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5 Best Marine Batteries for 2023

Power - by Bryan Veldboom - updated on 5/22/2023

Fisherman on an X2Power wrapped boat wearing X2Power swag

Determining the right battery for your boat can be complicated. Different battery types are manufactured to do different things and if you don't know what you're doing, you can end up with the wrong battery for your needs. Today, we'll be walking you through marine battery basics, including the different types and chemistries available, along with our picks for the top performing marine batteries on the market.

What are the Three Types of Marine Batteries?

There are three basic types of marine batteries outlined below:

Starting Batteries (also known as cranking batteries) - Designed to deliver short bursts of power needed to start your inboard or outboard engine. They are similar in function to car batteries.

Deep Cycle Batteries - Manufactured to provide a continuous source of power over a longer period of time. They are used to power marine applications like trolling motors, depth finders and sonar.

Dual Purpose Batteries - Function as a starting and deep cycle battery in one. They offer the initial burst of power needed to start an engine, together with the cycling power required to operate your accessories.

Do I Need More Than One Battery on My Boat?

If you're using a smaller boat with minimal accessories, a single starting battery may be enough. Boats with larger motors and multiple accessories require more power and may rely on both a starting and deep cycle battery, or a single dual purpose option. This chart will help determine your boat battery power needs.

Starting Needs Deep Cycle Needs Starting Battery Deep Cycle Battery Dual Purpose Battery Dual Purpose AGM Battery
Moderate None x   x x
Moderate Moderate   x x x
Moderate Heavy x x x  
Heavy None x   x x
Heavy Moderate       x
Heavy Heavy x x    

What are the Differences Between Flooded, AGM and Lithium Batteries?

Okay, let's talk chemistry. In addition to different battery types, there are also three different battery chemistries available: flooded lead acid, AGM (short for absorbed glass mat) and lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4). Here is a breakdown of their differences:

Flooded Lead Acid Batteries

  • Most affordable of the 3 battery chemistries
  • Shortest lifespan of the 3 battery chemistries
  • Not completely sealed; requires you to top off the electrolyte inside with distilled or deionized water
  • High rate of self-discharge in storage
  • Available as a starting, deep cycle or dual purpose battery

AGM Batteries

  • Higher initial investment than a flooded battery
  • Lasts 2-3X longer than a flooded battery
  • Completely sealed; requires no additional maintenance
  • Discharges slower than a flooded battery in storage
  • Charges up to 5X faster than a flooded battery
  • More resistant to vibrations & extreme temperatures
  • Weighs less than a flooded battery
  • Available as a starting, deep cycle or dual purpose battery

Lithium Iron Phosphate Batteries

  • Higher initial investment than the other 2 battery chemistries
  • Lasts 3-4X longer than flooded batteries
  • Completely sealed; requires no additional maintenance
  • Lowest self-discharge of the 3 battery chemistries
  • Can discharge up to 90% before it must be recharged
  • Charges 4X faster than most AGM batteries
  • More resistant to vibrations & extreme heat
  • 55% lighter than AGM batteries
  • Available as a deep cycle battery only

What are the Best Marine Batteries at Batteries Plus?

Looking for the best performance possible from your boat? We recommend the following batteries:

Best Flooded Starting Battery:
Duracell Ultra 12V Flooded Starting Marine Battery

  • Ideal for starting marine engines
  • Manufactured to offer extended lifespan & power

Best Flooded Deep Cycle Battery:
Duracell Ultra 12V Flooded Deep Cycle Marine Battery

  • Ideal for powering trolling motors, fish finders & other applications
  • Designed to provide extended power & battery life on the water

Best AGM Deep Cycle Battery:
Duracell Ultra Platinum 12V AGM Deep Cycle Marine Battery

  • Has 2X more cycle life than traditional marine batteries
  • Features 20X more vibration resistance than flooded marine batteries

Best Lithium Deep Cycle Battery:
X2Power 12V Lithium Deep Cycle Marine Battery

  • Up to 10X longer cycle life than standard batteries
  • Features ultra-fast charging and discharging, with a longer cycle life
  • Uses the safest, most stable components & comes with a built-in Battery Management System
  • Remarkably low self-discharge for extended storage periods

Best Dual Purpose Battery:
X2Power AGM Marine Battery

  • Two complete batteries in one - 100% starting & 100% reserve power to handle electronics
  • Made with pure lead for fast recharging
  • Non-spillable, non-gassing & maintenance-free

Batteries Plus is Your Boating Headquarters

Batteries Plus offers additional boating essentials such as boat battery chargers and battery boxes for off-season storage. Want to know if your current battery is strong enough for another season? Bring it to your nearest store and we'll test it for free.

Want to learn more? Our Marine & Boat Battery Buying Guide has plenty of additional information. Or, check out our blog. Some additional boating topics include "How to Find the Right Battery Charger for Your Boat" and "What to Do if a Boat Battery Dies?"

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