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Old 08-30-2012, 09:06 PM   #1
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Quick question about coach batteries

OK, I need a quick answer if possible. I have my coach manual and the chassis manual PDF's thanks to members here, and neither mentions what kind of batteries are used as the coach batteries. I replaced the chassis battery today. The 454 pops off in about 2 revolutions cold. "Happy camper dance"

1988 Coachmen Sportscoach Pathfinder DL S Chevy P30 Chassis.

I'll go into more detail in the next post, I just need to know if regular 12 volt batteries are used or deep cycle marine type batteries.

I pulled them both out and they are plain black with no labels or markings. Sides and ends are bulged out on both batteries. They each have rope and plastic handles. Each has two caps covering three holes each. I have a pair of digital battery chargers, neither will charge either battery. They keep faulting out. Multimeter reads less than 10 volts on each.

If I can find this out tonight, we can still get some camping in for the weekend.

Any help is appreciated, much thanks in advance.
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Old 08-30-2012, 09:10 PM   #2
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6 volt Trogans are what I have. 2 wired correctly give you 12volts and more amp hours for use. Little maintenance ( add dispelled water when needed.)
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Old 08-30-2012, 09:38 PM   #3
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More info

OK, Brought the RV home Tuesday. Took today and Friday to have a long weekend of RV'ing. Today was supposed to be clean up, gear up and get ready to leave Friday morning. Tuesday night, we ran the generator for about 45 minutes as we looked at and tested everything! Wednesday afternoon, I tried to start the generator so the wife could run the AC while cleaning out the RV. It started, stumbled and cut off. I tried it again and got the slow growl of death as the batteries gave up the ghost. The steps would not retract either.

When we picked it up at the sellers house, the chassis battery was a little weak and he boosted off the coach batteries to start it up. We had a 45 mile drive back to our house and he said it would get charged back up by then.

Wednesday night, I read on here that most generators started off the chassis battery. So, I planned to get and early start Thursday morning and clean and tighten up all the coach battery connections and go buy a new 600 amp chassis battery. Get it installed and start up the generator and get going with our plans. Well, I dropped $100 on the 6 year 600 amp battery, another $100 on tune up items for the Oden generator that looks like it has never been serviced and a few other items. No deal, dead as a hammer. The chassis light would light when the cut off was pressed, but the coach light would not light nor was there the clicking noise. The chassis battery will pop off the 454 in two revs. But, the steps won't retract so I can't drive it and camp off of the site power. So, here I sit, waiting on my new RV family to lend a hand and tell me what kind of batteries I need to buy in the morning and get my party started!
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Old 08-30-2012, 09:53 PM   #4
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They were wired with one large red cable and a smaller wire on the positive post of the left battery. One red cable bridged over to the positive of the right battery, A black cable bridges from the negative post on the right battery to the negative post of the left battery, another goes from the right battery ground to the battery box. A red cable comes off the positive post of the right battery to a relay mounted above and behind the battery box.

I understand this is wired in series. This is why I did not try to charge the batteries in place or try to jump off the generator with my Cherokee.
I guess they were 12 volt, they both measure less than 12 volts but not at 6.
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Old 08-30-2012, 10:07 PM   #5
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See the image above for connecting two 12v batteries. The wiring is parallel. If you are going to a camp ground that has power you really only need one battery right now.
It would be easiest to start with 12v deep cycle marine batteries. If you are going to be going to campgrounds that have power you don't need much battery capacity.
Sounds like the current chassis batteries are shot. No use messing with them, could be dangerous if they have a bad cell.
Series connection is like stacked flashlight batteries, positive to negative. Parallel is positive to positive.
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Old 08-30-2012, 10:29 PM   #6
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It sounds like you have 12 volt batteries connected in parallel not series.

Pop off the caps and look.
6 volt batteries have 3 holes to fill with distilled water.
12 volt batteries have 6 holes to fill with distilled water.

If your looking to buy new batteries quick, I think you will be happier with (2) 6-volt golf cart batteries hooked up in series like 4Knights shows above. The RV /marine batteries you buy at auto parts stores are not true deep cycle batteries like golf cart batteries are. Take measurements to make sure your new batteries will fit.
Go to Sams Club or Costco, I think Walmart sells them too, they are about $80 each.

You will have an extra cable because you are going to hook them up in series. It is easy, your first cable goes from positive on one battery to negative on the other. Now you have an empty positive or negative post on each battery to hook to the coach.
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Old 08-30-2012, 10:51 PM   #7
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6 holes, sounds like the 6 volt set up is the way to go. What I have now is a parallel set up, positive to positive. Will I need to make any other changes to what I have if I do the positive to negative 6 volt set up? The system will still run as normal, just run longer and with less fuss and muss?

Thanks, I'd go like it is with out coach batteries because we were going to use site power, but the steps wont retract. So, I'll be shopping for two 6 volt batteries in the morning. Thanks!
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Old 08-31-2012, 07:56 AM   #8
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Most MH have a switch to temporarily tie the chassis battery to the coach battery. This way if either battery is dead, the engine can be started or the steps can be retracted, or the generator can be started or the jacks can be retracted, or the slide can be retracted.

Most of the time it is on the dash somewhere (but not always), Mine is called " Aux Start" but different MH call them different things.

You mention a red wire that goes to a relay above the battery box (in post #4). this might be your aux relay that ties them together or it could be your disconnect relay that disconnects the battery for long time storage.
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Old 08-31-2012, 10:41 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the help! Going to get two Interstate GC2-XHD 6 volt batteries right now. The red cables from the RV will go on the left 6 volt, I'll use the red cross over cable I removed to tie the left negative to the right 6 volt positive post. Then the right 6 volt negative cable goes to ground on the battery box. We are planning to head down to Myrtle Beach as soon as I get these installed. Thanks again!

These batteries have some good numbers.


Interstate GC2-XHD-S is designed to withstand the stresss of repeated deep cycling and has the highest cycle life of any golf car battery in the market. Featuring the longest drive time between charges in the industry, the GC2-XHD-S is backed by Interstate Batteries' hassle-free 12 month free replacement at any Interstate Batteries authorized dealer.
FEATURES
Voltage: 6 volt
Capacity: 232Ah
12 month free replacement coast-to-coast
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Old 08-31-2012, 07:20 PM   #10
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Ok, you said both batteries have two "Triple caps" (cover 3 holes each) this means they are 12 volt and very likely not the original equipment, also very likely the WRONG kind of battery.

For the house batteries you need good quality DEEP CYCLE, this gives you two choices.

One is the common GC-2 Golf car battery, this type has only 3 holes, either one triple cap or 3 single caps.. This is a six volt battery so you wire two of them in series.. Like this

-{Bat}T{ery}+

Where the "T" is a jumper cable.

This gives you 220-230 amp hours at 12 vdc.

You treat the pair of them exactly like you would ONE 12 volt battery (Roughly an 8-D)

The other option is a pair of 12 volt DEEP CYCLE, either trolling or golf car batteries, They are becoming easier to find now days. And you hook them up the same way the old ones were.

WHat you have are "Marine/Deep cycle" and those are starting batteries, They are "ok" but not really the best for house battery use


The next question is "What size are they" (IE: Group 27, 29. 31) Note that a pair of GC-2 six volt hold more power than a pair of 27 or 29, but less than a pair of 31's (slightly in most of those cases).

Just take the old ones into the store with you and match the size. This is not a guarantee, but it will be close enough.
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Old 08-31-2012, 10:11 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PirateCamper View Post
OK, I need a quick answer if possible. I have my coach manual and the chassis manual PDF's thanks to members here, and neither mentions what kind of batteries are used as the coach batteries. I replaced the chassis battery today. The 454 pops off in about 2 revolutions cold. "Happy camper dance"

1988 Coachmen Sportscoach Pathfinder DL S Chevy P30 Chassis.

I'll go into more detail in the next post, I just need to know if regular 12 volt batteries are used or deep cycle marine type batteries.

I pulled them both out and they are plain black with no labels or markings. Sides and ends are bulged out on both batteries. They each have rope and plastic handles. Each has two caps covering three holes each. I have a pair of digital battery chargers, neither will charge either battery. They keep faulting out. Multimeter reads less than 10 volts on each.

If I can find this out tonight, we can still get some camping in for the weekend.

Any help is appreciated, much thanks in advance.
Take the chassis batteries out and go to Sams club, they will have something that will work and will get you going.
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Old 08-31-2012, 11:34 PM   #12
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The Interstate GC2-XHD 6 volt batteries are a good choice for deep cycle batteries for your MH. You will be happy with those batteries.

What kind of a price did you have to pay for them?

For long battery life you should not discharge your batteries below 12 volts or about 50% of full charge. (The exact number actually depends on specific gravity of the water in the battery but it works out to be around 12 volts)


Now, if you want a good battery monitor get a Trimetic 2025RV. It will cost about $200 with the shunt and cable. It tracks every amp in or out of your coach batteries and monitors your chassis battery. It lets you know in percentage of "full charge" your batteries are. You can watch your converter charging at different amps as the batteries get charged. You can see how many amps your inverter is drawing out of the batteries while you watch TV or charge your laptop or even turn on your interior lights.
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Old 09-01-2012, 03:29 AM   #13
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I got the two interstate batteries for $171 each delivered to my Firestone so I could charge them. Cash at the Interstate store in Columbia, SC would have been $141 each. Hooked them up as described in here and the worked super! I hit the generator button and it nearly jumps out of the mount! The new batteries are taller than the others, I'll need to move a few things around, but they worked great.

Had a good trip except 16 miles from home, had a major overheat. Had a friend come to us and bring water, gee, I can carry a lot of water right? Well, long story short, the seller replaced the over flow bottle under the hood but FAILED to put any coolant in it! SO, first bit of heat and it sucked in a big gulp of air! Not good. Got it cooled down, no water in the oil and no blown hoses. Made it to the coast at 3:30 AM Now, I have yet another problem, I'll start a new thread for that one.
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Old 09-01-2012, 06:21 AM   #14
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AWWW yes, the joys of RVing, sorry to hear about your overheat problems. You have to tells us why you were not carry any freshwater water in your tanks. I sometimes only carry a 1/4 tank for toilet flushing and hand washing until I get to where I am going.

$141 for Interstate batteries is a good price. My 2002 Flair MH came stock with Interstate U -22 (6) volt batteries. I replaced them after 6 years only because I was selling the MH.

Sounds like you have a few bugs to work out of your new to you RV. Hang in there.
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