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Old 06-11-2009, 09:07 PM   #1
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Question Starting batteries question

We have a 2004 Journey ... the original Alliance starting batteries seem to be coming to the end of their life ...

I am considering replacing them with WalMart MAXX-29 ...

Have any of you used these batteries in your diesel pushers?


2004 Winnebago Journey 39W - 2012 Buick Enclave
Present @home Home: Oshkosh, WI
We call our rig "Ernie the Journey"

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Old 06-11-2009, 10:22 PM   #2
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Hi again-we have a twin to Ernie (04 Journey 39W in catalina blue). Our OEM batteries became very marginal about a year ago. It was at the local Freightliner Oasis shop and I had them replace the old ones with two more Alliances--don't remember the cost, but it was about $180 for the two, I think.

Anyway, batteries don't last very long here in the Arizona heat. You have gotten good service out of your OEM batts.

Good luck--hope to run across you and Ernie some day.

2004 Journey 39W/330 Cat
2013 MINI Cooper S Hatchback
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Old 06-12-2009, 08:51 AM   #3
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Only five years.......... Have you tested those starting batteries.

Most motor homes have an "Aux-Start" or "Emergency Start" Switch, this connects the house batteries to the starting batteries to self-jump-start the rig.

Thus, if you leave those OEM bateries to die, fully and completly, you will NOT be stranded on the road as you can push button jump them

I would not replace them till they die


On my Workhorse, at 2 years the dang thing would not start.. Acted very much like a dead battery.

I crawled under (Easier to do than type, also that's where they hid the thing) took off the negative cable, hooked up the load tester and it passed. flying color (Green)

Hooked the cable back up and.... Good as new

Turns out all it needed was a cable end cleaning.

Says "Maintenance Free" But.. alas, needs routine cleaning just like the U-2200's in the house
Home is where I park it!
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Old 06-12-2009, 09:24 AM   #4
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gramp> we had a 2000 Itasca Horizon before the present coach. The batteries in it died at about 5 years. It was much cheaper and easier to replace them with the Wally World batteries and they did just as good a job. The Alliance batteries weighed a bit more than the WalMart, however they did not start it any quicker or faster. They were still spinning the Cat like a champ when we traded it off last year.
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Old 06-12-2009, 02:13 PM   #5
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thanks ...

thanks for the responses guys ...

I chose Walmart batteries for the house batteries ... they are working just fine (we don't dry camp anymore) so we are getting along just fine ... they hold the charge and the electrolyte level stays "up" ... which I could not say about the Trojans or Interstates that I had in here before

"doc" -- I am glad to hear the Walmart battery cranked the engine just fine ... that cemented my decision

"wa8" -- Yes I have a MOM switch ... and I know how to use the jumper cables from the house to the engine batteries in case the MOM solenoid decides not to kick in ... the model year is 2004 but the "date" my motorhome was manufactured was May of 2003 (and I think the batteries were probably on the chassis before that) ... so I think it will be time to "re-battery" before too long ... I just "re-tired" within the last month ... I doubt if I will drive this motorhome through another set of tires or starting batteries ... so the first time that I have to jump it ... off to Walmart I go ...

"dean" -- I come through AZ every winter ... I go west on I-10 and I -8 in January ... we spend time in Yuma ... and in May we go through the northern part of AZ on I-15 in May ... matter of fact I have visited Antelope Canyon and Horseshoe Bend a couple of times in the past two years ... do you ever get to Yuma in the winter ?... or Wisconsin in the Summer? ... maybe we can get these Journey's together and have a brewski
2004 Winnebago Journey 39W - 2012 Buick Enclave
Present @home Home: Oshkosh, WI
We call our rig "Ernie the Journey"

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Old 06-19-2009, 08:58 PM   #6
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Changed my mind

When I went to Walmart to look at their batteries ... they have no cranking batteries with studs on the top ... only conventional posts ... I did not like the looks of the gizmo that converts conventional post to a threaded stud ... I thought the jarring was likely to cause a loose connection ...

The MAXX-29 had the studs but the battery tech was reluctant to install a MAXX-29 for a cranking battery ... and suggested that I look elsewhere ...

SO ... I had Alliance batteries installed today ..

My son is always telling me "Buy the best and cry only once" ... so that is what I did today ...
2004 Winnebago Journey 39W - 2012 Buick Enclave
Present @home Home: Oshkosh, WI
We call our rig "Ernie the Journey"

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Old 06-19-2009, 09:34 PM   #7
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I have been told by some in the know that if your Batteries droop from 12 to below 10 two times or more you will start seeing major performance problems and power loss. I had lost all four 12 volt battery's on my TOUR and went to a local Wal Mart and found four deep cell with higher cranking amps. Now I keep my MH well charged.
Your son is correct about buying. I have talked with some who take short cuts, only finding a biger problems down the road.
TIRES, BATTERY'S anything that keeps your RVing moving you should never take a short cut on.

You want DEEP CELL, High Cranking Amps.
2006 Winnebago TOUR 350 CAT. 36' Freightliner Chassiss, Onan 7500 Gen.2008 Jeep Commander, Dinghy Unified Tow Brake
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Old 06-20-2009, 01:48 AM   #8
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Most Diesels I have seen use a group size 31 for starting batteries. Mine uses 3 of them and are now 7.5 years old and still going strong. My coach is always plugged in or moving and keeps the chassis and 4 house batteries charged. Here are some links for more battery info:
U.S.Battery/Leader in Deep Cycle Batteries
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) - DC Battery Specialists
Deep Cycle Battery FAQ
Mike, RVIA & RVSA Certified Master RV Technician
Amy, Dr. Assistant - Roxie & Mei Ling, four legs each
2000 Gulf Stream Scenic Cruiser 450 hp & 1330# torque
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Old 06-20-2009, 12:01 PM   #9
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Forget the replies re deep cycle - that is not applicable to starting batteries. I'd look for Group 31 size cranking batteries with at least a 900 CCA rating and 950-1000 is even better. Make sure that is CCA and not marine cranking amps, which are measured differently.

I have Harris batteries in mine, but there are dozens of decent brands.

Gary Brinck
2004 American Tradition; 2014 Buick LaCRosse
Homebase in the Ocala Nat'l Forest near Ocala, FL
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