How do you choose a new 130/135AH AGM Battery?

Submitted: Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 12:54
ThreadID: 136972 Views:1040 Replies:11 FollowUps:16
My current 130AH AGM has a resting charge of 12.51 after being on trickle charge for a week, reference to a few sites on the net would indicate that the battery is only running at about 70-75% of full charge. So with a trip away coming up it looks like a new battery is on the books.
A look on good old ebay shows quite a few 130/135AH batteries around $250-260 and anywhere up to $600+. They all look the same to me and without any having 2 and 3 yr reviews how do you know if they are any good?

So, how do you choose a good and fair priced new battery, thoughts and suggestions welcome.

Cheers, Simon.
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Reply By: Glenn C5 - Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 13:45

Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 13:45
Hi Simon . I have been using one of these for quite a few years and still going strong.
https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/ZAP-130AH-AGM-Battery-SLA-12-VOLT-12V-DEEP-CYCLE-DUAL-FRIDGE-SOLAR/182047316152?epid=1654179129&hash=item2a62dd98b8:g:QysAAOSwE9RbRVHR
AnswerID: 620105

Follow Up By: SKEB - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:36

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:36
Thanks Glenn,
Will have a look at them.
Cheers, Simon
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Follow Up By: Nomadic Navara - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 09:00

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 09:00
There are many members of other forums who deal with batteries who tell us that if you have enough material in a battery to deliver the required power that a 100 Ah battery will weigh 32 kg per 100 Ah. On that basis the battery advertised as 130 Ah is really a 100 Ah battery in an oversize case.
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Reply By: Member - Bigfish - Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 18:28

Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 18:28
I use Fullriver for their reliability and solid reputation. I also go by the guide of around 300grams in weight per 1 amp of battery. 100 amp battery , of good quality , would be around 30kg. 130 amp around 39kg. I,ve seen many batteries advertised as 130 amp and only weigh around the 30kg mark . Where they draw the extra 30amps from must be magic. Buy a Fullriver and you wont be disappointed.
AnswerID: 620107

Follow Up By: SKEB - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:37

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:37
Thanks Bigfish,
A mate has a couple of these and reckons there not bad as well. Ill add them to my short list.
Simon.
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Reply By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 19:32

Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 19:32
I've been happy with the SSB Dryfit AGMs.
Tvan has a 7 year old 130Ah in it - still going fine.
Caravan also has a 130Ah SSB - only a few years old
And I have installed a few under the bonnet on mates cars.\ and have a 105Ah now on mine.
They come with a 3 year warranty and rated for underbonnet use.
2012 Landcruiser 200 Altitude
2015 New Age MR16E Deluxe
2003 Tvan

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Follow Up By: SKEB - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:39

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:39
Thanks Phil,
A third to add to my short list, good to hear from people that actually have had them for some time.
Cheers, Simon.
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Reply By: qldcamper - Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 20:12

Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 20:12
how old is the battery and have you tried running your fridge off it to see how long it goes for, just because the battery doesn't have a resting voltage of a new battery doesn't mean it has no capacity, batteries do lose capacity with age and use but can still have a lot of life left.
AnswerID: 620111

Follow Up By: SKEB - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:44

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:44
Battery has just ticked over 3 yrs, when not in the car (connected via Projecta IDC25) it gets a periodic trickle charge at home. The fridge does run off it but I notice one day less running on our last trip away. My only concern is having it completely go whilst away and having to drink warm beer....
Cheers, Simon.
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Follow Up By: Nomadic Navara - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 09:26

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 09:26
Where batteries simply loose their capacity their terminal voltages do not change much. The loss of capacity happens because some of the plates simply fail to work, not because the whole of the plates change their characteristics. In the flooded batteries the active material actually fell off (that's the reason for the wells at the bottom of the battery.)

The effect is often described as having a square tank. shifting one wall across reduces the capacity of the tank However it does not change the height of the water (the height of the water is analogous to the battery voltage.) If a battery is loosing its ability to maintain regular voltage levels there are more problems than just simple loss of capacity.
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Follow Up By: SKEB - Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:04

Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:04
Thanks PeterD, the drop in static charge means the 130ah is really a 91ah if all goes well with the battery, but the back of mind says something else is wrong and maybe it doesn't have long to live...
Cheers , simon.
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Reply By: Notso - Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 22:38

Thursday, Jul 12, 2018 at 22:38
Have you checked the trickle charger? Might not be outputting enough to charge the battery.
AnswerID: 620113

Follow Up By: SKEB - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:46

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 08:46
That I haven't done....Interesting, I possibly made a big mistake by assuming it was working OK. Will check that out over the weekend before I spend any dollars.

Thanks.
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Follow Up By: Nomadic Navara - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 09:12

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 09:12
Only check battery performance after giving them a full charge first.
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Follow Up By: Notso - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 10:28

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 10:28
Yeah mate it should be floating somewhere around 13.8 volts whilst the charger is connected.
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Follow Up By: SKEB - Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:07

Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:07
Well checked the charger, does the job as it should but battery still showing a low static-resting charge, bugger must be the battery.
Oh well, time to review batteries , cost etc.
Simon.
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Reply By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 11:05

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 11:05
.
Simon, I just composed a long expression on testing the battery and endorsing what Qldcamper and PeterD said...... Then, dammitall, in the last moment I fumbled and lost it all.
I cannot bother with doing it all again so will just say that I usually choose "middle-of-the road" and suggest that the cheapest may not be good value and the dearest may provide longest performance and "bragging rights". Only you can weigh it up.

But one extra thing to bear in mind is freight costs. Include them in your assessment. Batteries are heavy things and you may well be better off to purchase from a local battery shop who will also dispose of your old battery.
Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: qldcamper - Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 09:01

Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 09:01
Agreed Allan, over my career batteries have been a necessary evil to deal with, and I have come to one very outstanding conclusion after having dealt with many different brands and types (remember the good old days when in automotive there was only one type, and specific gravity told the Real story to state of charge).

My conclusion is that price has pretty much nothing to do with battery quality, LUCK is what you need.

There are many different processes involved in making a battery and these days they are carried out by different companies and countries to produce one battery, there is no one quality control over the whole production.
If all these steps go perfectly and come together in one battery, you will get a brilliant battery regardless of the price, if something has gone slightly pair shaped on any of the steps you get a less than brilliant product, even with the most expensive battery on the automotive market.

Go with Allan's suggestion, Dollars wont guarantee a good battery, crossing your fingers might help more.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 11:16

Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 11:16
.
Yes Qldcamper, what you say applies to most manufactured products. A retailer selling at dirt-cheap prices is probably selling just that..... 'dirt'. Unless he is discounting a superseded model etc. But paying 3-times the price will not guarantee a product of 3-times the quality.

In general, a retailer wishing to stay long-term in business will not only source quality merchandise but will also provide long-term service. He relies upon referred and repeat sales for not only a reasonable income, but to stay in business.

A high-end provider may well do the same, but by hell, you will pay not only for the product, but also for his "Cost of Sales"....... advertising, fancy website and video promotions etc. And he will expect to make more than a reasonable profit from you.

Yep, if you want a cheap screwdriver, go to eBay and pay peanuts. But if it is a $200-plus product, the benefits of a well-established, ethical local retailer provides value. Annnd, you are spending within your community.... always a good thing.

I shop much as I drive........ middle of the road. lol

Cheers
Allan

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Follow Up By: SKEB - Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:10

Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:10
I agree Allan, I never get the cheapest or most expensive, always figure somewhere in between is a good compromise.
Will head this way with the battery as well.
Cheers, simon.
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Reply By: Batt's - Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 11:53

Friday, Jul 13, 2018 at 11:53
I'm no battery guru but my first thoughts are why just a trickle charge maybe it needs discharging and then a full recharge and get it load tested before you look at buying another one.

I have a 105 ah Giant battery from Aussie batteries it's around 4yrs old still ok they quite often have good sales on their batteries. I also have it wired up in parallel with a 105ah amp tech from Auto Barn. One thing I've been told is if you don't use it you'll loose it deep cycle batteries will apparently last longer from regular use. Mine gets used for a couple of days nearly every week I work out of town so I put the fridge on a day or 2 before I leave put food drinks in then turn it off when I get to the mining camp. I also have a solar panel on my canopy which keeps them topped up for the odd time I leave the fridge running for a week or two.
AnswerID: 620138

Reply By: 9900Eagle - Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 12:18

Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 12:18
Have and do have two of these 130a/h batteries from these people. Both batteries have been good and are now over 5 years old.

Have delt with this company quite a few times and have found them excellent.

Here is a link to their store, also the batteries are shipped for free.

autoelec link
AnswerID: 620158

Follow Up By: SKEB - Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:12

Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 18:12
Yeah I noticed these those, I have bought a lot of gear from them for various electrical jobs, will keep them on the short list.
Cheers, simon.
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Reply By: IvanTheTerrible - Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 13:21

Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 13:21
My battery died on the first night of a trip four years ago and the only replacement I could get was a cheap arse chinese no-name battery. Now I only expected it to last a year but no matter what I do to it it just keeps going.
AnswerID: 620159

Follow Up By: SKEB - Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 17:58

Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 17:58
I know what you mean, I've had that with some lights like that as we'll, just waiting for the cheapy to die but they won't.
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Reply By: ian.g - Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 16:09

Saturday, Jul 14, 2018 at 16:09
Have been using a Power Sonic 100a/h for nearly 7 years, appears to be a good battery but I suppose one day it will just up and die, don't know exactly how heavy it is but is heavy if I have to carry it too far. It doesn't live in the vehicle and only goes in when we are away and is charged by a Redarc DC charger. Only powers a 40 litre Engel fridge and a couple of Fluro camp lights.
AnswerID: 620160

Reply By: qldcamper - Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 07:34

Sunday, Jul 15, 2018 at 07:34
VIC offroad has them on special at the moment.
Not vouching for their quality but the price seems ok.
AnswerID: 620164

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