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#4553574 - 10/24/17 09:05 PM AGM vs Flooded cell battery
SilverFusion2010 Offline


Registered: 06/29/11
Posts: 1671
Loc: Crawfordville FL
Which is better for a daily driver? I've always had flooded cell batteries for vehicles. Are AGM worth the premium price?
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2010 Ford Fusion SE 3.0L V6, 178k miles M1 HM 10w-30

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#4553583 - 10/24/17 09:10 PM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
W9HDG Offline


Registered: 05/29/16
Posts: 32
Loc: WI
I am interested in this topic too for my Suburban

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#4553589 - 10/24/17 09:15 PM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
Panzerman Offline


Registered: 12/16/06
Posts: 4213
Loc: Port Orange, Florida
In a ATV or motorcycle yes in a car battery no.
You would have to get 10-15 years out of a AGM battery to make it money smart.
AGMs do out last flooded cells in ATVs and Motorcycles only because they don't have the charging system cars do.
It's just not worth the money.
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2006 Dodge Ram 2500 Hemi 4x4
2016 Dodge Challenger Scat Pack

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#4553594 - 10/24/17 09:18 PM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
JohnnyJohnson Offline


Registered: 10/22/09
Posts: 2899
Loc: Wet side WA
In my Duramax my AC Delco batteries lasted 10 years they didn't die I just replaced them winter was coming.
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#4553611 - 10/24/17 09:31 PM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 41896
Loc: New Jersey
You're in FL. Its a daily driver.

Heat degrades batteries. Can't avoid that where you are. Being less than 100% charged degrades batteries. Assuming you don't do just ultra short tripping, you're hopefully good there.

AGM has longer cycle life and less self discharge. Since your car is a daily driver, self discharge isn't a big deal. Ultimate power isn't as huge a deal,either because it doesn't get super cold.

Other than very specific circumstances, I'd stick with a flooded battery personally.

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#4553621 - 10/24/17 09:39 PM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
clinebarger Offline


Registered: 12/19/13
Posts: 1990
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
I don't think they are, With all the Optima failures I've seen over the years!
At my shop we have to carry AGM batteries because most builds get the battery relocated to the trunk....We used to be a Optima dealer....We now carry XS Power AGM batteries & they are really good but NOT available in every group size & they're quite expensive.

They only other AGM battery I have a lot of experience with is Odyssey, Hit & Miss but better than Optima!!!

I started buying Lead acid Continental batteries a few years back for my personal vehicles & have had great luck with them.
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2006 Chevy 2500HD LBZ/Allison 1000
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#4553635 - 10/24/17 09:54 PM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: JohnnyJohnson]
clinebarger Offline


Registered: 12/19/13
Posts: 1990
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Originally Posted By: JohnnyJohnson
In my Duramax my AC Delco batteries lasted 10 years they didn't die I just replaced them winter was coming.


Delco batteries used to be pretty good, I got about 7 years out of the originals in my '06 Duramax. The Last Delco I bought didn't last 2 years.
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2001 Chevy Camaro L92/4L80E
2006 Chevy 2500HD LBZ/Allison 1000
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#4553670 - 10/24/17 10:20 PM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
Chris142 Offline


Registered: 06/05/03
Posts: 16966
Loc: Deplorable in apple valley, ca
I generally get 8+ yrs out of an agm.in my jeep. I am lucky to get 3 yrs out of a flooded battery in it.
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#4553731 - 10/25/17 12:40 AM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
Panzerman Offline


Registered: 12/16/06
Posts: 4213
Loc: Port Orange, Florida
I got almost 8 years out of my factory Dodge battery and I am in 4 years on my current battery ( a Walmart Everstart). I just don't see the value in a AGM. Cost three times as much and "If" it lasts twice as long you still aren't ahead.
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#4553759 - 10/25/17 03:22 AM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
HorseThief Offline


Registered: 10/12/17
Posts: 120
Loc: MI
There's a couple things to consider.

First off, what's inside the vehicle from the factory and why?
-some vehicles come with agm batteries from the manufacturer for better charge/discharge characteristics, extreme vibration resistance or non-spillable design. There are vehicles that the PCM's voltage regulator/charge controller are programmed around the specs and abilities of an AGM battery. Replacing with a flooded battery requires having the computer reprogrammed (at least according to dealers/guides)

-sometimes manufacturers do a bad job of picking a battery or designing a charging system. Look at certain YMs of ford fusions that chew through batteries in 3-4 years. A lot of modern vehicles are burning through their factory batteries faster than ever. I've been selling a lot of batteries for 2013-2014 vehicles this year. Other times in powersport applications, smaller batteries were used where space couldn't be made. There's nothing you can really do to get a significantly longer lifespan out of batteries in these situations. Also, there's quite a few powersport flooded batteries with no glass mat equivalent.

- you just can't extrapolate your experience from one vehicle and battery to another. Getting 8 years out of a battery on a mid 00s pickup is easy because there's comparatively low parasitic drain and a big honking alternator compared to more modern vehicles along with batteries rated at at least 50% higher cranking amps than what they actually need (diesels not necessarily included).

Next, how is the vehicle used?
- AGM batteries have a number of advantages over flooded batteries, but that doesn't necessarily meen they provide any benefit to you (at least not for the 50%+ price increase) for a daily driver.

- vehicles that sit for long periods of time, as well as vehicles that only make short trips will benefit from AGM batteries faster charging and resistance to acid stratification, as well as better deep cycling capabilities. Of course this is only to a point, they're not infallible.

- Vehicles with heavy electric drains such as winches and wheelchair lifts can benefit from faster charging and better cycling ability.

- vehicles in severe service situations such as heavy shock or vibrations, rolled vehicle/extreme angles, extreme heat or cold can see better battery lifespan out of an AGMcas well.

Holy [censored], its 4AM

in a nutshell, are AGMs better? Yes. Do you need better, or will it net you more service life for your dollar than a flood battery? Who knows. Pure Lead AGMs like oddysey and northstar tend to be the best available, with any of the standard lead calcium batteries being second.

Otherwise, for a daily driver, figure out what the average lifespan is of a standard replacement, and then decide if you will need longer service life or more reliability and if you need to spend more to get it.
Also, do you plan on keeping the vehicle or being alive for that long? People get sick of cars - they also get sick and die.


Edited by HorseThief (10/25/17 03:31 AM)
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#4553768 - 10/25/17 04:20 AM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
Olas Offline


Registered: 12/11/13
Posts: 3937
Loc: Manchester, England
The ROI just isn't there, outside of really extreme and infrequent circumstances.

99 out of 100 motorists studied would be better served with flooded cells.
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#4553822 - 10/25/17 06:35 AM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
carguy996 Offline


Registered: 10/26/06
Posts: 261
Loc: Illinois
I have found that AGM batteries seem to work really well for vehicles with lots of electronics. Now that there are store brand AGM batteries out there, costs have come down. My local farm store sells Duration brand AGM batteries for the same price as their best regular battery. I installed a Duration in my old 2010 Grand Caravan and in my 2014 Honda Odyssey and the results have been fantastic. Cold doesn't seem to phase it, the cars always fired right up in the cold. With the regular battery, both cars would crank slow in the winter, not the case with the AGM in my experiences. To me, the AGM is the only way to go now when I need batteries with the cost being much more competitive.
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2014 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite 3.5
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#4553941 - 10/25/17 09:21 AM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: carguy996]
Kira Offline


Registered: 08/19/10
Posts: 5436
Loc: Champlain/Hudson Valley
To HorseThief, Olas, carguy996: GREAT, CLEAR, INFORMATIVE POSTS. Thank you.

Question 1: Are there not electronics built into AGM batteries?
Do these electronics share the "infant mortality / long life" stats of other electronics?

Question 2: Is it at all realistic to fear that battery companies will make lead/acid batteries more cheaply in order to boost AGM battery sales?

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#4554039 - 10/25/17 10:44 AM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
meep Offline


Registered: 02/20/07
Posts: 3579
Loc: Southeast
1. To the above - there are no electronics built into AGM batteries.

2. anything we say here will be conjecture. it's more likely they will get their AGM manufacturing solid and then start cost-cutting.

I've started moving to AGM, and I always shoot for a physically larger battery than oem. Just this weekend the type 51R in the crv quit. The best flooded battery was $150. I picked up a group 35 AGM for $180. Both had the same 3 year warranty. The last two Advanced Auto golds I've bought failed just outside of 3 years, and the warranty was only 3 years. My first AGM is approaching 3 years in the Tundra and spins the engine over very quickly. As long as the AGM construction remains un-cheapened, I'm optimistic about using them. Amongst my family, we have 4 in service now. $30 between top flooded and AGM was not a big deal to me. The total cost was, though.

On the flip side, a recent deep cycle set me back all of $90. I think with batteries, the way to go is probably the cheapest, or the highest.

I will note that all of the recent floodeds I've had fail early, I believe to have been made by JCI. I used to be a fan of JCI but not so much now. If I could easily source Deka or east penn I'd gladly give them a shot. I'm also a fan of odyssey (had them in a camper a long time ago) and the no-frills battery was simply well made and lasted a long time. In my area, however, they're hard to find.

I've never been a real fan of Interstate, but now JCI seems to be declining to about the same.



Edited by meep (10/25/17 10:45 AM)
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2018 F150
2015 crv (wifey!)
2009 s60 2.5T

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#4554085 - 10/25/17 11:29 AM Re: AGM vs Flooded cell battery [Re: SilverFusion2010]
Superflan Offline


Registered: 04/28/15
Posts: 371
Loc: Reunion Island
Personal experience:

The Koleos in my sig is fitted with an AGM battery from factory.

The electrical management seems to be tailored to use the abilities of AGM to the max:
There’s a smart charging logic: maximizing load on alternator when decelerating or braking, minimizing recharge if not needed (80% state of charge?) when moving at low speed (city driving)...

Also, starter motor seems to be different.

Models with manual transmission may have start&stop technology on some model years.

Lifetime of the oem varta battery here (summer all year): 3 years max, considering 180 days per year doing door to door driving, approximately 60 starts per day.
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