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VARTA Leisure Batteries - New Range


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Hi All,


I needed a new leisure battery for our MH and after having read Brambles excellent advice on this earlier thread Link I decided to go for a VARTA 90Ah.


I did the usual on-line search and happened to notice on the VARTA website that there is a new range of Professional Deep Cycle batteries replacing the old Hobby range that Tayna and others sold, but no-one seemed to list it on-line.

After finding the best price for the old Hobby battery I phoned my local battery specialist who price matched and bettered the best price I had found :-D

The best bit was when I went in to collect the battery only to find it is the new Professional maintenance free one so was well pleased.

For info it is a sealed for life Lead Acid battery with a lifting handle and vents in both ends and is exactly the same size as the old Hobby battery.


If anyone in the Birmingham area wants a new battery then I can thoroughly recommend Bannings in Aston (next to Spaghetti Junction).


So thanks Brambles for the advice and I'll let you know how I get on with it in the future.



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The original Varta Hobby batteries are still available it seems, under the Bosch branding and are the L4 type series. Varta seem to have introduced two new batteries in the professional range. They appear to be dual starting and deep discharge so meeting the need for vehicles requiring such, and also the marine applications in boats where batteries are used for both starting and other equipment.

The starting power ( cranking amps of the old hobby 90 Ah is about 480 amps from memory and the new Prfessional flooded about 800 Amps. The bosch L4 90 Ah is still of course the 480 Amps.


Cycle life which is important to us, has been reduced to twice that of a conventional battery.

The Bosch L4 remains about 3 or 4 times. To meet the needs of high cycle life Varta introduced the AGM range which gives 5 to 6 times the life of a conventional starter battery.


So in effect the flooded Varta professional is NOT the same as the old Hobby range, it has lower cycle life. ( I think I said in previous posts on the subject I was confused at the time by the new Varta Range)

To get the best cycle life then the AGM is the best but will cost more.

So the best value now seems to be to try and source the Bosch L4 90 Ah which retains the 400 cycles for life at 60% discharge, or the Varta AGM giving 500 to 600 cycles and will withstand deeper discharges as well.


Do not be too dismayed, most leisure batteries, apart ftom Banner and now the the Bosch, are actually dual starter and deep discharge and only have a life of about 150 cycles despite what the suppiers say of all these rebadged batteries. Numax and Platinum come to minds as typical names along with Alpha and Lucas. So still a good purchase, but unfortuately may just not be quite what it seems. Sorry!

Do not take all the above as gospel, I may be confused still.


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Guest 1footinthegrave

Ah the mysteries of leisure batteries. I purchased two new Numax branded ones early last year, did my utmost to keep them in good condition and was surprised to find they gave up the ghost after approx 90 nights away, on querying this with the supplier ( although out of guarantee ) was told that with the cheaper end I would only get around 120 / 150 charge / discharge cycles in any event as "Brambles" states above, which came as quite a shock. Having now forked out another couple of hundred quid on a different brand Alphaline with a claimed up to 500 cycles and four year guarantee ( so called "professional" range) I'm now thinking perhaps I need a solar backup plan as well, but that all seems shrouded in mystery as to the different types and what performance you are likely to get. Any advice on that route would be appreciated.


Life used to be so simple with gas mantle lighting and a hand pumped water tap ! !

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I think the 'other' side is just as - if not more - important, ie how much, and how quickly, power is extracted. Being gentle with discharge has been the key for me, no matter the battery brand. Low current requirement items like small LCD TV, LED lighting throughout (becoming standard anyway now), and resisting the use of anything like 12V sandwich makers / hairdryers etc have meant that we've yet to ruin a battery. We have never used solar / wind power in a 'van and don't use hook-ups. Batteries, no matter the brand, do not like to be anything other than as charged as possible and to be discharge as slowly and gently as possible.

Solar power is only very rarely the most appropriate solution, in spite of its popularity. It's virtually useless when you really need good Ah capacity, ie when the weather is cold and dark, and is equally useless when you don't need good Ah capacity, ie when warm and light. In the latter case most of the energy produced disipates as heat, or cooks your batteries if you don't have a good regulator.

For some users solar is a genuine solution: for most it's just a feel-good addition.

If you pick your on-board equipment wisely and love your batteries, they will love you back.


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Guest 1footinthegrave
Prior to my purchase of the new batteries last year I changed all my halogen lighting to LED, but seemingly to little effect as far as battery longevity was concerned, or maybe I bought tow duff ones to begin with ! :-(
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