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Old 06-04-2009, 06:10 PM   #21
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

Have fun changing them
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Old 06-04-2009, 10:42 PM   #22
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

I would like to smack the guy or gal that designed the mounting and placement of the batteries on these vans! What a pain in the A%$$ to replace them.

Neither of mine had any corrosion. Just really dirty. I ended up just grabbing a couple of the Costco Kirkland 65-850's and got them installed this evening. When I went to attach the ground to the frame, I'm getting a bit more spark than the normal little sizzle you would expect when attaching the ground. I left it disconnected for the night. I'm guessing I have a short somewhere which is perhaps why my batteries have been draining over night. When I got home later today after the solar had been charging all day, the van fired right up of course.

Checking my old batteries showed around 12.7 and 12.4 volts after they were disconnected for about an hour or two, so not sure they were really bad.

So ..... how to find the short? I have no idea where to start.

For those that have swapped your batteries, do you recall a bit more spark than expected when re-attaching the ground wire?
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Old 06-04-2009, 11:00 PM   #23
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

Well, after slightly more then 3 years of perfect starts, the van acted up tonight after work. The gauges barely flickered and the gauge pointers bounced up and down a little, and I got nothing but a "click' when I tried to start it. I left the key on for a minute and heard a relay under the dash clicking several times. I recalled posts here about starting troubles and the van battery kicking in the help start the diesel when the starting batteries had died, so I let it sit for a minute or two more and then the engine cranked and started. The gauges didn't work for a minute or two after it started. I am guessing the voltage was too low to get them to work? They did start to work after a couple of minutes and I made it home OK. I turned the van off at home and it restarted without any trouble. I'll try it again tomorrow. Guess three years is typical life for the factory Ford batteries? Seems odd to me that I have not noticed any slower cranking or other issue prior to today, and then this trouble tonight.

Question: I had SMB install solar panels last year. Do they charge the the van battery, AND the starting batteries, or just the van battery?

Thanks for all the posts related to batteries over the years. having read them made me less alarmed today when it didn't start.

Brian
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Old 06-05-2009, 07:36 AM   #24
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

Brian -

Seems like the week for failing batteries. As far as I can tell, the solar does charge the van starting batteries. Yesterday morning, I did not have enough "juice" to turn the engine over and got the jumping needle syndrome like you, but after sitting in the sun all day with solar charging the van started with vigor in the evening.

Phil
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Old 06-05-2009, 08:25 AM   #25
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

Interesting that your van started after sitting in the sun all day. Mine started fine in the morning, and it was hot and sunny all day, and failed to start in the late afternoon.

Guess I'll email SMB and ask a few questions for details about how the solar panels are wired.

Brian
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Old 06-05-2009, 08:34 AM   #26
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

Quote:
Interesting that your van started after sitting in the sun all day. Mine started fine in the morning, and it was hot and sunny all day, and failed to start in the late afternoon.
That doesn't seem right.

I'm putting a call into SMB today as well to see if they have any suggestions on where to start looking for my problem. I quickly threw a volt meter across the negative cable from the starting batteries and the frame of the van before leaving home this morning and got 12.3 volts. I obviously have a short somewhere and am really not looking forward to searching it out.

Good luck.

Phil
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Old 06-05-2009, 10:45 PM   #27
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

gotta love potential electrical problems

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Old 06-16-2009, 04:05 PM   #28
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

I changed out my two starting batteries today. PO had two different batteries, and who knows when the underside battery had been changed last. Corrosion was running rampant! I downsized to size 34 from the 65. Why? The good agm batteries in the smaller size are better than normal maintenance 65's with less weight. 10lbs less per battery for maintance 65, and 20lbs less for agm 65's. The Deka 34 agm's I put in have 785 cca (ford recommends 650) with better cycling than the bigger 65 maintenace batteries. Also no more corrosion with the agm's!



I had to modify stock battery trays with universal top brackets and J hooks. SMB started with no effort at all. Sure is nice to have fresh agm's throughout (changed the house too).
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Old 06-17-2009, 04:30 PM   #29
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

Wow, Mercury must be in retrograde or somthing...cause our starting batteries crapped out Saturday. Ford OEM units, less than 2 years old. Same clicking, and gauge flutter as others reported here. Thankful it was in our lot parked, vs in the backcountry.

Ordered two Odyssey Grp 65 batteries. Not particularly looking forward to installing them, but I also feel I need to get a better idea of how stuff is wired down there. Any additional tips or tricks on this, beyond what ahs been posted is appreciated.

Is the floor jack method recommended, or can you drop the box onto the tethers and remove each batt from underneath without much drama?

Cheers,
Jeff
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Old 06-17-2009, 04:43 PM   #30
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Re: 6.0 PSD Starting Batteries - Size?

I didn't use a floor jack. Just the tethers and a step stool with a couple 2x4 spacers for the transition. The biggest part of the PITA factor was all the SMB added wiring and air hoses that draped over the hot cable that goes from the forward most battery towards the front of the van. I hadn't taken a look at that prior to dropping the front battery and found myself struggling to hold the battery while I figured things out, then get it back on the bolts while shorting out on the little breaker that I think is for the ExtremeAir. There was a little cussing going on at that exact moment.

Make sure you have enough slack in the "+" and "-" cables prior to dropping the batteries. That was the biggest problem for me.

BTW - Turns out one of my two batteries was shot and I would assume was pulling the other one down. The new Costco batteries spin the engine nice and fast now. I feel fortunate that I had no corrosion at all.

Good luck.
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