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leisure battery or car battery

4437 Views 10 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  pieterv
Our local garage recommends not using a leisure battery. we need to buy another battery as new to us secondhand van (Talbot autosleeper 1994) was sold without a second battery.
cheers Anita
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Then your local garage knows more than the leisure industry.
It's normal to use a car battery for starting the engine and a liesure battery for the needs of the habitation bit, something to do with deep cycling

Hello Anita in May! I trust you're well?

Through 30 years of caravanning and motorhoming, we've always had a second battery. As Loddy has said, one for the engine, and one for the leisure side of things.

One thing that still annoys the hell out of me is that folk are selling MHs, or maintaining them, and simply have no idea HOW they are used. :evil:

Even your 1994 AS will have internal lights, a water pump, probably a blown-air fan...

When you start attending Meets and Rallies, and you are stationary for a few days, you'll soon end up with a flattened battery which cannot start the engine. :oops:

A leisure battery is not expensive: I've just Googled 75 Ah Leisure Battery and come up with £52. Try this link for a starter...

That's lots that you could find out for yourself if you were to subscribe to MotorhomeFacts. You have just used your last free post, yet there is so much more for you to find out. Your £10 subscription will soon pay for itself!!

I wish you well.
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I'm sure the experts will be along shortly, but until then:-

A car battery is designed to give heavy output for a very short period, small outpuys, for example igjts drain it very quickly.

A leisure battery is designed to give gradual output over a longer time for devices with a smatt wattage.

There are more technical explainatitions but this one works for me.
There has been a lengthy thread on this subject on the Yahoo Motorhome List forum, and the following was quoted:

A particular sentence which caught my eye is:

Watch the term leisure / deep cycle as it simply does not exist. The standard, so called, leisure batteries, are simply starter batteries with extra support for the active lead material. This may increase the life by 5 - 10 %, but does not turn a starter battery into a deep cycle battery.
Thank you

Thank you chalky I read the full artical, a bit over my head on the tech stuff but could follow through to conclusion. Would recommend to any one else intersted.
Cheers Anita
This is another website that has some useful battery information. It is a manufacturers site but has useful general stuff.


Cheers Harvey,
Now totally confused as one site contradicts the other.
I'm a blonde so I'm now going to revert to type and talk nice to the garage mechanic. they specialize in recovery and deal with commercial vehicals constantly so I feel confidant with their recommendation.
Thanks everyone glad I joined this site lots of help for newbies.
Cheers Anita
A leisure battery is constructed differently from an engine battery in the way it can deliver it's power, I don't remember the actual techy stuff, but I believe the engine type has the ability to provide cold cranking amps, to turn the engine over, where a leisure battery provides longer term power.

The impression that I got from the Sterling website was that his main recommendation was to use a 'wet' battery with access to top up in the event of water loss due to 'gassing'. The quote from his site by Chalky9 a few posts ago does mention the 'leisure' battery having better supports for the lead plates which I think is reiterated on the Yuasa website.

What *I* would do, based on the wisdom of Sterling, the Yuasa website, and what I have 'picked up' over several years motorhoming, is buy a 'wet cell' 'leisure battery' with removable caps for topping up............ I am however most certainly *not* an expert on the subject............

You are right that Sterling recommends open/wet batteries. This is because his quick chargers (battery to battery or alternator to battery depending on how they are wired) depend on a higher than normal voltage to deliver their rapid charge. This will cause batteries to "gas" and therefore need topping up with water.
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