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Old 07-06-2013, 06:49 PM   #1
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Battery

Hi all, we currently have an old marine starting battery in our 59 trade-wind that is beginning to hold its charge less and less. Items that constantly draw our 12v power are the fridge circuit board, the fan in our composting toilet, and occasionally our fantastic vent fan. I have a tricker charger and 50w sar panel that charge the battery. I figure ill need to replace this old battery. What type is best for hold a charge and giving a long slow draw of power to small items?
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Old 07-06-2013, 06:58 PM   #2
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Marine deep cycle battery.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:02 PM   #3
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From what I have gathered here, 2 6-volt golf cart batteries offer the most capacity to size/weight. For cost and convenience, I went with a pair of 12-volt marine batteries and a 130-watt solar charging system. This gives my wife and I substantial power for boondocking in our 66 Tradewind. We also have switched to LED lighting make the most of our battery capacity.

In addition, the 2 marine batteries allow us to have some redundancy, should the tow vehicle have a battery or charging system failure, as a marine battery will temporarily work fine as an automotive starting battery.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:24 PM   #4
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Well, you need to define "best" as there are always tradeoffs.

There are many threads on this topic in the Forums. I'd strongly suggest that you read a few threads on this ... lots of info. available. But here's my short take on it all:

A marine battery is a reasonable compromise, but almost all marine batteries you'll find for sale in common places are dual purpose batteries ... they can be used for engine starting and then for relatively deep cycle use for powering 12v "stuff" on the boat or rv. Golf cart batteries and true deep cycle batteries such as Lifelines are better at the deep cycle business and if properly cared for will last a lot longer in that sort of service, but not so good at engine starting, and indeed may not even have the sort of terminals that a starter motor application requires.

Second slice: sealed batteries such as Concord / Lifeline don't require attending to cell water level, because they're sealed, so they save some maintenance, and can be installed in places that are hard to get at ... while all "traditional" batteries tend to outgas some and need occasional water topping up if they are to live very long. But the sealed batteries are in the area of 2x cost to traditional ones.

Third slice: depends a lot upon what / how you charge them. If most of your charging is done by the converter that came with your coach, with some boost from your solar panel when you're "out there" then you'll likely want to stick with something like a traditonal / marine deep cycle battery, because the original converters tend to cook batteries to death by overcharging them and will quickly ruin sealed cells. (Even so, most of the remedy is not to charge more than you need and to make sure your cells are topped up with fresh distilled water as needed).
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:43 PM   #5
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Some folks here at our campground are pointing me toward a group 27 agm battery? My battery compartment can fit a 12x16" battery. Any recommendations?
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Old 07-07-2013, 06:38 AM   #6
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What is everyones thoughts on an agm battery vs a marine deep cycle?
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Old 07-07-2013, 07:50 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by steveirving View Post
What is everyones thoughts on an agm battery vs a marine deep cycle?
A true AGM battery is the best for deep cycle use due the thickness of the plates and the separator design.

A marine battery is a hybrid that is meant for starting duties for a boat engine ....and....to provide power for a boat's other electrical needs like lights, radios, etc.

IMPO, (that's professional opinion ) a marine battery should stay on a boat and a true deep cycle battery such as a Lifeline AGM is designed and built for RV deep cycle use.
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Old 07-07-2013, 09:18 AM   #8
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What is everyones thoughts on an agm battery vs a marine deep cycle?
My opinion say's they are not worth it. Ours came with a Group 24 which lasted about three years and I replaced it with a Group 27 Interstate Marine. Had to get a bigger battery box. We have the multiple cycle charger so it doesn't "fry" the battery.
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Old 07-07-2013, 09:51 AM   #9
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I think it is more important that you replace it soon than what you replace it with. Nursing and old battery has to be hard on everything in the trailer. I suggest a marine deep cycle battery in the biggest size you can fit in if you still have the factory converter. You will need to be able to add water. I use the deep cycle from walmart and change them every 2 or 3 years. I am sure Lewster is correct in that the batteries he reccomends coupled with a proper AGM charger and a solar regulator would be the best. I get buy with my "poor" system for the use we make of the trailer. I like to plug in or run the gen every 3 days or so when we are not connected to shore power. Led lights, fantastic fan on medium setting, CPAP at night, water pump. Not much else on. A marine starting batery is not the right choice. You need the deep cycle for a trolling motor.
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