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Old 05-04-2020, 03:13 PM   #1
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Battery question

Hi folks, Due to some health reasons this is my first post in almost 2 years. I've not had the motorhome on the highway since returning home in August 2018. I hope to get out again by mid June.

While in the process of removing batteries to get them cleaned up, one of the posts snapped off as I was removing the nut. I'm now in the search for four new batteries. The existing are only 4 years old. Got them at a Costco in St Louis during our summer trip in 2016. I've not had any issue with them.

But, I now read horrible reviews about them on Costco site. I also cannot confirm the ones sold at Costco are the same quality as those sold at other dealers. At Costco, a GC2 is less than $100. It is rated at 210 AH At a dealer, a GC2 is $160. It is rated at 225 AH

Comments please.
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Old 05-04-2020, 03:41 PM   #2
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Very few folks posts reviews that they are happy with their batteries, its mostly bad reviews.

For the millions of GC2 batteries sold by the big box Clubs, you can expect some bad reviews. People abuse batteries all of the time and then blame the battery.

I have used Sams Club batteries since 2003, in 2 different boats and my motorhome. I still have a 4 year old pair in my shed that are looking for a home.

I always got the life, I expected, out of them. The don't fit in My new MH, but Sams Club GP31s are in it now.
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Old 05-04-2020, 04:30 PM   #3
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As you've determined, the GC2 sold at Costco is not the same as the GC2 sold by Interstate which is the "GC2 Extreme".
In addition to the lower amp hour rating, the Costco GC2 has a reserve capacity that is 1/4 of the GC extreme (105 vs. 447), and is 4 pounds lighter.

I can only speak to the GC2 Extreme, but I've had a good experience with them.
All at the 2 1/2 year mark, all 8 batteries are very consistent in specific gravity readings across the 24 cells, and the last rundown test I performed showed they still had 85% of their capacity remaining.
They did inadvertently get run down to completely dead one time, but they came back without issues (so far).

In line with Twinboat, I wouldn't be concerned with buying batteries from Costco if the specs matched what I was looking for, but in this case, budget permitting, you might want to look for batteries with better specs.
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Old 05-04-2020, 05:04 PM   #4
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I'm in the process of a long term test of 6 , G-2 batteries purchased at Costco; currently year 2 of the test.

Why 6 you say ... I have a 36 volt golf cart that I store at my Snowbird RV park, that's part of the story.
With temps in the area ( and inside the storage unit ; no insulation metal roof building ) going to 125+ for weeks in summer , I figure ; that's no place to store a battery ; I remove them from the cart and transport them home with me . 4 on the battery tray and 2 in the basement , the 4 in the coach are on the converter float charge and the 2 from the basement are in the garage on a trickle charge.
Previously ; 5 years ago; I'd installed 6 new Trojan 105 batteries in the cart and at the end of 5 years ( stored on the cart mind you ) only two tested usable. Those have been going back in the coach while the 6 Costco batteries are in the cart , but on removal this year both tested bad; so if I do get south this coming Snowbird season alternate arrangements will have to be made .
I figured given the cost per year of the Trojan batteries that the Costco had to be worth a try.
That's where I'd leave the brand; and price ; of batteries to purchase in your hands, figure the cost over the number of years you hope to be using your RV , and go from there , unless the batteries from Costco fail this coming golf season while in the cart , I'm money ahead.
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Old 05-04-2020, 06:07 PM   #5
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Interstate batteries always seem to last 4-5 years at least, purchased at Costco or elsewhere. Costco probably sells many thousands of batteries with no issue, so a couple of complaints means nothing in the big picture to me.
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Old 05-04-2020, 06:14 PM   #6
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I had 6 Costco (Interstate) CG2s in my 5th wheel with a central watering system connected to a solar system and Magnum 2800 inverter/charger. They provided me excellent service for more than 4 years which for the price is all that I expected but they were still going strong when I sold the coach!

How can you go wrong with Costco....if there is a problem they will stand behind them, their return policy is second to none (Except TP right now ).

In our new Coach when we added solar and when we were setting up for off-grid we bit the bullet and went with LifePO4 at roughly 7X the cost of the Costco batteries and that being said......I would NEVER go back to LA or AGM batteries
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Old 05-04-2020, 06:15 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LakeKerrGuy View Post
one of the posts snapped off as I was removing the nut.
That can be repaired by a battery shop if there's enough of a nub left. I've had repair posts cast a number of times over the years. One can argue it's "not worth it" to extend the life of a well worn battery this way but if the batteries are still serviceable otherwise, I've found it "worth it". I recall it was around $10-$15 per post.

Quote:
I now read horrible reviews about them on Costco site.
2 years on my costco GC-2's, still test above rated capacity and have yet to add water. I'm "easy" on batteries but it sounds like you are too. You have to wonder why people replace their batteries and if they really know what they're doing, end up going through a few new sets and blame the batteries and post a bad review before they figure out they have a bad cable, charger or are just plain using them wrong. People aren't going to go back to update their review and admit they made a mistake.

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Old 05-04-2020, 10:32 PM   #8
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[QUOTEif there's enough of a nub left. [/QUOTE]

There is no nub. It is snapped flat. Depending on what the core charge is, I will consider keeping all four batteries. I wonder if it is possible to drill and tap to install a form of a post - just thinking out loud...

As for the reviews, I agree. many of the negative comments may have been due to battery misuse. But, there was almost a total lack of positive reviews. I just found it odd.

If my existing batteries are the same ones Costco is now selling, I'm good with using the same battery again. The price difference for 4 batteries is over $200. I can live with 15 Ah less per battery set.

I need to try to determine if what I purchased in 2016 is the same as they are now selling.

Last thought. I need to research reserve capacity. I noticed the very large difference between the Costco Interstate and the dealer Interstate reserve capacity. Yet the AH's are relativity close.
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Old 05-05-2020, 04:55 AM   #9
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If you have a Sam's Club nearby I'd check out their Duracell GCs.
I and others have had good luck with them and as far as I know they are still made by East Penn. They run around $90 ea.
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Old 05-05-2020, 12:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
As you've determined, the GC2 sold at Costco is not the same as the GC2 sold by Interstate which is the "GC2 Extreme".
In addition to the lower amp hour rating, the Costco GC2 has a reserve capacity that is 1/4 of the GC extreme (105 vs. 447), and is 4 pounds lighter.

Nothing unusual about this or unique to the Costco battery. There are two standard capacities for GC2 6v batteries - 210 Ah and 225 AH. The difference is simply the amount of lead inside and lead is what makes batteries expensive, so the 210 AH model will always be cheaper, regardless of the brand name on the outside. Interstate sells both a 210 AH and a 225 AH version.


I can't figure the low RC values on the Costco Interstates, cause it's listed as the same GC2_UTL model as other Interstates and the AH rating (an alternative measure to RC) is identical at 210. An RV of 105 would be low even for a plain old car battery, so something is hinky about the number in the Costco advertising.
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Old 05-05-2020, 02:07 PM   #11
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[QUOTE


I can't figure the low RC values on the Costco Interstates, cause it's listed as the same GC2_UTL model as other Interstates and the AH rating (an alternative measure to RC) is identical at 210. An RV of 105 would be low even for a plain old car battery, so something is hinky about the number in the Costco advertising.[/QUOTE]

That is what has me befuddled. Why the LARGE difference

Like I said, I need to determine if the batteries I purchased in 2016 are the same as those being sold today. If they are, "ve been living with it so I see no reason to change. (But, I'm going to check out the Duracell that someone mentioned is available at Sams because Sams is closer to me than Costco)
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Old 05-05-2020, 03:48 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Nothing unusual about this or unique to the Costco battery. There are two standard capacities for GC2 6v batteries - 210 Ah and 225 AH. The difference is simply the amount of lead inside and lead is what makes batteries expensive, so the 210 AH model will always be cheaper, regardless of the brand name on the outside. Interstate sells both a 210 AH and a 225 AH version.


I can't figure the low RC values on the Costco Interstates, cause it's listed as the same GC2_UTL model as other Interstates and the AH rating (an alternative measure to RC) is identical at 210. An RV of 105 would be low even for a plain old car battery, so something is hinky about the number in the Costco advertising.
Costco has been selling those for years with different labels - same SKU, but always the exact same amp hours and poor RC values printed right on the batteries. They used to be labeled Golf Cart batteries. As far as I can see, Interstate sells three GC2 batteries but none with those those RC specs even in their budget "M" line, so they do appear to be unique to Costco.
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Old 05-05-2020, 07:04 PM   #13
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If you have a Sam's Club nearby I'd check out their Duracell GCs.
I and others have had good luck with them and as far as I know they are still made by East Penn. They run around $90 ea.


What he said. Duracell-East Penn batteries are USA made in Pennsylvania. Very happy with them.
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Old 05-06-2020, 06:46 AM   #14
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[if there's enough of a nub left.]
There is no nub. It is snapped flat.
I would take it in anyway and see what they say. This isn't exactly a precision science and these guys do this kind of thing regularly. I would rather try and spend $15 to save $400 and even if you only get one more season out of them it's worth it (in my opinion).

Quote:
I wonder if it is possible to drill and tap to install a form of a post
Yes, but lead is very soft and isn't amenable to having threads cut in it. It will work but you wouldn't be able to put any amount of torque on the bolt you get in there before it strips. In industry (forklifts and such) terminations are sometimes welded but welding lead is tricky business especially in the close quarters of a busted off post in a plastic case. Before I'd try that I'd let the battery guys try and cast a post on first.

Quote:
I noticed the very large difference between the Costco Interstate and the dealer Interstate reserve capacity. Yet the AH's are relativity close.
Interesting. I never really pay attention to RC, just 20 hour rate. Not sure what's going on but the RC numbers on the costco site are absolutely wrong. They show a higher RC at 75A than 25A which is impossible. Plus, the Ah results don't work out, they're way off. The RC number for the 210Ah GC2 at the Interstate site does work out. Not a stretch to believe the guy doing the product page for costco effed it up and not many people know enough to proof this, so at the end of the day go with the OEM data and just disregard the vendor page.

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