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Old 12-23-2020, 01:14 PM   #1
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HDT batteries

I just picked up a Volvo 630 and I think it is going to need batteries soon. The truck has been sitting a few months.

Both the first time and second time I looked at the truck it did start right up. However I did check the battery voltage before starting it the second time I looked at it and it they were at 11.8v.

After we drove it home and the truck had run at least 3hr total I parked overnight and checked the batteries again. They were at 12.2v. I have not been able to check the date code one the batteries yet the way they are mounted.

Preparing for the need to replace the 4 group 31 batteries it currently has and I need some advice. I have true deep cycle AGM in my toy hauler and in the past I have always used true starting batteries in my vehicles. For this application could I consider using RV/Marine batteries?

There are times we would be using the truck as an independent RV and it would be nice to run some light loads for a bit and my CPAP overnight. Also I plan on running a heavy 12v power line between the truck and RV so that when we camp for a week or more I can use the RV solar to keep the truck batteries charged. Also in the spring/fall or stormy weather the truck could supplement the RV bank.

I know there might be a concern of the truck batteries getting too low to start the truck. Yes that is a risk, but a low one in this situation. The truck has an APU with a low voltage auto start, the RV has solar and a generator.

Thoughts on RV/Marine vs traditional starting batteries?
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Old 12-24-2020, 08:34 AM   #2
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I worked on trucks for 40 plus years, and we would put the "dual purpouse" batteries in for the guys that ran microwaves or electric heaters in the sleepers.

That's what I would recommend.
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Old 12-24-2020, 12:59 PM   #3
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I have confirmation from both East Penn (Duracell) and Trojan that their 6V GC and GP31 batteries perform equally well for deep cycle and starting applications.
With AGMs there is no difference in plate design (thick vs thin) like there is with flooded LA.
If you look at batty specs for AGM you will find both AH and CCA / MCA as they will fo both and are not a "compromise" like FLA dual purpose battys.
If you check AGM specs a pair of 6V GCs are roughly the same AH and CCA as a pair of 12V GP31s.
Take your pick based on what fits best.
Only advantage to the GP31s IMO is if one goes bad it can be disconnected and operate on one for emergency until both can be replaced. With 2 6V GCs you lose that ability... need to replace in pairs.

If you have any doubt about running battys down and not being able to start you might consider adding a 1-2-all-off switch and wiring so you could combine most of the time but run off only one when for o'nite "camping" and keep the other isolated for starting in the AM. This very common for boats when start & house functions use common batty banks.
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Old 12-25-2020, 11:20 AM   #4
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Thank you for the replies. I just did not want to get stuck with batteries that did not have enough CCA to start the big truck.

I guess like most things the newer trucks are much "easier" starting than the old ones.


Winemaker, am I reading right that is possible/practical to replace 4 12v batteries with 4 6v batteries and still have enough starting power?

As for the switch, in my application I am not worried about run down with the multiple charging and auto charge sources I have. Standalone it would make a lot of sense.
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Old 12-25-2020, 12:41 PM   #5
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Thank you for the replies. I just did not want to get stuck with batteries that did not have enough CCA to start the big truck.

I guess like most things the newer trucks are much "easier" starting than the old ones.


Winemaker, am I reading right that is possible/practical to replace 4 12v batteries with 4 6v batteries and still have enough starting power?

As for the switch, in my application I am not worried about run down with the multiple charging and auto charge sources I have. Standalone it would make a lot of sense.
Yes you can but just compare specs
Sams Club Duracell AGMs
4 - 6V GC = 380 AH (20 hR rate) and 1360 CCA

4 - GP31 = 420 Ah and 3200 CCA

While you can and they are fairly close I don't see an advantage with 4 6V GCs if you are comparing AGMs. GP 31s about the same for AH and beat the GCs for CCA.
Price identical at $179/ ea x 4
If one GCs go bad you need to drop a pair and run at 50% if a GP 31 goes bad you can drop one and still have 75%.

I'm planning on changing out 3 8D AGMs on my boat when they go and have decided to go w 6 GP31s... a pair for starting / thruster (hi amp load) and 4 for house (lo amp deep cycle application)
Many will claim 6V GC as only true deep cycle but they are talking or relating Flooded characteristics, which I agree with, but AGMs are a different animal and do not have different plate design between the 2 sizes like they do in FLA.
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Old 12-25-2020, 12:56 PM   #6
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Thank you.

I will likely stick with 12v then. I dont know that I need the true deep cycle for this application.
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Old 12-25-2020, 03:29 PM   #7
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Thank you.

I will likely stick with 12v then. I dont know that I need the true deep cycle for this application.
If you are still talking AGM the point is they are both deep cycle. No performance difference. Confirmed by both East Penn and Trojan.
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Old 12-25-2020, 04:49 PM   #8
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If you are still talking AGM the point is they are both deep cycle. No performance difference. Confirmed by both East Penn and Trojan.
Yes, I will be going with AGM. My RV has 6v AGM, 225ah deep cycles, they do not list a CCA at all on them. Looking at at the same brand they have 6v AGM 235ah batteries that show 1100 CCA, so 2200 CCA should work just fine.
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Old 12-25-2020, 06:38 PM   #9
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For the truck batteries, what I have done is to check the truck dealers to see who has the sale going this month. Someone will have a deal for the 900cca batteries for $80-90. In 6 years I have replaced ours twice.
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Old 12-25-2020, 07:03 PM   #10
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For the truck batteries, what I have done is to check the truck dealers to see who has the sale going this month. Someone will have a deal for the 900cca batteries for $80-90. In 6 years I have replaced ours twice.
That makes sense for straight starting batteries.

Are you using an inverter and running small to medium loads overnight with starting batteries?
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