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 > Deep cycle battery maintenance

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rvshrinker

Beautiful Pacific Northwest

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Posted: 09/14/20 09:02am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hello experts

My TT and interstate batteries are there years old. The trailer is plugged into my house when not in use. It gets five or so trips per year so is plugged into the house most of the time. It is now on a dedicated 30 amp circuit but was previously on a 15 amp.

We have mild weather, almost always between 35-90 degrees. A few days of subfreezing temps per year, a couple weeks over 90.

I have never added distilled water to the batteries or done any other maintenance. I open the batteries to check there is water in there before every trip... But that's it.

This website sounds like I should be doing a lot more. It also is quite a bit over my head:

Deep cycle battery maintenance

Is the a simpler explanation/resource for the essential tasks and checks I should be doing?

midnightsadie

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Posted: 09/14/20 09:22am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I clean the post IF I see any grud, check water level spring july and oct. a year ,if you,ve never added water? you need too.

CA Traveler

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Posted: 09/14/20 09:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Add distilled water until it just reaches the bottom of the fill tube. Do not fill to the top of the case/cap. This allows for a adequate reserve and for the battery to vent.

You can buy a battery filler bottle that will fill them to the correct level.


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TurnThePage

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Posted: 09/14/20 09:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I just had to add water for the first time in over a year, and I also keep my trailer plugged in full time at home.

Since I'm strictly a recreational RVer at this point, and have a generator (and 150 watts of solar), I don't worry about the batteries too much. I have a TM-2020 meter that tells me their current state of charge.

I exercise them once in a while, but no set schedule. I otherwise pay little attention to them. I've gotten over 8 years of service from each pair of 6 volt batteries with that routine.


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MEXICOWANDERER

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Posted: 09/14/20 10:11am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

  • What that website is emphasizing is to not overly discharge their batteries
  • 80% of capacity means use 20 amp hours of a 100 amp hour battery
  • Without an amp-hour meter installed in your system it's all guesswork
  • Few chargers will not end up undercharging your batteries
  • This is why solar panels are so popular
  • Their charge regulation is much more realistic


theoldwizard1

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Posted: 09/14/20 10:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Keeping flood lead acid batteries FLOODED at all times is the most important thing you can do. If they are on a charger 24/7, I would recommend checking the liquid level every 1-2 months, especially when the temperature is above 90F.

Keeping the outside of the battery clean is #2.

For MAXIMUM battery life, I believe that lead acid batteries should NOT be on a charger 24/7 ! 4 - 6 hours per day on a "maintainer" is plenty. Use a cheap mechanical lamp timer for your battery maintainer.

rvshrinker

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Posted: 09/14/20 10:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I do check the water, it's above the battery level so I haven't added. Do you mean add water until reaching the bottom of the case, but not filling to the cap top? I can do that. The batteries themselves are definitely still under water, I check before every trip. Our mild temps probably are easy on these batteries. It's 55 degrees outside today.

Batteries are very clean, connections and outside.

I saw some kind of device in a thread here that transferred water into the battery etc, is that something I need?

I do boondock often so I wouldn't want to be surprised by a dead battery. What's the best way to monitor whether my battery performance is starting to degrade?

* This post was edited 09/14/20 11:28am by rvshrinker *

TurnThePage

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Posted: 09/14/20 11:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I use one of these purpose built water jugs. It fills each cell uniformly without over filling or making a mess. It makes the whole job quick and easy.

CA Traveler

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Posted: 09/14/20 12:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Remove the cap and you'll see a vent well. Fill to the bottom are almost to the bottom. Filling to the case means water will come out due to temperature or trying to vent.

pianotuna

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Posted: 09/14/20 12:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If the plates are covered, then fully charge the batteries BEFORE adding distilled water.


Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp hours of AGM in two battery banks 12 volt batteries, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

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