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Old 05-04-2021, 07:40 AM   #1
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1994 34' Excella
Warren , Manitoba
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Deep Cycle or AGM battery thoughts needed!

Yesterday was the day to get the trailer out of storage. Took the batteries off the winter trickle charger, and decided to check tham with a load test before heading out 2 1/2 hours to the storage shed. Batteries showed on the border line weak/ ok, so it is time to replace them. In 2 weeks the batteries will be 7 years old. They are maintained very well, with fluid checks monthly when in the trailer and when on the bench on trickle charge. Trailer has a PD9245 converter. My friends are telling me to replace them with AGM batteries. Last night I was checking out prices on the internet. My local supplier has Deep Cycle, Group 27 batteries on sale for $99.50, and Optima AGM for $319. Canadian Tire sells Deep Cycle for $166 and they have 2 different AGM's for $479, or $299. We use our trailer in the summer about 50-70 nights. Hopefully we can go back to Yuma for 4 months this winter. Do I spend the extra and get the AGM's or continue the Deep Cycle's? Will I gain enough to compensate for the price of the AGM'S. I'm not "cheap", but see no need to waste money if not needed. We camp with shore power 95% of the time, and if we have to boondock I carry 2, 2000 watt gen sets with parallel cable set up. What are some of your thoughts on which way to go? Thank you for your ideas and what you have done in this situation.
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Old 05-04-2021, 08:25 AM   #2
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Good question.

As some have said here it is hard to beat Costco Golf cart batteries for the value. A true deep cycle battery.

Compare price and Amp hrs.

Costco: 6V Group Size: GC2
Part Number: 9-GC2-UTL
Voltage: 6
Reserve Capacity(RC) @ 25Amps: 105
Reserve Capacity(RC) @ 75Amps: 175
Amp Hours(Ah) @ 20Hr: 210
Amp Hours(Ah) @ 5Hr: 175
Length: 10 5/16"
Width: 7 1/8"
Height: 11"
Weight: 58lbs
Your Price: $98.99

Lifeline: RV Battery Specifications. Also rated as Deep Cycle battery.
Voltage 6v
Length - in 10.28
Width - in 7.06
Height - in 9.92
Weight 66.00 lbs / 30.00 kgs

Lifeline Battery
Part Number: GPL-4CT Cold Cranking Amps: 1095 Rated Cap.
Amp. Hrs: 220
20 Hr Rate Minutes of Discharge
68° 32° 0° 25 Amps 15 Amps 8 Amps
GPL-4CT 1095 925 750 220 492 856 1692
Your Price: $309.50

FYI, I have been told that Optima is no longer the same company and to steer clear. They have down graded there warranty and are no longer made in the USA. Many new failure issues.

Many folks are converting to Lithium batteries now. They are significantly lighter and significantly more expensive. However in the long run may be even more cost effective. IDK.

All this being said. I have four of the Lifeline GPL-4CT batteries in our Safari that have lasted for 10 years. Pretty good value I would say.

Best of luck,
-Dennis
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Old 05-04-2021, 08:52 AM   #3
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The Optima configuration has lower capacity than the standard batteries so that is out for me. I do not think the AGM provides more power. The golf cart batteries might provide more usable power. But if they do not fit and you have to rewire they require some effort. I am also buying batteries this year. Have not decided yet. Looking fondly at the possibility of lithium batteries.
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Old 05-04-2021, 09:02 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBWELL View Post
We camp with shore power 95% of the time:
That says it all. No need for anything fancy and expensive. Stick with same as you already have.
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Old 05-04-2021, 09:05 AM   #5
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From my perspective the answer is pretty straightforward, though I suspect that most of the respondents to your query will disagree with me. Your useage and battery care is similar to mine, i.e., rare dry camping and proper charge maintenance; consequently, high-priced batteries would not be cost effective. If I continue to get a decent number of years out of the Costco/Interstate, etc. hybrid RV batteries, then that's what I'll continue to use. If not, I'll switch to group 27 automotive starting batteries because they have a longer guarantee. I'm also thinking I might just use one battery, rather than two since I only need battery to operate the water pump during brief pit stops. An automotive starting battery will serve that purpose without difficulty. I did use a single battery for one season, and it worked perfectly fine...I just insulated the connectors of the unused battery compartment.

I hope this helps.
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Old 05-04-2021, 09:45 AM   #6
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The only real advantage to going AGM is maintenance. Or lack there of. No need to worry about water levels etc. obviously charging correctly and winter maintenance charging remain the same.
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Old 05-04-2021, 09:47 AM   #7
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My previous trailer had a 10+ year old Lifeline AGM that was working great and my current trailer has a pair of 6 volt Lifeline AGM batteries which are doing very well. I find they are very dependable, do not out gas and are maintance free.
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Old 05-04-2021, 09:58 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by kscherzi View Post
That says it all. No need for anything fancy and expensive. Stick with same as you already have.
I agree with this. You already have your battery routine down with the flooded cells, it seems to work for you (7 years life), and you mostly have full hookups.
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Old 05-04-2021, 04:55 PM   #9
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Well, went to the battery store this afternoon. I had a very good discussion with a very knowledgeable sales and service person. At the end of it all he suggested that the Deep Cycle flooded battery would be my best purchase, based on my maintenance schedule and type of use. I brought 2 new one's home. Thank you all for the insight and thoughts. If the price of the AGM's was closer to the Deep Cycle, I probably would have gone that way. Tomorrow they get installed!
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Old 05-04-2021, 06:40 PM   #10
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It sounds like you made a good choice.
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Old 05-05-2021, 07:00 AM   #11
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1964 22' Safari
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBWELL View Post
Well, went to the battery store this afternoon. I had a very good discussion with a very knowledgeable sales and service person. At the end of it all he suggested that the Deep Cycle flooded battery would be my best purchase, based on my maintenance schedule and type of use. I brought 2 new one's home. Thank you all for the insight and thoughts. If the price of the AGM's was closer to the Deep Cycle, I probably would have gone that way. Tomorrow they get installed!
Excellent choice!

-Dennis
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Old 05-05-2021, 10:21 AM   #12
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If you are considering AGM batteries, you should consider switching to lithium batteries.
This is a video worth watching.
This is a good video that ran tests on AGM, flooded lead acid and lithium.


Sources for quality lithium batteries include:
AMPS Lithium
https://lithiummarinebattery.com/shop

Battle Born Batteries
http://www.battlebornbatteries.com/


LiFeBlue Battery
http://www.lifebluebattery.com

ReLion
https://relionbattery.com/products/lithium

SmartBattery
https://www.lithiumion-batteries.com...-rv-deep-cycle
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Old 05-05-2021, 10:47 AM   #13
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I have a 2016 AS that I bought new and soon thereafter I replaced its lead acid batteries with Group 27 AGMs that I bought on eBay for around $175 each with free shipping. They're still working just fine five years later with absolutely no maintenance except a trickle charger.

In 2011 I bought a twin diesel cabin cruiser and replaced all of its batteries (engine starting, house, generator starting, & bow thruster) with AGMs (at approx. $4K), and they are still working just fine, again with absolutely no maintenance except a trickle charger.
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Old 05-05-2021, 10:53 AM   #14
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Your choice is a good one, basically because you take care of your batteries. Many owners don't, then wonder why their batteries fail. You, on the other hand, are a good caretaker.
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Old 05-05-2021, 11:23 AM   #15
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New batteries are in the trailer. Before I installed them, I got thinking of the orientation of the positive post. The positive post has always been closest to the compartment door, and with the Group 27 batteries the clearance when removing is very tight. A couple of times the rubber post cover has move when pulling out the batteries to check them and have had an arc. I have always bee
n taught to remove the negative post first, then the positive. Looking at the cable length in the compartment I was able to install the batteries with the negative post closest to the access door. Now when I check the batteries, I can disconnect the negative post and not have to worry about an arc. I guess that you are never too old to learn something! Thanks again for all of the input. Chris
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Old 05-05-2021, 12:43 PM   #16
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AGMs are preferred by off roaders as they can handle the shocks of rocks and bumps better than sealed lead acid. Unless ur going down bumpy roads at off angles, the cash savings of deep cycle SLA will be just fine in ur coach.
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Old 05-05-2021, 05:04 PM   #17
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Hi

There are three basic choices:

1) The cheapest flooded cells on sale at Costco or your favorite outlet.

2) AGM's from a variety of suppliers.

3) Lithiums (also from a range of suppliers).

Looking at immediate cash outlay, number 1 wins hands down. For a "never use battery" use case, this is also the winner.

Looking at long term cost or at performance, number 3 wins by a wide margin.

AGM's used to be the "long term" winner. These days ... not so much.

Bob
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Old 05-05-2021, 11:35 PM   #18
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Five years ago, I too went with lithiums, solar, and an inverter/charger. Today, I realize that system is by far cheaper and more reliable than either the flooded cell or AGM systems in the long run. Zero worries and complete reliability.
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Old 05-06-2021, 07:11 AM   #19
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Old Orchard Beach , Maine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimdelane View Post
If you are considering AGM batteries, you should consider switching to lithium batteries.
This is a video worth watching.
This is a good video that ran tests on AGM, flooded lead acid and lithium.


Sources for quality lithium batteries include:
AMPS Lithium
https://lithiummarinebattery.com/shop

Battle Born Batteries
http://www.battlebornbatteries.com/


LiFeBlue Battery
http://www.lifebluebattery.com

ReLion
https://relionbattery.com/products/lithium

SmartBattery
https://www.lithiumion-batteries.com...-rv-deep-cycle
That was a painfully geeky 37-minute video. I suppose it probably ended with bottom-line recommendations, but I died before the end. RIP to me.
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Old 05-06-2021, 03:12 PM   #20
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We have used the Interstate flooded batteries since 2007. Each set lasted 7 years. With a 100watt portable solar panel, we're good, we have low electric demand. We've gone eight days (until we ran out of water). I'm putting 280 watts of solar on the roof as soon as the parts arrive. I also need new batteries and see that Interstate now has "EFB"- Enhanced Flooded Batteries. Wet, but no maintenance, claim they double the life. I'm not expecting (or wanting) 14 years out of a battery, but I'm interest to see how they work.
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