Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: How to winterize batteries on the TT?
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 > How to winterize batteries on the TT?

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spoon059

Just north of D.C.

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Posted: 10/21/20 11:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Make sure to check the water level, that is very important. A cheaper converter in your RV can overcharge the battery and boil off water. If you don't have a quality converter (can cost a couple hundred dollars for a nice one), perhaps consider a nice quality trickle charger (maybe 30-50 dollars for a nice one). Good quality and circuitry will help protect your battery, but still check your water level at least yearly.


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Wishin

Grand Rapids, MI

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Posted: 10/22/20 09:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Most important thing, disconnect the batteries from the camper. That alone will eliminate any accidental discharging of the batteries which can allow them to freeze. A fully charged battery will not freeze.

Leaving them hooked up and letting the converter keep them charged has 2 potential issues. One, the trailer could lose power. GFCI trips, breaker trips, someone accidentally unplugs it. I've seen it happen to my parents and their batteries froze (2 6V batteries). The 2nd potential issue is some convertors tend to over charge the batteries and cook off the water out of them. Mine does this over time, not real bad, but they need water every few months and I don't want to deal with that in the winter.

I used to bring my batteries into the garage each winter but I got tired of moving them around since they are so heavy, why not just leave them on the trailer? That is what I've been doing for the last few years. I do disconnect them and then run a trickle charger to them. I can get a glimpse of the green light on my Battery Tender Jr. hanging under the trailer and it is always just solid green, which means it is just monitoring because the batteries are fully charged. I also have 2 6V golf cart batteries on my trailer. I bought them in '09 and they still work great. Just camped the weekend for 2 night with the furnace on and still had capacity left.

To sum up, make sure they are disconnected from the trailer so nothing can drain them. Store them in a warm spot or leave them on the trailer. If brought inside, you can monitor the charge and charge as needed (you probably won't need to). Or leave them on the trailer and do the same. Or put on a trickle charger to make it a fuss free winter.


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bacabunch

Idaho

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Posted: 10/23/20 08:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for all the tips, i think I'm going to leave them on the trailer and hook them up to a charger!


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Gdetrailer

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Posted: 10/23/20 09:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

bacabunch wrote:

Thanks for all the tips, i think I'm going to leave them on the trailer and hook them up to a charger!


No need to put them on a charger for the winter provided you disconnect the batteries from the trailer.

As long as the batteries have been fully charged, and disconnected from anything that can drain the charge (like a RV), they can be left alone for 3-6 months without needing to be charged.

If you really want to use an external charger, be aware that most portable "smart" chargers will shut off and never turn back on once the charge cycle you started ends..

Older non smart chargers can and will be worse at boiling the battery than your RVs built in converter charger since they do not reduce the voltage and keep on with the same voltage.

In some respect as long as your RV has a three stage charging converter (most have since the early 2000s) your battery will be fine left alone with being plugged into the shore power.

Your choice..

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