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Folks, my boat batteries are toast. I am in the market for a new cranking battery and 2 batteries for the trolling motor. Looking for some suggestions on what would be good options in the mid level price range or less. Not really looking to shell out top dollar for these right now.

Suggestions welcome and thanks in advance for your help.

Mods if this is the wrong forum feel free to relocate this...

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Interstate Batteries! say no more!

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Well, I sell Interstate so obviously I have them in my boat now but I'll also be honest with you in telling you I will never run another one. I have had trouble (dead cells) with 3 of them in under 2 years. As the ones I have now go bad, I'll be replacing them with AC Delco. I have an AC Delco as my starting battery and I think it's going on 5 years old now and performs like it was new. Granted it's not cycled like my TM batteries but still.

I have also heard good things about the Everstart line from Wally World.

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Better post in the bass boat forum, but here is my short list of best bang for buck.

 

 

Good batteries that last about 2-4 years depending on how you take care of them (Charge them immediately after use, check and maintain fluid levels correctly, etc.)

 

1.Walmart's Everstart Marine Maxx (Group 29 for your starter and Group 31s for the Trollers)

   Best Bang for Buck in my opinion.  I've gotten 4 years out of a starting/house battery so cost of ownership is ridiculously cheap!

 

2. Sears DieHard Platinum Marine AGMs (Basically Odyssey Batteries made for Sears)  Best bang for buck for AGMs usually Sears runs promotions and you can pick them up for around $200/each or a little more for the Group 31s

   Have an Odyssey going on 6 years!  Recently replaced my trolling motor batteries with two group 31 Sears DieHard Platinums

 

 
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Better post in the bass boat forum, but here is my short list of best bang for buck.

 

 

Good batteries that last about 2-4 years depending on how you take care of them (Charge them immediately after use, check and maintain fluid levels correctly, etc.)

 

1.Walmart's Everstart Marine Maxx (Group 29 for your starter and Group 31s for the Trollers)

   Best Bang for Buck in my opinion.  I've gotten 4 years out of a starting/house battery so cost of ownership is ridiculously cheap!

 

2. Sears DieHard Platinum Marine AGMs (Basically Odyssey Batteries made for Sears)  Best bang for buck for AGMs usually Sears runs promotions and you can pick them up for around $200/each or a little more for the Group 31s

   Have an Odyssey going on 6 years!  Recently replaced my trolling motor batteries with two group 31 Sears DieHard Platinums

 

 

 

 

 

Good advice. If you travel with the boat strongly consider Sears or Walmart for weekend access if you have a warranty concerns.

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Better post in the bass boat forum, but here is my short list of best bang for buck.

 

 

Good batteries that last about 2-4 years depending on how you take care of them (Charge them immediately after use, check and maintain fluid levels correctly, etc.)

 

1.Walmart's Everstart Marine Maxx (Group 29 for your starter and Group 31s for the Trollers)

   Best Bang for Buck in my opinion.  I've gotten 4 years out of a starting/house battery so cost of ownership is ridiculously cheap!

 

2. Sears DieHard Platinum Marine AGMs (Basically Odyssey Batteries made for Sears)  Best bang for buck for AGMs usually Sears runs promotions and you can pick them up for around $200/each or a little more for the Group 31s

   Have an Odyssey going on 6 years!  Recently replaced my trolling motor batteries with two group 31 Sears DieHard Platinums

 

X2.........I went with Walmart......they are everywhere if you replacements.

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X3 on the Walmart Everstart Maxx.  I use them for the TM on my canoe and they're my primary power source.   I got three seasons on my first one and had no problems with it but since they're so cheap I just got a new one so I could start the next season with a fresh battery.  I now have three full seasons on that second battery and am going to go ahead and keep running it for the 4th season coming up. 

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Sears DieHards have never let me down. I cant say the same for Interstates or the Walmart Everstarts. In fairness to the Everstart, it worked great right up until the day it died on me. I could have gotten a free replacement, but I didnt want to keep having to get a new battery every year. About 6 years ago, I had bought Interstates for all 3 batteries. Almost 2 years to the day, fishing a tourney no less, one of the trolling motor batteries completely crapped out. On the way home I stopped at sears and bought two DieHards. Changed them out in the parking lot, have had them ever since. I kept the other Interstate trolling motor battery for a spare, but 2 months later it too was completely gone. I still have that Interstate cranking battery though.

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A lot depends on how anal you are about maintaining your batteries. If you don't properly maintain them, I would recommend the Wally world ones, they are a little less expensive and convenient. If you properly maintain them, Deka batteries are hard to beat. Trojan deep cycles are still an excellent choice for the TM.

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Don't leave the battery charger(s) out of this equation.  They have as much to do with the life of a battery as anything, other than neglect. 

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You are going to get a lot of opinions from a lot of people. I truly believe that sometimes you can luck out with an outstanding battery and sometimes not I myself for a cranking battery hands down Sears Die hard Platinum. I've had (3) Interstates in 7 years and I'll pass on those. I also have had three sets of Interstates for my 24V trolling motor as well.  I religiously maintain my batteries and I will take a pass on Interstates. I currently have BPS batteries for my trolling motor. We'll see how that goes.

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I guess it is hit or miss with Interstate. I had one in my SUV work reliably for 5 years with no problems. And I know a local Interstate rep who sells me batteries for basically his cost, so I am using them in the boat now and going on my 3rd year with it- again with no problems.

 

My SUV Interstate battery recently failed within the warranty and Interstate told me since I could find the receipt that it did not matter what the rep tagged out on top of the battery- none of that mattered to them. Interstate told me they go by the date code stamped into the plastic housing of the battery and mine was old enough to be out of warranty- meaning one of their Interstate reps sold me an already 2 year old battery as new making mine now well over 6 years old and out of warranty!

 

I told Interstate I would not be buying any more of their batteries.

 

So I now go to the same battery reconditioning stores that commercial companies use for their industrial batteries in fork lifts, bulldozers, and heavy equipment. I can buy reconditioned batteries for $50.00 each with core trade in. It costs a little more if you don't have a core trade in, but these mom and pop local reconditioning companies stand behind their battery work and if I have a problem with a battery I just take it back in and they trade me out with a newly reconditioned one for a small charge if I have had it a while, otherwise within the 2 year warranty it is a free trade for another reconditioned battery.

 

I have never handled my batteries like corporations do, but I am now and so far so good.

 

They even replace the batteries in my battery operated hand tools and they install batteries 4 or 5 times stronger and higher quality than what you will ever get from a Home Depot.

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Wal-Mart.

Good batteries that will not break the bank.

Keep receipt in a safe place so when they croak you can get a small refund towards replacement batteries.

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Don't leave the battery charger(s) out of this equation.  They have as much to do with the life of a battery as anything, other than neglect. 

I have to strongly echo this. I was using a small charger/maintainer for years and thought I was properly charging my batteries. I spoke with an Interstate rep and he explained the difference between a car/starting battery charger and a marine/deep cycle specific charger; very different charge profile. I know I bashed Interstate in an earlier post but, with all fairness to them, it may have been my charging habits. But, as humans naturally do, it still left a bad taste in my mouth about them.

Back to chargers; once I picked up a dedicated marine on-board charger, my battery life doubled (on the water time).

So, if you are using a typical car battery charger, you may be doing yourself and your batteries a big injustice.

I went with this one:

http://promariner.com/products/waterproof-on-board-marine-battery-chargers/prosport-series/

and so happy with it.

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I have never herd a bad word about trojan. If I have to replace mine that's what I will buy.

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In my book, proper maintence includes using a good charger. The problem for most they don't realize what a good charger is and what they cost. Some think because they paid $30 for one with automatic cut off over $20 for one that wasn't, it's a good charger. Some think those $45 Schumauker digital things are good. I've never seen one that didn't fry the battery after a long period of use.

The top rated on board chargers are not top rated because the are expensive, it's because they work the way they should. Not saying it takes a high dollar onboard but a good single charger is going to make you dig a lot deeper in your pocket than those Schumaukers and those automatic hot boxes.

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Im going to be biased,  Interstate Batteries has the best replacement marine batteries hands down. I say that for 1: we own a local distributorship in Va and have for almost 30 years  but for 2: unlike a lot of people that post on particular products and not know how the product works all we do is batteries and its what we know and for a marine application there really isnt a better battery and it does have a lot to do with how you take care of them. Always check water levels before going out and voltage. Yes you have a 12 volt battery but no 12.0 volts is not fully charged and wouldnt recommend relying on that battery for the day if it doesnt read atleast 12.6 (6 cells, 2.1 volts per cell) especially if you just unhooked it from a charger.   People automatically think (bad cell) everytime their battery stops working mostly because they take it to an auto parts store to be tested and thats what they say, not always the case. Keep in mind, these stores want to sell you a battery and if you dont know any better they will. Keeping a hydrometer handy to check the specific gravity of the cells is the only true way to determine a bad cell, not hooking it up to an electronic machine.  Cranking batteries will always last much longer because in most boats they dont require the full amount of cold cranking amps the battery has, so even operating at 50% that battery might still be enough to start your engine years down the road. Deep cycle batteries are different, they dimenish little by little every year based on how many cycles are used. So if your trolling motor batteries get you through 10 hours of fishing in the wind the first year they will likely be less the following year and so on. To the guy that posted on warranty centers being more readily available with walmart and sears i would say that depends on where you are at. Interstate batteries have a nationwide warranty at any dealer that stocks that battery( and in most locations dont require you to have a receipt) and i live in an a pretty well populated area that has atleast 15 walmarts and 5-10 sears locations within a 30 min drive however our business probaly has 100+ marine locations and stores within that same radius that stocks our batteries (marine batteries) that could take care of a warranty for you. Good Luck and Tightlines!!

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I've had good luck in the past with the Everstart line at Wally World. They're relatively cheap and seem to last fairly well. Plus, if you have any issues with one you can find a Walmart just about anywhere. 

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In my book, proper maintence includes using a good charger. The problem for most they don't realize what a good charger is and what they cost. Some think because they paid $30 for one with automatic cut off over $20 for one that wasn't, it's a good charger. Some think those $45 Schumauker digital things are good. I've never seen one that didn't fry the battery after a long period of use.

The top rated on board chargers are not top rated because the are expensive, it's because they work the way they should. Not saying it takes a high dollar onboard but a good single charger is going to make you dig a lot deeper in your pocket than those Schumaukers and those automatic hot boxes.

Very true, here in one I use and recommend, they don't fry batteries!

 

http://www.dualpro.com/

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In the 20+ years I have owned a boat, I have used Wallyworld Everstarts. I think when I started buying their deep cycle units they were $45-50. Now they are about $90 or so. I know that I will have to replace them every 3 years and accept that but,they have never failed me. I can afford better if I choose to, however, WHY? $180 or so every 3 years for how many times a year that I fish is dirt cheap. I would be willing to bet, it costs more to charge them over that 3 years than to buy them.

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Thanks for the feedback all. I know which direction I want to go.

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