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Author Topic: A few issues to clarify please  (Read 3383 times)

UK-RV

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A few issues to clarify please
« on: January 13, 2007, 09:48:32 PM »

Hi Guys

I have a few questions on topics Im unsure of - anyone help please.

Coach Batteries

I am heading toward Miami where Im planning to buy 4 Trojan T-105 batteries.

The cost is $100 each including fitting + tax, which appears a good price.

Q1. Am I better paying $100 for a Trojan or paying $150 for a Universal AGM battery ?

Q2. What should be the OLDEST manufactured date on the batteries and where will I find the date (will it be in code etc) ?

Water Heater

Q3. When on Propane, our water heater is so loud you can hear it 5 sites away - is that "normal" ?

Q4. When we are at a CG I thought the water would be kept hot by the CGs shore power. But, even on a warm night, as soon as we turn on the Propane heater in the morning, it kicks in for several minutes, suggesting the electric hasnt kept the water hot. How do we check ?

Q5. Around the water heater door, there is damage to the paintwork where the hot water overflow has run out. I have the paintwork down as a warranty repair when we get to Lazydays, but do you think there should be some warranty fix to stop it happening in future. (I know several older Fleetwood owners have run a tube from the overflow down inside the coach and hanging out under the rear end for leaks to drip onto the street).

Thanks
Paul





Tom

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2007, 05:50:29 AM »
Paul,

Trojans will usually outlast other batteries by a good margin. (I know people who've had 10 years out of a set). OTOH I had 5.5 years out of the last set of 10 "good generics" on our boat. There's no propane on board, so it's all electric and has more/heavier loads than our coach. Running times are often short and much of our summer boating is the equivalent of boondocking (i.e. they get a lot of abuse).

How long do you plan to keep the coach after you return to the UK? If only a couple of years, Trojans might be an overkill.

Battery distributors usually turn their batteries around in a short time rather than having them sit on the shelf for a long time. So find yourself a distributor such as one who supplies local golf courses, then age will be a non-issue.

« Last Edit: January 14, 2007, 05:52:28 AM by Tom »
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Tom

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2007, 05:56:11 AM »
Many water heaters I've heard, including ours, are very loud. I've assumed it's normal, but maybe someone can help educate us both.

Have you turned on a hot water tap in the morning before turning on the propane switch? Is the water hot? The water heater will have two thermostats, one controlling the electric element(s) and one controlling the propane. It's possible (likely) that one is set slightly higher than the other.
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2007, 08:13:11 AM »
Trojans are top quality batteries and well worth the price.  AGMs don't work any better electrically, but they have zero maintenance (not water to check/refill) and can be installed in unventilated areas or even laid on their side.  If any of those features has value to you, get the AGMs. Otherwise go with the Trojans.

As for the heater, there are two separate thermostats, one for electric and one for LPG. Typically the LPG t-stat is a bit hotter than the electric one, so the propane comes on for a bit even though the electric was working fine. If your wate ris hot enough without turning on the propane, don't worry about it. If not, you may need to replace the electric t-stat or perhaps even the electric heating element. But I doubt it.
Gary
--------------
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Just Lou

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2007, 08:36:00 AM »
It is sometimes possible to reduce the sound of the burner by adjusting the air/fuel mixture with the air shutter.  It needs to be adjusted just to the point of removing any yellow from the flame.  If set too blue it will sound like a blow torch.
'97 Bounder 34V (F53 w/tag), '99 Honda Accord EX

Ned

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2007, 08:45:24 AM »
Quote
Q1. Am I better paying $100 for a Trojan or paying $150 for a Universal AGM battery ?

My personal preference is for the AGMs, as they require no maintenance.  That's a good price relative to the Trojans, AGMs are typically about twice the price of flooded cell batteries.  But, as Tom asks, if you're not going to keep the coach for at least another 5 years, it may not be worth the extra expense.

Quote
Q2. What should be the OLDEST manufactured date on the batteries and where will I find the date (will it be in code etc) ?

There will be a date code on the batteries, but as pointed out by Tom, they turn over the inventory frequently so I wouldn't worry about it.  The shelf life of a new battery is quite long.

Quote
Q3. When on Propane, our water heater is so loud you can hear it 5 sites away - is that "normal" ?

Yes, they do make a lot of noise, and if the burner is adjusted correctly, there isn't anything you can do about it.  I often hear other water heaters from inside our well insulated coach.

Quote
Q4. When we are at a CG I thought the water would be kept hot by the CGs shore power. But, even on a warm night, as soon as we turn on the Propane heater in the morning, it kicks in for several minutes, suggesting the electric hasnt kept the water hot. How do we check ?

It's most likely that the gas thermostat is a higher temperature setting than the electric.  Our old water heater did the same thing.

Quote
Q5. Around the water heater door, there is damage to the paintwork where the hot water overflow has run out. I have the paintwork down as a warranty repair when we get to Lazydays, but do you think there should be some warranty fix to stop it happening in future. (I know several older Fleetwood owners have run a tube from the overflow down inside the coach and hanging out under the rear end for leaks to drip onto the street).

It sounds like there is no air head in the water heater and the TPR valve is weeping.  Drain the water heater by opening the TPR valve with the drain plug out, then close the TPR valve, replace the drain plug, turn on the water and the air head will be reestablished.  If it starts weeping again, then the TPR valve may be leaking.  They can get mineral deposits in them that keeps the valve from closing completely and the air head will leak out, followed by water.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

UK-RV

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2007, 09:43:01 AM »

Thanks Guys

I think I will run with the Trojans at $100+tax fitted (www.batterysalesusa.com)

Will also look deaper into the water heater / leaking issue.

Thanks again.

Paul

Tom

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2007, 05:44:55 PM »
Sounds like a good deal on the Trojans Paul.
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John From Detroit

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2007, 09:42:36 AM »
1: Trojans... Very nice batteries.  Normally I don't see "Trojan/AGM"  I see Trojan/Costco (or Sams) and the answer is always the same,,, Get Trojan's  (Heck, if you don't ask me just ask a Trojan dealer.. he's got the long winded explanation way.

2: Hot water should not blister paint, at least not at temps below super heated steam, unless the paint is wet.

3: Hot water should not be leaking out either unless 1: you have another problem or 2: you are NOT using an in-line pressure regulator on the rig's water supply line (some parks can hit you with 80 or more PSI of pressure, the hot water heater is designed to work at <50PSI.  Here is what happens, at 50 psi as the water heats it expands, pressure goes up, perhaps as high as 70 or 80 psi, no problems,  At 80 pis, as the water heats and expands, again pressure goes up, perhaps as much as 100-120 psi and at these pressures the pressure relief will drip, drip, drip, drip.

4: Water heater operation on gas/electric.  Some heaters have different thermostats for gas/electric,  Some may fire the gas when it's first turned on as a "Test" procedure.

5: Finally, the loudness of the gas burner... As someone else said, that is an air/fuel adjustment and can be reset by a skilled user or technician.  I have done this kind of thing a few times, but prefer to suggest professional help rather than explaining the procedure... Should I make a mistake working on My rig I know who to blame,  Should you screw it up acting on my advice then who is at fault is not as clear and I would feel bad.  Thus I suggest professional help.
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

UK-RV

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2007, 11:12:06 AM »

Thanks John

Ann-Marie has been suggesting I need Professional Help for a long, long time.  ;D

We purchased a pressure regulator when we first got the RV so we know that is OK.

Im trying to get the digital camera to work again, and will post some pics of the paint damage - it's like scale marks on a kettle but it wont wipe off (obviously I dont want to scrubb too hard).

Paul


Karl

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2007, 03:01:43 PM »
Paul,

Try soaking it with a rag wet with vinegar. If it's hard water deposits, they'll come right off after a bit. Works faster if it's quite warm.
Karl (Cheesehead) Kolbus   Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting "...holy cow ...what a ride!"

BruceinFL

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2007, 11:58:08 AM »
Are you sure your hot water heater is also heated electrically? Not all have that option. If it does, have you checked to make sure the switch for the electric portion of the hot water heater is turned on? The on/off switch on mine is located inside the hot water heater access door, not inside the RV.
Bruce A.
2004 Alpenlite Valhalla 29RK 5W
2005 Ford F-350 SRW 6.0L

UK-RV

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2007, 05:56:46 PM »
Hi Guys

Got the 4 new Trojan T-105s yesterday.

We called into the wholesaler and they fitted them for us.

It actually took 90 minutes to fit them as they gave the whole bay a good clean and scrubbed the connectors clean too.

They gave me the invoice and had only charged $95 per battery INCLUDING the fitting (which I thought was an extra $5 each).

So, if any of you are heading toward Miami, I can recommend a stop at Battery Sales USA (www.batterysalesusa.com) - but email them to ask the best price for your battery choice as they will sell cheaper than their website prices.

Their unit is only 2 miles (along one street) off the I-95 (9A), but you will need to disconnect the toad as you need to reverse out of their street a 100yrds or so (there is hardly any traffic there).

Paul

John From Detroit

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2007, 11:52:27 PM »
Thanks John

Ann-Marie has been suggesting I need Professional Help for a long, long time.  ;D



Glad you liked my use of that phrase.  Of course for those who are impaired, "Professional Help" can mean many things,  The guy who fixes your car is a Professional, Your doctors, (All of them) the person who fits your shoes.  The waitress at the local eatery (And the cook). The man at the car wash.

All are paid, and thus all are professionals.   So "Professional Help" means you employ a repairman

But it sounds so much better when you say "Professional Help"

By the way. I've actually SPOKEN with Dr. Kevorkian (The Famous Dr. K of assisted suicide fame)

Yup, he called me back when my office phone number was 9-1-1
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

Smoky

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2007, 04:46:52 AM »
Paul:

Wow that sounds like a good dealer you found for batteries.  Does anyone know a place like that in the Phoenix or Tucson area?

And thanks for starting this thread.  I learned a lot!
Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
Toad - Taurus wagon w/ axle lock
On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

Ned

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2007, 06:55:57 AM »
Try Copperstate Batteries in Phoenix.  I got my original Lifelines there after ordering through Arizona Wind and Sun in Flagstaff.  They installed the batteries at no charge and made a couple of needed cables for very little cost.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

Smoky

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2007, 08:44:26 PM »
Just what I am looking for!  Thanks Ned!  :D
Smoky S  Ham radio - W3PY

The magic of a campfire
where the fish get bigger
the mountains get higher
the hike was uphill both ways
and new friends become old friends

2005 KSDP3910 Newmar Kountry Star
Toad - Taurus wagon w/ axle lock
On our way to the Poudre River in Colorado for the summer!

UK-RV

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #17 on: February 26, 2007, 09:22:26 AM »

Quote
If it starts weeping again, then the TPR valve may be leaking.  They can get mineral deposits in them that keeps the valve from closing completely and the air head will leak out, followed by water.

Ned,

You were spot on - thanks

I spoke with Hector this morning and he showed me the mineral build-up on the valve he had removed/replaced.

Thanks
Paul

Ned

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #18 on: February 26, 2007, 09:38:46 AM »
Paul,

Glad you got one item fixed, at least :)  The biggest problem with TPR valves is RVs use a smaller thread than a household valve, so they cost 3-4 times as much.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

Friendship8380

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Re: A few issues to clarify please
« Reply #19 on: March 24, 2007, 07:46:08 AM »
i'd be curious if you still have the valve. if submerging it in some CLR would remove the deposits and then re-install it...
after living in Florida for many years, we've learned to put showerheads, faucets and sink sprayers in CLR to remove the deposits and then put them back on. even pouring it in the drains to remove deposits that cause clogs...
Jerry
1991 Gulf Stream Friendship 38'
8.3L Cummins 250HP
Jeep Wrangler

 

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