Re: [DML] Optima Batteries?
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Re: [DML] Optima Batteries?

Hey Rich,

Thank you for the informative response. This makes perfect sense. I'm
betting my Optima will be fine, then - My grounds are tight, my
alternator is replaced, my cooling fans are John's low-profile, low
current fans, and my lock module is also upgraded for reduced standby
current. And I drive it regularly.

It sounds like the combination of dirty grounds, stock 25 year old
fans/alternator/lock module, along with periods of non-use and a
sealed battery that doesn't tolerate discharge as well as others is
the real problem here.


On 6/26/06, Tell you if you ask. <racuti1@xxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> I have gained unique battery experience with my recent experimentation
>  with owning and driving a pure electric vehicle for daily use. I've
>  researched battery types, behavior, vendors and cost in my quest
>  to "stick it to the man" by greatly reducing my need to buy gasoline.
>  1. Gasoline powered cars are not a proper application of the Optima
>  Yellow top. It is true that they are deep cycle but they are
>  not "marine" batteries. The Blue-tops are. Yellow tops are often used
>  in pure electric vehicles that require high performance, but not
>  necessarily long range.
>  2. Red tops do suffer from some manufacturing defects but we as
>  DeLorean owners exacerbate the problem with dirty grounds, and low,
>  but constant loads on the battery and long periods of non-use. Combine
>  this with the low alternator output and heavy cooling fan load from
>  OEM fans and these batteries often get more than their fair share of
>  abuse. The stock alternator/fan combo isn't so much of an issue if
>  your grounds are clean and tight and the alternator is working
>  CORRECTLY and doesn't have a few dead diodes.
>  3. I have only had to install 1 red-top in my DeLorean. I have
>  upgraded my lock module with lower capacitors and different
>  transistors to reduce the standby current, upgraded the alternator and
>  keep my grounds clean and tight. The battery has lasted over 3 years
>  so far, through all seasons, daily driving as well as extended periods
>  of non-use. I did not use a cut-off switch.
>  4. Optima batteries are an AGM (Absorbed Glass Matt), spiral-wound
>  cell construction, that does not vent explosive hydrogen gas when
>  charging (unless grossly overcharged), nor leak if you flip over in an
>  accident which is a Good Idea for batteries stored in the "people
>  space" like our cars and Corvettes. Wet-cell, flooded lead-acid
>  batteries are cheaper, and adequate for vehicles where the battery is
>  stored in the engine compartment. I wouldn't waste the money on an
>  Optima for my pick-up truck.
>  The bottom line is, the DeLorean must be healthy in order to keep the
>  battery healthy, what ever the type or vendor. If you prefer to use a
>  flooded, lead-acid battery, brands to avoid are "generic" brands
>  offered by Auto-zone and such, Exide, and certain Sears Die-hard
>  models. The lead plates are thin and of an out-dated design. A couple
>  of reliable brands are Interstate, and the Die-Hard "Gold" series. If
>  it seems like a 1000 cca battery is the only fix that works in your
>  car, it's only because the lead plates are thick enough to handle the
>  abuse that your car is dishing out in the form of poor grounding, weak
>  alternator output and constant drains from wiring problems and the old-
>  style lock module. You're just masking the real problem.
>  Mike Cohee's Optima for example, was probably slowly killed by his
>  faulty alternator. Now that his alternator is replaced, his grounds
>  are clean and he has Lockzilla, let's see how long the new one lasts.
>  If you like the AGM type battery, but don't trust Optima, Orbital
>  (made by Exide) and a few other marine battery manufacturers make a
>  similar battery. You may note that in one statement I recommend a
>  brand and in another statement I do not recommend the same brand. The
>  fact is, not all vendors make all bad or all good batteries.
>  Rich A.
>  #5335
>  --- In dmcnews@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, "Ryan Wright" <ryanpwright@...> wrote:
>  >
>  > Curious, I wonder how many of you drive your cars regularly and
>  still have
>  > problems with the Optimas? Is it possible the batteries just don't
>  like to
>  > sit? Do they discharge more quickly when not in use, or are they
>  otherwise
>  > less tolerant of being discharged too low?
>  >
>  > Does anyone really know the actual reason so many have had problems
>  with
>  > them?
>  >
>  > -Ryan
>  >

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