Disaster averted... - Fiberglass RV

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Old 04-19-2015, 05:22 PM   #1
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Name: Bat Dude
Trailer: Scamp
Posts: 254
Disaster averted...

Relatively new to FG trailiering with our 16' Scamp.

Spent from mid January to early April in it.
Will post a travel log a bit alter as still swamped with work.

The weather in Michigan actually got warm enough to be outside yesterday so I decided to replace the 2 (soft) Phillips head screws with nylock nuts that hold the propane tank in place. They have bent and deformed from removing and reinstalling for the multitude of tank top ups.

When I removed the tank I noticed a lot of white crusty stuff under the plastic batter box.

Red flags went up as it smacked of corrosion.

I removed the retaining strap and cover for a peek.
YEP the + terminal was corroded green (copper) and was starting to mushroom with corrosion. The two mounting screws (similar Philips bolts to the trailer tongue) had leaked through. SO the bouncing along the road cased the battery to leak some.

New maintenance check now after every trip.

I cleaned everything and painted the tongue area with black primer to prevent rust and this time sealed the bolt holes in the battery box with silicon sealer.

This was not previously on my radar.

Live and learn
Guess yesterday was our summer in Mi. as it is supposed to snow and light freeze again this week.


Conservation biologist specializing in bats. Now stepping aside from paid $ bat work and just Scamping, painting and mentoring students
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Old 04-19-2015, 07:28 PM   #2
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Name: Donna D
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA, 2014
Posts: 24,540
You actually want "leak" holes in the bottom of the battery box. Somehow water always seems to find it's way into that box. It needs a way to get out.

Donna D.
Ten Forward - 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Double Yolk - 1988 16' Scamp Deluxe
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Old 04-19-2015, 07:57 PM   #3
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Name: Paul
Trailer: '04 Scamp 19D, Tacoma 4.0L 4door, SB
ex VT, now CO
Posts: 1,372
If you have not taken the battery out already when you cleaned it, I would, and check the battery case. I do not think just bouncing along the road should be a cause for a leaking battery. Donna is right, the battery box should have drain holes, away from the mounting bolts. You are getting some good use out of your Scamp. Good luck!
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Old 04-19-2015, 08:20 PM   #4
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Name: bob
Trailer: 1984 u-haul ct13; 1996 Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe; 1946 Modernistic teardrop
New York
Posts: 4,533
I use a battery terminal coating on all battery connections. Comes in a small spray can. Used it in the truck shops I worked in. We also had a spray terminal cleaner but that didn't work real great.
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Old 04-19-2015, 09:48 PM   #5
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Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,729
I am with the others it would be very strange if the battery was to have somehow leaked due to travel.... my trailer has put a lot of miles on some pretty rough unpaved roads and have never had a battery do that. As others indicated the box should have some drain holes in it as well.

How old is the battery? Hows its operating condition? Topping up and not losing it fast?
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Old 04-19-2015, 10:15 PM   #6
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Name: Jack L
Trailer: Bigfoot B-17 CB
Posts: 1,278
Battery cases are really tough. As others have posted, damage from travel is unlikely. If a battery is overcharged it will boil over and make a mess. If the battery was dead it could freeze and possibly, maybe, perhaps crack the case ,but I'll put my money on "overcharge".
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Old 04-20-2015, 12:05 AM   #7
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Name: Dave
Trailer: Casita SD17 2006
Posts: 3,178
Yup, I have to agree with others, a bouncing battery on the tongue shouldn't be a problem as it rides pretty smoothly in that location with no sudden jolts just a sweeping motion. In the last 20 years of off road buggy runs over all kinds of rough terrain and rocks with drops and impacts enough to rattle your teeth I've never had a battery leak or break. They all have been batteries with removable caps also. I would have to say that a battery that is covered with dirt/dust and becomes wet "can" tend to short out between the lugs and make a mess. I had that happen once with the buggy a few years back. Guess there was enough dirt and what not on the top of the battery that it wicked up enough from the cells as it sat in the garage for a couple months to short out and have all kinds of "things" growing on it. Did you ever figure out what really happened to cause it?
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Old 04-20-2015, 07:17 AM   #8
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Name: Jack L
Trailer: Bigfoot B-17 CB
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Another possibility is that the battery was overfilled and overflowed when charging.

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