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g0ttadrift
Senior Member

USA
156 Posts

Posted - 11/12/2020 :  1:30:14 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This is on 2019-2021 Blue Bird All American FE. We've replaced every single one of the factory 8D batteries on these buses due to corrosion or shorted plates. Does anyone have a better way to secure the batteries in the tray besides the factory ratchet straps that corroded out after the first year? Also, we are having a handful of buses with the tray rails falling apart. I just want to see if anyone else is having these issues and what they did about it.

Ryan5r
Senior Member

USA
51 Posts

Posted - 11/16/2020 :  05:12:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
What ever battery BB uses is junk. I've had to replace them by the time they're 3 years old in all my BB's. There was a recall on the battery trays a while back. They just added braces to the existing trays. I don't think it's a issue with the strap but rather cheap batteries.
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g0ttadrift
Senior Member

USA
156 Posts

Posted - 11/16/2020 :  12:53:46 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Ryan5r. Do you happen to have that campaign number? I'll try and look it up.
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Brook Peacock
Senior Member

54 Posts

Posted - 11/16/2020 :  10:25:09 PM  Show Profile  Visit Brook Peacock's Homepage  Reply with Quote
The same thing that our mechanic did when batteries corroded. They have replaced and added new braces to fix it.
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Ryan5r
Senior Member

USA
51 Posts

Posted - 11/17/2020 :  06:18:09 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I believe its R17YY-SB
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g0ttadrift
Senior Member

USA
156 Posts

Posted - 11/17/2020 :  1:15:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ryan5r: That campaign number you gave me is for the Vision battery box support brackets cracking. I haven't been able to find anything for my issue. Thanks for the info though.
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Thomasbus24
Administrator

USA
4491 Posts

Posted - 11/18/2020 :  04:10:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Does anyone know of a battery this isn't junk now?

I hate to hear that the blue bird batteries are junk now...they used to have a very good battery, at least for us. Wasn't uncommon to see them last 7 or 8 years. We tried to buy them and parts couldn't get them.

Never did find out 100% who makes them, but I guess I don't care anymore!
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Ryan5r
Senior Member

USA
51 Posts

Posted - 11/18/2020 :  04:45:41 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by g0ttadrift

Ryan5r: That campaign number you gave me is for the Vision battery box support brackets cracking. I haven't been able to find anything for my issue. Thanks for the info though.



I guess i should read better lol
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RonF
Top Member

854 Posts

Posted - 11/18/2020 :  07:48:53 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ryan5r

quote:
Originally posted by g0ttadrift

Ryan5r: That campaign number you gave me is for the Vision battery box support brackets cracking. I haven't been able to find anything for my issue. Thanks for the info though.



I guess i should read better lol



95% of batteries made in the US are made by Johnson controls. They just slap whoever's sticker placed the order.

US Army retired CMBT
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Thomasbus24
Administrator

USA
4491 Posts

Posted - 11/18/2020 :  08:36:33 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That's what I've heard. I guess they are just like everything else, lesser and lesser quality is the new norm.
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671Fan
Active Member

21 Posts

Posted - 11/18/2020 :  10:02:13 AM  Show Profile  Visit 671Fan's Homepage  Reply with Quote
We have pretty good luck with the Deka 908-DFT on the 8Ds. They are pretty much maintenance free and don't ooze acid everywhere. It saved a ton of labor after we switched to not have to deal with corroded connections all the time. Made in U.S.A. also.
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Ryan5r
Senior Member

USA
51 Posts

Posted - 11/18/2020 :  10:19:21 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I use Crown batteries which are made in Fremont Ohio. They're 30 minutes up the road and deliver here. I've never had a issue with them.
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bluebirdvision
Top Member

USA
1077 Posts

Posted - 11/18/2020 :  4:11:52 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
When I worked in the warranty office at the Bird dealership here I believe the batteries were made by Voltec. I haven't heard any of our customers complaining, and as a delivery driver i've heard it all...

I do agree that automotive batteries are all junk now, and they rarely last thru their warranty period & if they do make it past it, its not far.

Facebook Page: Blue Bird Corporation Fans
https://www.facebook.com/home.php?sk=group_212311114614&ap=1


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Bluenozer
Advanced Member

Canada
389 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2020 :  02:43:07 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Up here I find the operator will determine the life, dead idle all fans on 1-2 years an operator that ramps idle up , runs only defrost until they are on the road where the rpm is high enough for an automotive rated alternator can overcome the amperage draw of all the fans and most in my fleet batteries last 4-5 years just with a little common sense IH, C2 and bluebirds even old f70 with CATS

OEM trained in wiring and all engine platforms for 20 years
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Thomasbus24
Administrator

USA
4491 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2020 :  03:08:38 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm 100% group 31 now. Have used Napa, TRP, Fleetrite (probably all Johnson Controls). Sooner than later we get a hard start/no start, charge them up, and one of the batteries tests bad. I'm not going to say they have a hard life here, but it's not the easiest either.
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CISDbusman
Advanced Member

302 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2020 :  06:23:05 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have heard that Cat batteries are made from virgin lead and that is the reason for their longevity. I don't use them but have had some on various pieces of used equipment and some are OLD for a battery! I can generally get 4/5 years out of my bus batteries whatever brand I use. There is always that one that dies randomly though.

Terminal maintenance and surface discharge avoidance is key to battery life I feel.
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g0ttadrift
Senior Member

USA
156 Posts

Posted - 11/23/2020 :  1:25:48 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Thanks for all the feedback. Thomasbus24, this is the first set of buses we have ever had corrosion issues and premature battery failures with. We hardly changed batteries on the old Bluebirds. And you're right, we would get 5-7 years out of them. We have been replacing them with Interstate 8D-MHD batteries and haven't had any issues. 671Fan, I do like the sealed design of the Deka batteries. Right now we use J-bolts and plywood as battery tie-downs. We would have to go with a different tie-down if we tried Deka since the plastic is flat at the top and not notched.
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