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Thread: Auxiliary Battery Issues

  1. #91
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    Itís capacity isnít understated - Iíve done the tests and itís almost bang on.

    Weight isnít a good indicator either - the casing design is heavy...

    The Optima was great for ďhigh discharge currentsĒ and great cycling as it could boost quickly - in its day quite rare.

    Now itís just another battery and slipping down the ladder.
    Cheers
    Tombie

    Gone - D1 AZZKIKR - 5.0L Supercharged with the lot
    Gone - Tombraider Defender - Lara
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    - Just about the way I want it.
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  2. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tombie View Post

    Now itís just another battery and slipping down the ladder.
    this is how i feel.
    and the price for the quality is quite high and no longer justifiable with the falling quality.
    Last edited by LRD414; 7th January 2020 at 06:33 PM. Reason: fixed quote
    Quote Originally Posted by DazzaTD5 View Post
    Its a land Rover Defender... you need a real mechanic

  3. #93
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    Jan 2015
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    I am wondering how the people with Optima problems got on when they contacted their retailerís Optima distributor? Thereís only two in Australia?

    If they did not get satisfaction from an Optima distributor, they could then ring Optima direct in the USA. Also Clarios direct. I checked and there are support numbers available, I can list them if people want. One could even ring the Sydney office of Brookfield Partners to perhaps find the right contact to resolve your dissatisfactions (Brookfield own Clarios who own Optima. Clarios - previously Johnston - make one third of the worldís lead acid batteries).

    I am also a bit bemused by statements such as the Optima spiral wound battery ďis just another batteryĒ. IMO thatís not the case for an auxiliary battery in a D3 or D4 or similar Range Rover. Itís true that there are now lots of AGM battery brands around. But as statements like ďjust another batteryĒ show, thereís more ignorance and confusion about AGM batteries than ever before. Saying ďanother batteryĒ reinforces lack of knowledge IMO.

    We are bombarded by various brands that claim all sorts of greatness where many of them donít even tell us the company that actually made the battery these companies distribute or sell, and their stats, even their weights, are often not accurately stated. I've seen 3kg differences in weights stated for the same battery. Many claims are rarely backed up by full descriptions of the construction materials they use. Probably because such companies OEM their batteries from different factories all over Asia. They donít want to identify who is making their batteries. Trying to find out who actually made such battery ainít easy, and verifying construction quality is thereby just guesswork. So we all get confused and we donít know what is going on.

    Concerning the Optima batteries, they are a thin plate pure lead (TPPL) battery. Pure lead plates are relatively weak. Optima got around plate weakness by winding the sandwiched plates around each other, which results in a very tough battery. Box casing TPPL batteries donít get around the strength issue as well as the wound design. Optima make the H series box case TPPL battery, and they state itís not as suited to rough conditions as the wound design.

    TPPL is a rare construction for an AGM battery. The Optimaís construction sacrifices space efficiency but allows pure lead while its uniquely rugged casing design only has a 50 gram weight penalty versus their own box casing design. The benefit of pure lead is longevity and primarily for me, they charge quicker than the lead alloys plate AGM batteries that are typical of AGM batteries. These are called Thick Plate and they use alloys of lead, calcium and tin for their ďleadĒ plates. Incidentally such ďplatesĒ are now grids made with various manufacturing techniques some of which have better performance than others. Same too for the pastes they use. These alloy plates are stronger than pure lead, hence their use inside most AGM batteries. A TPPL (pure lead plate) in a box will not be as rugged as the wound type. There are however some TPPL box AGMs around, and their cases are heavily re-inforced compared to thick wall AGMs (whose plates are Lead/calcium/tin).

    If I was replacing my Optima D34 in my D4 today Iíd ensure I got a TPPL (pure lead) AGM. Pure lead plates charge much quicker than the alloy lead plates. A faster charging auxiliary battery protects the starter battery, if one is using a Traxide setup like many of us are. When one switches off, the fully charged auxiliary will then add charge to your not fully charged starter battery, which benefits your starter battery. Ruggedness is also more important for an auxiliary battery in the front of a D4 because while its sitting so far forward in front of the wheels, it gets a lot more shock than the starter battery which is further back, between the D4ís wheel base. Engine bay temperature tolerance is also an issue for an auxiliary engine bay battery, and many AGMs are not engine bay temperature tolerant. Strangely I looked up brief data on the Optima D34 and couldn't quickly find operating temperature data! It used to be easily available...

    What alternatives for me would there be for an Opltima D34 for our Discos that will fit and handle engine bay temperatures? My alternative choice would be Northstarís NSB-AGM35. Has anyone used one of those?

    Itís got a very reinforced casing, it has really excellent warranties, I can operate at 65C which appears to be fine for under bonnet use, the company has recently become part of the Enersys energy group (who are huge battery makers), itís made in the USA and I think it can be bought cheaper than a D34 Optima, plus importantly it fits in the same space. The risk of getting one would be that no TPPL AGM box case would be as vibration rugged as the spiral wound construction of an Optima IMO.

    Incidentally I donít think there is anything wrong with the Mexican Optima operation, it was all robotized and Optima batteries have been coming from there since I think 2008.

    Cheers Guys and good luck, and there is also the legal threat option
    Doug
    2014 HSE White;Tint; Windsor Lthr; 18" Compo & BFG KO2s 265/65/18; ARB-Summit B Bar, roof racks, air compressor Bushranger Night Hawk VLI 9" dimmable, Traxide Ritter Tow Bar, X Air jack Max Trax V1ís Redarc Tow Pro, GME Uhf 2 antennas, 9555 Iridium sat phone, AOR Matrix V3 off road van

  4. #94
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    Auxiliary Battery Issues

    Spiral tech was a packaging technique in its day and now has no real world benefit in either capacity or energy density in a modern battery.

    Iíve seen multiple D34s buckled or damaged, split, loose terminals, leaks at terminals - you name it...
    Cheers
    Tombie

    Gone - D1 AZZKIKR - 5.0L Supercharged with the lot
    Gone - Tombraider Defender - Lara
    Gone - D2 TD5

    D4 MY11
    - Just about the way I want it.
    D90 MY15 - Just about the way Mrs Tombie wants it.

    On order...
    Tesla Cybertruck Tri-Motor AWD due 2021


    And for those fun times:
    2007 Suzuki M109R Boulevard Limited - 1800cc of V-twin goodness
    2020 Suzuki Katana - 1000cc of pure mayhem - Just Send It

  5. #95
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    589
    The issues re optimas reminds me of USA made BFGs v Asian built BFGs ..which were rubbish by comparison. And yet every tyre retailer said "na mate they are just the same quality and wear characteristics"

    They were not...but I guess we've just had to get used to it nowadays😐

  6. #96
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    South Australia
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    Auxiliary Battery Issues

    The HV50T charges at the same rates as your beloved D34. Has a higher Ah rating. Same heat rating (most engine bays have AGMs in them since about 2005).
    And a price tag almost 40% less than a D34.

    Your google based post - from reading and regurgitating specifics from certain sites is like reading a marketing brochure.

    Here, read some more:

    Note the comment on cycle life:
    https://www.trojanbattery.com/pdf/Fa...Technology.pdf

    TPPL vs. Li-ion Battery

    The only time TPPL (an old design) is better in any report is when compared to Flooded and Gel cell batteries.
    Cheers
    Tombie

    Gone - D1 AZZKIKR - 5.0L Supercharged with the lot
    Gone - Tombraider Defender - Lara
    Gone - D2 TD5

    D4 MY11
    - Just about the way I want it.
    D90 MY15 - Just about the way Mrs Tombie wants it.

    On order...
    Tesla Cybertruck Tri-Motor AWD due 2021


    And for those fun times:
    2007 Suzuki M109R Boulevard Limited - 1800cc of V-twin goodness
    2020 Suzuki Katana - 1000cc of pure mayhem - Just Send It

  7. #97
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    Jan 2015
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    Brighton, Vic
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tombie View Post
    No, just shows how full of **** you can be.

    Spiral tech was a packaging technique in its day and now has no benefit in either capacity or energy density.

    Iíve seen multiple D34s buckled or damaged, split, loose terminals, leaks at terminals - you name it...

    But keep telling yourself that theyíre great, ok champ!
    Hey you seem really wound up tight! Just like an Optima?!!!

    So who/ Where? When? Fact is too that the Optima has been round for 20 years? No one here is claiming they last forever! I've seen 10's of thousands of broken batteries.

    A debate is healthy, but it shouldn't be personal. And you seemed to think the Net is the base of my knowledge? And no - I don't want to check all your web sites thanks. Who knows if their stats are real? There's rubbish posted all over the net and in marketing these days. And I've been talking about Optima because that is the basis of this thread - that people have been having problems with Optima terminals. I've bought them so I've posted.

    I used to do business with battery companies. I know a bit. Unlike your reference to battery casing weight, which was wrong. And if you can't see the mechanical advantage of a wound plate - then too bad. For me, there's nothing worse than being in a road side loo while you just filled the tanks, and emptied yours, and the loo paper is separate squares - please give me a round roll thanks!!! And while we're at it - please - no shiny paper ...

    Seriously though - I've bought a number of batteries for my own vehicles and stuff:

    ie - 2 x 120 AH for my off road van, supplied by AOR (my van maker), but one of those failed early, and AOR replaced both Ozcharge branded batteries, which then worked for 4 years, then one started to fail in July / August. I replaced them in late September 2019. Australian Off Road now supply a variety of batteries, not sure if they still supply many Ozcharges, but they did tell me (in late September) that the Ozcharge battery was made by Lion, and the Ozcharge deep cycles are now actually deep cycles, and hence are a more appropriate battery for the van, unlike the Ozcharge AOR supplied to me 4 years ago. Ozcharge apparently found out their previous deep cycle AGM 120 AH (claimed) weren't true deep cycles. The Lion deep cycle 120 AH (claimed) was available in September a lot lot cheaper than what I ended up buying. But I was keen on longer life and I wanted some more Amp hours, and despite the labelling of AH being the same, I bought the more expensive option late September with 2 more 120 AH batteries ( real 120 AH rather than I reckon 107 AH), Fullriver brand. NOT Optimas.

    - A $130 Exide bought from Costco in my V6 Camry. It's still going well after maybe three years.

    - A 2009 Optima Yellow top - Mexican made - ( likely a D27 I suspect - I'd have to check) in my Prado. That 4WD is a driveway car now in another house, and it runs flat several times a year. But its run a decent size fridge for years and years of camping. I should have a charger on it, but if I did I'd not run the Prado, and I still like that Prado - its not good that they just sit. I used to keep a battery in the boot to jump the Optima when I flattened the Optima (due to the fridge and the camp lighting which it all ran as well as starting the Prado V6). I bought the Prado new in 1997. It had many batteries until the Optima. Anyway 11 years is a miracle in that Prado considering the numerous batteries I went through before that first Optima. $20 a year ain't bad and its still going after 11 years. As said, made in Mexico.

    - 2012 - Optima yellow (likely D34) in a Lexus RX350. Mexican made. Its been in the car since 2012. Lexus wouldn't do a warranty on the battery. My fault they said, batteries are a consumable they said. Last October I went overseas for a month (10 days business) and my son reported the RX350's battery was gone. He said the battery kept dying and the car was dead in the morning he said. He offered visits to my home and he could drive some of my cars while I (including my darling wife of approaching 40 years marriage) was away. Oh - by the way Tombie - my son loves the Tesla Cyber Truck you've ordered! I promised him I'd look it up. Evidently styling wise it's way way out there! He was telling me about it today!!! I've a friend who supplies Tesla with fastenings, made right here in Melbourne!

    Anyway, when I came back from overseas, I charged the Optima yellow - it seemed OK. We drove it for a week. Then I left the RX for 11 days just to see if something was wrong. It started perfectly. In its 8th year. The RX chews a battery if you have it in accessory mode. Lexus says don't leave it on accessory for more than 3 minutes! The Optima can still run that Lexus in accessory mode, people using the phone etc., for quite a decent time. It's Mexican Optima too.

    - The auxiliary in my D4. It's only in its 5th year. The main factory battery was replaced in September (with a Korean Delkor) but the Optima's going strong.

    That'll do for now.

    If I had to get a battery quickly and the price was reasonable, I'd put in another Yellow top. But I'd ask my battery guy as well. And if I had a warranty issue I know he'd act on it. And if he did not I'd go further. To the distributor. And then to the maker. And then to the owner. And there's also the law.

    IMO places that sell batteries would find it a pain to handle warranty work. My wife did some legal work for the largest truck business in Australia. Their dealers are mostly franchises. The factory has issues with top selling dealers (these sell lots of trucks) not fulfilling warranty work. The factory is really unhappy about dealers not taking car of warranty work that should be done. But for some reason some dealers just didn't do the right thing, and it wasn't the factory that was the warranty bottleneck. My wife said such dealers seemed to be so sales focused that handling warranties seemed a big diversion for them. Those truck owners who got onto the factory (ie the company's Australian head office) got their problems fixed. So who knows, but it seems to me who one buys a battery from matters. It maybe if one has a problem then one should push them hard?

    IMO there must be a problem with the battery retailers who wouldn't replace those faulty Optima batteries (besides the fact that they failed which is serious enough). Or maybe the distributor. And I'd like to know why their's failed, and mine have been fine. Does it mean that the Mexican plant is making worse batteries than they used to? Or is something going on with the setup that doesn't suit those Optima batteries? I'd like to know.

    And how much can one rely on a battery retailer for advice? Besides my suspicion that they prefer to sell something in stock and something that they make a good margin on - how much training do battery retailers get? Even off road van maker Australian Off Road - who put in heaps of batteries - back 5 years ago they just put in AGMs - and all the same size - they did not know the Ozcharge batteries they were supplying 5 years ago were not fully deep cycle. They thought they were though. IMO because when one doesn't know who made the battery, one doesn't know what the design really is. ie the Original Equipment Manufacturer gets an order for a quantity of batteries and the buyer gets the OEM to stick their brand on it (like Ozcharge do) - then how can a retailer really know what is going on? And how can we rely on a Distributor that buys OEMs and makes claims about their batteries without telling us who made the battery? And Tombie who made the batteries you are pushing?

    I've been a yachtsman and a Yellow top would be laughed at in many serious boats. At sea people seem to buy the best they can. its not fun having a failure at sea. And there are many more niche expensive and better built batteries out there than Optimas.I think the Optima construction and materials are OK, the lead is great, and the idea is excellent, if you need ruggedness, deep cycle capability and want a fast re-charge that doesn't dint the battery's life. Their big negative is cost but for me I write that over the life of the battery. Their packaging size is sub optimal too, but if weight is an issue, then packaging size may not be a factor at all. You certainly get more volumetric efficiency in a box than Optima's cyclinders with their air spaces in between.

    As far as the stats - they don't mean much to me in the front of a vehicle. Longevity has been the key for me. And my Optimas have been long life. They have and are still doing the job. The stats mean nothing besides knowing what I am really getting, before I buy. Can one trust the stats? I've wanted my batteries to outlast their warranties by multiple factors. In my van, the AH really mean something. But they don't mean much in my vehicles. I just want them to do the job, and recharge quickly. And I know I can empty the Optimas and they'll keep on keeping on. Well that's been my experience.

    IMO there are no tougher pure lead batteries than the Optimas for the price. I just looked up prices and a D34 costs around $300, without haggling. And in my experience, battery margins are high.

    But business's need to make profits, so good on them. But if they don't support their customers, that's outrageous, and THAT's WHY I've been posting.

    Hope you have a nice day.

    Doug
    2014 HSE White;Tint; Windsor Lthr; 18" Compo & BFG KO2s 265/65/18; ARB-Summit B Bar, roof racks, air compressor Bushranger Night Hawk VLI 9" dimmable, Traxide Ritter Tow Bar, X Air jack Max Trax V1ís Redarc Tow Pro, GME Uhf 2 antennas, 9555 Iridium sat phone, AOR Matrix V3 off road van

  8. #98
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    Oct 2016
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    Perth, AU
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    Optima donít allow the retailers to exchange or refund their batteries - they test them themselves before making a decision on exchange or repair.
    I know this, because my retailer was ready to exchange when they were unceremoniously told they couldnít.

    Speaking with a guy at Coates hire, they previously used optimas in all their equipment - recent batteries and their fast failures, together with rubbish exchange process has meant they are walking away. Not a small sample size there, and one that appears in line with AULRO. (Accepting of course that people without issues usually donít post much...)

    Anyway, my failed unit is to be exchanged, but due to a lack of stock, will be exchanged for a blue top (marine). Has anyone had any experience with these? Iím promised it is a much better unit?
    2010 TDV6 3.0L Discovery 4 SE, Alaska White, GME XRS-330c, IIDTool BT, GOE Compressor Plate, Traxide D3-DU Dual Battery Kit, Rhino Rack Batwing Awning (Part time install), Hankook Dynapro AT-m RF10

  9. #99
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    Ther eare 2 types of marine blue top.
    The starting type has a black case and the deep cycle/starting type at 800CCA a light grey case.

    I have a light grey one which is 2.5 years old and according to my cheapo tester is at 60% capacity. BTW I note that according to a YouTube from a battery maker, you should add 100CCA when testing an AGM, and with this it would be near 50%.

    It is in a hot position next to my TD5 turbo, but I am disappointed with it.
    Regards PhilipA

  10. #100
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    Oct 2016
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    Perth, AU
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    Thanks - I since researched a little, and it sounds like with the exception of an extra set of terminals, the two Ďlight coloured caseí versions are identical.

    Think Iím sticking to plan A, and flogging a brand new optima to buy a SSB
    2010 TDV6 3.0L Discovery 4 SE, Alaska White, GME XRS-330c, IIDTool BT, GOE Compressor Plate, Traxide D3-DU Dual Battery Kit, Rhino Rack Batwing Awning (Part time install), Hankook Dynapro AT-m RF10

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