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Old 07-11-2006, 10:35 PM   #1
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battery types

besides the cranking amps, what is the difference in- regular batteries-deep cycle batteries?. i got a crown bus that uses 4 batteries and i see these terms. i dont have seperate batteries to run things on my bus but i do have a isolater. i might have to replace these batteries so i was wondering what would be best. thanks, battery illiterate.
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Old 07-11-2006, 11:41 PM   #2
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The biggest difference will be in how the plates are made. Starting batteries are designed to provide a short burst of LOTS of amps and have very thin, sponge-like plates to do this. Deep cycles are meant for just the opposite. They provide a relatively small amount of current for a long period of time. Basically, a starting battery is meant for that....starting....a deep cycle is meant to run things like a trolling motor, high end stereos, power inverters in our case, etc.

My advice...first of all, read Phrannie's Poop Sheets. There is A LOT of good info there. Second, replace your starting batteries with new starting batteries as that is what they are there for. The Everstart batteries are surprisingly good. They carry a fantastic warranty and are rated very high by consumer reports in terms of quality.

Use your isolator to keep another bank of deep cycle batteries seperate and use them for your inverters. My battery bank is just two 6 volt golf cart batteries wired in series to get 12 volts. They are only rated for 110 minutes at a 75 amp load or 137.5 amp hours which is relatively low in terms of big deep cycles, but I know for a fact they are every bit of that and I intend to add more. They were $55 each on sale at work and are just a rebadged Exide battery.
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Old 07-12-2006, 06:10 AM   #3
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My new favorite "house" batteries are regular 8D's. They are extremely heavy duty batteries and the interstate website states that they are built not only to start big trucks, but to allow the driver to run appliances and things all nite when he's not driving.

I do like the 6 volt golf cart batts too
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Old 07-12-2006, 10:43 AM   #4
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hey guys, thanks for the battery info. it was extreamly helpfull. it also explanes the settings on my new napa auto parts smart charger i got. it had - starting batteries / deep cycle, gel. i was like, what the heck ???? and i think i will try that interstate battery, sounds like just what i need for mine are not staying up even for a couple weeks. thanks john
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Old 07-12-2006, 06:39 PM   #5
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Just out of curiousity...how much was the charger? We sell one where I work for $60 I believe. It's Schumacher branded and is supposed to be fully automatic with settings for starting, AGM/Gels, and deep cycles like yours. I think the charging rates were 2, 6, 12, and some astronomically high cook-your-battery rate. It also has a battery condition checker and desulphater (sp?). Just curious what other places charge for a similar unit before I go and buy one from work.
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Old 07-12-2006, 10:25 PM   #6
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that high cook yoru battery rate is good for jump starting your bus. Is there any difference between putting a big 100 amp charger on your batteries or starting your bus when it's nearly dead and having your 160 amp alternator pounding current into the battery? IDK the answer....
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Old 07-13-2006, 12:02 AM   #7
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well experence 3, my new charger was 59.99 at napa. it has a 2 amp- 10 amp and a 50 amp boost on it. it could be made by shumacher, i dont know. its sold under the napa name. so were you work is close on the mark. even a cheap one that just charges was 40 bucks. but the one i bought has auto shut off and all that stuff. its pretty heavy duty unit in a fairly small package. i did by 2 shumacher 1.5 amp small battery charger/ large battery maintainer for my bus. which i mounted in the battery compartment. i bought 2 because my crown uses 4 batteries. these are run in sets of 2 at 12 volts. these were bought exclusively to use when the bus sits. i got one maintainer for each 2 sets of batteries which i checked on the ol volt meter and are shot. one reads 11 volts two of them are barely over 10 volts and one is 12. i have no idea how old they are because the school district didnt scratch off the date thing. they are 4 delco high cycle freedom batteries at 650 cca each. guess i better get to working over time
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Old 07-13-2006, 12:44 AM   #8
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That sounds like basically the same charger we have where I work. I'm thoroughly convinced that there are three companies that manufacture everything in the US and then there are just different labels slapped on it later

As for the alternator pounding your battery....I honestly don't know either, but I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that it doesn't pound the battery. Alternators are about the "smartest" charger out there. You'd have a hard time overcharging a battery with an alt since the sense voltage. That 160 amps or whatever will likely never hit your battery. Yes, it will put a charge to the battery, but only what it needs which might be for only the first minute it runs and then intermittently throughout driving. The only time I can see the battery getting pounded pretty bad is when you use the alternator to recharge a really dead battery after jumping. I always see a disclaimer on jumper cables, etc that say not to charge the battery with your alternator after jumping. They don't exactly explain how you should charge it then since if you had a charger and gennie handy you wouldn't be jumping in the first place....

I know for a fact that my truck with multipoint fuel injection will run just fine without a battery after starting. I may have had to do this before.... After starting the alternator provided all the current I could need to run the vehicle. I was just without something in the system to absorb any power spikes that might have occured. I know some offroad light manufacturers even recommend hooking the power wires for their products directly to the alternator to prevent pounding the battery.

Anyway...sorry for the long post. If anyone knows better than I, please set me straight.
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