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Old 11-20-2011, 01:51 PM   #1
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Battery concern

In the process of cleaning the corrosion in the chassis battery compartment I pulled both batteries and noticed that both were bulging a little on the sides. The batteries are not quite 4 years old. I have had a considerable problem with off-gassing. I know the AGM batteries would solve that problem but there is not an extra $600.00 in our budget so guess I will replace the existing batteries with like batteries. When not in use the coach is normally plugged into shore power.

Questions are: What could have caused the batteries to swell/bulge? Is a little swelling normal? I have put the coach up for the winter and donít plan on using it again for probably 3-4 months. (StaBil, oil change done, etc). I had rather not buy two batteries now if Iím not going to use the coach but I do need to be able to run the propane heater when it freezes. It will be plugged into shore power unless plugging to shore power without batteries will cause a problem. Can I run the propane heater without the chassis batteries in the coach and if so will being connected to shore power without batteries do any harm? Also, weather permitting; we normally try to drive it once a month but am concerned about any damage that might happen if there are no batteries in the coach.

Advise and suggestions are appreciated.

Thanks,
RJ
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:59 PM   #2
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Battery concern correction

In my post I said chassis battery but I meant to say the house batteries. Sorry.
RJ
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Old 11-20-2011, 02:14 PM   #3
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My Centennial house batteries were made in April of `11 and already show slight bulging. I bought my MH the last day of May and they have been properly charged. I don't remember if they were bulging then I got it, but noticed it yesterday.
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Old 11-20-2011, 02:27 PM   #4
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Considerable out gassing? I think you could have a converter problem. What brand of converter do you have? You might check the voltage from the converter to see what it is putting out.
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Old 11-20-2011, 04:06 PM   #5
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RJ,
I could not find any info in your profile as to what type of RV you have.
I suspect you either have a faulty or outdated voltage converter. Newer style converters have 3-4 charging stages to minimize out gassing and overheating of the batteries/cases.
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Old 11-22-2011, 11:20 PM   #6
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Check voltage

Some swelling us normal over time

Over charge will kill page batteries

13.5 mean float charge
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Old 11-22-2011, 11:31 PM   #7
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Check them with a hydrometer. About $10 or less. Tells you if all the cells are OK.
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Old 11-23-2011, 12:08 AM   #8
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Off gassing and bulging are signs of overcharging. If you just replace the batteries you will be in the same spot 3 or 4 years from not. You should use a good three stage charger.
Most people do not have to cleanup their battery compartment and work to prevent corrosion on their batteries.
The batteries are not the problem. The problem is the charging system you are using.
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Old 11-23-2011, 04:52 AM   #9
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Your furnace is powered by the 12v house batts/converter I would imagine, so no batts it will not run. As others have said your converter is more than likely over charging you batterys, causing your issues. As far as the swelling goes that doesn't mean the batts are bad the only way you will know that is with an inexpensive hydrometer. AGM's will not solve the problem, you will just burn them up until you check/fix the overcharge issue.
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