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Which Brand of Battery is Best


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I am in need of replacing my battery. The last one I bought was a Duralast Gold AGM from Auto Zone. It is not quite a year old and won't hold a charge. I called to check on warranty and only 3 month. Just curious what other members are using and how long they last.

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Only three months wouldn't wash over here. Here, things have to be fit for purpose and give reasonable life.. manufacturers can't get out of it by imposing a short warranty. I'm surprised they can get away with that.

I don't know whether they make small batteries, but I have Trojan batteries in my off grid home.. they are absolutely amazing.. Really good performance, good durability, long lived..  Check Trojan.. American company.

And as for agm, flooded or lithium.. old fashioned lead acid flooded are known to be the most tolerant of cold, heat, over and undercharging, followed by agm then lithium last. Agm and lithium can stand vibration, and lithium they say holds more power, but that's only true until the first time it's flattened too far, or over charged slightly, or gets too cold.

Lead batteries are also the most recyclable.. if that's any consideration..

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Lead acid batteries do  not like to be discharged beyond half their capacity before they begin to degrade.  "Deep cycle"  batteries are more tolerant of draw down  beyond half but even  they begin to  lose capacity much faster the deeper they are pulled  down. Lithium  batteries can be drawn down to  nearly their full capacity  without  similar degradation, but they are not as tolerant of the cold.  They can be left sitting at less than full charge without degradation but they cost a lot more than  lead acid  of the same capacity rating .   Lead acid batteries need to  be fully recharged after use or they begin to sulfate up and lose capacity rapidly. What kills most ATV / UTV batteries is letting them sit partially discharged , or  unused for long periods unused.  If you want  long service life out of lead acid batteries , they need to be kept on a  maintainer when  not in use.   Newer cars and recreation vehicles are pretty much all electronically controlled and their computers draw a small constant current  whether in use or not so  they increase the discharge rate when the vehicle is idle.  There's nothing wrong with Duralast batteries. Like all  lead acid batteries they must be kept  fully charged on a maintainer if you want long service life from them. Leave them  partially discharged  or idle for months and you will be lucky to  get a year or two out of one .. Keep them  on a maintainer and you can expect several  years use. If it uses a lead acid battery , get a maintainer for it if you want it to  last,  whether it is a big name brand battery or some generic brand, and whether it is in a car, truck  yard maintenance machine or recreation vehicle.

 

 

Edited by davefrombc
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None of the battery types like sitting flat. They all need to be recharged fully after every discharge if you want them to last.

Lithium does produce usable power down to a lower state of charge than lead, but then they just need more charging to get them back up again.. Handy I suppose if you run out of fuel or flood your bike and have to crank for an age to get it started, but for the money, and their dislike of low temperatures, and general frailty if you do take them below eighty percent discharged, I prefer lead.. It's the robust one that can take the abuse.. it's proven.

Lithium is a dirty material, environmentally unfriendly, and best left to light weight applications in my opinion. Phones, laptops etc...

Flooded lead are the most tolerant of abuse, then AGM, then gel, and lithium are really quite fussy despite their seeming advantages. The literature is all out there.. I've been living off grid for four decades and have a lot of experience with batteries..

Oh, and lithium, start fires and can't be put out.. 

 

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Lithium ion batteries are prone to  fires if overcharged. shorted or if they get wet.  LiFePo are much less prone to  fires.  Lithium  fires CAN be put out, but like  phosphorus and sodium  fires,  you can't use water to do it .. It takes foam  or dry chemicals and lastly Lithium batteries can be recycled.  Yes,  lithium  mining is dirty, but so is mining for any mineral/ metal. All mining causes environmental damage  in the mined area and too often downstream  of the mine when environmental protection practices are absent or inadequate.  Lead pollution is  a far bigger problem  than  lithium use poses.

Lithium  battery technology has improved a lot since the first ones were introduced, and  very likely more can be done with them. There are also  stories of development of other "exotic" battery technology in the works..

With all that being said, in my opinion  SLA batteries  are still the best choice  for our fossil fueled  mobile toys when price, capacity and performance are all taken  into  account.  Keep  them charged and on a maintainer when they are idle and you will get long service life out of them . Let them sit flat  or idle for  a long time and they will deteriorate rapidly or end up  seriously sulfated and prone to shorting out when you try to desulfate them.

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Yeah ok.. I was generalizing about the fires not being able to be put out..  They are much harder to put out. Almost impossible if they are big batteries such as we have in electric vehicles or houses. Recycling.. I don't think that's common yet, not here at least. Lead is easy to recycle and is going on all over the world.

Lead batteries are just so robust, they can handle misuse so much better, with far less risk of disaster.

In the alternative living world, for off grid power supplies, lithium is being sold by idiots that cant interpret graphs or manufacturers data, with disastrous results. I suspect that their use in the auto industry as starter batteries is much the same.. We really don't need light weight batteries. We seldom need to take our batteries down to twenty percent charge. Charging regulation does go bad sometimes. Fires in batteries destroy entire vehicles.

 

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I doubt there is much use fro lithium batteries for starter batteries in  vehicles since weight is not really a problem there  and lead acid batteries serve the job very well.  The LiFePo batteries are seeing increasing use in RVs and other storage applications where large capacity in a smaller, lighter weight package is desirable.  The biggest  factor limiting their adoption so  far is their price.
The vehicle fires from lithium  batteries were mainly from the earlier lithium  ion  batteries, not the newer LiFePo ones. I don't know the safety data  on the newer ones.

Off grid systems  pose a lot of  different considerations from  RV ones.   The charge controllers available now for solar/ wind/  micro hydro systems are a lot more reliable and failsafe than  those in use a few years ago. They really shouldn't be a determining factor. Initial cost is likely still the biggest determining factor in newer installations although according to  the industry the lithium  should far outlast the lead acid ones.  I don't think there is enough long term data on that count to see if there is any real long term savings to lithium.

I do know the short days and weak  winter sun along with snow mean  systems that rely on solar and wind power need a lot more storage capacity and draw down  survivability than  in areas where short days and snow are not a factor.-

Edited by davefrombc
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Yeah I thought that might be the case..  I'd only been interested in the bigger storage batteries.

Nobody's said yet what the best brand is though..  Anyone ?

For house batteries, these trojans I have now are the best batteries I've had.. 

For cars and bikes(since trojan don't do them), I've always liked Yuasa batteries. I've seen them in cars years old, and they seem to do well in bikes and quads.

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Walmart Canada has batteries that fit most ATVs..  I'm  sure they do in the US also. Amazon  also lists a range of ATV batteries.   Just search on one for your ride.  Costco  likely does too.  Look at the user ratings  they list and the number of people who  commented and rated to see the average star rating.   As I said earlier in the thread, most of the batteries, whether they are a big name brand or a generic perform   about the same; and all need to be kept on a maintainer  when the ATV is idle for any length of time.  Get an SLA battery. . The cheaper flooded ones can leak with the shaking they get from ATV use.. The  AGM ones are more for use where they may be mounted in a non-upright position and are needlessly expensive. The SLA are leakproof, and maintenance free beyond keeping them  charged up . Beyond that  I cannot tell you which battery brand  is the  "Best" one.  You'll find nearly all ATV and utility batteries have a short warranty period  compared to  automotive ones.  The main reasons are the environment they are used in and so many do not keep them  charged  up when  not in use,  like the ride -on lawnmower parked and forgotten  at the end of the season  and expected to start and run  next spring for example. Get one  well rated by other buyers,  and the best price to you,  Keep  it charged up  with a maintainer and you should get years of service out of it.

It took  a friend of mine several  battery replacements before he took  the advice to  buy a good maintainer for his seasonally  used boat battery.  Buying one good maintainer is a lot better and cheaper in the long run than  buying several  batteries because they keep "Failing"

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batteries, like a lot of other things used to be a quality item.

Not so much anymore.

In my twenties I could expect a battery to last seven to ten yea

Now 7 months to two years, possibly three is about tops.

We've had battery production since before 1900 and people want me to believe the durability and quality just dropped as the technology allegedly went up.

 

that doesnt make any more sense than chomojo.

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Thanks for all the response all good advise. I have no problem finding one . I thought I was buying a good one when I got the duralast gold that is their best battery but didn't last a year , I also might add that this is the first AGM that I have bought, I did so because the AGM in my Jeep lasted 9 years, so I thought they were better. I think I will go back to SLA I seemed to have better luck with those.

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I think around here, in N.Z, most people would expect to get six years out of their battery. I've noticed before though that in some makes, the N.Z versions get bigger batteries and different charging systems than the Yanky versions..  That might be the explanation.. though, you guys also get harsher climatic conditions in places than we do, and sound like you park your bikes up for part of the year, which wouldn't often happen here. Cold is hard on batteries, and the cure for it, stronger acid, isn't conducive to long life either. Parking up without an occasional trickle charge isn't good for batteries either.

I've always wondered why we get bigger batteries.. Perhaps it's just better economics to replace small batteries if they are going to die anyway, so pragmatic to have small ones.. 

Haha..  Bad luck Randy..  Us Kiwis have got bigger ones  !!

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