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Old 01-11-2012, 08:58 PM   #1
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Quick question,How Long?

How long do House batteries normaly last? Mine are 7 years old and still holding the charge but are they working to their ultimate ability?
I ask this because I've read elsewhere here about slow operating slides, could this be my problem, old batteries?
My slides are running slow and sometimes even stop,but restart after releasing the button and restarting again. Of course my engine is also operating while operating the slides.
Is there a given time that they should be replaced?
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:02 PM   #2
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I sure don't think batteries are like tires and should be replaced when they "time out"... but at 7 years I think you're probably way out on the extreme end of how long most users get. On my rig, weak batteries will certainly impact slow slide operation and cause the symptom you describe.

Good luck...

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Old 01-11-2012, 09:18 PM   #3
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Any autoparts store can load test them and determine what capacity is left.

I do agree with Rick, 7 years, you probably have got the goody out of them.
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:24 PM   #4
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Thanks Rick,,, Looks like I'll be replacing them come spring.
Wizzard your're probably right.... All the goodness is gone!

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Old 01-11-2012, 09:31 PM   #5
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Check and see if your battery charger has a equalization function to desulfate the plates in the battery. If it does then try using it. The sure way to know how good the batteries are is to see what voltage they will charge up to then to test them underload. If they charge up to and hold 12.6+ volts then that is good. I am surprised you can move your slides with the motor running. I cannot. Does your alternator give you enough charge to your house batteries for the slides? I would have thought you needed to run the generator to work the slides.
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:40 PM   #6
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Ours are the OEM U-2200 batteries that were in the rig when it was delivered on June 26th 2002. They have not been equalized ever. I did put 4 oz of mineral oil in each cell in 2004 though. I'm sure they're not 100% but still good enough for an overnight at Wal*Mart without running the gen.
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:49 PM   #7
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I'm surprised that your slides go out with the motor running, unless I misunderstand the post. Mine won't go out if the ignition switch is on.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:09 AM   #8
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Different coaches, different systems. Some Winnebago products recommend extending slides before shutting engine down to let the alternator handle the load. That way to batteries are not drained down first thing when you set up. We always do that and let the slides back in with the engine running. I usually have it running to warm up while we are finishing getting things ready to ride.

Last two things on checklist, retract slides, store jacks. I'm usually in the drivers seat while doing these.
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Old 01-12-2012, 09:13 AM   #9
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Hope I understood what you said. I'm with RVjimmy on the engine running/slides activated issue. Mine will not move with the engine either. I do run the genset it not hooked up to power. Just paranoid I guess, but I want to make sure there is no failure due to battery pulled too low.
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Old 01-12-2012, 09:36 AM   #10
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You must be doing something right in maintaining them. I would get new ones in the spring and keep doing whatever it is you do...
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Old 01-12-2012, 12:14 PM   #11
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I always run the engine when putting down jacks and extending slides, when that is completed I shut down the engine.
When leaving I do things in reverse order, they are the last two things that I do.
I have already extended and retracted with just the batteries but as a norm the engine is running.

Wizzard,,,
Quote:
Last two things on checklist, retract slides, store jacks. I'm usually in the drivers seat while doing these
Ditto that!

Mr_D,,,
Quote:
did put 4 oz of mineral oil in each cell in 2004 though.
I just caught a statement elsewhere in regards to putting mineral oil in the cells, what does this do?
I've never heard of this before.

Regards,
RovinOn
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:01 PM   #12
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Me neither, mineral oil in a battery is a new one on me.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:30 PM   #13
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Mineral oil cuts WAY down on the gasses and corrosion. In fact our compartment is cleaner after 9 years on our present rig than the one in our 2000 DSDP was after 2 years. After two years the hold down straps and battery tray slide release had to be replaced. They're still good in the 2002

Oil in the batteries is an old trick, the railways used to do it.

On 12 V batteries I'd use 2 oz per cell and on 6 V deep cycles I'd use 4oz per cell. I removed some of the electrolyte before I added the oil so it didn't overfill the cells.

Some people claim you have to use food grade mineral oil, but no one that has used mineral oil from the local drug/food store has had any problems.

There is also at least one product (Thermoil) that's made specifically for this but it's much more expensive than just plain mineral oil from Wal*Mart.
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Old 01-13-2012, 01:12 AM   #14
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Just checked out Thermoil's website. Very interesting, can't believe I never heard of that. Our MH we just got only has one house battery. I will be getting 2 new ones and making it a 2 batt system and will def be using min oil or thermoil in the new batts. Thanks for the good info.
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