LAST UPDATED: April 30, 2019
Best RV Batteries: The Best Batteries to Power Your RV
Find the best RV battery to make sure your camping trip or life off-grid isn’t left in the dark
The Review Team
How We Decided
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PUBLISHED ON April 30, 2019
Traveling in an RV is a great way to experience the world and see different places. Campsites make it easy to provide power to your recreational vehicle and enjoy the surrounding scenery, but you still need power for days you’re in between campsites or during emergencies. There are many types of batteries to choose from, and we’re here to help you choose the right RV battery to make sure you’re not left in the dark. Here are our top picks for the best RV batteries to power everything inside your camper.
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All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, or practical experience with most products we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.
Benefits of RV Batteries
- Generate electricity. Batteries work as a power supply when you need it most. They are especially useful when the motorhome is turned off, parked, or at a campsite.
- Provide a comfortable camping experience. Batteries are used to make sure you are comfortable while camping by providing light when it’s dark, keeping the heater on when cold, or the AC on when it’s hot.
- Save gas and money. A battery can save you money and gas by powering electronics inside without having to start the RV. While on, the RV’s engine is capable of powering everything. Leaving it running, however, burns fuel and leaves you spending money to fill it back up.
- Power other vehicles. Not only do batteries provide power for RVs, but they can also be used to start smaller vehicles such as boats, electric wheelchairs, scooters, and bikes.
Types of RV Batteries
Flooded RV Battery
This battery type is among the most common. Also referred to as wet cell batteries, they require maintenance to keep them working properly. That comes in the form of topping them off with water. They hold a charge well, but their design isn’t the toughest when it comes to durability and shock resistance. So, more difficult journeys may shake them to lose.
These sealed lead acid batteries, called absorbent glass mat (AGM), contain electrolytes with a mix of sulfuric acid and fiberglass material. These materials make the battery spill-proof, enabling it to move around without shutting down. They are light since they don’t contain water. The AGM technology is able to hold a charge longer and power devices more quickly due to its design.
Gel Cell Battery
The electrolytes and materials powering gel batteries are sulfuric acid mixed with fumed silica. This creates a gel-like substance that is immobile, meaning, the batteries can be placed on any side and still hold a charge through rough travels and bumpy conditions.
Optima has been in business for more than 40 years. It built the first maintenance-free lead-acid batteries/high-performance AGM automobile batteries in the 1970s and recently released new sizes for their AGM batteries. One of its top products is the Optima Deep Cycle Marine Battery.
Manufactured by EngerSys Energy Products Inc., Odyssey has been making batteries for cars, RVs, boats, and more for more than 100 years. It has two headquarters; one in Missouri and one in Wales. It makes the Odyssey PC680 Battery.
RV Battery Pricing
- $45-$150: These RV batteries tend to have lower amp-hour outputs. Their sizes are also smaller and range between 6-volts and 12-volts.
- $150 and up: It’s here you will get into batteries that provide more power. These typically provide much more amp hours and are more durable.
The size of a battery will change how much power it holds. You’ll find larger-sized batteries tend to come with more power, meaning your appliances will stay powered longer. However, keep in mind, not all RVs can hold a larger battery.
Keeping everything powered depends on how much power the battery puts out. That power is measured in amp hours. Amp hours detail how many amps the battery discharges in a 20-hour period, while RC, or reserve capacity, correlates to the number of minutes the battery lasts when providing amp output. To make it simple, you’ll want more amp hours and RC to keep things powered longer.
- Types: Finding the best RV battery comes down to what style you prefer. Flooded batteries will require more maintenance, such as topping them off with water, to keep working; AGM or acid-based batteries are more durable and can withstand a longer journey without dropping power to your RV.
- Life Expectancy: A battery’s lifespan all depends on how many appliances or devices you need to power inside your RV. It also varies on how often you plan on using the battery. You can conserve the life of your battery by monitoring how long your power what’s inside your RV. Charging and even overcharging batteries can decrease their lifespan.
Best RV Battery Reviews & Recommendations 2020
This is our top pick for the best deep-cycle RV battery. We found this to be reliable for keeping a consistent amount of power to the RV, coming with 100 AH. Depending on how much power you use, it can last a few days before needing to be charged again. To help control how long it lasts, make sure to turn off appliances and lights when they are not needed.
This battery can be mounted at any angle and in any position. It is also great to power small boats, golf carts, lights, and cabins. The battery is tough and can absorb shocks while driving without losing any power. Plus, it comes with a one-year warranty and has a long lifespan.
While it may fit anywhere and provide power to your RV’s appliances, it is a bit on the heavier side. Weighing 60 pounds, you’ll need to mount it somewhere that can hold the weight and not bounce out of position.
These batteries are a great power source that run significantly smaller than most other batteries. The compact design makes it simple to mount multiple batteries together where only one larger one would fit.
On top of it being lightweight—weighing only 22 pounds—this lead acid battery comes with a handle to make it easier to carry. While being excellent for powering appliances and lights in an RV, it’s also good for scooters, electric wheelchairs, and bikes.
On the downside, a single battery only has 35 AH, so depending on how long you need to power your RV, you may need multiple batteries. We discovered one is good for providing power for a few hours, but if you are out for a few days, you will need to charge it several times.
This deep-cycle RV battery made our honorable mention for its long-lasting, reliable charge. For being on the smaller side for batteries, its power output is immense and will provide your RV with hours of electricity.
Being smaller means these Optima batteries also weigh less than other RV batteries. Its lightweight design means it can be mounted in any position; not just on RVs, but also boats and more. Its durability is vibration-resistant and can stand up to the worst bumpy roads, even starting up when the weather is bad.
While it is one of the best RV batteries we found, it made our honorable mention due to the price. The cost is on the higher end, but that cost also gets you up to 120 minutes of reserve capacity for times when you need it the most.
VMAXTANKS’ RV battery is certainly a heavy-duty choice for your camper. The 12-volt AGM deep cycle battery is a great choice to power your vehicle. It comes with a maximum lifespan of 10 years and even has powerful lead/tin alloys that help boost the current so it runs longer and more efficiently. It’s also completely maintenance-free, so there is never a need to check if it’s tilted during the ride or the need to add water.
The battery is also rather well-designed and is built to take a beating from bumps or vibrations. Its absorbed glass matt build makes it sturdy and capable of absorbing electrolyte. It can even be mounted on its side and still function, as well as save space.
However, one of the reasons it is capable of taking such punishment is its build quality. This makes it rather heavy, at 25 pounds. It also comes with just 35 AH which, as we’ve mentioned before, is on the lower end.
The Odyssey PC680 is another high-quality RV battery that is highly resistant to bumps, shocks, and vibrations on the road. Yet, don’t be fooled by its smaller size, as it is plenty capable of powering your RV and appliances for several years. The Odyssey battery is rated to last 70 percent longer than other conventional deep cycle batteries as well. Plus, it’s reasonably priced for a battery, so if you need multiple batteries you won’t be set back too far.
It’s also rated to charge much more quickly too. It can reach a 100 percent charge within four to six hours. Plus, it can also be used in the water, snow, and on land, as it can power boats, jet skis, and snowmobiles. It is also rated to last up to 10 years and more than 400 cycles and can function in extreme temperatures without an issue.
However, it may not do too well when it comes to extreme temperatures. It can be a bit difficult to start in hotter climates and the same may be said of cold weather as well.
ExpertPower batteries are designed to be able to run in nearly any climate and temperature with ease. They look heavy-duty, and that’s because they are. They are capable of operating in temperatures as cold as -40 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. The company’s 12-volt AGM battery in particular can be found in either a 33 AH or 35 AH model too. It can be easily installed in a few minutes.
When it comes to providing power to your RV, this battery can get the job done. Plus, it can easily run a few smaller appliances without much of an issue. On top of all that, the battery is able to resist shocks and vibrations when traveling too.
However, as you might have seen, the AH levels are on the lower end. The battery is also on the smaller end in terms of size and the handle isn’t the best quality.
This is another solid RV battery from VMAXTANKS. This 12-volt, 125 AH, AGM deep cycle, heavy-duty battery is one of the strongest on our list. As a premium RV battery, it is capable of powering several appliances at once and makes a great battery in general. It even has custom-built military-grade plates that make it even more reliable. Couple that with its lengthy lifespan of 10 years, and you have a good-quality RV battery that will last you several trips. Another great benefit of this battery is it can be mounted on its side without losing any capacity.
One of the biggest drawbacks is its price. Because it is a military-grade premium RV battery, you will be paying quite a bit for it. It is also larger in size than most other batteries, so fitting it in place can be an issue. It’s also on the heavy side, at 75 pounds.
If you’re looking for a premium RV battery that won’t let you down, consider the Battle Born LiFePO4 Deep Cycle Battery. What makes this one stand out from other brands is what the company calls BMS, or battery management system. The BMS acts as the brain of the battery and helps to protect it from failing. It can even stop it from overheating. If it senses anything out of ordinary, it automatically shuts off the battery for your safety.
The 12-volt battery comes with 100 AH, which makes it a hefty battery for powering just about anything. If you need something to send electricity to your appliances, this will certainly do the job. It’s even recommended to power marine vehicles, vans, and entire off-the-grid homes.
However, you will pay quite a bit of cash for this RV battery as it is the most expensive on our list. At that price, it doesn’t come with a handle and, at 29 pounds, it could benefit from one.
- Make sure to get the best RV deep-cycle battery that fits your needs the most. Six-volt batteries are lighter and can fit easier into areas on the RV, while 12-volt batteries are heavier and provide more power.
- If you need more power but lack the space, two 6-volts can replace a full 12-volt.
- Keep track of how much charge your battery has left by installing a battery monitor. These allow you to see when your battery is low so you know when to charge it. Batteries with little energy may end up being damaged if they continue to power appliances and lights.
- You’ll need to make sure to invest in a battery charger as well to charge the battery when it needs it.
Q: How do I install an RV battery?
A: Installing an RV battery can be difficult, but after some practice, it should be relatively simple. First, make sure all the appliances, lights, and devices are turned off. Then, find the mount where the batteries are placed inside the RV. Gently place the battery on the mount, connect the cables, and activate the hold-down hardware. Then, test the lights and appliances.
Q: How long should the RV battery last?
A: This all depends on how long you spend powering the lights, appliances, and more inside the RV. If used in moderation, most batteries can last a few days before needing another charge.
Q: Where should I store the battery?
A: You can protect your deep-cycle RV battery by keeping it somewhere at room temperatures, such as the house or a storage unit. Make sure wherever it is, it never drops below freezing.
Our top pick for the best RV battery is the Universal Power Group Deep Cycle AGM Battery for its dependability, shock absorbency, and high-quality design.
If you’re looking for a battery that will power everything inside your RV but are wanting to save cash, check out the Universal Power Group Sealed Lead Acid Battery