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AGM batteries

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by mjpchief, Feb 7, 2019.

  1. mjpchief

    mjpchief XS650 Enthusiast

    Had an AGM battery in my '75 650 for a year and a half. Went to start the bike this week and it was dead. Of course it was out of warranty. It cost me about $140 when I bought it. It was on a battery monitor. Ordered a new yasua AGM on line for $39.00 shipped. Has anybody had any experience with these batteries.

    When I checked it after a 4 hr charge it only had 7 volts in it setting on the bench. When put back in bike and hooked up it would show no voltage. When unhooked it would show charge. Batteries nowadays are weird. There are no shorts in wiring on this bike.
    gggGary likes this.
  2. Signal

    Signal XS650 Junkie Top Contributor

    Never heard of Yasua, (did you make a typing error) could be a knock off of Yuasa. Yuasa are a good they can handle vibration quiet well. $39 shipped does seem pretty cheap for a Yuasa suitable for an XS I paid well over $100 NZ for one.

    From your description of how the new battery is performing it looks to me like a dud.
    gggGary and Jim like this.
  3. Ratranger

    Ratranger XS650 Addict

    I've bought multiple batteries from Motobatt, they are bright yellow about half the cost of yuasa and a 2 year warranty. They always came fully charged, and even a downsized one had no problem starting a ducati 748/853 in below freezing temps after sitting a month. Average life for my dad and I on them has been 4-5 years.
    grizld1 and gggGary like this.
  4. Signal

    Signal XS650 Junkie Top Contributor

    I and others I know have had Motobatt batteries fail prematurely. Perhaps they come from a different factory to the ones you get in the US.
    I wont buy a Motobatt here.
    gggGary likes this.
  5. Ratranger

    Ratranger XS650 Addict

    Huh, that is strange. I won't doubt it and maybe myself and the people I've recommended them to are the outliers who got lucky and had good ones.

    I will say that every AGM I have ever dealt with came fully charged and ready to run. That includes yuasa, motobatt, the offbrand at batteries+, and one other I can't remember.
    timbeck and gggGary like this.
  6. mjpchief

    mjpchief XS650 Enthusiast

    Spelling error on brand.
    Thanks for the replies guys. It's not riding weather here yet but when it warms up I want the bike ready to go.
  7. joebgd

    joebgd XS650 Addict

    I went through at least 4 I would say, agm, same they just stopped working within a year. I went back to a conventional battery and love it. You know when they are getting old. Ill get years out of it and it won't one day just stop working to where I can't even kick start it. It will get weak not just be like nothing. When my agm s died it was like having nothing.
    Wulfbyte likes this.
  8. ThatXS650Guy

    ThatXS650Guy More Sparky than Speed Racer XS650.com Supporter

    I have not had any issues with AGM batteries and use them almost exclusively. I also am a big believer in using a battery tender and I know I've been able to stretch battery life with those.
    The Motobatt in my GPz is 6 years old and still working great.
  9. grizld1

    grizld1 Grumpy old man Top Contributor

    Right, when a sealed battery starts to go, it's gone--probably the worst drawback to them. The only other typical problem I know of is that they're commonly sold prefilled with acid, so you really don't know how long they've been sitting on a shelf with partial charge. It's best to buy AGM batteries dry, fill them yourself, and give them a full charge before putting them in service. I usually get 5 to 6 years of use out of them. Proper charging is essential: charge at 1.5 A, no higher.
    Wulfbyte and ThatXS650Guy like this.
  10. perki48

    perki48 XS650 Enthusiast

    Original AGM worked just fine for 9 years in my Harley and only removed it for piece of mind.
  11. mjpchief

    mjpchief XS650 Enthusiast

    Everybody around here gave AGM batteries a standing ovation. That's why I bought one, but my luck runs like this. If there was a boxcar full of these batteries setting there and I was allowed to reach in and get one battery I would pick the only bad one in the boxcar.
  12. cafetools

    cafetools XS650 Addict

    If you need to use a battery on its side there not any other options in the same price range. Agm has its benefits. I want aware they didn't last as long.
  13. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    If your charging system is working right An AGM will last as long if not longer than a regular battery.
    What I like is that they are maintainance free. No battery acid leaking all over the place.
    I get mine off the internet. Usually get 4 or 5 years out of one.
  14. Mailman

    Mailman Hardly a Guru Top Contributor

    I’ve had a bunch of AGM batteries in a variety of classic and new bikes. They always held up very well, with one exception , or I should say, with one bike. A 2011 Triumph Bonneville that I had bought new. It had a weak charging system that I overtaxed by adding factory made optional driving lights. The bike charged just enough to make a battery last about 6 months before they would give up.
    And oh yeah, don’t EVER pry the caps off of an AGM battery and try to add water to the battery. Fatal Error!
    Don’t ask me how I know. :cautious:
    Wulfbyte and GLJ like this.
  15. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Batteries are funny. It seems you can get good and bad ones regardless of the brand or cost. I think it boils down to how that particular battery was assembled or built. Some last a long time, others don't. I've had good brand name and no-name batteries fall into both these categories. I've pretty much switched over to all AGM batteries on all my bikes now but I don't like the way they die with no warning. The couple I've had fail on me so far actually did so while I was riding down the road. The bike started up just fine at the beginning of the ride but when I came to a stop light or stop sign and the RPMs dropped to idle, it just died. At idle, the ignition draws it's needed power to operate from the battery and well, there was nothing there for it because said battery had gone belly up, lol. In both cases when this happened, I was able to get a jump from a car, get the bike started, and nurse it home keeping the RPMs up so the ignition was running off the alternator output. I've since invested in a couple sets of motorcycle jumper cables and I carry a set on each AGM equipped bike now. From my past experience, I know I will need them some day, lol.
    Wulfbyte and Mailman like this.
  16. Wulfbyte

    Wulfbyte XS650 Addict XS650.com Supporter

    Yep mine too! Decided to go back to conventional! The ol’ xs seems to like them better! Also read some where’s that some agms don’t like a battery tender,they shorten the life of them dramatically!
  17. Wulfbyte

    Wulfbyte XS650 Addict XS650.com Supporter

    But as you read ,everyone has different opinions and experience with them! That’s what is awsome about this site! In the past ,my conventional batteries as I remember would always last about 5 yrs or so! For the last 4 I have used agms,and went thru three of them,different brands at $100 and more! All with the same results,seems to start loosing its life around 4-6 months of riding,then just die,not even able to bump start! Always had to put them on a 1.5 amp tender! I put a conventional back in ,$50 from wal mart, after I got home from the rally last year, haven’t used a tender yet, it has stayed strong even after sitting for a couple of very cold days! I ride a lot ,and when not the bike gets started just about everyday! So it’s going on about 5 months now with no problems,knock on wood! Took a ride today ,started on second kick! And yes I checked all my charging components and they all check out fine! Checked voltage before and after ride and it was spot on! So just experiment and see what works best on your bike!
  18. mjpchief

    mjpchief XS650 Enthusiast

    Got the new battery today and installed it. Spins the engine like a top. Started right up. Now I just some good weather so I can ride.
    Wulfbyte likes this.
  19. fredintoon

    fredintoon Fred Hill, S'toon. Top Contributor

    6 month freeze up in the Canadian Prairies and I've never managed to over-winter my bike battery no matter what I tried.
    Perhaps it's size-related? The sidecar's big ol' car battery has survived 4 winters being charged at 2 Amps overnight once a month
    and is now on it's 1st winter plugged into a battery tender. Come spring we'll see how it cranks.
    But the bike battery? Buy an el-cheapo lead/acid in the spring and responsibly recycle it in the fall.
    Wulfbyte likes this.
  20. 5twins

    5twins XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    That's the thing, there really aren't any cheap lead acid batteries anymore. They cost pretty much the same as AGM batteries now. Besides the warning lead acid batteries gave when getting old (got weaker gradually), I also stuck with them because they were cheaper than the AGMs. But when my last lead acid wore out a couple years ago and I went to buy another, I found the prices pretty much the same as an AGM, so I got an AGM.
    Wulfbyte likes this.

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