Marine batteries use high cranking amps which is short bursts of high power to start the engine. Good marine batteries have high cranking amps to have the motor started and can run continuously for many hours just like a deep cycle battery does. The reserve capacity rating of good marine batteries is higher than normal ones. They also come with a higher cold cranking amp rating. Another vital statistic is the pulse cranking amp rating which measures the cranking amperage with the engine.
5 Best Marine Cranking Battery
Optima 8016-103 D34M Starting Battery
Optima 8052-161 D31M Starting Battery
Optima 8040-218 D35 Dual Purpose Battery
Optima 8006-006-FFP 34M Marine Starting Battery
Optima Batteries OPT8020-164 35 Starting Battery
The Optima brand is quite popular, and this 8016-103 D34M Cranking Battery is the bestseller. It is used as a dedicated cranking battery. This versatile battery can be used for both cranking and deep cycling operations. This popular trolling motor battery is also used for many camping sites. You can use it to power both boats and RVs. With its 55Ah rating, it can last for long.
The vibration resistance is 15 times more resistant than a wet-cell. The number of recharges it can take is 3 times as much as the cheaper batteries. This AGM battery is maintenance-free and there’s no need to add distilled water to it. It is spill-proof and so you can mount it in any position. It measures 10 by 6⅞ and it is 7 and 13/16 inches tall and performs brilliantly with 750 cold-cranking amps. So it can start your battery even in adverse weather condition.
It has a reserve capacity of 120 minutes and can discharge 25 amps for 120 minutes when used at 80 degrees F (26.7 degrees C) until the voltage goes down to 10.5 volts. It recharges quickly, and with 100 amps to recharge, you need about 35 minutes to get 90% charge capacity. It’s possible for the low internal resistance. However, to make sure you don’t overcharge it, you will need to use its own charger. It better to follow the charging instructions to take care of the battery properly.
- It can start a motor with no problem even at zero-degree Fahrenheit.
- It can power boats laden with lots of gadgets.
- You can recharge it within a short time.
- It can last for a thousand recharging cycles.
- It’s spill-proof, and you can mount it at any angle.
- It’s maintenance-free.
- It won’t overcharge providing that you use the right charger.
- Without the appropriate charger, you might end up overcharging the battery.
Optima 8052-161 D31M is one of the most powerful batteries for marine vehicles. Its Spiral Cell Technology ensures efficient performance. The Absorbent Glass Mat (AGM) plates hold electrolytes firmly to prevent spills. The technology also prevents intense vibration, corrosion or acid leaks. Even in bad weather, it will provide you with optimal cranking power. The battery reserves capacity of 155 which provides steady performance. It is fifteen times more resistant to vibration which ensures its durability.
- The battery is spill proof
- It doesn’t require maintenance
- Maintains optimal cranking power even on a bad weather
- Resistant to vibration and shock up to 15 more times than normal batteries
- Perfect for both deep cycle and cranking
- Has a reserve capacity of 155 minutes for continuous performance
- Perfect for boats and recreational vehicles laden with gadgets
- Comes with a less warranty compared to other batteries
The Optima Batteries 8040-218 D35 YellowTop is suitable for higher electrical loads or when the discharge cycle is more than the normal engine setting. This 12-volt battery with 650 cold cranking makes it a very powerful battery for cranking small to medium sized outboard motors. The battery is a small and very portable one weighing 36 pounds and measuring less than 10 by 7 inches. You can use it in small boats with limited space.
It has a reserve capacity of 98 minutes which makes it a perfect selection for good deep cycling and using it in smaller trolling motors. This AGM battery comes with a thick and durable plastic exterior. Its strong and durable construction ensures it is 15 times less vibration prone compared to other batteries. Fewer vibrations ensure that your battery will last longer. This battery offers the best warranty, and free replacement is available in case your battery is defective or stops working.
- Compact and lightweight
- Outstanding performance
- Works well with small and medium sized outboard motors
- 98-minute reserve capacity makes it perfect for trolling motors
- Durable exterior
- Overcharging the battery will reduce its durability
The Optima Batteries 8006-006 34M is another top quality marine cranking battery designed to work in any weather. Its thick and durable plastic exterior provides 15 times more vibration resistance compared to other batteries. It doesn’t require any maintenance and provides with a very steady and stable performance. With its 800 cold cranking amp and 1000 A marine cranking amps, it is more suitable for cranking power for small and medium-sized outboard engines. It has a reserve capacity of 100 minutes and weighs only 40 pounds. It is light and compact, and you can easily mount it in any position in your boat.
- Provides with sure starting and string starting
- Higher reserve capacity
- Fifteen times more resistant to vibration
- Optimal starting power even on bad weather
- Doesn’t need maintenance
- Two-year warranty
- You need to purchase a separate deep cycle battery for a trolling motor
- Overcharging the battery can cause permanent damage
If you have an old engine that is difficult to start, get the Optima 8020-164 35 RedTop Cranking Battery for a very strong burst of ignition power each time you start the engine. This AGM battery includes a positive and a negative coated lead plate and offers a reliable cranking. It provides you with an optimum cranking power even when the weather is unfavorable. Its reverse capacity of 90 minutes provides with constant performance. This marine battery is more durable compared to others. It lasts long with its fifteen times more resistance to vibration. This redtop battery exceeds many conventional batteries when it comes to cranking applications, and it provides with impressive high power delivery and high resistance.
- 2x longer life compared to other batteries
- The battery is maintenance free
- Has a faster recharging time
- Provides optimal starting power
- Comes with applicable installation height adapters
- Works well with trucks, motorcycles, and cars
- It is heavy and expensive
Buying Guide for Best Marine Cranking Battery
Whether a battery is right for you or not dependents on the usage of the battery. Below is a list of factors that you should consider.
The marine batteries may be used for two broad purposes: cranking an engine, and powering the vessel throughout its journey. If you intend to use the battery for cranking only, go for the one with a low rating capacity, but if you intend to use it for both cranking and powering your boat, then a deep cycle or dual purpose battery with higher current capacity is best for you.
Cold Cranking Amps
Cold Cranking Amps or Marine Cranking Amps is a measure of the ability of an acid battery to support plenty of power within a short duration of time. It shows how much of electrical power the lead-acid of a battery can generate within a 30-second duration, at zero degrees Fahrenheit temperature, before the voltage ultimately drops to below the 7.2 Volts threshold which is the minimum power needed to crank an engine.
Reserve Capacity Rating
Reserve capacity is the total duration that a fully-charged battery works. For example, a battery 150 minutes of reserve capacity rating can last for two and a half hours while discharging a load of 25 Amperes. The battery with the higher reserve capacity is preferable for optimal performance.
Amp Hour Rating
It is a measure of the number of amperes that a battery produces in a duration of 20 hours. For instance, a battery with a 100 ampere-hour rating can provide 5 Amperes of electrical current per hour for a total duration of 20 hours, providing that other factors are constant. However, some electrical current is usually lost by reason of the battery’s internal resistance. So it is strongly recommended that a higher rating than the one desired is to be generally selected.
Charging of the Battery
The electric appliances on boats draw current from the deep cycle battery, and it needs to be charged regularly to prevent damage to the battery. There are many methods of charging the battery from onboard chargers to portable alternatives.
Price and Warranty
Consider the cost of the battery and the accompanying warranty before you make the final decision. Choose one that balances between the two so that you can get the best service within your budget.
Choose a battery that you can use for both cranking the motor and powering onboard devices. That means it will work both as a starter and a deep cycle battery.
Choose a battery that is light and portable weighing somewhere between 20 pounds (9.1 kg) and 50 pounds (22.7 kg).
Vibration Resistance and Durability
As choppy waters create jarring vibrations, choose a battery that can withstand these vibrations easily. Spill-proof and shock-resistance boost durability as well.
The voltage rating of a boat battery decides the amount of power it generates. So a 24 Volt battery is preferable as it generates plenty of power and reliable as well.
People often overlook the necessity of having a suitable marine cranking battery for their boats, and they have the wrong impression that any battery will do the job well. They can only understand how wrong they were once they get stuck in the middle of the water. So be wise enough to buy the best marine starter battery for a wonderful cruising experience.