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Old 07-05-2010, 11:17 PM   #1
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Battery questions

i need to replace 6 6 volt batteries (which equals 3 12 volt batteries) for my coach batteries. in the past local suppliers have used interstate but they seem to have fallen out of favor allegedly due to warranty support issues. Centenial maintenace free can be had for approximately the same price. am i missing something? it seems too good to be true that i can get the same capabilities for the same price and have it be maintenance free?? any thoughts?

second issue how to hook up the batteries. i've been told that the way my 2004 Alpine's coach batteries were wired use of my batteries wasn't optimized in that coach leads from the positive and negative posts weren't from the far corners of the 3 batteries?? it's also been suggested to treat the 3 serially wired battery pairs totally separately by running individual cables from each pair to the coach's pos and neg connection?? advice??
thank you for any thoughts,
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Old 07-06-2010, 04:07 AM   #2
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hello dick skeers and welcome to iRV2.com. We are glad to have you join us here and we look forward to reading of your adventures and experiences. I am sure you will enjoy the website and forums.
Here are some links to help you with your battery questions but you get what you pay for most of the time.
http://www.usbattery.com
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) - DC Battery Specialists
Deep Cycle Battery FAQ
http://www.rvsolarelectric.com/sources.htm
http://www.batteryfaq.org

Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 07-06-2010, 09:46 AM   #3
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You could go to Sam's or Costco.. The batteries are made by Johnson Controls (One of the companies that makes Interstates) and many forum members have had good results.

Warranties may be shorter.. but odds are fairly good that if it lasts 90 days it will last years.. and the Uniform Commercial Code applies to all sales unless you sign a waiver of rights.
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Old 07-06-2010, 11:41 AM   #4
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interesting how these questions keep getting pasted URL's for information way beyond the question ...

Your local retailers, folks who sell a lot of batteries to folks who use them like you, are a good resource. They are the ones you need to stand behind their product.

Both Costco and Sams have good reps for standing behind what they sell. Costco seems especially up on this.

As for brand name, voltage, and such other things that keep people in these discussions frothing, they are minor issues.

Quote:
odds are fairly good that if it lasts 90 days it will last years.
This is because the key issue in how satisfactory a service you get from your batteries is how you use and maintain them. If you don't get satisfactory service from your batteries, your efforts are better directed at your charging and maintenance equipment and use patterns rather than the stuff you'll usually find in those URL's that seem to be a knee jerk response to any battery question.
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Old 07-07-2010, 07:22 AM   #5
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"Maintenance Free" doesn't mean much - just that the caps are sealed. It does not they are an AGM or Gel type. You can be pretty sure they are not either of thse if the price is the same as the Interstate 6V's.

I would not be concerned about the warranty on an Interstate 6v. I suspect the dealer's issue is that Interstate is slow to reimburse the dealer, but warranty claims on 6v batteries have to be rarer than hens teeth.
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Old 07-07-2010, 09:15 AM   #6
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re: "warranty claims on 6v batteries have to be rarer than hens teeth." -- no different than any other batteries. Don't fall for the 6v being special somehow or the true deep cycle myths.

re " "Maintenance Free" doesn't mean much" -- what it means is that the battery is built to reduce gassing (often means calcium rather than antimony in the plates). You may get a bit less life for a bit more convenience.

When it come to batteries, look for things you can actually measure that relate to what you want to do. Watch out for myths and folks who know a lot of things that just aren't so.
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Old 07-08-2010, 02:01 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dick skeers View Post
i need to replace 6 6 volt batteries (which equals 3 12 volt batteries) for my coach batteries. in the past local suppliers have used interstate but they seem to have fallen out of favor allegedly due to warranty support issues. Centenial maintenace free can be had for approximately the same price. am i missing something? it seems too good to be true that i can get the same capabilities for the same price and have it be maintenance free?? any thoughts?

second issue how to hook up the batteries. i've been told that the way my 2004 Alpine's coach batteries were wired use of my batteries wasn't optimized in that coach leads from the positive and negative posts weren't from the far corners of the 3 batteries?? it's also been suggested to treat the 3 serially wired battery pairs totally separately by running individual cables from each pair to the coach's pos and neg connection?? advice??
thank you for any thoughts,
i like my lifeline 6v agm batteries. check my previous post for pics.
check this site out for answers to your hookup question:
SmartGauge Electronics - Interconnecting multiple batteries to form one larger bank
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Old 07-08-2010, 08:14 AM   #8
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thank each of you for your responses. i'm leaning towards Trojan brand and have come to believe that "maintenance free" are about the same as regular except that they are largely sealed but can still be boiled dry without the user's knowledge or a means to refill. and to my second question, i gather based on the informative link to "SmartGuage" even thou their example is for parallel, i think that the point is u don't want the electricity to have to travel thru any more other batteries than necessary. therefore, unless someone advises differently, i'm going to hook each of my 3 pairs separately. thanks again.
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Old 07-08-2010, 10:23 PM   #9
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althou confusing, i'm glad i asked the questions and have a much better understanding, especially after reading the "SmartGages" on line info. i've agreed to purchase Centennial 6 v batteries with 220 amp hours for $88 ea, installed and will use SmartGages method 3. the only "difference is that my negative is wired into one of my starting batteries instead of directly. i assume that this is to facilitate the "crossover" engine starting application.
Thanks to all of you again, Dick
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