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Old 03-16-2009, 03:13 PM   #1
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Batteries - Best bang for your buck

I might possibly have to replace the batteries, both storage and the starting, on my rig. What batteries give you the best bang, in terms of Amp/h, overall life, maintenance, $$, road service (or service locally)?

I am thinking about putting the same battery in all three positions, but I am open to putting a couple of golf car batteries in the storage positions. I would really like to get batteries like Optimas, so I don't have to fool with fluid levels.

I am going to see if there is any warranty on the three batteries I have, but since I didn't purchase them, I doubt I am going to have any luck there (they are AutoZone batteries).


1995 Vectra, 34RA, F460, Banks, Blah, Blah, Blah
2001 Jeep Cherokee, 2dr, Toad
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Old 03-16-2009, 03:39 PM   #2
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Trojans seem to be the most popular and best conventional 6 Volt house batteries. They now make a 6 volt deep cycle gel battery. http://www.ebatteriestogo.com/Trojan_RV_Batteries.htm

I believe I used the T145 six volt batteries in my MH. I see they now make a T145 Plus. Don't know what the difference is. I would love to try those 6 volt gel batteries next time but they are $299 each and don't seem to have the ratings of a acid battery.

As far as the motor batteries I use NAPA 12 volt batteries and bought the same model battery that goes in the toad so I have three batteries all the same. If the toad goes bad I can take one out of the MH. There are NAPA and Sears all over the USA so that is worth considering.

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Old 03-16-2009, 04:25 PM   #3
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I just replaced my Chassis battery with the Optima AGM Red Top, and the house batteries with the Optima AGM Blue Tops. I purchased them at Costco due to price and their no questions warranty. I am extremely pleased with them and wish I had made the conversion sooner.
Wayne & Roberta and Maggie the Miracle Dog
08 Winnebago Destination 39W Gas UFO Workhorse Chassis
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Old 03-16-2009, 04:41 PM   #4
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My problem with the Optima's, like the Trojan gel cells, is the lack of energy. If you look at the Optima site: http://www.optimabatteries.com/optim...ical_specs.php you could get one Trojan 12v battery that has the same capacity as 2 Optimas. Believe me, I love Optimas, I have them in all my other vehicles.

To Mike's point, you could get 2 12v Trojans that would give you the same output as 2 6v Trojans, for the same price. (2-12v add the a/h, 2-6v average the a/h)

I reading someplace else that Sam's club has some good golf cart batteries for around $60 (?).
1995 Vectra, 34RA, F460, Banks, Blah, Blah, Blah
2001 Jeep Cherokee, 2dr, Toad
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Old 03-16-2009, 04:56 PM   #5
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If you look at the Interstate battery site: http://www.interstatebatteries.com/c...o/marine_f.asp
it doesn't look like the Optima is too far off from the other batteries.

Wayne, do you know what model blue top they sale at Costco? The D31 seems to be better than the 34's and the 27 is inbetween them.
1995 Vectra, 34RA, F460, Banks, Blah, Blah, Blah
2001 Jeep Cherokee, 2dr, Toad
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:20 PM   #6
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I don't know about the Optima but the size could kinda tell ya what would fit or do like I did and modify the holder to hold bigger batteries. Mine was set up from factory with one 24 or 27 series battery for the coach and one 24 or 27 series for the engine. I wanted more battery power so I transplanted the engine battery to a seperate box and the top was metal and with 29's or 31's or the t207's i think that was the number they were much taller than the 27 series and so I had some banging to get the metal to allow me the larger batteries in that box. They together put out as much amps but in a 12 volt on both batteries. So far two years later i haven't had to add any water to any of the battery's. As for the brand , I used wally worlds best. Not to cheap but the last 29 we had lasted 7 years of dry camping and travel and parked so no complaints from them but have heard that others have had issues with them. Can't say what was there issues but i have had these 2 years now and no issues yet.
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:39 PM   #7
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I just came home from Sam's Club, and the golf cart 6 volt batteries were $76 apiece. Be care ful as they also had 8 volt batteries right next to them. 3 caps vs. 4 caps. 2 volts per cap.
2001 32-V Suncruiser,Ford V-10, 310 HP, 4 Koni FSD's, KVH Tracvision,trickle charge, awning travel lock, 1 dinning room slide; no roof leaks, 03malibu toad sometimes, Blackhawk all terrain towbar, Roadmaster brake Pro,1 wife,1 westy, life is good!
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Old 03-16-2009, 08:23 PM   #8
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For "House" batteries, Golf Car batteries (a pair or pairs of six volt batteries) from Sam's or Costco (I like Costco better myself but price 'em both) are enough less expensive that even if you have to buy a membership it's still a good deal In any case this type of battery (Six volt flooded wet cell Golf Car type) is the best "Bang for your buck" in the house battery side of things

For the starting battery(ies) I would not hesitate to recommend the Costco batteries either... Sams.. are made by the same company.. but .. Well.. I'm just not sure

I mean GM makes Cadillac and Chevrolet.... Does Johnson Controls do that too?
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business.
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Old 03-16-2009, 11:01 PM   #9
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my house batteries are 2 each 6v. gpl-6ct lifeline agm batteries connected in series mounted on their sides. 2 300 ah batteries fit my box in this manner.
lifeline is the only manufacturer of batteries in this size.
my house battery capacity increased from 200 to 300 ah. those puppies are expensive but should last about 10 years if not deep cycled. deep cycling is using more than half of their capacity before recharging.
i got them from bd batteries online.
my starting battery is a sears platinum 12v agm battery.
agm batteries do not require venting and you can mount them upside down if you want to without any spilling issues.
:(i used to have all this info and more in my signature box.
:( that disappeared recently.
01 WINNEBAGO 35U W20.8.1L SW Wa, Hi. Good Sam, SKP. AMSOIL fluids. BANKS ecm program. SCAN GAUGE II w/ Ally temp. 2 LIFELINE GPL-6CT AGM Batts on their sides. TST tptts. K&N panel air filter. AERO mufflers. TAYLOR plug wires. ULTRA POWER track bar. KONI fsd shocks, toad '14 smart car
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Old 03-17-2009, 03:12 AM   #10
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You are going to have to do a lot of home work to determine the right battery for the intended purpose, frequency, maintenance and cost effectiveness for your particular situation. For one person a particular kind of battery is better than another person that uses them differently. Are you going to do a lot of boon docking? Be always plugged in, or a mixture of both? Here are some links that will help get you started.
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Old 03-17-2009, 08:05 AM   #11
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I just bought some http://www.eastpenn-deka.com/ Decka AGM 6 volt after talking to a user who stays plugged in 24/7 like me and is over 7 years and counting with no corrosion. We just had our battery rack rebuilt and replaced the pull out guides a few years ago. We do very little dry camping so it is ideal for us. They are 180 amp hours each and we have 4.
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Old 03-17-2009, 12:53 PM   #12
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I agree with RV Wizard, the type and amount of use you intend for the House batteries, will play a big part in selecting how many, and the type purchased. If you never use them, why purchase premium batteries. On the other hand, lots boondocking may require a different quality and number of batteries. For my use, I am trying out two of the Costco 6 volt golf cart type. Thier cost is approx 1/2 of a premium 6 volt battery, such as a Trojan T-105. My use is primarily for the TV, water pump, and lighting while boondocking.

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Old 03-17-2009, 04:42 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by dieselclacker View Post
My use is primarily for the TV, water pump, and lighting while boondocking.
These are our primary uses and this represents about half of our camping days, although I usually fire up the generator everyday to make a pot of coffee and/or run the microwave.

1995 Vectra, 34RA, F460, Banks, Blah, Blah, Blah
2001 Jeep Cherokee, 2dr, Toad
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