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Author Topic: Charging batteries  (Read 1208 times)

903 wireman

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Charging batteries
« on: February 21, 2018, 06:02:20 PM »
Do you leave Rv plugged in 24/7 or just long enough to build a charge while in storage ?
2016 Winnebago Cambria towing 2016 Jeep Wrangler 2 door  with invisabrake

Rene T

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2018, 06:09:28 PM »
Depends how long you'll have it in storage. I've never had to find out because I leave mine at home  all the time and I leave it plugged in. It may be just a matter of adding a battery disconnect switch if you don't have one now.
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

903 wireman

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2018, 06:15:35 PM »
I am constantly having to add water, about twice a month
2016 Winnebago Cambria towing 2016 Jeep Wrangler 2 door  with invisabrake

Rene T

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2018, 06:18:48 PM »
I am constantly having to add water, about twice a month

I'll let the experts answer this one but I would start out my adding that switch
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2018, 08:06:31 PM »
Ours were always plugged in, but if the rig didn't have a quality 3-stage charger (our earlier ones did not), I used an appliance timer on the power cord so that it did not charge 24/7. A couple hours per day are plenty in most cases.

I don't know what converter/charger your Cambria has, but it sounds as though it is over-charging. Most recent year chargers aren't that bad, even if not 3-stage, so maybe you have a weak cell in a battery. That drags the voltage down and stimulates the charger to keep pumping in electricity, probably boiling off fluid. Have you done a hydrometer test (assuming its not sealed batteries)?
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

afchap

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2018, 09:04:24 PM »
Mine has a triple stage charger. It is plugged in pretty much all the time except when I am driving. When I have to start adding water to the batteries I know they are nearing the end of their life.
Paul ... (KE5LXU), was fulltimin', now parttimin'...
'03 Winnebago Ultimate Advantage 40e
'05 Honda Odyssey toad
Escapees, FMCA, SMART, WIT
http://www.pjrider.com

SCVJeff

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2018, 09:25:15 PM »
I CHECK the water only once a year and add if necessary, but I also draw my batteries down to around 63% when in use, so I run a pretty high current charge routine and boiling simply happens. But when done the charger drops to float and then standby (off) until needed. If you're adding water like that you need to watch the charger with a real DVM and see what's going on
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Santa Clarita, CA.
'06 Itasca Meridian 34H, CAT C7/350

John Canfield

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2018, 07:55:35 AM »
Mine has a triple stage charger. It is plugged in pretty much all the time except when I am driving. When I have to start adding water to the batteries I know they are nearing the end of their life.
Same here except I have AGM house batteries.

Do yourself a huge favor, replace your Winnebago supplied charger with a good three stage version. Replace your house batteries with premium AGM (totally maintenance free) ones. When my Horizon was brand new, I replaced the charger/inverter with a Xantrex RS2000 and replaced the house battery bank. A buddy sold the Dimensions charger/inverter I pulled out on flebay.

Spend the bucks now and enjoy years of trouble free battery charging (and a good three stage charger will charge faster.)
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
Our weather

SCVJeff

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #8 on: February 26, 2018, 01:41:32 AM »
Do yourself a huge favor, replace your Winnebago supplied charger with a good three stage version.
---snip--
Spend the bucks now and enjoy years of trouble free battery charging (and a good three stage charger will charge faster.)
WORD!
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Jeff - WA6EQU
Santa Clarita, CA.
'06 Itasca Meridian 34H, CAT C7/350

Mile High

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2018, 10:00:42 AM »
So far my BatteryMinders have been doing the job, one for the 6 AGM coach batteries and the other for the 2 chassis batteries.  I just leave the masters off on the coach and not worry about trying to plug the rig in.  The BatteryMinders go direct to the batteries.

Brad and Dory
2013 Winnebago Itasca Meridian 42E (new to us 2016)
2013 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara
FMCA 457993 / WIT W170238

John Stephens

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2018, 11:21:41 PM »
You guys now have me curious. I'll be storing my coach for six months between trips this year and rely on my solar charger to keep the batteries at a reasonable level along with visiting it every two weeks and exercising the generator, which will charge the batteries for one to two hours. Is this going to be enough? I have done this for the past two years and haven't had problems other than with older batteries needing replacement.
John
Cape Coral, Fl.
2005 Winnebago Adventurer 38J
2018 Chevy Equinox

John Canfield

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2018, 07:35:36 AM »
The little 10 watt solar panel Winnebago installed isn't going to help much if any and I think it's hooked up to the chassis battery bank.  If you added solar panels, that might or might not keep your batteries topped off depending on the wattage. Did you install a Trik-L-Start or something similar to keep the chassis batteries charged?

Running the generator is a good idea but your charger might not pump much current into the batteries, your engine alternator might put more current out (if the batteries accept the charge.)
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
Our weather

John Stephens

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2018, 10:32:48 PM »
John, thanks for the info. I exercise the generator every two weeks and start the engine, letting it run until it gets to normal operating temperature, usually about 10-15 minutes. Knock on wood, but until now, I haven't had any problems. I never knew if the solar charger from Winnebago did any good, but each time I go out to the coach, the house batteries show 12.7-13.2 amps and the chassis battery usually reads 12.5-12.9. I went out today and it showed consistent readings. I have never installed a trickle charger because the coach is stored in public storage and there is no electricity, nor have I installed extra solar panels.
John
Cape Coral, Fl.
2005 Winnebago Adventurer 38J
2018 Chevy Equinox

John Canfield

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2018, 07:35:16 AM »
It sounds like you are doing the right things to maintain the batteries so I wouldn't change anything at this point.
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
Our weather

Mile High

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2018, 01:09:41 PM »
Your lucky to be able to exercise it every two weeks.  About every 3 months for me.
Brad and Dory
2013 Winnebago Itasca Meridian 42E (new to us 2016)
2013 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara
FMCA 457993 / WIT W170238

903 wireman

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #15 on: March 01, 2018, 05:00:06 PM »
I changed out my batteries, I will see what happens. Question: how do you know what the battery charger you is doing without a gage. Coach information says it USA 3 stage charger. Thanks to all the replies to my original post.
2016 Winnebago Cambria towing 2016 Jeep Wrangler 2 door  with invisabrake

John Canfield

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #16 on: March 01, 2018, 06:07:36 PM »
You would need a monitor interface with the battery charger or a battery status monitor.  The battery monitor would track charge and discharge current. After a couple of days, your three stage charger should float a charge at about 13.2 or 13.4 volts give or take a tenth of a volt. In short, without buying more stuff it's just a guess.
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
Our weather

CharlesinGA

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2018, 11:36:28 PM »
The Winnebago Views were switched over to multi-stage converters about 2014, I would think a 2016 model would have a multi-stage unit.

Most likely a cell has gone bad in one of the batteries and is causing the converter to charge too much.

Charles
2007 Winnebago View 523H, 2006 Dodge (Daimler-Chrysler aka Mercedes) Sprinter 3500 chassis. Bought Sept 2015 with 18K miles, Prog Ind HW30C, Prog Dynamics PD4645, Chill Grille, Fanstatic Fan Ultrabreeze, PML/Yourcovers.com deep alum trans pan, Roadmaster sway bar

Malibu39

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #18 on: April 24, 2018, 11:21:23 PM »
Can someone provide a link to a trick-l-start type product? It appears they are no longer available and this year my engine batteries were toast even though it was plugged in all winter. I replaced them and now want to keep them. Thank you!
2004 Itasca Horizon 40KD 350 Cummins, 60,000 miles

Howard R

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #19 on: April 25, 2018, 01:18:38 AM »
 http://www.lslproducts.net/TLSPage.html           put one on our 99 Mirada years ago and works fine ... keeps engine battery charged on shore or generator power.  There is now a 15A version also.

Howard

2001 Fleetwood Southwind 35R
V10   F53
2003 Jeep Liberty Toad
Minnesota

John Canfield

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Re: Charging batteries
« Reply #20 on: April 25, 2018, 07:35:52 AM »
Can someone provide a link to a trick-l-start type product? It appears they are no longer available and this year my engine batteries were toast even though it was plugged in all winter. I replaced them and now want to keep them. Thank you!
There is a new model.
--John
2005 Horizon 40AD, 2006 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
Our Horizon projects
Our weather