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Old 10-11-2011, 20:12   #1
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House Battery Comparison

At present I have one bad 12 volt deep cycle battery for my house bank. This is on a 33' sailboat. I don't have room in the battery area or a bulge in my wallet big enough to install four 6V batteries as seems to be the most common setup. So, I'm considering two 12v deep cycle batteries wired parallel. I do have a seperate cranking battery. All batteries are located under the cockpit. I would like to keep them there.

Today I found a Trojan SCS225 for $190 and a Duracell at Sam's for $85. Both are group 29 and have almost the exact specs., with Duracell being slightly higher CCA. I looked at several other batteries but, these two stuck out mainly because of the price difference for the same specs. I know Trojans are reported to be very good but are they worth twice as much? Has anyone used the Durcell?

Are there any others I should consider?

I can fit two in my battery box with a slight modification. I would still have only 260 Ah at 12 volts. That will meet my needs for now.
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Old 10-11-2011, 20:20   #2
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Re: House battery comparison

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Originally Posted by wunderluster View Post
At present I have one bad 12 volt deep cycle battery for my house bank. This is on a 33' sailboat. I don't have room in the battery area or a bulge in my wallet big enough to install four 6V batteries as seems to be the most common setup. So, I'm considering two 12v deep cycle batteries wired parallel. I do have a seperate cranking battery. All batteries are located under the cockpit. I would like to keep them there.

Today I found a Trojan SCS225 for $190 and a Duracell at Sam's for $85. Both are group 29 and have almost the exact specs., with Duracell being slightly higher CCA. I looked at several other batteries but, these two stuck out mainly because of the price difference for the same specs. I know Trojans are reported to be very good but are they worth twice as much? Has anyone used the Durcell?

Are there any others I should consider?

I can fit two in my battery box with a slight modification. I would still have only 260 Ah at 12 volts. That will meet my needs for now.
2 questions?

1. Are these for deep cycle, meaning are they used for the house bank, where they will be discharged to 50% or more?

2. Do you know the difference between an SLA, and a House battery?

Lloyd
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Old 10-11-2011, 20:38   #3
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Re: House battery comparison

Quote:
Originally Posted by wunderluster View Post
At present I have one bad 12 volt deep cycle battery for my house bank. This is on a 33' sailboat. I don't have room in the battery area or a bulge in my wallet big enough to install four 6V batteries as seems to be the most common setup. So, I'm considering two 12v deep cycle batteries wired parallel. I do have a seperate cranking battery. All batteries are located under the cockpit. I would like to keep them there.

Today I found a Trojan SCS225 for $190 and a Duracell at Sam's for $85. Both are group 29 and have almost the exact specs., with Duracell being slightly higher CCA. I looked at several other batteries but, these two stuck out mainly because of the price difference for the same specs. I know Trojans are reported to be very good but are they worth twice as much? Has anyone used the Durcell?

Are there any others I should consider?

I can fit two in my battery box with a slight modification. I would still have only 260 Ah at 12 volts. That will meet my needs for now.

The Duracell deep cycle battery at Sam's, labeled as a group 29, is really a Deka/East Penn DC 31. This is the same exact battery they sell at West Marine as the Deep Cycle 105 for more than double the price @219.99. The only difference between the WM, NAPA & Sam's Deka deep cycle batts is the pricing and the sticker.

This Deka/East Penn venture is new for Sam's as they previously sold the Energizer batts which were made by Johnson Controls. The Duracell 29 has 105Ah, 650 CCA and 810 MCA. The SCS 225 is a 130Ah battery and is also a very good battery.

NAPA also sells the same Deka batts that WM & Sam's does but Sam's has the best price.. Both the Trojan and Deka/Duracell require watering/maintenance. If I absolutely need the extra 25Ah per battery, and a customer insists on Trojan, then I will pony up for the SCS-225 but otherwise the $85.00 Duracell/Deka's are a steal. I've installed lots of them since July.

The US Battery 31DCXC is also a very high quality 12V deep cycle WET battery packing 130Ah's in a group 31 case. Also a lot less money than Trojan..
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Old 10-11-2011, 21:27   #4
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Re: House battery comparison

i had a trojan scs225 as starting battery and four trojan t105 golf cart batteries as house bank on my csy 37 for about six years. i always took good care of them and they lasted as long as i might have expected but last year before going cruising i decided to replace them in the u.s.a. so i wouldn't have to replace them in the bahamas.

after checking prices i decided the trojans had simply become too expensive for my purposes. maybe if i was circling the globe, but not for just hopping across the gulf stream. so last spring i bought equivalent batteries at sam's club - a 12 volt deep cycle size 29 and four 6 volt golf cart batteries. i'll take just as good care of them as i did the trojans and let's see what happens.

by the way, these are all flooded wet cells, no agm's for me!
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Old 10-11-2011, 22:13   #5
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Re: House battery comparison

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Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post
The Duracell deep cycle battery at Sam's, labeled as a group 29, is really a Deka/East Penn DC 31. This is the same exact battery they sell at West Marine as the Deep Cycle 105 for more than double the price @219.99. The only difference between the WM, NAPA & Sam's Deka deep cycle batts is the pricing and the sticker.

This Deka/East Penn venture is new for Sam's as they previously sold the Energizer batts which were made by Johnson Controls. The Duracell 29 has 105Ah, 650 CCA and 810 MCA. The SCS 225 is a 130Ah battery and is also a very good battery.

NAPA also sells the same Deka batts that WM & Sam's does but Sam's has the best price.. Both the Trojan and Deka/Duracell require watering/maintenance. If I absolutely need the extra 25Ah per battery, and a customer insists on Trojan, then I will pony up for the SCS-225 but otherwise the $85.00 Duracell/Deka's are a steal. I've installed lots of them since July.

The US Battery 31DCXC is also a very high quality 12V deep cycle WET battery packing 130Ah's in a group 31 case. Also a lot less money than Trojan..
Main Sail,

I'm West Coast, and while we are seeing Deka starting to make a market penetration here..so far it's somewhat anemic.

But on more then one occasion I have searched the Deka site, and the only thing I can find that relates to warranty..is if ya don't do this or that it'll void the warranty.

Then next I find all the PR releases about how good the warranty is of this or that bat, but I still don't find an statement of warranty.

Do you know what is the warranty of the Deka brand bats, I'm assuming that each offering has it's own warranty..yet I can't find it.

Google Site Check

Lloyd
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Old 11-11-2011, 06:05   #6
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Re: House battery comparison

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Main Sail,

I'm West Coast, and while we are seeing Deka starting to make a market penetration here..so far it's somewhat anemic.

But on more then one occasion I have searched the Deka site, and the only thing I can find that relates to warranty..is if ya don't do this or that it'll void the warranty.

Then next I find all the PR releases about how good the warranty is of this or that bat, but I still don't find an statement of warranty.

Do you know what is the warranty of the Deka brand bats, I'm assuming that each offering has it's own warranty..yet I can't find it.

Google Site Check

Lloyd
Sam's Duracell/Deka (for MARINE USE) = 12 Month Free Replacement / 36 Month Pro-Rated

West Marine/Deka (for MARINE USE) = 12 Month Free Replacement / 36 Month Pro-Rated

Trojan (for MARINE USE) = 12 Month Free Replacement / No Pro-Rata Warranty

I have gone round and round with Trojan headquarters, and my Trojan distributor, on "marine" warranties on Trojan batteries and it is one of the reasons I avoid buying them unless I have to.

If I lie, and say they were being used in an RE application, I can get 24 months free replacement on T105's and 3 years pro-rated but I should not have to lie. As to the OP you can't lie on the SCS-225 as it is not warranted for use in RE applications so 12 months free replacement is the warranty on the SCS-225. The Sam's Club Duracell adds three years pro-rated after the 12 months free replacement, so technically, in the marine environment, it has a better warranty than the Trojan does.
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Old 11-11-2011, 06:12   #7
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Re: House Battery Comparison

Get Trojan, as it won't upset your charging system. (mixing batteries not a good idea) Shop around (best price usually from a golf cart companies).
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Old 11-11-2011, 06:31   #8
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Re: House Battery Comparison

Thanks for all the responses.

Maine Sail, Thanks for the very detailed and knowledgeable response. I will be going to Sam's today!

onestepcsy37, another CSY will have batteries from Sam's club.

To answer other questions: these will be the only batteries in the "house bank". So that bank will have all new, all the same, batteries.

I will keep the West Marine Dual purpose as the starting battery as long as it lasts.

I love this forum!
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Old 11-11-2011, 07:13   #9
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Re: House Battery Comparison

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I will keep the West Marine Dual purpose as the starting battery as long as it lasts.
I have a spring 2007 Deka/WM Dual Purpose battery (green WM label) on my bench right now for equalizing. The battery is still going strong, putting out more than "new" CCA capacity, 650 CCA rated and putting out 658 CCA as measured with the Argus 500 analyzer. This was the reading before equalization which I have not had a chance to perform yet.

It is not unusual for the Deka and many other brands to put out more CCA than rated for when new but at 5 years it is a little out of the ordinary. Specific Gravity was good and cell water was even across the cells. It also supports a carbon pile load test done to ABYC load test parameters and remains well within voltage range. The customer uses the boat almost every weekend and does a two week cruise each season. This is not an unusual finding for Deka batts but is somewhat odd to find on a Dual Purpose used incorrectly as a house battery..

Despite this battery being on a boat sailed off a mooring, incorrectly being used as a house battery, and only being charged by a 35A dumb regulated alternator the darn thing is still going at 5 years and is doing just fine. The owner does tend to motor a lot more than he sails so this may have helped his bank fend off sulfation.

According to the owner over the last five winters, since October 2007, the battery has been left on-board and charged up with a portable charger in the fall before covering the boat. Based on the current tests I suspect this customer may get 7 years or more from it, in spite of the "abuse" he's given it in an incorrect application for the battery. Of course it could fail in the spring as with batteries they can sometimes surprise you and all the testing in the world still can't predict outcomes....

This will be the first time this battery has been equalized and I am curious to see how it tests after equalization. I did print a test certificate at 658 CCA which I will compare the after equalization number to.

Ideally he should have two deep cycle batteries but he refuses to upgrade until he kills this one. Can't say I blame him as the battery is still good and by buying at WM he paid a lot more than he should have for it, about double..

He is not interested in paying for a capacity discharge test as the bank is just not worth the cost and time involved.
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