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Old 06-15-2019, 02:56 PM   #1
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Chassis Battery

I suppose it's time to buy a new chassis battery.

Battery voltage shows 13.04, hasn't come up from there for a week. Starts instantly, but I don't think I want to rely on a battery that doesn't seem to be charging. I keep the 35K plugged in constantly when it's parked. Typically, I recall it to be around 13.4v.

Anyone have any recommendations?

Ron
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Old 06-15-2019, 03:03 PM   #2
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Chassis Battery

Since it’s chassis battery what’s the voltage while engine is running?
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Old 06-15-2019, 05:29 PM   #3
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14.2 or so, normal for the alternator at idle

rm
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Old 06-16-2019, 08:58 PM   #4
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12.7 volts is a fully charged battery. The charger puts out a higher voltage and that is what you are seeing but the battery is more than likely fully charged. With the engine off and the coach unplugged, the chassis battery should have around 12.7 volts
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Old 06-16-2019, 09:20 PM   #5
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How old is the battery? If its nearing end of life anyway, replace it proactively.
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Old 06-17-2019, 07:20 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by chuckftboy View Post
12.7 volts is a fully charged battery. The charger puts out a higher voltage and that is what you are seeing but the battery is more than likely fully charged. With the engine off and the coach unplugged, the chassis battery should have around 12.7 volts
That makes sense, after taking a trip to www.batteryuniveristy.com for a re-education on lead acid tech.

The 13.04 is probably when the BCC has it in float. I got used to seeing 13.4 (probably when the BCC is charging) and 14.2 when the engine is running.

Coach is 5 years old, I would assume the battery is a bit more than 5 year old.

I'll measure it open circuit, just to be sure.

Thanks
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Old 06-17-2019, 08:03 PM   #7
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Float voltage for any recent year "smart" charger is going to be 13.6v - that has been standard for lead-acid batteries for many a year now. Sometimes there is a bit of loss going through the BCC, but 13.04 is low enough to be worrisome. 13.4-13.6 is expected, so there is a problem somewhere. My guess is that either the house or chassis battery bank has at least one battery with a weak cell that is dragging down the voltage in the system. Check all your batteries, not just the chassis.
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Old 06-18-2019, 07:15 AM   #8
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Thanks Gary, good catch.

I'll pull the cables off tonight (if it doesn't rain again) and do some measuring.

ron
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Old 06-18-2019, 07:37 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmueller View Post
I suppose it's time to buy a new chassis battery.

Battery voltage shows 13.04, hasn't come up from there for a week. Starts instantly, but I don't think I want to rely on a battery that doesn't seem to be charging. I keep the 35K plugged in constantly when it's parked. Typically, I recall it to be around 13.4v.

Anyone have any recommendations?

Ron
We need a lot more information to decide if battery needs replacement. The charger being used can have different controlling programs and thus different charging voltages. The battery SOC can cause different charging voltages. Of course a self discharging battery can affect the charging voltage.

I have a marine charger that is designed so that once charged, the charge voltage shuts off all together. It reactivates if voltage drops or periodically to maintain battery health. 13.04 would be a normal value at different times during maintenance phase.

Testing while driving is more predictable. Most engine alternators use a similar program. Battery charging voltage should start low after starting engine and rise to 14.4 or so and then drop to 13.6 or so.

If the engine starts quickly after a period of none use, the battery is adequate for your vehicle. A better test is starting after none use in below freezing weather.

The battery is not likely to stop working suddenly. It will usually deteriorate slowly. You will notice slower starting and have time to get a new battery.
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Old 06-18-2019, 04:24 PM   #10
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Agreed...

Pretty sure this charger and BCC shuts down after 12.6/.7 (understood to be full charge). I measured the voltage in circuit, got 12.65. Then measured open circuit sam reading, got 12.65. Pretty sure battery is good.

I pulled out the manual and confirmed, the BCC cuts out at 13.2 and allows the coach battery to run down to 12.2 when on shore power.

The same BCC controls the house batteries. The panel indicates 'float charging' at 13.41. They work fine.

Engine starts instantly, I think I'd be jumping the gun buying a battery.

Ron
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