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Old 12-01-2020, 08:04 PM   #1
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Best 8d battery for full time liveaboard

In the process of putting in 2 new 8d batteries In the willard,its a full time liveaboard so batteries are used alot at night,gotta switch over to led lighting for interior,but want to get batteries that eventually will be hooked up to wind turbine,any thoughts and recommendations would be greatly appreciated
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Old 12-01-2020, 08:25 PM   #2
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I put in 3 East Penn AGM 8Ds in 2014 and happy with them for both house and thruster banks.
I will not be replacing w 8Ds when needed. After doing some research and contacting both Trojan and East Penn they both confirmed that in their AGM line there is no starting or deep cycle performance difference between GC2s and GP 31s. This is confirmed by the specs as they spec CCA and AH capacities for both (unlike FLA).
I felt there was some potential benefit to having the same battys in both thruster/ start bank and my house so my decision is to use 2 GP 31 for start/thrusters and 4 GP 31s as a house bank. If one or two get weak/ die I MAY be able to avoid replacing all 4 or 6 by combining the remaining usable batty into one bank (of 2 or 4) and delay having to replace the other bank until more die. If I had 6V GCs for house and say GP 31 start I lose the flexibility.
Long story but bottom line my East Penn (Sams Club Duracell) AGM 8Ds are all doing well after 7 seasons so I'm happy with EP for their reasonable price.
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Old 12-01-2020, 08:51 PM   #3
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Old 12-01-2020, 09:01 PM   #4
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You can get the power you need without going to the ancient heavy, big 8ds.

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Old 12-01-2020, 09:09 PM   #5
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I'd rethink installing 8Ds for your house bank- especially with the new technology available (carbon foam and LifeP04). The new tech batteries can be more deeply discharged, recharged quicker, and are much lighter than an 8D.
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:08 PM   #6
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I have a tendency to say the higher end batteries are worth it. Bacchus says "Seven seasons". I am curious If they were being tortured all year long for 7 seasons would they still last??? I think East Penns are mid level batteries. But It is hard to argue with 7 seasons!!!! When it comes to Lead acid batteries(yes that does include AGM), I have learned that the heavier the better.....all other things being equal. IOW, more lead=better!!!! 2 Odyssey Group 31s might be easier to handle than an 8D and offer better performance.
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:22 PM   #7
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My new LiFePO4s weigh 23 pounds, are rated for 3500 discharges and come with a lifetime warranty. No way I would put in 8Ds ever again.
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:36 PM   #8
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My new LiFePO4s weigh 23 pounds, are rated for 3500 discharges and come with a lifetime warranty. No way I would put in 8Ds ever again.
I am no fan of 8Ds. But I have a hard time with the (ignorant)physics of LiFePO4 technology. Ultimately energy is heat.....or the other way around. It is hard to imagine 23 pounds absorbing the heat required of the task we are asking of them. Again....totally ignorant observation on my part.
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Old 12-01-2020, 10:49 PM   #9
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I am certainly no expert on battery technology but the Lithiums are pretty amazing. Time will tell.
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Old 12-01-2020, 11:06 PM   #10
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We have four lifeline 8Dís on our Lindell 36. Replaced them 2 years ago, after 17 years of service. They were still going strong but our generator run times were going up and seemed like we had got a reasonable amount of use out of them. We spend an average of 20 weeks per year on the hook, usually for a week at a time. I am sure there was a scientific way to determine replacement time, but my seat of the pants thinking was they had served their time. Anyway very happy with lifeline and if we have to honcho 4 8Dís in and out in another 15 years I wonít be to worried.
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Old 12-01-2020, 11:13 PM   #11
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We have four lifeline 8D’s on our Lindell 36. Replaced them 2 years ago, after 17 years of service. They were still going strong but our generator run times were going up and seemed like we had got a reasonable amount of use out of them. We spend an average of 20 weeks per year on the hook, usually for a week at a time. I am sure there was a scientific way to determine replacement time, but my seat of the pants thinking was they had served their time. Anyway very happy with lifeline and if we have to honcho 4 8D’s in and out in another 15 years I won’t be to worried.
ONLY 17 years????!!!!! My point. I do think something needs to be said about how they are cared for. Mostly what kind of charger is looking after them. I see people on here saying they turn their chargers on when they get to the boat and turn them off when they leave. I can guarandamnteeyou those people are not seeing decent life out of their batteries. One of the things the better chargers have is an "Idle Mode". It is somewhat of a FOURTH stage of charging. If the batteries need a float charge, it will be applied. A continuous float charge by some battery chargers will kill your batteries over time. What charger were you using?

Edit: also you have four 8Ds in a 36 foot boat. That pretty much means you are not torturing your batteries and the reason they lasted so long.
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Old 12-01-2020, 11:37 PM   #12
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LifePO4s are great. Light, long-life, and you can fully deep discharge them. Be careful, though, if they share duty as the starting battery for you engines, especially diesels. They have limited CCA (Cold Cranking Amps). They are perfect for a house battery if you can afford them. They have a higher up-front cost, but due to their long life end up being cheaper in the long run.
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Old 12-02-2020, 12:15 AM   #13
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linked below is a thread entitled "My attempt to murder my Firefly batteries" in the sailing forum (Cruisers forum). The OP of the thread was an early in with Fireflies on his boat. He had a history of killing his lead acid batteries and wanted something which could withstand his abuse. If you read the thread its all self explanatory. He also has an Efoy unit on the boat. He has a classic sailboat with beautiful lines and he didn't want to visually wreck it by using solar panels.

Here is the opening lines to his thread:

Just an interesting story.

As I mentioned in other threads, if there is someone who can kill batteries, it will be me. I have a long history of murdering batteries badly! My challenge is to destroy the Firefly batteries in my boat by abuse!

They, however, have a different agenda!


https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...es-221607.html
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Old 12-02-2020, 12:29 AM   #14
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LifePO4s are great. Light, long-life, and you can fully deep discharge them. Be careful, though, if they share duty as the starting battery for you engines, especially diesels. They have limited CCA (Cold Cranking Amps). They are perfect for a house battery if you can afford them. They have a higher up-front cost, but due to their long life end up being cheaper in the long run.
Mine are a dedicated house bank. I have 3 starting batteries for the engines and genset. They were actually cheaper for me because I needed more room in the engine room for more house batteries but in order to get the room I would have had to buy a new self contained A/C system to replace the split system. Now the A/C can stay and I will have a larger house bank along with a new 120 amp alternator for less money than replacing/expanding my old 6 volt bank.
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Old 12-02-2020, 07:03 AM   #15
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Read the article in the Library which discusses better alternatives to 8Ds. Most 8Ds are straight lead acid starting batteries and won't hold up well in deep cycle service.

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Old 12-02-2020, 07:49 AM   #16
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OP, obviously thereís nothing wrong with FLA technology. Switching to lithium is not a simple nor a cheap thing.

However, Iíd recommend you consider installing a bank of 2V industrial batteries instead of the 8Dís. You have a huge selection of capacities and weights to work with and they are generally rated to about 1500 cycles at 80% discharge, just about equalling lithiums, but at a fraction of the price.
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Old 12-02-2020, 08:43 AM   #17
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Mako:

Could you give us a few examples of 2V industrial batteries with web links that would work in a marine house battery bank. One example I found was huge and comparing it to 6V golf cart batteries, was much more expensive: 28 cents per watt hour for a big 2V Trojan industrial battery vs 14 cents for 6V Trojan golf cart batteries. Prices were from the same seller- Arizona Wind and Sun.

In my experience due to the tremendous volume of golf cart batteries sold, their cost per watt is as low as anything you can find. They also require minimal jumpering, unlike 2V batteries.

See- https://www.solar-electric.com/troja...l-battery.html and- https://www.solar-electric.com/trt16vo225ah1.html

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Old 12-02-2020, 08:48 AM   #18
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I have a tendency to say the higher end batteries are worth it. Bacchus says "Seven seasons". I am curious If they were being tortured all year long for 7 seasons would they still last??? I think East Penns are mid level batteries. But It is hard to argue with 7 seasons!!!! When it comes to Lead acid batteries(yes that does include AGM), I have learned that the heavier the better.....all other things being equal. IOW, more lead=better!!!! 2 Odyssey Group 31s might be easier to handle than an 8D and offer better performance.
I agree with a minor difference...
My part year season is what it is and may help batty life vs more active use. On the other hand I am unable to charge batty while in bed for the winter and no way I'm removing 8Ds to tend at home (as I used to with smaller boats & batty banks). So 6 mos w/o a charge isn't the best trestment and the original reason I went to AGM. With FLA I found a way to ignore batty maintenance sooner or later and was guilty of at least assault... not murder.
My philosophy re batty purchases is to attempt to balance performance, ease of use and economics. I absolutely agree that East Penns are in general a mid range batty. I do think they are a good value and readily available (Sams Club or a small truck shop I deal with).
No doubt there are "better" battys available but I question the payback for the higher $.
I am intrigued with LiFe but reluctant, at this point, to make the investment in time & $ to make the switch... maybe if I was 20 yrs younger and could hope to see a return in my boating or motorhoming life I'd feel different.
We all get to make choices and no one right answer for all. All I offer is what I've decided, my rationale of why and report my experience.
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Old 12-02-2020, 09:17 AM   #19
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I installed fire fly batteries 18 months ago and have been more than pleased. I have about 930 amp hours of fire fly batteries and one battery bank which both starts the engines and provides house current.

I chose fire flies because I did not want to put lithium batteries in the engine room which in summer can get to 100 to 110į. Lithium batteries do not like high temperatures. Actually no battery likes high temperatures. But lead acid batteries and fire flies are a bit more resilient to such heat.

My batteries seem to maintain voltage even when they drop below 50%. This past summer the power pedestal on our dock malfunctioned. I had a dehumidifier hooked to a circuit powered by the inverter. The voltage dropped to 11 1/2 V by the time I learned of the pedestal issue. I was able to bring the batteries back to 100%. I am guessing that these are the last batteries I will have to put in this boat.

I replaced 8D start batteries with two group 31s. I replaced two 8D house batteries with 3 L-15, 4V batteries. All of these batteries comprise one large battery bank.

Before anyone talks about the danger of not having a dedicated start battery, I have to tell you I have two generators each with its own dedicated start battery.
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Old 12-02-2020, 10:16 AM   #20
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+1 on not having dedicated starting batteries. IMHO, the boating world is rampant with "what if, what if, what if" for the extremely unlikely event. Same for those $1,400 dual Racor, space-hogging, rarely, if ever used, filter heads. As you no doubt have, I, too, have starting batteries for my generators which can be used (the generator) to recharge the house bank or the drive engines started with jumper cables if one must move immediately. Plus, a boatload of wiring and switches are absent with a combination starting-house bank. Yeah, but, yeah but .......
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I installed fire fly batteries 18 months ago and have been more than pleased. I have about 930 amp hours of fire fly batteries and one battery bank which both starts the engines and provides house current.

I chose fire flies because I did not want to put lithium batteries in the engine room which in summer can get to 100 to 110į. Lithium batteries do not like high temperatures. Actually no battery likes high temperatures. But lead acid batteries and fire flies are a bit more resilient to such heat.

My batteries seem to maintain voltage even when they drop below 50%. This past summer the power pedestal on our dock malfunctioned. I had a dehumidifier hooked to a circuit powered by the inverter. The voltage dropped to 11 1/2 V by the time I learned of the pedestal issue. I was able to bring the batteries back to 100%. I am guessing that these are the last batteries I will have to put in this boat.

I replaced 8D start batteries with two group 31s. I replaced two 8D house batteries with 3 L-15, 4V batteries. All of these batteries comprise one large battery bank.

Before anyone talks about the danger of not having a dedicated start battery, I have to tell you I have two generators each with its own dedicated start battery.
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