Cruser said it very well.
Old Scout the same and on both of my Alpines, the house and chassis switches did disconnect all that is important. The inverte/charger is never disconnected w/o taking off the cables and is obviously needed for the equalizing charge.
BryanL, If you always have your coach plugged in when you are not driving it, then I would say OK other than that I will have to beg to differ.
Mike, good note for Vansco owners.
Our 3 stage chargers are designed to help with the need for equalization. The problem is that many of you only have your AGS set to "Absorb off" which means that the gen shuts off after the bulk charge and you don't get the true advantage of having the 3 stages.
From AM Solar @ AM Solar - Batteries
in reference to charging, gassing and equaliztion, "if you don't push the batteries to their gassing threshold, you will leave some of the sulfur behind on the plates. This sulfur will begin to form a sulfate crystal which will eventually grow to cover a substantial part of the lead plate. Once this happens, that part of the plate can no longer interact with the electrolyte solution and the capacity of your battery diminishes. You will know your batteries are sulfated when you find that they don't last as long as they used to before they need recharging. An equalization charge can drive some of this sulfate crystal back into solution if it hasn't hardened into a rock like crystal yet.
An equalization charge is a planned overcharge. As discussed above, overcharging (equalizing) a battery is not good but then neither is allowing sulphate crystals to grow. Equalization, however, is a lessor evil than sulfation. Pushing the batteries up to 15 to 15.5 volts for 3 to 6 hours occasionally (once when you put your RV into storage and once when you take it out) will help knock loose hard rock sulfation and allow weaker cells to come up to a full charge. If you recognize that you will have to replace the water that 'boiled' off during this planned overcharge, you can extend the life of previously sulfated batteries.
Another method that works satisfactorily is to allow a once-daily climb to between 14.5 and 15 volts for a short duration (half of an hour). This has proven to eliminate the need for true, long duration equalization charges. This short duration, daily "equalization" also keeps the battery from losing excess water and overheating, both of which are potentially harmful to your battery."
The last paragraph refers to the likes of the absorption stage of our charge.
From Xantrex application note @ http://www.xantrex.com/web/id/257/DocServe.aspx
"THE EQUALIZING PROCESS
An equalizing charge is a controlled overcharge cycle that performs several actions within the battery and provides certain benefits. During equalization, the voltage is raised to approximately 2.7 volts per cell, or about 16.2 volts for a 12-volt battery. The current output of the charger should be limited to about 5% of the battery's capacity. In other words, a 200-amp hour battery should be allowed to accept no more than about 10 amps of current. This will help prevent overheating. The equalize cycle is timed to be between 4 and 8 hours depending on the features of the charging source, but the cycle can always be terminated early if necessary. The particular battery manufacturer's recommendations for equalization time should be followed. This elevated voltage results in a vigorous charging action to take place within each cell that has several effects on the battery. First, much of the residual sulfate is forced to re-combine with the electrolyte in the form of sulfuric acid. Crystallized sulfate that will not re-combine is broken loose from the plates and falls harmlessly to the bottom of the battery. Deep cycle batteries have additional space beneath the plates intended to collect this material. This action cleans the plates exposing fresh lead to the electrolyte and restores battery capacity."
Good information about deep cycle batteries.
Deep Cycle Battery FAQ
While trying to fine tune my battery monitor, I used a hydrometer and found that my batteries were far from fully charged, even after a full 3 stage charge. This is after I had done many charges that went thru a majority of the absorption charge. I did about 4-5 one hour equalizing charges and brought them up to almost full charge. I am still looking into how to get the AGS to shut off after doing most of the absorb cycle, but not all. The full absorb charge takes too long and wastes fuel.