Group 24 Deep Cycle Battery Suggestions

I’ve been looking for a group 24 sealed lead acid deep cycle battery (not dual purpose). After a bunch of research I concluded the Deka Marine Master DC 24 was my best option. I spoke to a Deka representative and he said they haven’t been able to get those in stock for at least a year. Any suggestions for a high quality true deep cycle battery?


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DRAX

Active member
May be semantics/pedantic, but I see a lot of people referring to various deep-cycle marine batteries as "SLA" or "sealed lead acid." Some may refer to AGM as SLA, but SLA batteries are different. Think UPS, scooter, emergency exit lighting in buildings, etc. Those are SLA. For vehicle use the common options are:
  • FLA (Flooded lead acid) deep cycle - Not maintenance-free, have caps with vents and the electrolyte level needs to be checked regularly.
  • AGM (Absorbent Glass Mat) deep cycle - Maintenance free, various types of AGM exist (Optima spiral cell, standard AGM plates, etc). Some may refer to these as SLA, and while they are technically sealed and are lead acid chemistry they are not defined as "SLA", they are AGM.
  • Lithium/LiFePO4 - Best power/energy density per lb, best able to handle deep discharge compared to AGM, able to handle higher continuous amp draw, but are sensitive to freezing.
To your question, I'll say that, in/for the US, there are only a handful of FLA and AGM battery manufacturers. East Penn (makes Deka batteries), Clarios (Formerly Johnson Controls), EnerSys (makes Odyssey), and Exide.

The Deka Marine Master Group 24 battery is not an AGM ("SLA") battery, it's a standard flooded-cell (FLA) battery. An Interstate (made by either Clarios or Exide), such as https://www.interstatebatteries.com/products/srm-24?productline=marine, is comparable to the Deka. Interstate has a good dealer network as well and I think you should have good luck being able to locate them in-stock.

You may be able to locate Exide or rebranded-Exide (Duracell, EverStart, etc) Deep Cycle batteries at various retailers, but they also only have a 12-month warranty.

I'm on the fence about Odyssey batteries, a lot of people swear by them but they are also a lot more expensive. I've used a couple of Odyssey batteries in the past and I wasn't able to get any better use or life out of them than cheaper alternatives that had similar or better warranties so I'm hesitant to recommend them.

Hope this helps!
 
May be semantics/pedantic, but I see a lot of people referring to various deep-cycle marine batteries as "SLA" or "sealed lead acid." Some may refer to AGM as SLA, but SLA batteries are different. Think UPS, scooter, emergency exit lighting in buildings, etc. Those are SLA. For vehicle use the common options are:
  • FLA (Flooded lead acid) deep cycle - Not maintenance-free, have caps with vents and the electrolyte level needs to be checked regularly.
  • AGM (Absorbent Glass Mat) deep cycle - Maintenance free, various types of AGM exist (Optima spiral cell, standard AGM plates, etc). Some may refer to these as SLA, and while they are technically sealed and are lead acid chemistry they are not defined as "SLA", they are AGM.
  • Lithium/LiFePO4 - Best power/energy density per lb, best able to handle deep discharge compared to AGM, able to handle higher continuous amp draw, but are sensitive to freezing.
To your question, I'll say that, in/for the US, there are only a handful of FLA and AGM battery manufacturers. East Penn (makes Deka batteries), Clarios (Formerly Johnson Controls), EnerSys (makes Odyssey), and Exide.

The Deka Marine Master Group 24 battery is not an AGM ("SLA") battery, it's a standard flooded-cell (FLA) battery. An Interstate (made by either Clarios or Exide), such as https://www.interstatebatteries.com/products/srm-24?productline=marine, is comparable to the Deka. Interstate has a good dealer network as well and I think you should have good luck being able to locate them in-stock.

You may be able to locate Exide or rebranded-Exide (Duracell, EverStart, etc) Deep Cycle batteries at various retailers, but they also only have a 12-month warranty.

I'm on the fence about Odyssey batteries, a lot of people swear by them but they are also a lot more expensive. I've used a couple of Odyssey batteries in the past and I wasn't able to get any better use or life out of them than cheaper alternatives that had similar or better warranties so I'm hesitant to recommend them.

Hope this helps!
You are right, I meant FLA (thanks for the catch), but I am also open to an AGM. It seems that so many of the deep cycle batteries are designed for dual purpose. The Interstate 24M-EFB was next on my list, so that is probably my safest bet.

I had been looking at Odysseys for my Jeep that occasionally runs a fridge because it is a deep cycle agm that is dual purpose. I ended up buying an Optima DH6 because they were locally available. The Odyssey was my first choice. It is interesting to hear your experience with them. I know Optima gets beat up too, but I think some of that and possibly Odyssey is because they get damaged if they are not properly taken care of. My Jeep does not put out enough volts to fully charge it, so I have to put it on a charger every now and then.




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john61ct

Adventurer
Top FLA manufacturers are Rolls/Surette, Trojan, Deka/East Penn, U.S. Battery, Crown and Superior

G24 FLAs aren't that long-lived though, same with 27 & 31's

The "GC2 Golf Car" models are much better if you can make them fit.

The best battery value by far is Duracell (actually Deka/East Penn) FLA deep cycle golf cart batteries, 2x6V, maybe $210 per 200+AH @12V pair from BatteriesPlus or Sam's Club.

NAPA relabels it here: https://www.napaonline.com/en/p/NBP8144

Deka self-labeled also sold at Lowes.
 

Regcabguy

Expedition Leader
I have a flooded cell,sealed deep cycle Interstate group 27 from Costco in my Northstar popup. $87.99 two years ago. It could die any minute I know.
 

john61ct

Adventurer
Depends how it's used of course, lots of variables.

But yes not a long lifespan compared to the others mentioned, maybe 4-5 years?

Interstate makes no batteries, mostly uses JCI, meh.
 

NatersXJ6

Explorer
You are right, I meant FLA (thanks for the catch), but I am also open to an AGM. It seems that so many of the deep cycle batteries are designed for dual purpose. The Interstate 24M-EFB was next on my list, so that is probably my safest bet.

I had been looking at Odysseys for my Jeep that occasionally runs a fridge because it is a deep cycle agm that is dual purpose. I ended up buying an Optima DH6 because they were locally available. The Odyssey was my first choice. It is interesting to hear your experience with them. I know Optima gets beat up too, but I think some of that and possibly Odyssey is because they get damaged if they are not properly taken care of. My Jeep does not put out enough volts to fully charge it, so I have to put it on a charger every now and then.




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I did the Odyssey in a JK “because of my fridge” thing for about 2 years, maybe getting onto 3. It was a nightmare of constant undercharge or random low voltage cutouts and dead battery jumping. Even with the Odyssey charger and plugging it in several time a week my 60+ mile daily commute wasn’t keeping up with the fridge draw. It was an approximate $500 experiment that ended in failure.

Similar money spent on a couple of solar panels, a controller, and a group 27 marine battery ($90) have made me not have another problem for years on end. I check the water a few times a year, if it ever runs low I know that the battery is marked for death in about 3-4 months. Sure enough… another $90-100 puts me back on the road for 2-3 more years.

Of course, where I live, several months of days above 100 F are common, under hood temps get really high.
 
I did the Odyssey in a JK “because of my fridge” thing for about 2 years, maybe getting onto 3. It was a nightmare of constant undercharge or random low voltage cutouts and dead battery jumping. Even with the Odyssey charger and plugging it in several time a week my 60+ mile daily commute wasn’t keeping up with the fridge draw. It was an approximate $500 experiment that ended in failure.
That is strange. I just top off my Optima H6 every 3 or 4 months when I’m not using my fridge in my JK and have never run into any problems. It is usually close to full. I’m a couple months from 3 years with it, so fingers crossed.


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john61ct

Adventurer
A lead bank requires at least 4-5 hours charge to get back to 100% Full.

No matter how high the amps available.
 

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