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Old 10-28-2008, 02:00 PM   #1
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OK - I have two batteries that charge off of the engine . . . and maybe the generator too. Those are underneath the stairs coming into the RV. Then in the first storage compartment on the entry side, I have two batteries that are supposed to be for my solar panels. I have this very confusing wall panel that tells me how much charge the batteries have on them. No matter how long I run the generator or how long I sit in the sun, the charge never gets over 12.8 and it's supposed to get to 14.5. The batteries under the stairs were dry when I got it and I add distilled water to them. I haven't pulled the other batteries out - they are like LOCKED DOWN underneath there. I'll probably have the mechanic look at all this stuff - or camping world - but just wanted to pick the great brains on here . . .

I have two solar panels. You'd think if the RV was sitting out in the sun as much as it is here in ABQ it would get SOME charge from the sun. The panel says "array charge" which I believe means solar charge and nothing is coming in. There's also this little light that's supposed to light up when the solar panels are charging the battery and it never lights up. But the other charge light on the panel lights up all day - the charge just never goes up. Would have come in REALLY HANDY considering the fact that I'm going on a month of boondocking!!!!!

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Old 10-28-2008, 02:00 PM   #2
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OK - I have two batteries that charge off of the engine . . . and maybe the generator too. Those are underneath the stairs coming into the RV. Then in the first storage compartment on the entry side, I have two batteries that are supposed to be for my solar panels. I have this very confusing wall panel that tells me how much charge the batteries have on them. No matter how long I run the generator or how long I sit in the sun, the charge never gets over 12.8 and it's supposed to get to 14.5. The batteries under the stairs were dry when I got it and I add distilled water to them. I haven't pulled the other batteries out - they are like LOCKED DOWN underneath there. I'll probably have the mechanic look at all this stuff - or camping world - but just wanted to pick the great brains on here . . .

I have two solar panels. You'd think if the RV was sitting out in the sun as much as it is here in ABQ it would get SOME charge from the sun. The panel says "array charge" which I believe means solar charge and nothing is coming in. There's also this little light that's supposed to light up when the solar panels are charging the battery and it never lights up. But the other charge light on the panel lights up all day - the charge just never goes up. Would have come in REALLY HANDY considering the fact that I'm going on a month of boondocking!!!!!

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Old 10-28-2008, 02:25 PM   #3
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I'm not sure where you got your figures from but---if your batteries are being RE-carged, that 14.5 VDC if fine, but if the batteries are fully charged and setting on a maintenance charge, 13.8VDC is max they should have. Generally, 13.4 to 13.8 is the preferred amount of charge into fully charged 12 volt batteries. I cooked and ruined three batteries in a previous motor home before I got smart and did to research on them. It was an expensive lesson to learn.

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Old 11-04-2008, 12:29 PM   #4
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Thanks Marty . . . that's what was listed in the owners manual but I don't have to worry about it - it's never seen anything about 12.8. And the charge literally starts disappearing as soon as I turn the generator off. It charges up great and lasts longer from the engine, but not great from the generator and not at all, that I can tell, from the solar. Another thing to get checked!
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Old 11-04-2008, 02:00 PM   #5
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If the batteries are bad or have no water in them, they will never get to the 13+ they should be at full charge. You (or somebody) needs to get a look at them.

And it sounds as though at least one of the batteries under the step is bad, i.e. has one or more dead cells.
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Old 11-04-2008, 03:52 PM   #6
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Yep, they say that once a battery cell gets dry it is dead and can't be revived. I would have the batteries tested to find out if they are still good or not.It really doesn't sound like they will support you when boondocking for a month. If you need new batteries I would include Wal-Marts Everstart batteries on your list of batteries to consider. I've had good results with them, they have a good warrenty and there's a Wal-Mart close by just about anywhere you may find yourself these days!
Good luck!
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Old 11-05-2008, 02:46 PM   #7
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And when the batteries are checked, don't just put the clamp on tester on the posts. They are not accurate gauges of what the health of each cell is. Use a hydrometer to check the electrolite in each cell. Only then will you get the whole picture of what the current status of the battery is.

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