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ohiofarmer

Bought new piece of trash AGM battery

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   I have a friend who may be facing some surgery soon and he is getting some bucket list issues out of the way. One of them was a three person group ride.  We had a ball and great riding weather and twisty roads in the  Kentucky hills. The friend's cousin cooked a breakfast of pork chops, bacon, eggs fried apples and of course biscuits and gravy, and ummm blackberry cobbler. Had to add some air to the tires,absolutely

 

 I met another of his friends to trailer both our bikes there and discovered my battery was giving up the ghost.  Box auto parts stores seem to sell at almost double what the farm stores want for motorcycle batteries, but i did not want to hold up the trip. Advance auto had two in the size needed, so i thought the glass matt battery might last longer than a standard flood battery.  That was two weeks ago and today upon starting the bike, the battery sounded like a flash camera unit charging up and then it made a 'POP'

 

  I don't know much about glass mat technology . The head honcho at Advance Auto said he would cover the warranty, but he thought it was the fault of the bike's charging system not charging the battery. I offered to show him that the old battery I had in the bike for the trip to the store was being charged at 14 volts if he wanted to grab a VOM..  Won the argument and got my money back.. Come to think of it, that very battery even two weeks ago acted like it would not fire the spark plugs, so stupid me whote that off to needing a tune-up . Not a fan of AGM at this point. Maybe someone who knows batteries can comment

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Would help to know what kind of " bike " you're talking about .

I have an AGM battery in my Can Am Renegade and it has been flawless .

My general experience with batteries is as follows .

1 You roll the dice with any battery .

2 Always go to a dealer for your specific type . Bike dealer for bike batteries , lawn & garden dealer for outdoor power equipment . Reasoning ? They sell only a given type of battery . They "move" them faster leaving you with less chance of buying a dud from a general store .

3 You can easily check your charging system with a multi-meter .

Hook it up correctly to the terminals with the unit off and you should have around 12 & 1/2 volts . Start the unit and it should rise to just below 14 .

 

Hope it helps and enjoy the ride :handgestures-thumbupright:

 

 

 

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I don't know the details of the AGM's but here was my experience. 

 

I had an 84 Goldwing. Lousy reputation for starting issues. I replaced the starter and added HD custom cables and installed an Odyssey AGM battery. Used it for 3 years before it started to give any further issues. Then I read I think on this forum not to use a AGM battery because tractors bikes ect don't charge them correctly. WT....???? I think it was SOI who was discussing that. Anyhow I got 3 years out of it not charging it right! :banana-wrench:

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I have 2 6v Optima batteries one on my DC3 Case and one on the Farmall M... i have about 2 years now and I am impressed.  They spin the old girls fast even after sitting unused for 2-3 months....The seem to recharge just fine from 6v generators.  The M has cutout so i have to remember to put her on high charge for short time then back to normal (even when i leave it on high too long (forgertful) hasn't caused any issues)

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Posted (edited)

I haven't been impressed with the average quality of most batteries these days, but that being said, I can't say I've had particularly good luck with AGMs vs conventional flooded cells. Years ago I tried Optima batteries in my car. The first one failed after a little over a year, the second one lasted longer but eventually developed a bad cell. By then I'd had enough and went with a flooded cell again. The truck I got a few years ago has a dual battery setup in parallel to handle the power demand of the diesel engine intake heater plus the starter load. It came with two Optimas in it. One of them appears to have a bad cell that occasionally makes the voltmeter read wrong -- even though putting a meter on the batteries or in the charging system shows everything is safe and OK -- and apparently the Dodge electronics are known to be hypersensitive. Basically, one cell tends to suffer from sulfation. The total charging and output loads are OK due to the parallel battery arrangement's averaging effect. It's annoying, but not yet worth the cost of replacing two batteries since the truck still starts fine in subzero weather -- but pretty much the third strike for me against Optimas, at least.

 

Supposedly, AGMs are more vulnerable to overcharging. Better regulation of the charging output from the vehicle alternator is supposed to prevent that, but opinions vary on whether typical automotive charging systems are really designed with AGMs in mind or not. The smaller, light-duty regulators in small equipment and many motorcycles may or may not have output profiles that are good for AGMs, so that's why there are so many pro and con opinions. In my Dodge truck, the regulator is built into the ECM which is built into the gauge cluster, of all things. And it had problems charging the Optimas -- So the previous owner bypassed it and wired in a conventional Mopar external regulator, which, apparently, is a very popular modification. Now the Optimas behave themselves (relatively) OK using a charging circuit that's supposedly not as good for them as the factory one, which didn't charge them well at all. :angry-banghead:

 

My best guess is that an AGM battery in a :wh: tractor or other small equipment can't do any worse than a crappy flooded battery -- it'll just cost more. Where I live in New England, I've had good luck buying flooded-cell batteries at Wal-Mart. Their prices are decent, their stock tends to rotate well, and most of them are made by Johnson Controls, which is a good battery manufacturer. My local Wal-mart doesn't have an auto service center, so doing the recycling/core exchange through the customer service line is a pain in the backside, though. But I've tended to get more years of service out of the local Wal-Mart's batteries than anything else.

Edited by EricF

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Perfect timing. I took my 10 % off coupon to TSC and picked up a new 360 Tractor battery for my Power King. The old one is 5 yrs. old and still working. It's going into the 701 for a few months to replace the one in there that's almost 6 yrs. old. :banana-wrench:

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Now days one cannot get a lot of life out of a car battery simply because of the huge demands made upon it. I feel that the life of a battery depends somewhat upon the state of charge when it is put into service. My experience is if I fully charge a battery before I install it I seem to get more life out of it and if I put in a 1/2 charged or less battery I get less life.  Battery life also depends on how  cool the battery is. Does the battery reside in an area where is doesn't get to cool is it cooped up under a hood and allowed to be super warmed by engine heat. All of these factors will change the usable life of a battery.

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Posted (edited)

:text-yeahthat: There is a local guy who rebuilds starters and alternators who swears by that. He always advises to charge batteries up fully and slowly on the 2 amp setting. Motorcycle dry charge batteries have instructions that advise you the same way . Guys with battery tenders which put out about one amp swear their batteries last much longer.

 Thanks for all posts and comments above.There is something in almost every one of them that i can use. First, there was really not much of a choice what battery i could buy to use in the Honda CB750. We were on the road and being detoured so it was decided that we would stop and get something at the first place that had a 14 series. We struck out at TSC and then Advance Auto had one that fit. Having it already charged up and ready to use was a bonus because we were already late due to a trailer wiring issue.

 

 As far as the 'Best" battery for a CB750 ---, that has been settled a long time ago. Yuasa is the OEM for Honda and i have had good luck with them. I suppose when you add it all up, a flooded battery might be the best thing for the way I use my bike. i take day trips at the spur of the moment just to settle my brain and I have never lacked for someone wanting to help me out if i have the rare issue with the bike. Having a battery that takes a special charger that is rated for AGM is not the best thing to have when you travel the most isolated areas like I do. Don't tell anybody, but running back roads has resulted in more than one or two good buys on Red tractors as well

 

  I think from now on that I will run batteries in the bike for two years and then relegate them for use in the little tractors after that  .Batteries that start a 70 horsepower bike should have some life left in them to start a 10 horsepower tractor that has compression release.

 

Bike batteries usually read about 12.6 volts when fresh and when they drop to 12.4 volts [resting  after sitting overnight], they are about a year from death in my experience.

 

 I just found this info on how to charge a discharged AGM. Good stuff  https://www.optimabatteries.com/en-us/support/charging/resuscitate-deeply-discharged-battery

 

Sorry, don't know how this link below appeared

 

Edited by ohiofarmer

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