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Old 04-09-2012, 03:07 AM   #1
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Lifeline Batteries

We have a '09 DS with the 400 Cummins engine. I would like to replace the Interstate batteries with LifeLine AGM type. Will the existing charger and solar charger work with AGM? Any inverter issues? Will I lose memory on the dash diagnostics or GPS? I know to shut everything down breaker wise and disconnect negative sides first. I am going to video as well. Any other special instructions or should I have this done at a dealer? Thank you...
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Old 04-09-2012, 04:25 AM   #2
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The only way to prevent memory loss is to supply 12V during the swap. There is a fitting that can be plugged into the OBD II port attached to a battery pack. Or you can keep a jumper attached. I am assuming you have one of the starter batteries?
I am using a 150AH Lifeline AGM battery for our trailer.
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Old 04-09-2012, 06:15 AM   #3
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When I change to AGM, Lifeline batteries, last year I had to adjust the setting in the charging system to match the charging requirements of the AGM batteries. In your charging system manual look to see if it indicates how to adjust your system to match the AGM requirements. The charging profile required for wet cell, gel and AGM batteries varies with each type.
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Old 04-09-2012, 06:46 AM   #4
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One of the more interesting things I have come across in my surfing of the web is the recommended re-charge rates for many different battery makes.

Most "automotive" type batteries recommend a maximum recharge rate in amps of around 30 percent of the 20 hour rate amp hour capacity. So a 100 amp hour Group 29 should suck about 30 amps.

LIFELINE recommends a MINIMUM of 30 percent.

That said your existing charger system should work, may need a slight voltage adjustment.

But a question.. less you have enough charger to force that higher charge rate.. WHY go with the most expensive, shortest lived class of battery.. I mean for RV use regular Maintenance free, which like AGM is a sealed, valve regulated, lead acide battery, costs less and generally lasts longer.

AGM's do have an advantage if you are goign to lay them on their side or somethign like that, so say in a 2-wheel electric scooter, Best battery made,, but how often do you lay your motor home on it's side? (No more than once, hopefully not that often).

I have tried AGM's. after I bought 'em I visited the web pages and found the estimated life (In discharge cycles) is lower than Maintenance free or flooded wet cells, the only thing worse is Gel, (Optima is roughly 2/3 of an AGM battery (the rest is empty air space). And true to the predictions, The AGM's I bought (MK brand) were the FIRST batteries to be replaced on my motor home.. In fact so far they are (Up to last December) the NEWEST batteries in the rig, and they are now the first ones to be replaced.

And that is fact.
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Old 04-09-2012, 08:00 AM   #5
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What is the name and price of a 6 volt deep cycle maintenance free battery?
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Old 04-09-2012, 09:37 AM   #6
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re: "What is the name and price of a 6 volt deep cycle maintenance free battery?"

For this question, the first problem is to define "deep cycle" in some way that is measurable and applicable to RV use. I've been looking for years for some measurement I can make on my batteries so I can categorize them into a 'deep cycle' pile and a 'not deep cycle' pile. I've seen a lot of marketing hype and spurious claims that don't stand scrutiny but have yet to find any useful measure.

Then there's the "6 volt" thing. Bank voltage does need to match system needs but battery voltage in banks of the size typically used in RV's is irrelevant. Most systems are for 12v with a few 24v out there. So it raises the question about what the "6 volt" is all about.

Finally, there's the "maintenance free" idea. In my experience, maintenance needs are insignificant if you have the proper battery bank support equipment and exercise due care in use and maintenance. If you find you need to do more than check electrolyte levels once or twice a year, your focus needs to be on how you treat your batteries rather than on a magic bullet battery that you hope will compensate for your poor usage practices.
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:48 PM   #7
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Harry: I switched my Dutch Star to Lifeline AGM 6-volts and love them. No more corrosion and longer life before recharge and quicker recharge.
No problems with charger/inverter just went to menu and changed charger from lead acid to AGM batteries. Installation tip, photo the cables and then remove them one terminal at a time and wire tie all the cables together and label which terminal. When you push them all back inside to remove the old batteries and install the new, the cables all run together and the cable ties will make it so much easier to get them back on the right terminal. You do not want to mix them up!
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Old 04-09-2012, 04:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadowcatche View Post
The only way to prevent memory loss is to supply 12V during the swap. There is a fitting that can be plugged into the OBD II port attached to a battery pack. Or you can keep a jumper attached. I am assuming you have one of the starter batteries?
I am using a 150AH Lifeline AGM battery for our trailer.
I've never seen and OBD II port on a diesel.
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Old 04-09-2012, 05:35 PM   #9
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Wayne, I take it you disconnected and removed all 4 batteries, then placed 4 new AGMs. Did you lose any memory on the dash or gps etc? Did you replaced the starter batteries to Lifeline AGM batteries as well? If you did, did you disconnect all 6 and replace or do the 4 house batteries, hook them up then the 2 starter batteries? I wonder if that would prevent losing memory. Thanks to everyone..
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Old 04-09-2012, 09:01 PM   #10
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What is the name and price of a 6 volt deep cycle maintenance free battery?
Well MK,, You likely know that I am one of the biggest pushers of the GC-2 Six Volt flooded wet cell.

What you may have overlooked is that I am one of the first to say there is no TECHINICAL adavntage to six volt pairs.. The reason I like them so much and the reason they are so popular is very simply COST. Due to the economics of manufacturing in very large numbers, and the very large numbers of golf cars using them. They cost less.

But there is nothing about them to make them preferable to a 12 volt deep cycle And I think Wal-mart actually sells one. Sealed Lead Acid, Maintenence free, Deep Cycle 12 volt.

Fact: A pair of GC-2's is 220-230 amp hours at 12 volt in series.
A pair of G-29's is around 200-210 That's very very close.
A pair fo G-31's, closer to 260.

So why are you insisting on six volt?
I mean if he's going to spring for AGM's. when he can get maintenance free for like 1/3 the price.. Who cares about the lower cost of Golf Car batteries?

By the way. Club Car uses 12 volt Deep Cycle in some of their rides.
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:41 AM   #11
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wa8yxm,
By no means am I stuck on 6 volt. Like the fact of no gassing batterys (mantenance free)but don't like the cost of the agm's.
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Old 04-10-2012, 11:51 AM   #12
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...there is no TECHINICAL adavntage to six volt pairs..
Well, not exactly true. A parallel wiring configuration allows the batteries to be parasitic on each other. Hence the lower charged battery will continually try to "charge" from the higher charged one(s). No two batteries are exactly alike (electrically and chemically). A series wiring configuration does not allow the batteries to be parasitic.

Hence, ideally, a SINGLE string of serially wired batteries would be optimal. A serial string also allows the replacement of a single battery in the chain without worry as to matching the other batteries. As soon as you place a parallel bank in the circuit you induce parasitic drains and eliminate replacement of a single battery as the entire bank must be replaced with the same batteries - all due to the parasitic and electrical matching aspects of a parallel arrangement.

Hence, a single 2 x 6v serial pair IS (significantly) technically better than a 2 x 12v parallel pair - and the amp/hr capacities will be about the same. I sure wish they made a 2V cell with a 600-800amp/hr capacity - 6 of those in series would be excellent.

BTW - AGMs require only periodic dusting to clean them. No corrosion issues at all. It is a pleasure to be able to actually use a feather duster to clean one's batteries.
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Old 04-10-2012, 12:49 PM   #13
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re: "Well, not exactly true. A parallel wiring configuration allows the batteries to be parasitic on each other. Hence the lower charged battery will continually try to "charge" from the higher charged one(s)."

yeah, not exactly true.

All cells in a battery bank, no matter how configured can be considered "parasitic" on each other. If we set aside the loaded terms and look at the situation, a different picture emerges.

The facts are that new batteries, old batteries, small batteries, and big batteries of the same sort all have the same voltage characteristics for state of charge. That means that parallel batteries in a bank will all share the same state of charge (they will self equalize, which series cells won't) and share the load and charging currents proportional to their capacity.

A good discussion of this is at Battery Reliability and how to Improve it - Bombshells and the Meaning of Life -- it disagrees with "ideally, a SINGLE string of serially wired batteries would be optimal" and explains why.

As for AGM's and no corrosion issues - that is true of all properly maintained batteries, even wet cells. Like other sealed, valve regulated, batteries, AGM's will tend to minimize outgassing (but guess what the trade-off is!) and that will help reduce potential corrosion but there is a reason that code requires a properly constructed and vented battery box even for AGM batteries.

Again, on the 'this is better than that' ... find me a good measure. I hear a whole lot of bull but I haven't yet found any pertinent measure nor even a good rationale that stands any scrutiny for such bald assertions of which is best.
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Old 04-10-2012, 04:27 PM   #14
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Harry: I took out all six batteries at the same time so I could refinish the slide drawer with a spray on truck bed liner finish. I put the two original engine batteries back in as they were already maintenance free and still good. I replaced the four six volts with the Lifeline AGM's and lost nothing but the radio presets in the whole ordeal and the batteries were out for a week while the tray finish cured. Now all I have to do is spray them off when I wash the coach and they look and perform great.
I got the best price direct from Lifeline in California and they shipped them to my door free. I sold the original lead acid batteries on Craigs List to a golf cart owner for $50. each.
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