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Old 01-27-2010, 01:06 AM   #1
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House Batteries, what kind?

Time to replace,


What’s the best choice to replace my house batteries?
Has anyone used interstate? I ask because I can get these wholesale.
Are there any sealed gel types that are good?
If I use wet batteries, I need to replace some of the auto fill connecters, two are broken. Where can I get replacement parts?
Should I change the whole set with something different? Opinions welcome.



Thanks,
Dan
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Old 01-27-2010, 10:04 AM   #2
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Boy have you invited a religious argument!

Interstate is a very fine brand, I rate them in the 2nd level (Trojan's are more or less the 1st level) and when you compare bang for the buck (Value of the battery) I think Interstates may well beat Trojan out.. That is, of course, opinion, but it is based upon the anticipated life of my U-2200's v/s the anticipated life of T-105's (Equivalent Trojan battery) compared to the price tag.

What's more is that the batteries at both Costco and Sam's club are made by the same folks who make Interstate, only less expensive as a rule.. You, however, may well break that rule due to that word "Wholesale" in your post.

Now, the next thing you will find discussed is the relative value of Deep Cycle (Best) marine/Deep cycle (Not nearly as good) AGM (Good batteries but expensive) and Optima (not all there)

But, provided they fit, I think you will be very happy with a pair of Interstate U-2200's in series, that is about 220 amp hours at 12 volt (or 2 pair if you have the room)

If you do go with six volt batteries paired in series.. Consider each pair to be a single 12 volt battery, Think of it as such, treat it as such and all your six volt battery questions answer themselves

Cause there are no six volt batteries in RV's.. Just 12 volt's that come in 2 pieces.
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Old 01-27-2010, 10:24 AM   #3
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Mule Skinner,

First, replace the whole bank, not just the ones you think are bad. Second, I highly recommend AGM batteries to avoid the headaches of watering and outgassing. AGM batteries also charge faster.

Here are some related links:
Batteries
Battery vent caps
Storage in battery compartment
Swollen batteries
How long can an engine sit dormant?
house batteries
Battery Solenoid Clicking On and Off
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Old 01-27-2010, 11:03 AM   #4
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John's got it right, this gets into some deeply held beliefs. Brand isn't the issue and neither is type. What you need to do is to find a retailer you trust and who will stand behind what he sells and sells a lot to folks like you.

If you are having problems with gassing and electrolyte loss or with short battery life (expect 3 to 5 years for wet cell and maybe 40% longer for AGM), then you need to look at your use and maintenance, not battery type.

Lead acid battery manufacturing is a mature process and there are very few major OEM's that provide the batteries for private branding at various retail outlets. The trade-offs you will encounter balance cost, capacity, and ruggedness but the range is really rather small, especially when considered against nominal variations.
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Old 01-27-2010, 05:13 PM   #5
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I just purchased 8 new Interstate golf cart batteries. I also retained the battery watering system. So far, so good.
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Old 01-27-2010, 05:54 PM   #6
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My Alpine came with Interstate's and I just replaced them with the same thing after 5 years. They were terrific. The watering system has been great. I hear a lot about how great the AGM's are but we have two battery manufacturers in our area and I have played golf with some of there execs and they truly told me to stay away from the AGM's. They indicated that wet cells were by far the more reliable battery. Both companies make AGM's. Of course that is why Ford makes more than black & gray cars. That's only for us older folk.
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Old 01-27-2010, 06:05 PM   #7
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When I was doing the walk-through for our "new to us" coach, I found that the batteries were in a really small bay. In fact, to water the house batteries I would have to use a mirror to see into the cells of the back battery. I told the service department to change those out with AGM's. I didn't specify a brand, but there was no way I could carry out the maintenance properly with the set-up the way it was.

As far as reliable, the posts indicate that they are as good or better than the normal battery
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Old 01-27-2010, 06:47 PM   #8
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how many?

I have room for 3. What would y'all think, 3 12volts, 2 6volts or 2 6volts and 1 12 volt?
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Old 01-27-2010, 08:36 PM   #9
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I wouldn't mix and match, although theoretically the electrons would not know any difference. If I had an even number of batteries, I would use pairs of 6v golf cart batteries, but if an odd number, I would use 12V's. Two 6V's would be giving up too much capacity over 3 12V's.

I chose AGM's two years ago and no problems with them. Even if they were somewhat more fragile than wet cells, my lack of proper maintenance would make up the difference. Just my two cents worth.
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Old 01-27-2010, 09:29 PM   #10
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Jim A,

I'm surprised at your comment about AGM batteries, " Even if they were somewhat more fragile than wet cells..."

I would consider them to NOT be more fragile than wet cell batteries. They can even be shipped with a non-hazardous labeling, per Concorde Battery Corporation. There is no spillage of acid even if the case is broken. See this link:

Lifeline Batteries - Marine & RV Deep Cycle Batteries

AGM batteries were originally developed to withstand the extreme conditions of fighter jets. They are used in F-18s and other military aircraft, since they are non-spillable at any altitude or attitude and can withstand extreme temperature conditions.

They have a very low self-discharge. With extremely low internal resistance, there is almost no internal heating even during heavy discharge or charge currents. They can be charged far faster than wet cell batteries with no ill effects.

I can't think of any technical drawback to AGM batteries, but there is one big non-technical consideration - they cost a lot more than wet cell batteries.
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Old 01-27-2010, 09:58 PM   #11
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Dale,

I don't believe they are more fragile. I spent a lot of money for them because I thought they were better and worth the difference! I only included that to address an earlier posting that somebody talked to battery company execs who questioned their durability. That's why I put "Even if". You and I are on the same page.
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Old 01-27-2010, 11:17 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wil Rathke View Post
I just purchased 8 new Interstate golf cart batteries. ... So far, so good.
Watch out, but I believe that the Sam's Club & Costco 6V golf cart batteries are not the same quality (i.e. lower) as an Interstate U2200, which is now rated at 232 AHrs.

Solar Bill in Quartzsite sells the Interstate U2200 for $90 + 2.5% city tax. A week ago, the stock they were selling was stamped "A0", which is manufactured Jan 2010!!
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Old 01-28-2010, 12:06 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale777 View Post
Mule Skinner,

First, replace the whole bank, not just the ones you think are bad. Second, I highly recommend AGM batteries to avoid the headaches of watering and outgassing. AGM batteries also charge faster.

Here are some related links:
Batteries
Battery vent caps
Storage in battery compartment
Swollen batteries
How long can an engine sit dormant?
house batteries
Battery Solenoid Clicking On and Off
Thanks Dale,
A lot of good info here.
My 04 has 6 6v house battery's. I think I'll replace the chassis battery's as well. Best to do now than on the side of the road.
Still need auto fill caps. The Hydro caps seem to be not available?
Any other options?

Dan
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Old 01-28-2010, 12:14 AM   #14
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Jim A,

Sorry, I get it now. I didn't give the "Even if..." the proper consideration. We truly are on the same page.

I should have been surprised at Ted III believing what the golf buddies had to say.
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