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Old 12-30-2011, 08:12 AM   #1
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Battery Amperage -- Does it Matter

My 23'FB 2010 Flying Cloud came with a Interstate SRM-24 550 amperage batteries. I am trying to find replacements. It seems most of them have a higher amperage, for example 750, etc. Does it matter if my amperage is higher than the original battery.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:15 AM   #2
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No, but it is best to match batteries used in parallel in birthdate and capacity.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:46 AM   #3
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you might like the info in this thread:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f449...nfo-82152.html
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:47 AM   #4
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The "amperage" rating you mention is the so called "Cold Cranking Amperage" and is virtually meaningless in RV use. With regular RV use and the battery compartment size you have, find the largest physical size and highest physical weight you can get of the "deep cycle" type battery. Lead acid battery capacity is essentially determined by the weight of the battery. The CCA rating, high or low, tells you nothing and need not be a factor in your decisions.
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Old 12-30-2011, 01:54 PM   #5
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Like idroba said you need a deep cycle battery. The deep cycle batteries have lots of lead and thick plates that will last a long time and tolerate being drained all the way down and charged back up repeatedly. A modern car battery has plates with lots of surface area which is good for current but bad for longevity. The more lead the more capacity. What you want is the amp hour rating to be as large as possible. For example, a 100 AH battery can theoretically run a 1A load for 100 hrs or a 10A load for 10 hrs etc. CCA means nothing to you. If you have two such batteries in parellel you get twice as many AH. So two would get you 200AH of run time.

Perry
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Old 12-30-2011, 05:52 PM   #6
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re: "The deep cycle batteries have lots of lead and thick plates that will last a long time and tolerate being drained all the way down and charged back up repeatedly."

whoops! the advice was going fine until this cropped up.

No lead acid battery likes deep discharging as a routine thing.

Cycle life is not an issue for typical RV use so its a moot point, anyway. RV

Batteries labeled 'deep cycle' or what not are built the same as all the other batteries we normally find in RV's and cars and commonly available at retail for that sort of purpose.

Battery manufacturing is a mature technology. Manufacturers provide a line of batteries for different purposes that trade off between cost, capacity, and ruggedness. If you look at a manufacturer's line card and analyze the specifications, you'll see that the differences between batteries tend to be on the same order as the variances you can get in battery use due to temperature, use profile, age, cycle to cycle variation and other factors.

note: I understand these ideas are highly offensive to some. All I suggest is that you look at the actual measurements and be very careful about what is often offered as gospel rather than soundly based conclusion.
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Old 12-30-2011, 07:45 PM   #7
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Yes the basic technology is the same. A battery is a battery is a battery. I would expect a deep cycle battery to have thicker plates to tolerate being totally discharged better. Whether this is expectation is real or not remains to be seen. Bust one open and find out otherwise we are just speculating here. Pull the caps on a car battery and a deep cycle battery and see what the difference is. You can tell when a car battery is going bad. Usually the plates are starting to crumble and many times they are warped.

HowStuffWorks "What's the difference between a normal car battery and a deep-cycle battery?"

Perry
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:05 PM   #8
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Not sure why you would be replacing the batteries in a 2010 unit already? Did the dealer put in the correct ones? Interstate are good batteries. They would be good to replace with. You need a pair of deep cycle of the correct physical size to fit in. Not much else matters much. In your case, a group 24 if it indeed came with the correct batteries. I would use interstate for replacement. Higher amperage batteries will not hurt anything.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:34 PM   #9
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FWIW, I just bought two Duracell AGM batteries from Sam's Club for $166 each. The original batteries were starting to fade, but are still doing fairly well. This seemed like a good price. Made in USA. Heaviest batteries I've ever owned. I'll install them after I get back from New Orleans.
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Old 12-31-2011, 09:12 AM   #10
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re: "Bust one open and find out otherwise we are just speculating here. Pull the caps on a car battery and a deep cycle battery and see what the difference is."

hey! thanks. I'll have to add this to my list of simple things folks can do to see the 'deep cycle - thick plates' thing is bogus.

NAWS has done it and they didn't see any difference - and noted that in their FAQ. I've done it and haven't seen any obvious significant differences either.

The reason I think such simple tests as 'just look at it' are important is because the myth is all over the place on the web (as the link to HowStuffWorks illustrates and even the NAWS FAQ falls but at least they indicate context which helps explain the myth).

However, when you do decide to take a look into a battery, please follow appropriate hazmat precautions. Wear safety glasses and have proper support for the battery so it won't spill.

re: "Duracell AGM batteries... Heaviest batteries I've ever owned." -- curious about this. Bigger in physical size, too? How much heavier than other batteries of the same size?

re: "Not sure why you would be replacing the batteries in a 2010 unit already?" -- many of these rigs spend a couple of months on a lot out in the heat and sun with little attention paid to battery maintenance. It isn't uncommon to find that the batteries in a new rig have suffered quite a bit as a result.
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Old 12-31-2011, 10:13 AM   #11
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re: "Not sure why you would be replacing the batteries in a 2010 unit already?" -- many of these rigs spend a couple of months on a lot out in the heat and sun with little attention paid to battery maintenance. It isn't uncommon to find that the batteries in a new rig have suffered quite a bit as a result.

VERY common...our JC installed Interstates were shot at delivery. Interstate did replace them, (pro-rated) so there was a small charge. Ideally they should be checked/replaced by the selling dealer before delivery.

Bob
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Old 12-31-2011, 10:47 AM   #12
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When we bought our new Bambi in 2005, one OEM Interstate battery lasted about a year, and the other one died about six months after that. We replaced them with Optima Blue Tops, which lasted about five years. However, Costco has stopped carrying Optima batteries; so we will probably be switching to something else when these die.

By the way, we installed a marine battery isolator switch when we got the first Optima battery, which most likely would have increased the OEM battery life, too. We had lots of battery problems before we installed the battery switch (phantom drains lead to charging 24/7, which probably cooked the batteries).
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