Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 05-22-2016, 11:42 AM   #21
rjnye79's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: East Coast kid
Posts: 142
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: T444e
Rated Cap: 66
Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
I got 31's at Rural King for $75. Check and see if you have a RK nearby.
I'd say just grab one.
No RKs in Georgia... Tractor Supply?
rjnye79 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2016, 11:49 AM   #22
Bus Crazy
Scooternj's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: EHT New Jersey
Posts: 1,134
Year: 2003
Coachwork: AmTran
Chassis: International 3000RE
Engine: T444E/AT545
Rated Cap: 75
Originally Posted by rjnye79 View Post
No RKs in Georgia... Tractor Supply?
Tractor Supply, NAPA. Although I got my 8D at an independently owned truck place for around the same cost as some of the other places
Hey! That's not an RV, that's a school bus.
Well thank you for noticing, Captain Obvious

Captain Obvious on deviantArt
Scooternj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2016, 02:01 PM   #23
Bus Crazy
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Georgia
Posts: 1,828
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: IH
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 14
Not sure where in GA you are, but I'm not far from Athens and I picked up some Group 31's for about $80 each locally. Independent place, J&J battery I think is the name of it. They had less expensive options, but these were going in a truck with an ISX Cummins and I went with middle-of-the-road batteries.
Brad_SwiftFur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2016, 05:50 PM   #24
Bus Geek
EastCoastCB's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 19,873
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
Originally Posted by rjnye79 View Post
No RKs in Georgia... Tractor Supply?
For your purposes I'd shop around and find a sub-$100 g31 somewhere local.
Roll Your Own Build Thread
EastCoastCB is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2016, 09:32 PM   #25
Bus Crazy
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Winlcok, WA
Posts: 2,139
In the world of batteries, not all batteries are created equal.

In order to properly shop for the best value you need to make sure you are comparing apples to apples.

I have seen some Group 31 batteries that have a higher cold cranking amp rating than some 8D batteries I have seen.

For all practical purposes most school buses do not need much more than one Group 24 battery to get started if it has enough CCA's and the battery is fully charged.

School buses have large battery banks in order to never get a dead battery. During the winter with all of the lights, heaters, and blowers going even the largest alternators can not keep up with demand while the engine is at low idle--like it is at every pick up and/or drop off.

But for those of us who are repurposing a bus the odds are none of us will ever be driving one of these buses in the winter and stop with nine heaters/defrosters/blower fans running with the interior and exterior lights on while activating the crossover lights.

The best compromise would be to get one, or perhaps two, Group 31 batteries with the highest CCA rating.

If you are going to boondock you will need a battery bank to operate your 12-vdc house system which needs to be a totally separate system from the start batteries. For a house battery bank you will want deep cycle batteries that are built in a totally different fashion with different materials that do not lend themselves well to start batteries.

As to why you all of a sudden had a dead battery, a lot of things could have happened to your battery that run the gamut from it just chose this time to die or old age, a plate has become broken and shorted out the internals of the battery, or something has been inadvertently left on the last time you started the bus. One little dome light can suck an older battery down to the point where it won't resurrect in less than 48-hours.

I have had good luck with Interstate and Napa United batteries. My experience with Globe batteries have not been that great.

Since all lead acid batteries, regardless of the label, are made by one of three companies--Exide, Globe, and Interstate--it really doesn't make much difference whose battery you purchase. As long as you are comparing like CCA ratings you should be able to determine who has the best value for batteries this month.
cowlitzcoach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2016, 10:27 PM   #26
Bus Nut
GreyCoyote's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Danglebury, Tejas
Posts: 310
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: IH 3800
Engine: Navistar DT466E
Rated Cap: 72 passenger
I wanted to add something to Cowlitz's excellent post specifically for the DT466E owners out there.

Run dual batteries as a minimum, and three if you have room for them in the battery box. Why? Read on...

The reason lies in the FICM (fuel injection control module). Apparently a major cause of failure (second only to heat) is excessive current draw created by the dc-to-dc inverter in these units. The inverter always strives to put out 110 vdc. If you try to start a 466e with a weak battery (or a single battery), the inverter current draw can exceed the safe operating specs of the unit. (As input voltage drops, the inverter draws more and more current to compensate in an effort to keep 110 vdc at the output).

The long life solution is to keep the FICM input voltage over 12.1 volts even during cranking. Many times the only way to do this is with a second (or third) battery.

Having replaced two FICM's in a Ford F250, I can personally attest to this failure mode. Both times I had to service a FICM were the result of a low battery (or jump-start, same thing) on a hot day. As a result of this pocket-book lightening experience, I immediately put three new Group 31's into my 1999 BBird DT-466E when Imbought it, and have had pleasingly fast starts and smooth idles ever since.
"You can finally say you have enough horsepower when you leave two black streaks from corner to corner"
(Mark Donohue, famed TransAm driver)
GreyCoyote is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dead Battery whoops turf Electrical, Charging and Solar 31 07-22-2013 08:00 PM
DEAD BUS? TheRainbowBoxer Alternative Fuels | Electric, Propane, Wood Gasification, etc. 6 03-17-2012 03:26 PM
dead battery DDEC 6V91 frank-id Detroit Diesel Drivetrain 2 01-21-2012 07:37 AM
Main Battery - Starting Battery Group 31? 8D? Tone Conversion Tutorials and How-to's 5 04-16-2009 06:02 PM
Am I dead? temp Forum Admin | Account Help | Suggestion Box 1 06-20-2007 04:57 PM

» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:50 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.