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Old 09-26-2015, 03:08 PM   #1
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Check those batteries!!!!!

We are getting ready for a trip and today I thought of the fact that I had not checked the battery levels in several months. I was shocked to find that the water level in all cells in all four of the 6V house batteries was below the top of the plates! One cell in the huge 12V engine battery was low also.

It took over a gallon of water to get them back up to the proper level. The amazing thing is that everything has been working great so hopefully I have not done any permanent damage to the batteries.

My MH stays plugged in at the house all the time when not on the road, so the batteries are constantly charging. I bet I don't make that mistake again!

Learn from my dumb mistake! Keep those batteries checked and topped off! Be SURE to use only distilled water!
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Old 09-26-2015, 03:21 PM   #2
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If I need to check or do something, I write me a note and stick it up on the fridge, or a little sticky on the computer monitor.


Not to say that I have never forgotten anything.
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Old 09-26-2015, 04:57 PM   #3
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Yep, I am adding that to my "Departure" list so I will always see it even if it's not time to do it then. It's one of those "out of sight, out of mind" thingys!
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Old 09-26-2015, 05:05 PM   #4
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While I don't have the number of batteries you guys do, I had to replace my house battery as I had let the water get too low and bad things happened. Might consider a monthly to do list to include check the batteries. Run the gen, check the batteries, check for mud dawbers in access points.

Oh, I got a new one this week... Check the brake fluid...
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Old 09-26-2015, 05:06 PM   #5
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I don't leave my rig plugged in just because of that. Iso switchs off and then no elec draw so batteries stay charged with no fluid loss. I am a snow bird and the rig is used perhaps once during it's 8 month summer rest.
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Old 09-26-2015, 05:18 PM   #6
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Between letting them run down and low on water, these are the two worst things for batteries.
My coach is plugged in 24/7 when not on the road. Actually, it's my Sports Lounge when we are home.
I have 4oz of mineral oil in each cell and check them every 3-4 months and add a bit each time. Don't know if I could go six months or not, maybe, but not about to try.
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Old 09-26-2015, 05:32 PM   #7
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Same as Dennis above^^^^^^^^ Just checked/topped off today in preparation for a month long trip. I also have mineral oil in mine. Today was the first time since spring I have added water.........check usually twice a year, with the mineral oil.
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Old 09-26-2015, 05:40 PM   #8
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Most RV batteries are not allowed to die natural deaths. The usually are murdered due to poor maintenance. I have been dealing with vehicle batteries for 40 years. The abuse they endure is astonishing. They are the heart beat of our vehicles and yet are so under appreciated.

I installed a watering system for mine and it works great. Once a month I drop the hose into the bottle of distilled water and squeeze the bulb. Done in seconds.

Now for the second most neglected item and I am guilty of it. Ignoring the nice cables that go to grounds. It is time to get the dremel tools and wire brushes out to clean and tighten every one I can find.

Thanks for the reminder.
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Old 09-26-2015, 06:11 PM   #9
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I checked mine last month. After washing the batteries off, I found one of the cables was broken at the battery terminal! I guess on the last trip maybe we were only using 2 of the 4 house batteries because of that broken cable.
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Old 09-26-2015, 06:49 PM   #10
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I don't have a watering system, and I haven't checked my batteries in 3 years.

I put a tablespoonful of mineral oil in each cell when they were new, never loses water, never need checking.
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Old 09-26-2015, 09:12 PM   #11
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If you wish to upgrade the grounds get sone star washers, electrical grease and stainless steel hardware.

Clean wire and mating surfaces then smear some grease on both then using stainless steel hardware attach wire back where it went with the star washer between wire lug and mating surface.

Tighten to correct amount.
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Old 09-27-2015, 02:52 AM   #12
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Any hope that we can find "dry" batteries for our rigs? I do not understand why we are using 1950's (or older) battery technology.... why? Cost? Thanks
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Old 09-27-2015, 06:40 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murf2u View Post
I don't have a watering system, and I haven't checked my batteries in 3 years.

I put a tablespoonful of mineral oil in each cell when they were new, never loses water, never need checking.

Tell me about this mineral oil thingy. I've never heard of that. Thanks!
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Old 09-27-2015, 06:57 AM   #14
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I think the mineral oil floats on top, and prevents the water from evaporating.

L.
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