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Old 09-22-2015, 08:27 AM   #1
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I think I killed my 6-volt house batteries

New, to me, 1998 National Dolphin GM gaser and am slowly working my way through all the systems.

I was told the batteries were fairly new, but 12-volt engine battery died suddenly so I replaced it. After about a month, I noticed the coach 6-volt batteries were not holding charge and the GENERAC generator would only run about 45 minutes then shuts down.

I looked at the batteries and (here's the dumb part) had assumed they were maintenance free but saw the little caps on top and sheepishly popped them... DRY. I put water in them and fired up the generator using the running coach engine. Shut down the engine and the generator ran for about 45 minutes then shut down as always.

I think I'm in for a long chase here, but first thing I'm going to do is replace the 6-volt batteries (they're over 5 years old) for my upcoming winter trip to Florida.

This leads to my two questions:

1. If the generator is running and there is one or more dead battery cells, will it cause the generator to shut down? (I realize it's not charging them directly, but hope replacing the batteries will somehow cure the shutdowns). If no relation to the batteries not charging, then where to begin on the generator problem much appreciated.

2. I'm having trouble finding replacement batteries. They are Duralast Gold 6-volt batteries from AutoZone but AutoZone only carries one 6-volt battery and it's only about 1/2 the cranking amps of the Gold which has 800 cold 1000 cranking amps. Any suggestions for replacement batteries would be greatly apprciated.
(having built in top post with additional screw posts with wingnuts would be nice, but I believe you can buy those that will fit on the posts if needed).

Here's a picture of current batteries and setup. Everything worked fine (generator and batteries) when I first got the Dolphin. Thanks! Bud



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Old 09-22-2015, 08:43 AM   #2
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I don't think the genny shutting down and the batteries are related. Electric fuel pump is a not uncommon failure after running for a period of time. After it heats up, it quits pumping. Probably available on Amazon - match up the part number there from your existing pump.

I like Trojan 6v batteries as I have gotten good service from them over the years. A search here will find a number of battery discussions.
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Old 09-22-2015, 09:03 AM   #3
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Your battery problems are NOT related to your Generac generator shutdown problems. On my Diesel Generac Genny, there are two sensors, 1) water temp and 2) oil pressure that can shut down the generator after it has run for some time. When they trip, they both put a ground on terminal #12 of the Control Board, and that shuts the engine down. If you simply disconnect them, one at a time, you can see if they are the source of your shutdown. Rook
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Old 09-22-2015, 09:24 AM   #4
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Any battery that has a cold cranking rating is not a deep cycle battery. You really want to get seep cycle batteries that have an amp=hour rating. Look at the 6 volt golf cart batteries from Trojan, Interstate, U.S. Battery, or Cosco.

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Old 09-22-2015, 10:53 AM   #5
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As to the Generator shutting down after 45 minutes, Two answsers:
IF you use an Automatic Generator Start system, then if the batteries have lost capacity (Very likely) the system could sense "Full" and shut it down.. IF however you MANUALLY started the generator this should not happen.. Problem with generator is likely NOT the batteries.


Sorry.

That said, Let the batteries go dry, 5 years old. yes Replacement is indicated.. Costco or Sam's has best price,, I bought DEKA's cause once I paid for a membership Sam's would have been roughly same price.
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:18 AM   #6
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just replaced my 6 volt Deep Cycle pair, got Duracell from Batteries Plus, they are reasonably priced, backed up nation wide, and well informed folks who really appreciate your business (franchise but locally owned usually).
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:27 AM   #7
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If you have a Sam's Club close by, these are a good choice for the money.

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Old 09-22-2015, 11:47 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bud01234 View Post
New, to me, 1998 National Dolphin GM gaser and am slowly working my way through all the systems.

I was told the batteries were fairly new, but 12-volt engine battery died suddenly so I replaced it. After about a month, I noticed the coach 6-volt batteries were not holding charge and the GENERAC generator would only run about 45 minutes then shuts down.

I looked at the batteries and (here's the dumb part) had assumed they were maintenance free but saw the little caps on top and sheepishly popped them... DRY. I put water in them and fired up the generator using the running coach engine. Shut down the engine and the generator ran for about 45 minutes then shut down as always.

I think I'm in for a long chase here, but first thing I'm going to do is replace the 6-volt batteries (they're over 5 years old) for my upcoming winter trip to Florida.

This leads to my two questions:

1. If the generator is running and there is one or more dead battery cells, will it cause the generator to shut down? (I realize it's not charging them directly, but hope replacing the batteries will somehow cure the shutdowns). If no relation to the batteries not charging, then where to begin on the generator problem much appreciated.

2. I'm having trouble finding replacement batteries. They are Duralast Gold 6-volt batteries from AutoZone but AutoZone only carries one 6-volt battery and it's only about 1/2 the cranking amps of the Gold which has 800 cold 1000 cranking amps. Any suggestions for replacement batteries would be greatly apprciated.
(having built in top post with additional screw posts with wingnuts would be nice, but I believe you can buy those that will fit on the posts if needed).

Here's a picture of current batteries and setup. Everything worked fine (generator and batteries) when I first got the Dolphin. Thanks! Bud


Attachment 107615

I had a similar problem on my Generator. The hotter the weather the shorter it would stay running. Replaced the fuel pump and that solved the problem.

On a side note where do you get 6v batteries tested? I tried the auto parts stores and they can't really test them with the car battery testers they have.
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:47 AM   #9
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In your text, you mention replacing your 6 volt batteries.

If your picture is of them, you do not have 6 volt batteries!!!

If you want to convert to 6 volt batteries, that is another matter.

Being a newbe, to living on batteries, I recommend you get " GC2, 6 volt " batteries from Costco or Sam's. NAPA and Advance Auto also sells them.

They are cheap and will give you good service, while you learn how to manage your power.

We all make mistakes, and buying expensive batteries, to learn on is one of them.

If you go to 2, 6 volt batteries you need to switch around your wires.

Right now, they are wired in parallel.

Someone else will probably post a picture of how it should look, wired in series. Real simple to do.

I'm on a smart phone so posting images is tough for a non smart user.

Good luck.
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Old 09-22-2015, 11:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twinboat View Post
In your text, you mention replacing your 6 volt batteries.

If your picture is of them, you do not have 6 volt batteries!!!

If you want to convert to 6 volt batteries, that is another matter.

Being a newbe, to living on batteries, I recommend you get " GC2, 6 volt " batteries from Costco or Sam's. NAPA and Advance Auto also sells them.

They are cheap and will give you good service, while you learn how to manage your power.

We all make mistakes, and buying expensive batteries, to learn on is one of them.

If you go to 2, 6 volt batteries you need to switch around your wires.

Right now, they are wired in parallel.

Someone else will probably post a picture of how it should look, wired in series. Real simple to do.

I'm on a smart phone so posting images is tough for a non smart user.

Good luck.

Is it better to have two 6v batteries in series or two 12v batteries in pareallel in a motorhome?
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Old 09-22-2015, 12:02 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twinboat View Post
In your text, you mention replacing your 6 volt batteries.

If your picture is of them, you do not have 6 volt batteries!!!

If you want to convert to 6 volt batteries, that is another matter.

Being a newbe, to living on batteries, I recommend you get " GC2, 6 volt " batteries from Costco or Sam's. NAPA and Advance Auto also sells them.

They are cheap and will give you good service, while you learn how to manage your power.

We all make mistakes, and buying expensive batteries, to learn on is one of them.

If you go to 2, 6 volt batteries you need to switch around your wires.

Right now, they are wired in parallel.

Someone else will probably post a picture of how it should look, wired in series. Real simple to do.

I'm on a smart phone so posting images is tough for a non smart user.

Good luck.
Wow guys! Thanks for all the great responses. I was feeling pretty good about buying a couple of deep cycle batteries from batteries plus for $109 but now you say they're not 6 volt but 12 volt?

Now i'm totally confused. Please confirm what twinboat says about them being 12 volt. If so, I'd rather just leave them at 12 volt because they're a heck of a lot easier. Maybe I can even find the duralast GOLD batteries in 12 volt.

btw, the generator has been running for about three hours now! That's my kind of problem; ignore it and it goes away!! lol
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Old 09-22-2015, 12:21 PM   #12
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Twinboat has good eyes!!!!! You do have a pair of 12volt batteries.





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Old 09-22-2015, 12:22 PM   #13
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btw, the generator has been running for about three hours now! That's my kind of problem; ignore it and it goes away!! lol[/QUOTE]

What is the temp today. If it is cool outside the generator will work. It will cause issues when it warms up if it is the fuel pump.
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Old 09-22-2015, 12:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petegemelli View Post
btw, the generator has been running for about three hours now! That's my kind of problem; ignore it and it goes away!! lol
What is the temp today. If it is cool outside the generator will work. It will cause issues when it warms up if it is the fuel pump.[/QUOTE]

it's in the low 80's so i'm going to let the genny run for another couple of hours. I'm also getting a pre-fla trip oil change and a quick check up at delightful days RV so might have the replace the pump unless they're really expensive.

Ok, I'm convinced I do have 12V batteries even though the original owner told me they were 6volt. That makes my choices a lot easier but I second the question of petegemelli: 'which is better, 2 6-volt batteries in series or 2 12-volt batteries in parallel?'
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