Go Back   iRV2 Forums > MOTORHOME FORUMS > Class A Motorhome Discussions
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 03-15-2015, 01:41 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 133
Gel Batteries - Are they good?

I need to replace the 2 - 12 volt Deep Cycle coach batteries in my 2005 National Seabreeze and was recently told to get gel batteries. I know that they cost twice as much as regular batteries but want to know if they are worth the extra cost. Can anyone tell me what they recommend?

Thanks in advance for any guidance.
__________________

__________________
John; Karen and "Willow" (the RV cat)
2005 National Seabreeze 1341 F53 V10
2008 Malibu toad " Life is not a Spectator Sport!"
John Stott is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 03-15-2015, 02:09 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
89sandman's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 879
What we've found where I work is they only last about 1/3 longer than regular batteries and cost twice as much.
__________________

__________________
89sandman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 02:19 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
D Lindy's Avatar
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 1,635
IMO I'd go the AGM batteries. If they are kept charged and connections clean they'll last as long or longer then any other battery, and there's absolutely no worry about maintenance other then keeping the post clean.
__________________
2012 Journey 40U (Our Incredible Journey)
2008 Dodge Dakota(TOAD) 2005 Honda Shadow in TOAD
AF-1 braking system
D Lindy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 02:55 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 9,805
Gell batteries have shown long life but are very sensitive to over charging. One time and they are shot.

AGM batteries need lower float voltages then flooded batteries, but will accept more current during bulk charging. That necessitates a bigger charger. ( search out the post about the guy who cooked his AGMs in 3 years ) . It is also recommended that they be recharged to 100% often.

Flooded batteries are like the garbage truck of batteries. They will handle abuses better then the others and cost much less, to replace, when you ruin them. You do need to check and add water, regularly.

Battery life is measured in cycles, not years. If you were to treat any of the 3 types of batteries, as recommended by the manufacturer, they all would last as many cycles as predicted.

If you are going to be plugged in, or running a charging source, most of the time, any battery will work. Let your maintenance habits and wallet be the judge.

Good luck
__________________
twinboat is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 06:43 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
wa8yxm's Avatar
 
Damon Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 22,790
Many people confuse GEL and AGM

THey are very much alike, Both are Sealed Valve Regulated Lead Acid Batteires,

Both can be mounted in ways other than "This Side Up" (Wet cells must be This Side Up)

BUT....... Gel is very delicate,,If you charge it too fast,,Get new ones,, IF you over charge,,, Get new ones.. And many other things can cause you to..> Well,Get new ones.

AGM, On the other hand..Is the 2nd (And 1st) Most Rugged of the Lead Acid Batteries...Able to accept a much faster charge,, Way more forgiving of an overcharge (Though Flooded Wet,properly maintained,wins here)

Why are AGM listed as 1st and 2nd..for Ruggedness? OPTIMA, which by the way is a very POOR choice for most RV applications... IS a sub class of AGM.

THey advertise it as both AGM and GEL however,,, but it is AGM

Why is it a poor choice

Well From the OPTIMA web page (Blue Top, Download Full Specs)
The capacity of a Group 27 Optima is 66 amp hours (C/20 rate)

From Inerestate battry a Group 27 (NON optima) can run 5 amps for 20.4 hours (that is over 100 amp hours)

So you get 2/3 the battery for 3/2 the price.
__________________
Home is where I park it!
wa8yxm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 10:04 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 133
Thanks for the responses and good feedback. It would be great to hear from anyone who has or had GEL batteries and would you use or not use them again (and why) Big thanks.
__________________
John; Karen and "Willow" (the RV cat)
2005 National Seabreeze 1341 F53 V10
2008 Malibu toad " Life is not a Spectator Sport!"
John Stott is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 10:32 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4,492
Gell or agm...

Many folks interchange the terms often...

Gel are available but not common.

Agm are acid starved so look inside and it is dry.

In 35 plus years never seen a true gel battery so cannot comment on them.

AGM, VRLA are two terms for same batteries but there may be some AGM thst may not be VRLA but that may be a special product for special service so just consider both same.

Gel cells are different and most who have used them hated the results due to poor performance but that could be due to incompatible system design or incorrect expectations which applies to ALL battery systems.
__________________
Tony & Lori
1989 Country Coach Savannah SE
TQ60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 10:43 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
B Bob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,162
I used to have a sailboat that had gel batteries. They were fragile and when they failed I replaced them with wet cell deep cycle. I believe gels are mostly used in boats not RVs. I don't know this for sure though.

AGMs are common in higher end RVs. Our coach came new with 6 8D AGMs. I have gone through two sets of house AGMs in 5 1/2 years. Last friday I replaced the house batteries again. I chose wet cell deep cycle ones because of my previous good experience with my boat. And they were less than 1/2 price of the AGMs.
__________________
B Bob
Country Coach 42' Affinity
2013 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
B Bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 11:00 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
chboone's Avatar


 
National RV Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Horse Town USA, CA.
Posts: 2,933
This link has a good explanation of the differences of battery types.
Battery Basics: A Layman's Guide to Batte | BatteryStuff Articles

Which ever battery type you decide make sure your battery charger can be set to the manufacturers charge perimeters.

You don't want to end up like this guy with four three year old 8D's that got ruined because of the incorrect float charge.

Lifeline battery problems

Also, I would suspect that the two 12V batteries you have now are not True Thick Plate Deep Cycle batteries. What you most likely have are Marine thin plate deep cycle batteries which are not the same as True Deep Cycle batteries. Marine deep cycle batteries are starting batteries with the characteristics of deep cycle, they don't do either very well.
__________________
1999 35 ft. Dolphin 5350,F53 Chassis Chassis build date 1/99, Banks System, 5 Stars Tune, Air Lift Air Bags front & rear, Koni Shocks,Blue OX TruCenter,TigerTrak track bars front & rear, Roadmaster 1-3/4" rear auxiliary sway bar,2004 F450 Lariat 6.0 Diesel Crew Cab DRW with B & W Custom Truck Bed, 1994 36 ft. Avion 5th Wheel
chboone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 11:06 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Superslif's Avatar
 
Thor Owners Club
Pond Piggies Club
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: NE. Ohio USA
Posts: 4,705
Heard the newer wet cell group 31's are a step above the common group 24 & 27 ones. Here is a link to "The Battery Guy". Two 6 volt vs. 12 volt.
__________________
Jim, Diane & Robert ~ NE. OH.
2018 Outdoors RV Timber Ridge 24 RKS
2014 Toyota Tundra Limited 5.7L
IRV2 Photo Album ~Let's Go Places~
Superslif is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 11:13 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4,492
Grp 31 are a larger battery that will be better than a 24 or 27.

There is a whole lot of other things to consider other than size.

In any one form size there are many types as well as many capacities of eacy type of battery so one needs to do their homework to know what choice to make and what to expect.
__________________
Tony & Lori
1989 Country Coach Savannah SE
TQ60 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-15-2015, 11:59 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
dons2346's Avatar
 
Country Coach Owners Club
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 4,477
Quote:
Originally Posted by chboone View Post
This link has a good explanation of the differences of battery types.
Battery Basics: A Layman's Guide to Batte | BatteryStuff Articles

Which ever battery type you decide make sure your battery charger can be set to the manufacturers charge perimeters.

You don't want to end up like this guy with four three year old 8D's that got ruined because of the incorrect float charge.

Lifeline battery problems

Also, I would suspect that the two 12V batteries you have now are not True Thick Plate Deep Cycle batteries. What you most likely have are Marine thin plate deep cycle batteries which are not the same as True Deep Cycle batteries. Marine deep cycle batteries are starting batteries with the characteristics of deep cycle, they don't do either very well.

I am not totally convinced that the Lifeline batteries in question are toast. I would have to see for myself which will probably not happen but I think they are fine
__________________
Don
2002 Country Coach Intrigue
dons2346 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-16-2015, 12:46 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
chboone's Avatar


 
National RV Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Horse Town USA, CA.
Posts: 2,933
Quote:
Originally Posted by dons2346 View Post
I am not totally convinced that the Lifeline batteries in question are toast. I would have to see for myself which will probably not happen but I think they are fine
It is possible their not toast. The OP in that post said that the person at Lifeline said they are toast and probably low on electrolyte from the float voltage being to high. I've never seen a Lifeline, don't know if caps or top could be pried open to check the level. If there is no liquid in sight their probably toast. If there is liquid above the plates he could try doing a conditioning charge.
__________________
1999 35 ft. Dolphin 5350,F53 Chassis Chassis build date 1/99, Banks System, 5 Stars Tune, Air Lift Air Bags front & rear, Koni Shocks,Blue OX TruCenter,TigerTrak track bars front & rear, Roadmaster 1-3/4" rear auxiliary sway bar,2004 F450 Lariat 6.0 Diesel Crew Cab DRW with B & W Custom Truck Bed, 1994 36 ft. Avion 5th Wheel
chboone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-16-2015, 05:46 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
wa8yxm's Avatar
 
Damon Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 22,790
Gel's were used back in the 1970's when they were a fairly exotic product.. I had some devices that used them..They were good, but, to rephrase what I already said... Very Fussy..

The charging circuit had to be very carefully designed.

Today the AGM has mostly replaced the GEL.. it has all, and I mean ALL, the advantages of the GEL, but is far more forgiving of the charger.

Also, Most AGM's can handle far higher charge and discharge rates... I have seen small AGM's (Like 27 amp hour) that can put out hundreds of amps for short bursts, In fact, I have one.

A Gel Cell loaded down that way (as much as 50 times the C/20 rating) would likely explode.
__________________

__________________
Home is where I park it!
wa8yxm is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
batteries



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Ventilation for batteries in bay storage Rvbuzz RV Systems & Appliances 16 02-24-2015 01:12 AM
How long should the batteries last in an Anthem when not connected to shore power? Wineman Entegra Owner's Forum 22 10-30-2014 09:23 AM
Beware: Another Good Sam--Bad Roadside Product Experience tealstar iRV2.com General Discussion 49 09-30-2014 11:56 AM
Batteries won't hold a charge... Dlew911 RV Systems & Appliances 21 07-14-2014 05:10 PM
EchoCharger with AGM and Standard batteries BudtheDiplomat Monaco Owner's Forum 2 02-15-2014 07:37 PM

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:48 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.