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Old 04-17-2014, 08:56 AM   #1
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Losing charge

Hello all,

I am relatively new at rving and ran into a problem on my current vacation. Even though I plugged in prior to leaving and drove 240 miles, my coach batteries will not hold a charge. I open the top of the battery and the cells were only 50% full of water. Bad maintenance by me, I know. Thought we were ok, the batteries are only one year old. I filled up the cells and ran the generator for 2 hours and still the batteries would not hold a charge. I am thinking my batteries are shot and have the ability to run to Walmart, but before I spend the money, is there something else I should check. Also, when I try to start the generator from the coach, it just beeps.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:08 AM   #2
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Your batteries may have gone dead on you. Adding water in that volume wouldn't necessarily fix the dead battery. Did you measure the voltage after charging? I'm thinking you may need new batteries. The main thing is to figure out why they lost water and charge so that it doesn't happen again.
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:45 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knagy2688 View Post
Hello all,

I am relatively new at rving and ran into a problem on my current vacation. Even though I plugged in prior to leaving and drove 240 miles, my coach batteries will not hold a charge. I open the top of the battery and the cells were only 50% full of water. Bad maintenance by me, I know. Thought we were ok, the batteries are only one year old. I filled up the cells and ran the generator for 2 hours and still the batteries would not hold a charge. I am thinking my batteries are shot and have the ability to run to Walmart, but before I spend the money, is there something else I should check. Also, when I try to start the generator from the coach, it just beeps.

Thanks in advance.
You don't indicate what type of rig you have or how many batteries but if they have sat in a dry and discharged state for a long period, they may be shot.
However, it will take more than a couple hours to bring them back to full charge so I suggest you go through a charge/test sequence before ditching them.
The attached link will give you some good direction.


Battery Maintenance Facts
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:46 AM   #4
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Sounds like 'new' battery time! Two hours of generator time might not be enough time to get a good charge into the batteries. Try charging them with a good charger and then test them. Can you 'load' test them to see if they might come back to life? I know that it sucks to have to shell out money for batteries but, one of the lessons we 'learn', check batteries often! During the winter I check the batteries in our MH every month, just to ensure that they have enough fluid in them.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:02 AM   #5
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Hi Knagy2688,
I agree with the previous posts about getting the batteries to full charge (or as best they will charge). Consider putting a good external charger on the batteries for a few days. If you do not have one, purchase a battery load tester. Use the batteries for a couple of use/full charge cycles. With the batteries fully charged, take a voltage reading on all the batteries (disconnect from each other). They should be consistent within a couple of tenths of a volt. Now do a load test on each battery. Follow the instructions that came with the device. If you make the purchase, try to purchase a load tester that has a 100 AMP rating or higher. My tester has a 130 AMP rating.

Ensuring you know the status of batteries is a slow process. The only other alternative is to throw money at the problem and immediately go out an purchase new batteries. You may end up buying new batteries, but at least you will know the status of the batteries you had.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:06 PM   #6
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Thank you for the responses. We left the mountain and drove into town. We located an autozone and tested the batteries. They would not take a charge and an hour later I was the owner of two new batteries.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:40 PM   #7
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First thing to do when you "land" is check out your charging system yo mske sure it is good.

Search it here and you will have plenty of reading to do.
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