I have a 2005 Itasca Spirit 24F that has been great for us. However, I've recently noticed a problem with the chassis (engine) batttery running down within a week or so of being parked and not in use. No lights on that I'm aware of, no apparent source for battery drain. I can start the engine if I use the "Battery Boost" switch and start from the house batteries, and the engine battery itself holds a charge when I drive the rig, park it for a night or two, then try to start it from the engine battery - no problem there. chassis battery is fairly new - 1 or 2 years old only.
I did install a new radio/CD player, and wonder if that's causing a drain, although that was installed nearly a year ago and this problem only cropped up this winter. I'm wondering how many of you install a battery cutout switch on the chassis battery, similar to what the manufacturer installed on the house batteries? Can this be accessed easily from inside the cab, or do I have to pop the hood to reach it? Thanks, Dave
I had a similar issue with our MH, and finally just use the battery disconnect switch that was on the battery when we bought the MH (used). I had to replace a battery, after it had gone completely dead, and never really charged up to full charge again......
Getting a switch isn't expensive, and is good piece of mind for when you have the RV parked for extended periods of time, and can't keep a Battery Minder on it.
Bill & Claudia / DD Jenn / DS Chris / GS MJ Dogs: Sophie, Abby, Brandy, Kahlie, Annie, Maggie, Tugger & Beau RIP: Cookie, Foxy & Gidget @ Rainbow Bridge.
2000 Winnebago "Minnie" 31C, Ford V-10
Purchased April 2008 FMCA# F407293 The Pets
It's a good idea to keep a Battery Minder connected to the starting battery when rig is not driven for some distance at least twice per month. This will keep the battery from self-discharging and going flat from running connected devices. Your converter should keep your house battery up if plugged into shore power, but some will overcharge and boil out electrolyte damaging the house battery. Best to check electrolyte levels once per month. Otherwise you should connect a Battery Minder to your house battery too. Battery Minders are "smart" trickle chargers that can prevent or reverse sulphation of battery plates. They are good to keep batteries charged fully and extend their useful life considerably. They can be left connected with no fear of over-charging. Desulphation feature only works well on partially sulphated batteries, read FAQ's on website:
Do you switch the radio to the "house" setting? I can usually store 2-3 months if the battery is just keeping the memory in the ECM alive, but can run it down in a week or less if it is supplying the turned-off radio.
This gets progressively shorter as the battery ages, and loses it's capability to hold a full charge.
What we do with these batteries, long periods of storage with low level loads, often high temperatures, pulls them down to discharge levels well below what they were designed for. This kills them faster than using them for a start, and fast recharge, every day or at least a couple times a week.
Pulling the ground connection will remove all loads. I don't like to do this because the ECM has to learn all over again about my driving and the condition of the engine and transmission, but if the battery goes too low that happens anyway.
If the battery self-discharges in less than two-three months, when totally disconnected, it is time for a new battery.
Hopefully this comment might help someone. I had a similar problem with my RV, the chassis battery would sit all winter and be ready to go in the spring. (often between October until April the next year) Then something happened and the RV battery was dead in 30 days.
I connected a set of jumper cables to the chassis battery and immediately my OBD2 monitor lit up and chirped without me even touching the ignition switch. I immediately learned the problem. I thought the OBD2 went completely dead when shutting off the ignition, but apparently it stayed live and connected merely shutting off the display.
The next time, I unplugged the 8-pin modular connector from the ODB2 and lo and behold the chassis battery remained fully charged for the next 2 months.
2002 Trail-Lite Model 211-S w/5.7 Chevy (click View Profile)