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Old 10-03-2015, 03:45 PM   #1
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Battery Winterizing

If you had the option which would you do:
A: pull both the engine and house batteries and place them on battery tenders all winter in the garage
B: leave the entire RV plugged into shore power for the winter.

I don't want to have 2 dead batteries come spring and I'm not sure which route is better.
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Old 10-03-2015, 04:24 PM   #2
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If removing the batteries isn't a big chore, storing them on a battery tender would probably be best. If you do that, make sure you label each cable and take photos so you get it hooked up correctly in a few months.

If you leave the RV plugged in, you could perhaps install a timer on the shore cord outlet so the charger would only be on a few hours a day, or less to maintain their charge. Leaving it plugged in full time might over charge the batteries unless you are sure your converter/charger will maintain them at a proper charging level. You could also only plug in one day a week, but you might forget that.

Another strategy would be to disconnect one terminal on each battery to isolate from the RV, then put the battery tender in with the batteries plugged in to the RV's shore power. Again, you could put the Battery Tender on a timer so you limit it's charging time. Batteries not being used don't need 24/7 charging, just every so often to replace the natural discharge that happens over time.
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Old 10-04-2015, 07:27 PM   #3
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We leave our MH plugged into shore power all winter long. I do check the batteries every 30 days just to ensure that they stay full of fluid. One never knows if/when the MH might be needed for an emergency shelter.
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Old 10-04-2015, 07:42 PM   #4
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Fully charged batteries will not freeze and fully charged batteries will last 8-10 years as long as you keep the water level maintained.
Short answer, if you have shore power, leave it plugged in. Do not turn off the power disconnects.
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Old 10-04-2015, 07:50 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BFlinn181 View Post
If removing the batteries isn't a big chore, storing them on a battery tender would probably be best. If you do that, make sure you label each cable and take photos so you get it hooked up correctly in a few months.

If you leave the RV plugged in, you could perhaps install a timer on the shore cord outlet so the charger would only be on a few hours a day, or less to maintain their charge. Leaving it plugged in full time might over charge the batteries unless you are sure your converter/charger will maintain them at a proper charging level. You could also only plug in one day a week, but you might forget that.

Another strategy would be to disconnect one terminal on each battery to isolate from the RV, then put the battery tender in with the batteries plugged in to the RV's shore power. Again, you could put the Battery Tender on a timer so you limit it's charging time. Batteries not being used don't need 24/7 charging, just every so often to replace the natural discharge that happens over time.
Respectfully, I disagree. Today's Inverters will maintain the batteries to optimum voltage and leaving them plugged in 24/7 will extend their life cycle to the maximum as opposed to letting them discharge. Each time the batteries are allowed to run down their lifespan is shortened.
My coach is always plugged in or traveling. Inverter maintains 13.7 VDC as required.
If you don't have the luxury of shore power lends itself to the procedure you have stated but being plugged in 24/7 is the best.
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Old 10-04-2015, 08:54 PM   #6
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Respectfully, I disagree. Today's Inverters will maintain the batteries to optimum voltage and leaving them plugged in 24/7 will extend their life cycle to the maximum as opposed to letting them discharge. Each time the batteries are allowed to run down their lifespan is shortened.
My coach is always plugged in or traveling. Inverter maintains 13.7 VDC as required.
If you don't have the luxury of shore power lends itself to the procedure you have stated but being plugged in 24/7 is the best.
Different opinions are what make the forum interesting. I have no idea of the quality or charging capabilities of the OP's converter(inverter)/charger. If it can keep the batteries charged without over charging or boiling them, I agree, leave it plugged in and outside. I also agree, charged batteries don't freeze, here in Ohio we have nights of -15 and batteries still function.

I keep my RV plugged in and I just serviced the batteries today. No water needed, I removed and cleaned each cable end. My converter/charger is doing a competent job of keeping the batteries charged without over charging. As a teen working in a boat yard, one of my duties was to collect all batteries from the boats stored on land and hook them up to a charger in the service shop over winter. They were periodically checked and water added since it was before the days of sophisticated battery chargers. Some we experimented with putting the charger on a timer to reduce the over charging. It worked and made the labor of checking and servicing over 150 batteries much simpler.
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Old 10-04-2015, 09:13 PM   #7
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Different opinions are what make the forum interesting. I have no idea of the quality or charging capabilities of the OP's converter(inverter)/charger. If it can keep the batteries charged without over charging or boiling them, I agree, leave it plugged in and outside. I also agree, charged batteries don't freeze, here in Ohio we have nights of -15 and batteries still function.



I keep my RV plugged in and I just serviced the batteries today. No water needed, I removed and cleaned each cable end. My converter/charger is doing a competent job of keeping the batteries charged without over charging. As a teen working in a boat yard, one of my duties was to collect all batteries from the boats stored on land and hook them up to a charger in the service shop over winter. They were periodically checked and water added since it was before the days of sophisticated battery chargers. Some we experimented with putting the charger on a timer to reduce the over charging. It worked and made the labor of checking and servicing over 150 batteries much simpler.

Your right about differing opinions but sometimes there are so many the OP has difficulty sorting out opinions from fact. I based my post on the fact that the Op has a new (or close to new) rig that Should Have a State of the Art inverter/converter.
However, I know where you're coming from as I too can recall as a young fellow in a garage I worked as an apprentice, being the one to look after all the New Batteries making sure they did not loose charge or overcharge, which would render them junk. Times change and so do Chargers.
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