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Old 08-16-2019, 04:59 AM   #1
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Default 2016 Travato 59G House Battery Replacement

Q1. I may need new house batteries for 2016 59G. Other than removing batteries and taking them to store for testing, what is best way to test while still mounted under the 59G?
Q2. If need new house batteries, is it best to replace with identical NAPA batteries or are there better alternatives?
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Old 08-16-2019, 08:51 PM   #2
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Q1. I may need new house batteries for 2016 59G. Other than removing batteries and taking them to store for testing, what is best way to test while still mounted under the 59G?
Q2. If need new house batteries, is it best to replace with identical NAPA batteries or are there better alternatives?
Q2. NAPA doesn't manufacture batteries. They are made by Deka or Exide. A cost effective alternative is a Costco Interstate AGM battery. Their warranty is valid at any Costco in the country.
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Old 08-16-2019, 11:19 PM   #3
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I have found NAPA to be a decent place to buy decent DECA AGMs (branded NAPA as per above). Very handy and the warranty is good at any NAPA in the country. There is no need to stick with NAPA, but they are a good choice, In my experience.
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Old 08-17-2019, 05:33 AM   #4
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q2

Q2. NAPA doesn't manufacture batteries. They are made by Deka or Exide. A cost effective alternative is a Costco Interstate AGM battery. Their warranty is valid at any Costco in the country.
Thank you for the suggestion, however, turns out that I was at Costco today. The folks in the tire and battery department told me that Costco does not sell AGM batteries. I'm likely to purchase Duracell house batteries from either Sam's Club (less expensive but only 18 month full replacement warranty) or Batteries Plus (30 month full replacement warranty and far more stores across the U.S.) The NAPA batteries are considerably more expensive, approaching the cost of Lifeline AGM batteries, and have only a 12 month pro-rated replacement warranty.
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Old 08-17-2019, 06:44 AM   #5
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Have you check Fullriver batteries, my experience with them is excellent for the last six years. https://www.fullriverbattery.com/dc-series-batteries/
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Old 08-22-2019, 08:06 PM   #6
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Thank you for the suggestion, however, turns out that I was at Costco today. The folks in the tire and battery department told me that Costco does not sell AGM batteries. I'm likely to purchase Duracell house batteries from either Sam's Club (less expensive but only 18 month full replacement warranty) or Batteries Plus (30 month full replacement warranty and far more stores across the U.S.) The NAPA batteries are considerably more expensive, approaching the cost of Lifeline AGM batteries, and have only a 12 month pro-rated replacement warranty.
I saw AGM battery at my Local Costco this week (Kingston Ont) and it appears that Costco has AGM (group 24) on the Costco.ca website: https://www.costco.ca/Energizer-24F-...100404760.html
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Old 08-24-2019, 07:36 PM   #7
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Q1. I may need new house batteries for 2016 59G. Other than removing batteries and taking them to store for testing, what is best way to test while still mounted under the 59G? ...

Pardon me while I hijack this thread, but Q1 was about how to test house batteries, and no one has addressed it, and I am in a similar predicament with a similar question. The difference is that my 2007 RT Pop190 has a pair of flooded Interstate SRM-27 lead acids that I think are finito (Yes, my fault, I just don't think to check fluid levels, especially not in the Connecticut winter. Last time I checked, plates were exposed.) but a service tech in the area thought were fine - after he replaced a corroded contact under the hood - just needing charging. After several days on shore power, I still doubt that one or both are healthy and charging up - viz. after unplugging 120v, fridge can light up on gas, but subsequent cycling fails, gas won't light and fridge stops. Back on 120v and gas stays lit indefinitely. Opinions? Tests?

Q2 is whether a lazy slob like me should switch to zero maintenance AGM's like all the rest of you seem to have done. I just don't like to check fluids in the cold or when I'm on the move (which is most days). For a minimum system of 2 batteries - I'm not curious about how the batteries are doing today, I just want the fridge to be cold. (Right, I should get a compressor job - maybe next year, if the Dometic dies.) Q3 What else do I need to change to be a happy AGM user? Possible complication: Years ago when I was fleeing Winter racing to Yuma, my Tripplite PowerVerter died. The RV tech would have to order one in, but he did have in stock an Intellipower PD9140A Power Converter (no 12v DC to 120v AC! but he said what AC appliance could you run for long on your house battery, anyway, and you do have your Onan for that!) I had no ready argument - I'm sure you guys can provide one), So I had it put in and everything seemed to be simpatico. Will it get along with the AGMs? Possibly pertinent: We have in the house an Autocraft XC-103 100 Amp Charger (3 modes: trickle, fast, and engine start) as well as a number of test meters (not mine). Q4 NOW, what are good brands? (I'm not one of Sam's or Costco's boys, but there's a NAPA in the area.

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Old 08-24-2019, 08:12 PM   #8
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Pardon me while I hijack this thread, but Q1 was about how to test house batteries, and no one has addressed it, and I am in a similar predicament with a similar question. The difference is that my 2007 RT Pop190 has a pair of flooded Interstate SRM-27 lead acids that I think are finito (Yes, my fault, I just don't think to check fluid levels, especially not in the Connecticut winter. Last time I checked, plates were exposed.) but a service tech in the area thought were fine - after he replaced a corroded contact under the hood - just needing charging. After several days on shore power, I still doubt that one or both are healthy and charging up - viz. after unplugging 120v, fridge can light up on gas, but subsequent cycling fails, gas won't light and fridge stops. Back on 120v and gas stays lit indefinitely. Opinions? Tests?

I don't have a compressor fridge, but I'd bet on a propane problem since the batteries do light. But what causes you to suspect your batteries are done?


Q2 is whether a lazy slob like me should switch to zero maintenance AGM's like all the rest of you seem to have done. I just don't like to check fluids in the cold or when I'm on the move (which is most days). For a minimum system of 2 batteries - I'm not curious about how the batteries are doing today, I just want the fridge to be cold. (Right, I should get a compressor job - maybe next year, if the Dometic dies.) Q3 What else do I need to change to be a happy AGM user? Possible complication: Years ago when I was fleeing Winter racing to Yuma, my Tripplite PowerVerter died. The RV tech would have to order one in, but he did have in stock an Intellipower PD9140A Power Converter (no 12v DC to 120v AC! but he said what AC appliance could you run for long on your house battery, anyway, and you do have your Onan for that!) I had no ready argument - I'm sure you guys can provide one), So I had it put in and everything seemed to be simpatico. Will it get along with the AGMs? Possibly pertinent: We have in the house an Autocraft XC-103 100 Amp Charger (3 modes: trickle, fast, and engine start) as well as a number of test meters (not mine). Q4 NOW, what are good brands? (I'm not one of Sam's or Costco's boys, but there's a NAPA in the area.

You sound like a perfect candidate for no-maintenance AGM's.


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Hijacking a thread back to its' original topic. I . . . I . . . , well I never heard of such a thing. MODERATOR! MODERATOR!

At first, I thought that's what you were doing. But then I see you added your fridge questions, so we're back to normal.
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Old 08-24-2019, 09:26 PM   #9
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Hijacking a thread back to its' original topic. I . . . I . . . , well I never heard of such a thing. MODERATOR! MODERATOR!
Don't worry, he'll step in to get it back off topic any minute now.
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Old 08-24-2019, 11:11 PM   #10
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Somebody said: I don't have a compressor fridge, but I'd bet on a propane problem since the batteries do light. But what causes you to suspect your batteries are done?

Yes, they spark the gas once, immediately after unplugging AC. But if you switch off the fridge they won't light it again. Even seconds later, all you see is a brief flicker of the top "coldest" LED, than darkness. The propane tank is full, the water heater works, the Onan can run for hours, and I can brew up my "Special" on the stove. But, in the end, my technical retardation leads me to just switch on the display panel above the Onan switch. On AC or Onan I get 4 big LED's every time. Unplugged, I get one. I realize that there is some battery power in one or both lead acids. Fans and lights do run, but not at maximum AC power. One may be still good; I just don't know. Hence my request for a critical test. The propane system tested OK for leaks by the same guy who said the batteries were OK. What can you think of that might make gas the culprit?
The same guy said: You sound like a perfect candidate for no-maintenance AGM's.
Just the encouragement I needed! Let it be!


Then a guy had the NERVE to say: At first, I thought that's what you were doing. But then I see you added your fridge questions, so we're back to normal.


I mentioned the fridge as a TEST of the battery issue. I threw in "compressor" to forestall a debate about fridge technology!
You can be cruel, Rowie! You're hereby suspended from 1% Macerators Sunday rides until you turn in at least two more "A Gravity" puke scalps! Tomorrow we're harassing a certain guy in Minnesota with a big mouth.
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Old 08-24-2019, 11:40 PM   #11
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The same guy said: You sound like a perfect candidate for no-maintenance AGM's.
Did the guy who suggested them check the water levels in your batteries. Maybe that is your problem now. If that isn't the problem and you have access to a 12 volt socket attached to the house batteries you could get a cheap voltage meter and test the voltage. If its low, for any reason, that would tell you the batteries are likely your problem. Although you may already have enough evidence to support that conclusion.

The AGM's are almost "no-maintenance" for those of us more interested in using our coach than working on it.
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Old 08-25-2019, 12:02 AM   #12
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Pardon me while I hijack this thread, but Q1 was about how to test house batteries, and no one has addressed it, and I am in a similar predicament with a similar question. The difference is that my 2007 RT Pop190 has a pair of flooded Interstate SRM-27 lead acids that I think are finito (Yes, my fault, I just don't think to check fluid levels, especially not in the Connecticut winter. Last time I checked, plates were exposed.) but a service tech in the area thought were fine - after he replaced a corroded contact under the hood - just needing charging. After several days on shore power, I still doubt that one or both are healthy and charging up - viz. after unplugging 120v, fridge can light up on gas, but subsequent cycling fails, gas won't light and fridge stops. Back on 120v and gas stays lit indefinitely. Opinions? Tests?

Q2 is whether a lazy slob like me should switch to zero maintenance AGM's like all the rest of you seem to have done. I just don't like to check fluids in the cold or when I'm on the move (which is most days). For a minimum system of 2 batteries - I'm not curious about how the batteries are doing today, I just want the fridge to be cold. (Right, I should get a compressor job - maybe next year, if the Dometic dies.) Q3 What else do I need to change to be a happy AGM user? Possible complication: Years ago when I was fleeing Winter racing to Yuma, my Tripplite PowerVerter died. The RV tech would have to order one in, but he did have in stock an Intellipower PD9140A Power Converter (no 12v DC to 120v AC! but he said what AC appliance could you run for long on your house battery, anyway, and you do have your Onan for that!) I had no ready argument - I'm sure you guys can provide one), So I had it put in and everything seemed to be simpatico. Will it get along with the AGMs? Possibly pertinent: We have in the house an Autocraft XC-103 100 Amp Charger (3 modes: trickle, fast, and engine start) as well as a number of test meters (not mine). Q4 NOW, what are good brands? (I'm not one of Sam's or Costco's boys, but there's a NAPA in the area.

Love you guys!

In reality, you are probably better off with the PD9140A, especially if you can add a PD pendant to it so you can chose charge stages if you choose to. Of course, if you do want to have manual control with a pendant, it is best to have a battery monitor to guide you (even though some would say a monitor is useless ). The PD is a much better charger than the Tripplite, IMO.


Especially if you decide to go with and AGM, having some control of the charging is a good thing to be able to protect it from abuse a bit better. Wet cells tend to handle overcharge a bit better, but need a lot more maintenance. Lots of information on all the charging and battery stuff on the forum in various places, plus experience with the PD chargers.
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Old 08-25-2019, 01:27 AM   #13
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Hijacking a thread back to its' original topic. I . . . I . . . , well I never heard of such a thing. MODERATOR! MODERATOR!

At first, I thought that's what you were doing. But then I see you added your fridge questions, so we're back to normal.
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Did the guy who suggested them check the water levels in your batteries. Maybe that is your problem now. If that isn't the problem and you have access to a 12 volt socket attached to the house batteries you could get a cheap voltage meter and test the voltage. If its low, for any reason, that would tell you the batteries are likely your problem. Although you may already have enough evidence to support that conclusion.

The AGM's are almost "no-maintenance" for those of us more interested in using our coach than working on it.

Ross, to be brutally honest, I'm not sure WHAT the guy did! I had topped up the battery water 3 weeks before; I assumed that was not a problem. But I took the van in, saying first "There's a problem with the electrical system. The display indicates little if any charge in the batteries, and the fridge won't spark." I left it with them for 9 days - they did replace the kaput macerator - and he tells me the only electrical problem was a corroded contact in front of the engine, which he replaced. When I checked the battery display it still showed only one LED. I thought, "futheluva..they could at least have charged up the batteries for me after 9 days!" But the tech says " While you're driving home and on shore power overnight, everything will be charged up by morning." Actually, I doubt I'll be taking my van back up to Plainfield CT again. They never called me back to explain why I still had the same problem I did when I brought it in.
Funny you should suggest it, but we did just install a cig lighter socket (mentioned in another thread) to plug in a dashboard fan over the bed. (Actually, my brother did the installation. He's the electric-savvy son of our RCA electrical engineer father.) He has a collection of test meters, so I guess he can do the test, if he knows what voltage is right or wrong. If those batteries are good, I'm totally hornswoggled, and will probably start talking about "evil spirits" and such.
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Old 08-25-2019, 03:53 AM   #14
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Rowie! You're hereby suspended from 1% Macerators Sunday rides until you turn in at least two more "A Gravity" puke scalps! Tomorrow we're harassing a certain guy in Minnesota with a big mouth.
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Sorry, I'll be good. Please reconsider the ban. Joining the 1% Macerators is a lifelong dream of mine (I've already got the jacket). I'll rat out those gravity dumpers, I promise I will.
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Old 08-25-2019, 04:01 PM   #15
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Did the guy who suggested them check the water levels in your batteries. Maybe that is your problem now. If that isn't the problem and you have access to a 12 volt socket attached to the house batteries you could get a cheap voltage meter and test the voltage. If its low, for any reason, that would tell you the batteries are likely your problem. Although you may already have enough evidence to support that conclusion.

The AGM's are almost "no-maintenance" for those of us more interested in using our coach than working on it.

OK, Ross, progress has been made. There is no question that some power remains in the batteries. This morning I was able to relight the fridge numerous times after unplugging, yesterday one light was tops. Fans continue to turn, the macerator ran for awhile, but the Onan couldn't quite start. Then we slid out the batteries and my brother measured at the poles 8.3 volts in each. A fluid check showed one cell dry; took rather a lot of distilled to submerge the plates. Other battery was all wet. So are these dudes kaput? If so, I'm thinking of doing the AGM tango. I'm overdue in Ontario, so I'm hoping I can grab a couple at West Marine, drop them in the drawers, and hit the road. Is that foolhardy, Booster? Is this guy soon to be parted from 600 of his loved ones? Life is cruel, but I've got a 4th birthday party to attend!
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Old 08-25-2019, 04:06 PM   #16
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Yeah, get some AGMs. I'd go to Batteries-Plus, Costco, or NAPA before West Marine, though.

And, when you get some time, get yourself a battery monitor. You are groping around in the dark without one. As I said once before, they are not just for SOC estimates.
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Old 08-25-2019, 04:16 PM   #17
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OK, Ross, progress has been made. There is no question that some power remains in the batteries. This morning I was able to relight the fridge numerous times after unplugging, yesterday one light was tops. Fans continue to turn, the macerator ran for awhile, but the Onan couldn't quite start. Then we slid out the batteries and my brother measured at the poles 8.3 volts in each. A fluid check showed one cell dry; took rather a lot of distilled to submerge the plates. Other battery was all wet. So are these dudes kaput? If so, I'm thinking of doing the AGM tango. I'm overdue in Ontario, so I'm hoping I can grab a couple at West Marine, drop them in the drawers, and hit the road. Is that foolhardy, Booster? Is this guy soon to be parted from 600 of his loved ones? Life is cruel, but I've got a 4th birthday party to attend!
Thanks, Y'All

One dry cell is a bad sign on one one battery, I assume 12v batteries if both at 8.3v?


At this point, you don't have a real cause for the issue but it is likely just an end of life on the batteries thing. Charging issues can shorten life, as we have talked about a lot, but it is a slow death most of the time, except in major overcharging situations. Depending on how your use pattern, the PD charger could have been better for the batteries or worse than the Tripplite. The Tripplite will consistently undercharge, the PD may or may not overcharge some, but will rarely undercharge, so it all depends on how full the batteries are when you start a charge on them (like after a long drive and then shore power).


Since you appear to be short on time and ability to get the charging system all checked out (I doubt it has failed badly), I think making a long term guess on best solution may be better to leave until a later day. Since you do have a voltmeter available, once you get good batteries just check the voltage at them with the engine running and when you plug in to shore power. If you are less than 14.6v on both, you are very likely not in any severe problem.



I think if it were me, I would go to Walmart or Costco and get a couple of wet cells and put them in for now. Just make sure to keep track of the water level to preserve them and also see how much they use. For now, that might just be the lowest risk, lowest cost, lowest time used way to go.


Good luck, and be sure to let us know how it turns out.


Avanti got in before me, and once you have the the time to get it done, including the monitor, I totally agree.
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Old 08-25-2019, 05:38 PM   #18
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I would say get the AGM's, they won't run dry. Of course, that's easy for me to say, I am not the one out the money. I would make sure you have a way to check the voltage level, even if its just idiot lights, so you don't abuse the new batteries, and shorten their life, by running them down too far between charges.
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Old 08-25-2019, 05:49 PM   #19
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I have a "maintenance free" battery from Walmart. I purchased while on the road last year. I bought their Maxx DC battery, allegedly good for more charge cycles than the cheapy one. It comes with a two year replacement warranty. In about 7 to 8 months of travel of which more than 75% of the time was long term boondocking the battery has performed well with no noticeable drop in capacity, though I'm sure it has lost some.

I'm using a PD converter charger and also 150 watts of solar and have a battery monitoring system.

I run a single group 29 battery. Watch their amp hour ratings, they do not use a 20 amp discharge, but something really low, maybe 1 amp. This way they can inflate the amp hour rating.

That said, the battery has performed well and I plan on replacing it with another when it does give up the ship.

HTH. Have fun.
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