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Old 07-31-2007, 05:42 AM   #1
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What exactly is the battery for? I always go to campgrounds with electricity. Do I need it for anything? If it has died, do I need another?
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Old 07-31-2007, 05:42 AM   #2
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What exactly is the battery for? I always go to campgrounds with electricity. Do I need it for anything? If it has died, do I need another?
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Old 07-31-2007, 06:01 AM   #3
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Yes, the battery is legally required since its most important function is to power the trailer brakes in case the trailer should break away from the tow vehicle. When the trailer's breakaway switch is pulled, trailer battery power is applied directly to the trailer's electric brakes.

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Old 07-31-2007, 06:18 AM   #4
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Thanks Rusty.

I always wondered what it was used for. I will check it and make sure it is working properly.

El
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Old 07-31-2007, 06:19 AM   #5
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You need the battery because with most RV electrical systems, the campground electricity goes to the the converter which then uses it to charge the batteries. The batteries actually power the lights, the refrigerator control panel, etc.
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Old 07-31-2007, 07:17 AM   #6
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Depending on the converter, however, the 12VDC loads may be powered without a battery in place. I had an old Jayco pop-up (1978 vintage) that never had a battery installed in it since it had surge brakes. All the 12VDC loads ran off the converter's output.

I'd still recommend having a battery in the system, however.

Rusty
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Old 07-31-2007, 12:16 PM   #7
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by RustyJC:
Yes, the battery is legally required since its most important function is to power the trailer brakes in case the trailer should break away from the tow vehicle. When the trailer's breakaway switch is pulled, trailer battery power is applied directly to the trailer's electric brakes.

Rusty </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Rusty is absolutely right on this one. When my orig equip battery died last year while on a trip, the trailer brakes quit working completely. Quick stop at a Wallly World Tire and Lube exchanged battery and problem fixed so I surmised that if my on board battery is not fully charged my trailer brakes ain't gonna work.
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Old 07-31-2007, 07:06 PM   #8
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Have you done things, then looked back and said, "Now that was dumb?" A few years ago, we were going to stay for 5 days at an inner city campground and the pad was on somewhat of an incline. I got the bright idea to pull the break-away switch and lock the brakes. When I hitched up to leave, my refidgerator wouldn't switch to gas, but worst of all, my trailer brakes would work at all. I know better now!
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Old 08-01-2007, 04:49 AM   #9
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On every trailer I have had, the 12V appliances would all work without a battery connected. The converter powered everything just fine. You do need a functioning battery to power the breaks in the event of a breakaway as mentioned before. Most trailers come with cheap batteries in them that can be bought at most places fairley cheap.
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Old 08-01-2007, 02:42 PM   #10
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While 12 volt devices will run in many cases directly from the converter it is wise to have a battery in the system for the capacitor effect it will have. The battery will smooth out most spikes caused by voltage fluctuations. At least a few converters will not provide steady 12 volt power without a battery in the system.
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Old 08-01-2007, 03:05 PM   #11
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To carry rclarke's post a little further, the battery also loads the converter. Without the battery in the circuit the voltage output of the converter can be uncomfortably high for many lights and circuit boards - - and that can be an expensive problem.
Bob
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