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Chassis battery Replacement


Joelsheriff

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Posted (edited)

I Googled AGM vs Flooded cell and got this -

https://www.crownbattery.com/news/agm-vs-flooded-batteries-what-you-need-to-know

Not a black & white answer but it does spell out pros & cons.

My coach batts are flooded cells.  When we picked up the coach in Feb ALL the cells were dry as a bone.  Bummer, but now I keep a gallon of distilled water in the compartment and check them regularly.  I've had to top them off once (still above the plates but not by much).  They perform ok but when I arrive somewhere the coach goes into recharge mode. 

The chassis batts are AGMs.  So far no issues. 

On our Mini Cooper the computer had to be programmed when the AGM was replaced.  AGMs do charge differently than flooded.  Apparently they're a little more finickey but not as extreme as lithium ion.    From all the reading I've done I think I'd be happier with flooded cells and more money in my wallet but only if the recharging system is generic. 

Batteries Plus has additional perspective -

https://www.batteriesplus.com/blog/power/car-battery-types

If the system is designed for AGM then AGM should be the replacement (like the Mini).  And AGM has lower internal resistance, meaning more cranking power.  For a diesel that sounds great.  So maybe I wouldn't be happier with flooded cell for chassis batteries. 

My 2c, and probably not even worth that. 

- bob

Edited by cbr046
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My Monaco manual spells out the MINIMUM specs for the chassis battery. Installing a battery that does not meet minimum requirements often produces unwanted results. Below is the page from my manual. Remember Group 31 batteries ONLY refer to the SIZE of the battery, not it's output......hope this helps...Dennis

battery specs.jpg

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I just replaced all batteries on our 2008 Dynasty. ISL 425 HP. The commercial battery supplier I purchased from sells all kinds, types and brands so no sales pitch on any particular battery. My coach is in the heat of the southwest desert full time. According to the battery supplier the flooded batteries average life span here is 27 months. AGM's is 64 months. Lithium batteries are not popular here due to high heat in the summer and cold in the winter. I did the math and the AGM's all the way around made sense for me as if I miss/forget to check water level in the batteries, that will shorten battery life greatly. Since we dry camp in the middle of nowhere 90% of the time battery power is critical. Chassis batteries are 2 ea. Odyssey Extreme1150 CC @ 0 degrees AGM's and 4ea Life Line GPL-4DL for the house batteries. I went with 4ea big 12 volt over 8ea 6 volt as it was the same amp hours for less money. Higher initial cost but I am banking on the long haul overall cost in 6 years from now. Just my opion and everyone has different needs.

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Posted (edited)

Joel,

I view the switch to AGM for the chassis as a positive as they are maintenance-free. However, you must make sure that the battery(s) you decide on have equal or higher cranking amps compared to your flooded battery(s) to spin the engine on startup.

The only downside I see is that they will empty your wallet a little quicker.

My motorcycle uses AGM batteries.

Edited by Dr4Film
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I'm a retired mechanic, a long time RVer and I have extensive experience with batteries. I'm not a fan of AGM batteries  for RV applications. They work well in closed environments where fumes are a problem, in multiple positions and the are maintenance free. However they are expensive and usually don't provide as much cranking power as flooded batteries. You can also get a flooded chassis battery that is maintenance free. I recommend a good flooded lead acid battery, keep it fully charged as much as possible and try never to discharge it more than half way and you should get years of service from it. My chassis battery is 5 years old and still going strong. I have four 6 volt golf cart batteries for my coach, I dry camp some and I live in Nevada where they get both heat and cold and after 4 years they are still doing great.

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Project Farms.  I love this guy!  His name is Todd and he's like the Consumer Reports guy for guy-stuff.  Here's a video he did on car batteries (4 flooded vs 2 AGM).  Not only is he thorough without the use of a million dollar lab but also very informational.  And like CR he's not on the take.   Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h7rTcBanpMk

Keep in mind there's 3 battery manufacturers selling under the many brands we all know.  That doesn't mean all those brands are designed the same but quality control and base materials might be better at one plant than another. 

- bob

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I only go 10 years out of the chassis batteries (2 group 31 Interstates maintenance free) in our 04 dynasty... actually got another 3 years out of them in a 24V machine. No need for AGM chassis batteries.

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We like the AGM because they are main free.

Got 2 of the O'Reilly Group 31 SSB31 House Brand I believe (I did confirm they are made by East Pen battery company.

P/N AGM31T

$227 ea last  April 

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Posted (edited)

Friend just bought two group 31s for his Sig’s engine at ORiley for $127 each… maintenance free. Been using AGMs for the house but price of Lithium cells have come down enough to make them cheaper than AGMs if you build your own batteries plus probably 5X the cycles. I just finished building 600AH for $1200 including BMSs.

Edited by Ivylog
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The PO of my coach had AGMs put in when I bought it 3 years ago and I've been very pleased.  I really like not having to watch the water.  I know it's easy to watch, but with my work and just life in general I find it's one less thing for me to have to worry about.  

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1 hour ago, Steven P said:

The PO of my coach had AGMs put in when I bought it 3 years ago and I've been very pleased.  I really like not having to watch the water.  I know it's easy to watch, but with my work and just life in general I find it's one less thing for me to have to worry about.  

Plus you have a really nice looking, freshly painted battery tray! 😁

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It did clean up nicely. I repainted it with  bedliner spray paint. 

20210102_131834.jpg

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Our 2015 HR Ambassador came with Chassis AGM batteries.  Three years ago I changed out flooded type House Batteries over to AGM. 

Before changing over to AGM or Lithium or any change in battery type, first make sure your charging system and inverter can support your change.  Then you can decide on pros and cons.

Cons for changing to AGM from Flooded include:

Higher Price and Higher Weight

The Pros IMHO out weigh the cons.

Much easier to maintain - no fluid upkeep, no battery acid to contend with. they hold their charge much longer when dry camping, less use of generator to keep charged, charging system does not work as hard.

All battery systems require some maintenance such as checking battery hold downs and terminal tightness from road vibration, checking for terminal corrosion, checking for frayed wires and the like.

We have been using AGM batteries in our race cars and show cars for over 15 years simply for protection in the event of an accident, easy to charge and almost no maintenance.

Manufacturer and price vary.  What is good for me may not be right for you.  However, AGM batteries are and have been gaining popularity for years.  Good luck.

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1 hour ago, vegaman19760 said:

Our 2015 HR Ambassador came with Chassis AGM batteries.  Three years ago I changed out flooded type House Batteries over to AGM. 

Before changing over to AGM or Lithium or any change in battery type, first make sure your charging system and inverter can support your change.  Then you can decide on pros and cons.

Cons for changing to AGM from Flooded include:

Higher Price and Higher Weight

The Pros IMHO out weigh the cons.

Much easier to maintain - no fluid upkeep, no battery acid to contend with. they hold their charge much longer when dry camping, less use of generator to keep charged, charging system does not work as hard.

All battery systems require some maintenance such as checking battery hold downs and terminal tightness from road vibration, checking for terminal corrosion, checking for frayed wires and the like.

We have been using AGM batteries in our race cars and show cars for over 15 years simply for protection in the event of an accident, easy to charge and almost no maintenance.

Manufacturer and price vary.  What is good for me may not be right for you.  However, AGM batteries are and have been gaining popularity for years.  Good luck.

100% agree. The higher cost is a factor and may not be the right choice for everyone but for my application they are a great option. The attached You Tube is kind of interesting if one wants to spend 25 minutes on a video. You will never get the time back but the presentation is done well IMO.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9bAjvqym-s

 

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