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Old 04-27-2016, 02:05 PM   #1
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House battery replacement

I've read some of the threads on batteries, but that's left me with more questions rather than an answer.
First off, I am need of a replacement for my 4 year old Interstate Group 27 house battery. Since travel trailers don't have starting batteries, the threads I've read don't seem to address just having a single house battery.
As mentioned, I received 4 years use on my Interstate battery. Great I thought. Just replace it with another Interstate battery, right?
After numerous calls to local Interstate Battery dealers and finally with Interstate Battery Customer Service, it seems there are no retail dealers in my area that carry a Group 27 or 29 RV Battery! I could buy one from the local distributor, 40 miles away, but what happens if the battery dies while I'm dry camping in New Mexico? Where do I go for a replacement?
So I've looked at other possibilities....
Wal-Mart, Their Maxx 29DC (it will fit in my battery box) is $99.97 with a one year warranty, but with less than stellar reviews. Good news is that there is a WalMart almost everywhere.
Tractor Supply, also with stores almost everywhere. Their Group 27 battery with a 1-year warranty is $89.99. Good reviews. Same battery at Camping World with a Good Sam Discount and being on sale is $95.87.
AutoZone Duralast battery, 1 year warranty, $94.99 less 10% Military Veteran discount. AutoZones are everywhere too.
Right now I'm more confused than when I started this search for a replacement.
Your comments appreciated.
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Old 04-27-2016, 02:22 PM   #2
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Well a really good battery (Lifeline GPL-27T) is an AGM type battery, meaning it is sealed against electrolyte leakage, and you never add water. The good thing about AGM batteries is since they cannot leak, they can be shipped by UPS or FEDEX.

However you pay for this convenience and quality to the tune of about $300 including shipping charges.

If you want the best, this is it.

If you want economical, get any of the batteries you just mentioned .....you are only out worst case $100 if it fails without a warranty.
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Old 04-27-2016, 02:28 PM   #3
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One other thing ....even a Lifeline battery can be ruined in less than one year if it's not properly charged and maintained.

Don't discharge below 50%

always promptly recharge to 100%

don't allow charger to maintain a voltage higher than manufacturer recommended

Many have gotten 7-10 years battery life if well cared for.
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Old 04-27-2016, 02:43 PM   #4
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I use the Walmart batteries. Msny bass fishermsn I know swear by them for the trolling motors. There are wslmarts everywhere for warranty. I hav had no performance complaints.
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Old 04-27-2016, 03:40 PM   #5
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I've been satisfied with the group 27 batteries we've used in our camper, although we've never gotten 4 years out of one. This will be the third year for the one in there now, and it still seems strong. For the money I think they're OK. We also have one on our trolling motor that has worked well.

I believe Wal-Mart batteries are made by Johnson Controls. There are only a few battery manufacturers in the US that produce all the different brands. This could be researched and may provide some answers.

I have sealed batteries on our road bikes and they have lasted considerably longer than the lead acid batteries at about twice the price. The beauty is that if the bike falls over acid doesn't run out, not a problem with RVs (at least we hope not).

Best of luck.

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Old 04-27-2016, 05:18 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies so far.....
pasdad1....thanks for your input, but I'm not really interested in dumping $300 on a battery. And although they could be shipped either through UPS or FEDEX, that doesn't help if I need a replacement right now. When I went to the Lifeline website, the warranty policy is exactly what I want to avoid: find a local dealer. If I can't find a local dealer for an Interstate battery, how am I going to find one for a Lifeline?
dix39.....appreciate your comment. You say you are satisfied with your Group 27 battery, so what brand is it? Any yep, you are correct, Johnson Controls manufactures the Wal-Mart brand. Can't say that is good or bad.
Rorytug.....that is exactly why the Wal-Mart battery makes some sense...there is a Wal-Mart about everywhere. I can count at least 7 Superstores within 30 miles of me. And they really don't argue very much when you return them. Just pull another off the shelf and send you on your way.
I continue to be both confused and frustrated!
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Old 04-27-2016, 05:31 PM   #7
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+1 on Wally World battery for the reasons already mentioned. RV/Marine batteries usually only have a 12 or 18 month warranty because they know how often they fail due to owner abuse (over-discharging and failure to keep charged off-season).

Home Depot and Lowes often carry Exide batteries, but the turn-over of inventory would be much lower than W/M, so your chance of getting an old-stock battery is greater.

In any case, fully charge your battery as soon as you get it. Most off-the-shelf batteries have self discharged enough to require a recharge.
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Old 04-27-2016, 05:40 PM   #8
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And never discharge a battery more than 50% (around 12.1 vdc) or it will die sooner.
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Old 04-27-2016, 05:42 PM   #9
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Walmart or Autozone marine/deep cycle. I have used both with good success.
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Old 04-27-2016, 06:18 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thetravelkids View Post
...... I continue to be both confused and frustrated!

Don't worry...$100 is not worth being frustrated over....just get one of the ones previously mentioned.

Very few batteries die from defects....it is the care you give them that largely determines their lifespan. Get the one from Walmart and then you know it will be easy to find another Walmart should you need a replacement.
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Old 04-28-2016, 01:01 AM   #11
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[QUOTE=thetravelkids;3043024]
dix39.....appreciate your comment. You say you are satisfied with your Group 27 battery, so what brand is it? Any yep, you are correct, Johnson Controls manufactures the Wal-Mart brand. Can't say that is good or bad.

I'm sorry. Both the RV battery and trolling motor batteries mentioned are from Walmart. The current RV battery is the most recent of several I've bought from Walmart.

Good luck with your purchase.

Steve
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Old 04-28-2016, 07:32 AM   #12
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I've use the Johnson Controls MAXX Walmart batteries in almost everything that needs one and have only had a single premature failure in one truck - and within their full replacement warranty period. The replacement was still in the truck several years later when traded The last 5er had a Gr 29 that was 4 years old when traded. The current 5er has a 1+ year old version that is going strong. I've had more unfortunate battery failures with Interstates then all the rest added together. But as said above, a hundred bucks every 2-3 years for a TT/5er battery is not a big deal vs a couple nights camping costs these days
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Old 05-02-2016, 11:00 AM   #13
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If you need a life line when your out just buy a cheap life line one to get you back up and running. Till you can get the one you want.
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Old 05-02-2016, 07:27 PM   #14
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I'm on day one of the Great Battery Box Replacement and Battery Upgrade Project.
I've opted for the WalMart Group 29 battery with its 2-year guarantee.
Of course, the battery box in our 2012 Element isn't large enough (has a group 27 now) for the Group 29 battery, so I bought a new battery box at Wally World today and have been fabricating a new place to mount the box.
Also have had to modify the new box to accept the crazy battery venting setup that Evergreen has.
Tomorrow I plan on finishing mounting the new box and getting all the new hardware I want / need. I also have to remount the battery disconnect switch I have to the top of the new battery box.
With a little luck, the new battery will be installed on Wednesday. Or Thursday. Friday at the latest.
Why is everything so damn difficult?
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