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Old 05-19-2014, 06:31 AM   #1
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Country Coach Owners Club
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Temp. Storage. What to turn off

Due to my mom's recent death, we have put our coach into storage for hopefully no more than a month or so to allow us to move in with dad. Since we are the only ones of the family with the freedom to do so (everyone else has SB homes and jobs of sorts) this fell on us.

To shut down I did the following:
1) Shut off chassis disconnect switch.
2) Shut off 12 v switch for lights.
3) Opened both mains from inverters.

Did I miss anything?

It is warm enough (still getting into high 30's at night in upstate NY, ain't this weather a b **** this year) to allow not winterizing the coach.

I plan on starting the coach and generator at least once per week to charge everything and warm coach as needed.

Do I have to do anything else?

Thanks for any advice. Since we are FT, this is a first for us.
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Old 05-19-2014, 06:58 AM   #2
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shut off the house batteries too. After ours sits for a month or so we also disinfect the fresh water tank before we hit the road again. You might also want to shut off the hot water heater at the breaker until you have flushed and refilled the water system. Before you shut everything down plug it in for a couple of days and let the batteries get a nice full charge. It is also a good time to have things like carpet cleaning done and getting those little thing that need fixing fixed. Unless you are storing it inside you might want to close all the curtains shut down the refig, empty it and leave the doors open to dry it out.
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Old 05-19-2014, 08:02 AM   #3
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Being new to Country Coach, I'm not yet familiar with how much, if any, parasitic load is still on the batteries when everything is turned "off". On my Monaco Windsor, turning off the battery disconnect switch for the "house" batteries did truly isolate the batteries. There was zero current flow.

The chassis batteries were another matter. Even with the disconnect switch turned to the "off" position the engine and transmission control units were still energized and together drew a little over one tenth of an amp (112 milliamps) which would discharge the batteries enough to prevent cranking the engine after a week or so. So I would remover the negative cable from the chassis battery-pair when storing for an extended period.

How are Country Coach batteries and disconnects configured? Do either or both of the battery banks have to have a cable physically disconnected to eliminate any current flow even after everything is turned off?

Sorry to hear of your mom's passing, Medico.

With regard to starting your engine - most advice I have received and followed is to routinely start and run the generator under load. Monthly for about 1/2 hour was what the Onan rep said at a rally we attended.

The main engine however, should not be started unless it is going to be driven long and far enough to completely warm to operating temperature. Idling, even fast idle, is not enough to get it there. Time and distance vary depending on outside temperature.

Letting the main engine sit for extended periods does it no harm. The generator needs to be exercised to keep the electrical windings dry.

FWIW
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Old 05-19-2014, 04:44 PM   #4
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I am unaware of a disconnect from the house batteries. That is why I switched off the 12 V switch inside the door and the inverter main disconnects.

Unfortunately there is no way to run any power to the coach. It was plugged in for a week prior to driving it to the storage area.

When I attempted to start the coach after a week of sitting, I did need to use the battery boost switch so I let the coach run at idle for almost an hour with the generator also running under load during this time frame. I also ran the diesel hydro hot to warm the coach since, as I said, the weather here is COLD for the middle of May. I guess the lousy winter is extending into a lousy spring as well.

I will switch off the electric water heater, although I believe it might already be off. Perhaps I will just shut off most the circuit breakers. I do need the door locks to continue working and the steps to come out when I open the door.
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Old 05-19-2014, 05:19 PM   #5
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The electric steps and door lock are very likely parasitic loads that are drawing the batteries down. In addition, the ECU and transmission controller are also drawing on the batteries. If it was down that far in a week, I imagine in a month you'll have VERY dead batteries, perhaps needing replacement, not just a charge.
If you don't have a chassis batteries shut off, you should remove the cable from the ground post in storage.
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Old 05-19-2014, 05:28 PM   #6
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On my vintage CC the chassis battery disconnect is in the battery compartment.

The house battery disconnect is in the coach.

I would turn both off. You could even disconnect the negative cable from the house battery to extinguish the phantoms.

My inverter's Link 2000 remains powered even though the house battery switch is off.
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Old 05-20-2014, 05:11 AM   #7
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I have turned off the chassis batteries at the disconnect switch in the rear compartment. I am staying about 3 miles from the coach and regularly visit to check it out and at least once per week to start both the coach and the generator to let them run for a while to ensure full charge. I expect this situation will only last a month or so, perhaps up to 2 months (we certainly hope not).

The steps are deactivated with the chassis shutoff, so each time I need to get in the coach I have to turn on the shutoff. The door locks do appear to be a parasitic drain. I have to check today, so I will look for a disconnect on the house batteries.
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Old 05-20-2014, 12:15 PM   #8
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If you can't drive the coach and get the main engine up to full operating temps, you will do more harm than good. Let the coach sit and only run the generator to charge the batteries, Your coach has a Echo charger that will charge the chassis batteries from the house batteries.

You should be able to let the coach sit for a months without any ill effects.

Sorry to hear about your mom, I went through the same thing and it isn't easy.
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Old 05-20-2014, 04:56 PM   #9
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This was such a swift and unexpected occurrence that it really caught us all by surprise. Thank you for the condolences and thoughts.

I will take your recommendations on starting the generator rather than the engine. That does indeed sound like sound advice.

All else seems fine. We will get through this and head home to Florida sometime in the next couple of months. Unfortunately our trip to Colorado had to be cancelled. We no longer have the time or money to go this year. We will take our time heading south when the time comes to get some sight seeing in.

Thanks for all your answers and thoughts.
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