What are the pro's and con's of keeping your RV plugged into shore power

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Fcranger

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I was wondering what the pro's and con's of keeping your RV plugged into your house power when your not out rving? is it a good idea or not? I have mine plugged into shore power for a few months now can this screw up anything? is there anything I should do like check the battey water or anything else? :eek:
 

earljan34

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RI USA
Frank, I keep mine plugged in all the time I installed a Battery Minder on starting batt. and have a charge wizard on my converter/charger, These units monitor the charge rate thus not over charging the batt. also checking water is a good idea I keep an eye on water about once a month, I have never had low water with these devices. Hope this helps

Earl
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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It depends on the quality of your charging system.  In days gone by, it was common for the charger to overcharge the batteries and cause them to die early, but most newer RVs have good-excellent chargers that won't overcharge batteries. Regardless, it is wise to check the water in the batteries at least every 30 days (unless you have AGM or gel type batteries, in which case no check is required).

We leave ours plugged in all the time.
 

Chet18013

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Full time in RV. Home is where we are parked
I have kept our motorhome pluged in for the entire 11 years we have owned it. I also keep the refrigerator on all the time. The adsorbent type of gas/electric units used in RV's can corrode when condensate forms on the coils. The first two years, I did turn the frig off and as a result had a coil failure. After replacing the cooling unit, it has never been turned off--except to be defrosted--and we have not had another coil failure.

Chet18013
 

Shayne

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Have always kept the MH plugged in when at home until this year.  It has been in storage much of the year and what a difference.  I hate it this way.  No cold water in the fridge,  Batteries have a tendencies to weaken.  Just piddly things that irritate me.  JMHO
 

John From Detroit

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The answer to your question depends a lot of the rv,  I will describe some differences and what I'd do

First, I just read a post from someone who has a Magnetek converter.. I would not council him to leave his rig plugged in all the time till he replaces said box (He is planing on replacing it) with a real 3-stage converter charger such as the Progressive Dynamics Intella-Power with Charge Wizard (mine is a 9180)  The reason for this is that the Magnetek is not regulated and will boil batteries dry in very little time if the rig is not in use... It also won't run electronics w/o the batteries in place.  (MY P.D. unit does a great job of running a ham radio station w/o battery assistance if I screw up and hit the STORE switch)

On the other hand, given I have a "Best" class converter (The PD is not the only one wihch uses the charge wizard, some even come with it already "Built in") I leave mine plugged as much as possible  (I spend 2-3 weeks boondocking each year, And several days driving around the country, during these times I'm not plugged in though I may be generating power with the ONAN)

In the first year I added water once, at the 1 year point.  Was not yet urgent but they could use a bit of topping off

Batteries still give "like new" performance (They are around 19 months old now)
 

Fcranger

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It's a 2007 model so it must have the latest charging system, from what I have heard so far I think I'll leave it plugged in as much as possible. :)
 

John From Detroit

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Ok, I agree a 2007 will have the latest, but the question still remains the latest GOOD system the latest BEST system or the latest cheapest piece of refuse they could bolt in.

I was kind of surprised to find a Progressive Dynamics in my coach, As I said, having done considerable research I find it is on the "Best" list (Along with a few other makes and models) None better  My rig is low end for it's size and features

On the other hand I still hear from folks with brand new rigs which have "Converters" I'd not use for anything save as a weight to anchor a TV dish tripod... Both are the latest
 

ArdraF

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Frank,

Aside from all the technical issues, I don't think anyone has addressed the issue of WHY we keep our RVs plugged in when they're in storage.  There are all kinds of what we call "phantom" loads that can run down your batteries.  These include all the alarm systems (fire, propane, etc.), radios, clocks, and numerous other minor lights that are always in the "on" or "ready" position unless you've unplugged the unit.  Over time these voltage drawdowns can ruin your batteries.  Some, if not all, motorhomes do have battery disconnect switches that can be used for storage, but we never use ours.  It's easier to plug it in!  :D ;D  If you have to store the RV someplace that does not have an electrical plug, then use your battery disconnect to save the battery from these drawdowns.  By the way, we measured ours and the phantom circuits are somewhere between 2 and 3 amps.

ArdraF
 

John From Detroit

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Good point on the why.. And by the way I agree,  In my case add that the rig is never truly in storage even when it's parked at home because my primary ham radio station is in the Motor Home.. I mean, wny have two rigs?

I also like that my ham station is 100% emergency power equipped with it's own toilet, sink, kitchen, shower, and water supply most of the year
 
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