Free 7 Day Trial RV GPS App RV Trip Planner Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Free 7 Day Trial ×
RV Trip Planning Discussions

Go Back   iRV2 Forums > MOTORHOME FORUMS > MH-General Discussions & Problems
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 10-13-2021, 10:20 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2021
Posts: 16
Battery Mystery

I recently bought my '99 Coachmen Catalina 334 MBS. I'm in the process of getting it in good enough condition to begin full timing. Hoping someone here can enlighten me about my existing batteries.

I'm eventually going to add a lithium bank and solar install but currently planning to start out with existing set up and generator (marquis 7000).

Battery questions/issues:
1) The seller told me 'these two batteries' are for the chassis and 'these two' are for the coach. In looking at the set up I'm pretty sure he had it backward. Specifically, the 'set' he said were for the chassis is the set that has all the extra connections feeding back into the coach. Seems apparent to me that means those are the coach batteries...right? I imagine I can just disconnect those batteries and confirm my suspicion. Any advice regarding this observation/process would be appreciated.

2) The batteries are fairly new (labeled 2020). But I can not find info for them online in order to determine their capacity. I intend to install an upgraded battery monitor but, as I understand it, I need to program the capacity of the batteries in order for that to serve any purpose. The batteries are labeled:
HDA Truck Pride Heavy Duty Premium. They are EITHER 31XHE-HD (925 CCA) or 31HE-HD (750 CCA). But the batteries don't specify which. When I search for info on these batteries online I get nothing. HDA Truck Pride appears to be some sort of distributor/rebrander and I can't find specs for my batteries. I'm MOSTLY interested in the amp hours available to me.

3) The motorhome includes an emergency start feature which, as I understand it, allows for combining the power of all four batteries to start the vehicle in the event the chassis batteries become depleted. The emergency start switch is on the front dash. It has a red light that is always on. I suspect this was the case when I bought it and I just didn't notice. Observations on why this might be the case and/or troubleshooting steps would be appreciated.

4) The cheap/original battery monitor has four states indicated with a light for each:
L - Low 5-11.9 V
F - Fair 12-12.5 V
G - Good 12.6 - 14.49 V
C - "Convertor, more than 14.5 volts (unfiltered circuit or dead cells in battery)"

At the moment the coach has been sitting unplugged for a few days and it reads Fair. On a few occasions when I check it reads Good. Each time I've had it plugged into the house for a day or two the reading seems to be C.

I'm trying not to get too worked up about this because that monitor is so rudimentary. Should I worry about this? Is my convertor bad/going bad? Suggestions?

I'm attaching a photo of the batteries in question in case someone here knows exactly what they are (in particular the amp hours).
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Batteries.jpg
Views:	18
Size:	374.9 KB
ID:	345976  
OwensKa1a is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 10-13-2021, 11:41 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
RichKimball's Avatar
 
Fleetwood Owners Club
Freightliner Owners Club
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Central Arkansas
Posts: 1,007
Those seem to be group 31 starting batteries....and would be for the coach engine and acc. My Group 31 batteries from Freightliner are 925CCA which these are most likely.
__________________
2008 Fleetwood Bounder Diesel 38S, Flat tow-2015 Cherokee Trailhawk
Richard (KG5JAQ) & Margaret Kimball w/Shih-Tzu 'Charley'
RichKimball is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-2021, 12:23 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Beaver Dam, Wisconsin
Posts: 2,697
Battery questions/issues:
1) The seller told me 'these two batteries' are for the chassis and 'these two' are for the coach. In looking at the set up I'm pretty sure he had it backward. Specifically, the 'set' he said were for the chassis is the set that has all the extra connections feeding back into the coach. Seems apparent to me that means those are the coach batteries...right? I imagine I can just disconnect those batteries and confirm my suspicion. Any advice regarding this observation/process would be appreciated.

I agree, a test is in order. I suspect the seller was correct. A wider view of battery compartment may also help.

2) The batteries are fairly new (labeled 2020). But I can not find info for them online in order to determine their capacity. I intend to install an upgraded battery monitor but, as I understand it, I need to program the capacity of the batteries in order for that to serve any purpose. The batteries are labeled:
HDA Truck Pride Heavy Duty Premium. They are EITHER 31XHE-HD (925 CCA) or 31HE-HD (750 CCA). But the batteries don't specify which. When I search for info on these batteries online I get nothing. HDA Truck Pride appears to be some sort of distributor/rebrander and I can't find specs for my batteries. I'm MOSTLY interested in the amp hours available to me.


Deep draw coach batteries are usually rated in amp hours. Engine start batteries are usually rated in cold cranking amps. You are probably looking at engine start batteries even if they are connected to the coach system.

...

4) The cheap/original battery monitor has four states indicated with a light for each:
L - Low 5-11.9 V
F - Fair 12-12.5 V
G - Good 12.6 - 14.49 V
C - "Convertor, more than 14.5 volts (unfiltered circuit or dead cells in battery)"

At the moment the coach has been sitting unplugged for a few days and it reads Fair. On a few occasions when I check it reads Good. Each time I've had it plugged into the house for a day or two the reading seems to be C.

I'm trying not to get too worked up about this because that monitor is so rudimentary. Should I worry about this? Is my convertor bad/going bad? Suggestions?


Significantly higher than 14.4 volts while charging is a red flag for the converter charging, or engine charging. However, for flooded cell batteries occasional exposure is minor. You may need to add distilled water to the batteries more often.

Some RV battery chargers require a battery be present when shore power or generator power is present. Disconnecting the battery may allow voltage to climb beyond best practice.

F - Fair 12-12.5 V means above 50% state of charge when there is no charging or discharging.

Lead Acid Battery Voltages

There are three basic lead acid battery voltage profiles. They are "charging", "discharging", and "static".

Static

Static means batteries are neither charging nor discharging. Voltage will slowly stabilize. Usually 3 hours rest provides accurate voltage. The static voltage can be used to estimate state of charge.
12.7 = 100%
12.1 = 50%
11.3 = 10%

Charging

Voltage starts a "static" level and slowly rises to what ever the charger is programed for. Typical voltages may be 13.2, 13.6, or 14.4. Many chargers will raise to 14.4 volts when charging deeply discharged batteries and later drop to 13.6 volts. 13.2 is ideal for long term storage.

Discharging

Discharging voltage is always lower then static. The higher the current being drawn, the lower the voltage will go. When discharge stops, voltage will slowly raise to static level.

Battery University https://batteryuniversity.com/articles

How does the Lead Acid Battery Work?
https://batteryuniversity.com/articl...d-battery-work

How do battery chargers work
https://batteryuniversity.com/articl...-chargers-work

How to Charge and When to Charge?
https://batteryuniversity.com/articl...when-to-charge
__________________
Paul Bristol
Kodiak Cub 176RD
Nissan Pathfinder 2015
Persistent is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2021, 04:46 PM   #4
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2021
Posts: 16
Thank you for the reply and all the info. I have not yet done a test to confirm my understanding of which set of two batteries are which. They are all identical. In the photo below you can see that the set on the left has all of the extra connections. The seller told me that set was the chassis batteries. I believe he was just mistaken (based solely on the extra wiring on that set).

The main point of my post was to try and find out how many amp hours/watt hours I can pull from these batteries so that I can calibrate a battery monitor appropriately. I just can't find any info about them online. As far as I know there is no relationship between cranking amps and storage capacity. Right? Soon I'll be replacing the coach batteries with lithium...but that will be after I hit the road so I just want to be able to monitor the battery status more accurately when boondocking.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	All Batteries.jpg
Views:	7
Size:	236.9 KB
ID:	346765  
OwensKa1a is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2021, 07:38 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Ljwt330's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Capistrano Beach, California
Posts: 4,360
I agree that the bank on the right in your last post are likely the chassis batteries as there is no provision to install more than two.

As a matter of convenience and to avoid confusion, you may wish to change the jumpers between the batteries so the red jumper connects the + posts and the black jumper connects the - posts. Maybe do the same on the left bank, if necessary.

Those batteries are manufactured by East Penn Manufacturing, which makes batteries for a large number of name brands. You could try contacting them to ask specifics about the A-H. You can also get an estimate of the A-H by multiplying the CCA by 0.7, but you don’t know which CCA you have. A serial # and a call to East Penn may get the answer.
__________________
Larry, Eileen, and Finley
2004 Alpine 36FDDS
Third motor home, first Alpine, no need for another.
Ljwt330 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-22-2021, 02:46 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 241
I wouldn’t worry about the battery rating. Most likely you won’t get that anyway. Get a battery monitor… they only cost $40 for something like the AiLi monitor with 350amp shunt. Set the AiLI for a large size.. like 400ah… larger than you know you have. This is so during next step you can count how many amps you draw. You will reset it after test to a battery value.

Then charge batteries to 100% and run a test. Try to pull your expected load. For me that is around 10 amps. Keep a log of the volts and amps used every 15 to 30 minutes. When you get to 12.0 volts stop the test and let the batteries settle for at least 30 minutes. Then check voltage again. Lookup a chart online and it will tell you how much capacity is left. That based on your amps used will tell you what YOUR batteries are currently capable of. Then you can set the AiLI for that capacity.

Here is a quick demo of the AiLi.
SavnTheWales is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-22-2021, 05:56 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Meshoppen, PA
Posts: 1,227
Quote:
Originally Posted by OwensKa1a View Post
Thank you for the reply and all the info. I have not yet done a test to confirm my understanding of which set of two batteries are which. They are all identical. In the photo below you can see that the set on the left has all of the extra connections. The seller told me that set was the chassis batteries. I believe he was just mistaken (based solely on the extra wiring on that set).

The main point of my post was to try and find out how many amp hours/watt hours I can pull from these batteries so that I can calibrate a battery monitor appropriately. I just can't find any info about them online. As far as I know there is no relationship between cranking amps and storage capacity. Right? Soon I'll be replacing the coach batteries with lithium...but that will be after I hit the road so I just want to be able to monitor the battery status more accurately when boondocking.

The ones on left seem to be coach but....

simple test go to right batteries aand unhook one of the leads.. see what works LOL

The trays on the left look like they can take larger batteries maybe 8D style ??

regardless those 31D are starter style, the Ahr will be lower than a true deep cycle.. maybe 70ah each


that compartmrnt is big, with some shuffling you can get more batteries in place lith or FLA, your choices..
sibe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-22-2021, 07:10 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2021
Posts: 16
Awesome. Thank you all. The combination of these replies provides me enough ideas for a plan of attack. Perfect.

Searching East Penn I discovered they had a massive fire a couple of days ago at one of their facilities. Yikes.

I hadn't even noticed that the jumpers were 'confused'. I will definitely be swapping those.

I don't yet have an inverter because I don't expect the capacity of these existing batteries to be sufficient for any kind of extended AC power draw. In the near term I'll be dependent on Shore/Gen for my 120v needs. My current plan is to have a 'boondockable' power solution (sans gen) within a couple of months of hitting the road.

I think I now understand well enough how to perform a test 'estimate' once I have the new battery monitor/shunt installed. Good enough for my purpose.

Back to the transfer switch repair for now. I'll post end results on the batteries when I have them.
OwensKa1a is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2021, 12:02 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Gulf Streamers Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Memphis, TN
Posts: 2,644
Another confusing issue to the untrained is the FALSE HIGH SURFACE VOLTAGE READINGS that you will get on a battery for the first 30-miutes after a charger/ charging voltage has been applied (whether 13.2 or 14.5), so.... you have to WAIT 30-minutes after removing charging/ charging voltage, and with loads removed, to get accurate voltage reading that is close to accurate reflection of charge status percentage. If you turn off a charger w/ a VOM attached to battery, you can watch this false high slowly drop to an accurate reading. It does not happen instantly when switch turned off/ disconnected.
__________________
(TerryH.) 2000-GS Conquest Limited 6266 Class-C 99-E450SD V10
THenne1713 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
battery



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Battery charging mystery Kenneth Neal RV Systems & Appliances 12 02-25-2014 06:34 PM
Mystery Wire in Battery Compartment Barrier2 Monaco Owner's Forum 13 08-08-2012 07:26 PM
Battery Switch Mystery Craig36 Class A Motorhome Discussions 5 03-08-2012 09:59 AM
Chassis Battery and Slide-out Mystery Jackm Winnebago Industries Owner's Forum 5 11-11-2010 05:58 PM
Battery Murder Mystery Kiwi Winnebago Industries Owner's Forum 4 03-13-2005 08:43 AM

» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:23 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.