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Old 10-02-2014, 05:07 PM   #1
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I regret buying from Interstate Battery.

My coach has 4 6v Interstate batteries that I've been having trouble keeping charged. They run down to around 50% charge pretty fast, maybe due to low water and the RV cover keeping sunlight from the solar chargers over the summer. I also have an Interstate Battery warehouse about 1 mile from my office. Having limited time to solve my battery problem, I removed the old batteries and took them to Interstate. When the 20 something year old tech came out and asked what I needed I replied I'd like to have them charged enough to load test them(they were at about 50% charged) to verify if I needed new batteries or just a charge on the old ones. I was astounded by his reply: "It takes two weeks, at the very minimum 1 week of charging before we can do a load test. Do you have to have them sooner?". Everyone knows an overnight charge will tell you what you need to know, and I knew at that point my batteries would not pass any load test no matter how long they were charged. At least not at that facility. Unfortunately there are not many service centers around besides Walmart that can handle my problem, so I went ahead and bought 4 new batteries to the tune of $630. I knew replacing them was a possibility and was ready to pull the trigger, but after I thought about it for a few hours it hit me how wrong it was for me to have not left the warehouse on the spot and reported his sales tactic to "corporate". I did contact the home office, but they don't seem to want to return my call. I'll take my business elsewhere from now on.
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:18 PM   #2
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I also had a bad experience with Interstate Batteries, once and done. The same BS line about load test. I left the battery on his counter and told him what he could do with it. The store where I originally purchased the battery no longer carries them due to Interstate's refusal to honor their warranty's.
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:27 PM   #3
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Our new to us Bounder has two Interstate 6V batteries that were dead when we purchased the motorhome. The cause was a fuse blown on the inverter. I took them to interstate to be load tested. At the time they only had 11.6V at the terminals.

The interstate guy said they were still good,,, no load test just used a hygrometer.

They charged them for me for free. It to two days to completely charge them but it cost nothing.

My experience has been satisfactory with Interstate.
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:27 PM   #4
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Our OEM Interstates lasted one month short of 10 years and were still going the full night boondocking. Replaced them with the same ones and they are still doing just fine.
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie65 View Post
I also had a bad experience with Interstate Batteries, once and done. The same BS line about load test. I left the battery on his counter and told him what he could do with it. The store where I originally purchased the battery no longer carries them due to Interstate's refusal to honor their warranty's.
I had just the opposite experience with Interstate batteries. I took two 12v coach batteries that were in my opinion going bad to an Interstate store. The attendant very nicely explained that they needed a full charge to test. I took them home, charged them overnight and went back. They tested both and found them marginal. I was given over a hundred dollar credit toward new batteries even though the old ones were almost three years old. It covered nearly half the cost of new batteries.
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:35 PM   #6
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And that's what pisses me off. I'll never know if I had another 5 or 6 years left in them because he was only interested in making a commission. I'm sure not every location operates like this, but I can assure you the Haltom City Texas facility does.
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:36 PM   #7
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No matter the business you will find people employed that do not know up from down.
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Old 10-02-2014, 06:27 PM   #8
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Depending on the state of charge it can take as little as over night or 30 hours to properly charge a battery on a smart charger. Using the old style charger that just hammers voltage to the battery is a thing of the past. Smart chargers will vary amp and voltage through the charge cycle to bring up a proper charge on the battery. Load testing a battery is also a thing of the past. A failed load test is pretty much the last legs of the battery but it was going south a while ago. I only charge batteries with a smart charger and test them with a Midtronics battery tester. That tester is the only tester pretty much all OEM's will test batteries with when they are under warranty.
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Old 10-02-2014, 07:27 PM   #9
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"mxgeezer"......It doesn't really sound like you have an issue with Interstate as much as you do with the employee. You said you had the coach covered all summer and the batteries needed water and a charge, then you say you're situation required immediate replacement of the batteries. No offense, but it sounds like you decided to resolve your battery issue at the last minute and they couldn't jump to solve your problem, other than sell you new batteries. You than bought four new batteries that later aggravated you, more like buyer's remorse.

I'm always glad to see when a company/repair shop realizes that a battery needs to be fully charged before it can be load tested. Maybe the facility you visited had many other batteries that needed charging ahead of yours or maybe you misunderstood that it would take two weeks.

I've had great service from Interstate and is the only RV battery I buy. I think the new ones will serve you well if you take care of them. One of the best products I ever bought, was the ProFill automatic watering system for batteries. It only takes about 3-4 minutes to check and fill all four batteries.
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Old 10-02-2014, 07:50 PM   #10
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With the proper charget it should take no more than six hours.

My interstate U-2200s lasted 9 years,, Replaced them with DEKA, (mostly because that was what the store sold) Will give you my opinion of the deka's ... Hopefully in about a decade give or take a year or two.
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Old 10-02-2014, 07:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutch Star Don View Post
"mxgeezer"......It doesn't really sound like you have an issue with Interstate as much as you do with the employee. You said you had the coach covered all summer and the batteries needed water and a charge, then you say you're situation required immediate replacement of the batteries. No offense, but it sounds like you decided to resolve your battery issue at the last minute and they couldn't jump to solve your problem, other than sell you new batteries. You than bought four new batteries that later aggravated you, more like buyer's remorse.

I'm always glad to see when a company/repair shop realizes that a battery needs to be fully charged before it can be load tested. Maybe the facility you visited had many other batteries that needed charging ahead of yours or maybe you misunderstood that it would take two weeks.

I've had great service from Interstate and is the only RV battery I buy. I think the new ones will serve you well if you take care of them. One of the best products I ever bought, was the ProFill automatic watering system for batteries. It only takes about 3-4 minutes to check and fill all four batteries.
You're right, it's buyers remorse, but what I should have done is walk away from there and find another source. That's my fault. I told the kid an overnight charge would be plenty, that I'd never heard of having to charge one for a week or two. I had a couple of days which should have been enough to charge and test them. I just decided to take the safe route instead of trying to find another supplier and time to run them down. It just bothers me that an employee would make that statement(and why) and the corporate office offers no explanation. I'd rather do business with a supplier like the ones mentioned above who value customer service.
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Old 10-02-2014, 09:24 PM   #12
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"mxgeezer".......On a similar note.....Over the years I've emailed companies by going to their websites and clicking on the Contact Us button. It seems the larger the company, the less likely they will respond. Why do they even have a Contact Us button, if they're never going to reply. I usually steer away from their products after that.
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Old 10-02-2014, 09:56 PM   #13
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Exactly! Why bother? I contacted corporate by phone yesterday to let someone know how they were being represented and was told someone would be in contact with me today. Not a word. I even tried Facebook. They pulled that in about 5 minutes with no reply.

I'm not suggesting others boycott Interstate, just saying after being blown off by both the retailer and corporate I think I'll find an alternative next time. But beware....
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Old 10-03-2014, 12:32 AM   #14
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I started messing with cars about the time the Beatles started messing with music. Interstate had a reliable reputation then, and things haven't changed much at all. Your encounter was an anomaly.
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