OPTIMA Battery Experience

Submitted: Wednesday, May 26, 2004 at 23:42
ThreadID: 13199 Views:2079 Replies:7 FollowUps:8
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Evening All

Just came back from a two week trip from Melbourne to Dalhousie, accross the Simpson and return via Innamincka & Broken Hill.

IA couple of months ago my wet cell deep cycle battery had a cell 'collapse' after 3yrs and it was goodbye - to bad, so sad.

So I decided to go upmarket and get one of those you beaut, large capacity, sealed (no more wet cell leaking acid crap for me) big sucker batteries advertised in the 4WD mags as the best thing ever invented.

Ended up choosing an OPTIMA - $450.

Installed it and everything ship shape.

Depart for the Simpson at the end of April and all is still 'ship shape'. The Waeco is cooling and freezing as it should. Boy this is going to be one hell of a trip.

Get to Berri and stay at the 'Commissioner for War' relos, and she is showing them how good the Waeco is.

Oops! the frozen meat in the Freezer is starting to thaw. Bugger, must be tooooooo low, wind it up a notch.

Get to Clare the next day, Bloody hell, couldn't have turned it up enough. Alarm bells are starting to go off.

The Commissioner for War says later that day when turning on interior lights. Oh my! aren't these new fluros you went to all the trouble of putting in rather dim.

Well! the alarm bells fairly explode and a quick test with a $2 multi metre confirmed that the aforementioned 'mother' of a battery had dropped to 10V and wouldn't hold a charge for more than 5 minutes. This was Saturday night in the country.

Down to Adelaide next morning to Supa cheap in Elizabeth. They had an el cheapo wet cell deep cycle which I purchased, fitted and away we go.

That battery never missed a beat in 5000kms over some of the worst roads and conditions you will ever experience.

I reckon it will see me into my grave.

Now, this is the best part. I had to carry that mother of a OPTIMA (heavy as) for the rest of the trip to have a chance of being considered for warranty replacement. Sometimes moved it in and out of the vehicle three times a day.

Anyway, get back to Melbourne and return it to the supplier, who sends it off to his supplier.

RESULT: It was replaced with a comment passed down the line that should the replacement do the same, then there will be no more warranty as there is something wrong with the system it is attached to.

Bullcrap in the extremous. It is a Piranah system that has been fully tested.

One thing I will say is that the replacement was still in its imported shrink wrapping with OPTIMA literature enclosed along with some other accessories. The first one wasn't.

That may be a clue as to why it went 'fubar' as Truckster would say.

Now you can take or leave whatever you like from this experience, however I will say that this is the first time I have ever carried a multi metre, what for I don't know, but I do know I will be buying another one to keep in the 4WD permanently.

Regards

Ken Robinson
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Reply By: Willem - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 00:06

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 00:06
Hello Ken,

Glad to hear that you have had a positive result with the battery. There are too many products around these days which just don't seem to cut the mustard. Now that you have an extra battery hich one is going in to the Jeep?

Cheers
AnswerID: 60348

Reply By: Member - Pesty (SA) - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 08:53

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 08:53
Hi Ken Pesty of CLARE not sure why you went all the way to Elizabeth to get a battery, 10 min more driving and you could have been at the Optima Batt dealer, or could have bought batt at Clare?
You should make use of your EO freinds for local knowledge. Cheers mate I hope
all is alright now.
AnswerID: 60380

Follow Up By: Peter McGuckian - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:14

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:14
Perhaps the moral from this story should be use a standard cranking battery. I use an Exide Extreme as no 2 battery. Works fine with the waeco.

Peter
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Follow Up By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:42

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:42
Peter, same here mate. But I do use a Exide Orbital in my Ultimate and it's okay too.
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Follow Up By: Peter McGuckian - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:54

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:54
Roachie,

Our Ultimate still has the original battery - not had a geat deal of use though. Still seems to be OK. After persisting with deep cycles for two years in our old 60 series, I wouldn't touch one again. I was over at batemans bay a month ago and they too are now using Exide Extreme batteries with the new models. I guess an advantage of the Exide Orbital is that it is sealed. damn hard to top up the wet cell battery! I use a mirror to check the level. We head back to the bay tomorrow to pick the camper up after service. Just had the seats split for easier access to the storage areas and a service before our trip to Lawn Hill.

Peter
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Reply By: Michael - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:11

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:11
Hey Ken, For $450.00 i would expect the salesman who sold it to you come and kiss the battery goodnight, every night, during the warranty period. There is absolutely no way i would pay that much for a battery. I just buy Exide Extreme Batteries and hook them in Parallel for my Liemack 90 litre fridge, no solenoid, and change them every two years. I give the old ones to my mate for his electric fences and they last till i give him the next ones two years later. I just really cant see the value. Exide Extreme from ARB $140 ea. With a few tears and damp handkerchief, you will get them for $120 ea. Michael.
AnswerID: 60409

Follow Up By: Member - Ken - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 13:33

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 13:33
Michael

You are preaching to the NOW converted.

As I said above, I reckon that bleep y old wet cell deep cycle will go for ever, and when it does go, I do believe I will be taking your and others advice and try something like an xide Extreme.

Thanks for the feedback. I have learnt my lesson.

Regards

Ken Robinson

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Follow Up By: paul - Friday, May 28, 2004 at 14:12

Friday, May 28, 2004 at 14:12
Hey Ken

I don't have it fixed in my wagon. When I do take it away i dump it in a drawer in the back and recharge it either by christie charger or solar panels.

When not in the wagon i use it on my line marker to mark my football field or to run the 3x Opus 2 mega flouros at night training so we can see the friggin ball on the other side of the field - this sort of use though only take it to about 50% empty.

paul

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Reply By: Member - Bradley- Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:30

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 11:30
I was told to stay clear of the optima batts last year by one of our distributors (r&j batteries) because of their poor warranty backup, and also the price, $ even at mates rates they are ridiculous.. Went with the Delkor marine batt and still smiling....
AnswerID: 60416

Follow Up By: Mrs Diamond - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 18:29

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 18:29
thats the way. i got a delcor from r&j $110 i think over 2 yrs old still going strong still being used as a cranking battery dosnt stop it.
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Follow Up By: Mrs Diamond - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 18:30

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 18:30
thats the way. i got a delcor from r&j $110 i think over 2 yrs old still going strong still being used as a cranking battery dosnt stop it.
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Reply By: paul - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 12:34

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 12:34
well on a positive note i bought my little 55amp yellow top Optima three years ago now and it still charges to 12.70v no problem every time no matter how deep it is discharged. but yeah, i am stunned by the failure, but there is no battery range that contains 100% good batteries, just some have higher failure rates than others.
AnswerID: 60425

Follow Up By: Member - Ken - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 13:46

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 13:46
Paul

Always good to hear something positive Paul.

However 0n a technical note, where have/do you locate your Optima battery within your vehicle.

Ken Robinson

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Reply By: Richard - Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 21:50

Thursday, May 27, 2004 at 21:50
Have to locate my second battery inside the vehicle and went for the Optima yellow top . Had to replace my yellow top after 2.5 years just out of warranty. Purchased a new one at the right price. Will give it one more try.
AnswerID: 60515

Reply By: daren - Saturday, May 29, 2004 at 23:48

Saturday, May 29, 2004 at 23:48
just a tip.
If you are going to buy an optima, get it from the inporter not from a dealer. I saved $100 on a yellow top.
Thanks
daren
AnswerID: 60838

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