecessary, that is good to know.

I have the one stage Parallax charger. There are only two situations where I'm plugged into to shore power—at a CG or at home when I'm running the heat pump and furnace in the fall or spring. Otherwise my solar panel—which does have a 3 stage charger—keeps the batteries charged. When the present flooded cell OEM batteries die, I plan on buying AGM's, but whether to get ready for that by having a 3 stage charger/converter combo is my question.

But the Phillies have just eliminated the Rockies in the National League playoffs and I must go into mourning now.

Gene
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:13 PM   #10
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2 air,

I didn't realize that the original poster had separate compartments,
so maybe my post is off-topic.
However, I researched the battery size/capacity issue pretty carefully.
Had I not, I would have concluded that only Group 27s would fit into
my unit. Lifeline's 4CT six volt battery was recently shortened in height,
allowing it to (barely) work on our trailer. I really had no interest in
changing from 12 v to 6v, but the 6v had the most capacity. Maybe
somebody else would want to look at these, because they are a little
smaller than they used to be, but have the same specs.

Terry
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:17 PM   #11
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Quote:
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... When the present flooded cell OEM batteries die... get ready for that by having a 3 stage charger/converter combo is my question....
and properly cared for, those oem batteries could LAST for many many more years....

so WHY BUY todays C/C (even with 3 stages) ???

when a new/improved/32 stage/temperature/altitude/climate/gender compensated unit will be available soon...

it will weigh less, do more, be environmentally friendly AND cost next to nothing...

i know it's coming, i saw one on the internet.

and there is already a forum community of future users.

cheers
2air'
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:42 PM   #12
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I feel the very best value for AGM are Sears diehard platinum. These are simply re-badged Odyssy's... (ODYSSEY Batteries - Official Manufacturer's Site)

I plan to drop 2 group 34s into my 08 25' in the spring. They are $189 as compared to ~$250 if you buy them with an odyssy badge.

http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...atinum+diehard
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:58 PM   #13
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I have 2 Group 27 Lifeline batteries. Bought them online from Best Converter. Love boondocking with them.

Lifeline is made by Concorde battery. Concorde Battery - AGM Aircraft Batteries They also make SunXtender for a little less. The difference is Lifeline has a 5 year warranty.
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Old 10-13-2009, 03:50 AM   #14
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Quote:
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...I researched the battery size/capacity issue pretty carefully.Had I not, I would have concluded that only Group 27s would fit into my unit.
terry

i haven't researched your unit but didn't it come with group 24s, not 27s?

2x24 is only ~160 amp/hr while 2x27 is ~200+ amp/hours...

again the classic battery boxes only hold 27s or batteries that are smaller dimensionally.

and the boxes are SEPARATED by 2+ feet, so wiring into series INSIDE the boxes would be tricky tricky.
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i hope what u have works perfectly for you, others go other directions and the size/amp hour/ best voltage/series parallel thing confuses a LOT of folks

search peukert effect/law HERE (or Gugal it) or check out older threads. here is a recent basic one on some of this.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...ity-38012.html

lot of options, lots of options. lots of confusion.

MORE capacity usually (always) comes with MORE weight in the battery.

so one cannot compare HEAVIER 6s with smaller 12s fairly.

compare SAME weight, amp hours and there is essentially NO difference in 2x6v vs 2x12v

except IF one of the 6s fails or is lost/stolen...

ya got NO 12v supply at all.

cheers
2air'
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