I did not know you could safely run fresh water through the desalinator... Good to know.
The first year we cruised we had very good Deka lead acid batteries. But there were 78 caps to check... and like you said, one had to go look for distilled water... which we did in Port Washington, NY... what a drag... so at the end of the year, we threw them away and went with sealed AGMs. It's been a bit over two years, and so far, so good... and there are no caps to check.
SM2K No. 350 (2002)
At anchor, Tymnos —now called Bozburun