trickle charger - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-06-2007, 06:10 PM   #1
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I have 2 6 volt golf cart batteries in my Bigfoot and it will soon be time to put her away for the winter. I've been in the habit of charging the batteries every few weeks for a day or so. Should I purchase a trickle charger for the winter? If so, what kind?

thanks!

Eric
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Old 10-06-2007, 07:08 PM   #2
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First, I'd stay away from the term 'trickle charger' because many folks consider those to be the old kind with which it was possible to overcharge batteries under some conditions.

A better term, IMHO, is 'maintenance charger'.

I would use something like this for long-term storage.

Vector Float-Mode Charger

In fact, this one comes with the hardware to attach the leads to the battery by ring terminals so all one has to do is plug into the battery and into 120VAC. One could even put it in a larger battery box and leave it always connected to the egg's 120VAC and 12VDC so it was working when ever plugged into shore power.
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Old 10-06-2007, 07:35 PM   #3
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The batteries are under the dining seat inside in a regulation battery box. I don't plan to take them out of there. What might work in that circumstance?
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Old 10-06-2007, 09:11 PM   #4
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The battery maintainer (maintenance charger) can be placed outside of the battery box, if the leads between battery and maintainer are long enough, or are extended.

They commonly have a plug and socket in the leads (my Schumacher does) so that the leads can be left attached to the battery (such as by those ring terminals) and the maintainer just plugged into them when desired; it would also allow different ends (permanently installed leads, battery clips, etc) to be used with the same maintainer.

I think a nice setup would be a receptacle mounted through the battery box wall, so the leads could be left attached on the inside, and the maintainer plugged in on the outside when desired, without even opening the box. In this case, it might be a good plan to also mount a switch through the box wall, so the receptacle isn't always live with battery power, and to put an inline fuse in the lead to the positive battery terminal. I haven't done this yet.
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Old 10-07-2007, 10:16 AM   #5
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I've beeen told by some fellow hot rodders that these maintainers work best IF the battery is up to full charge before you connect them. I don't know (one way or the other) if this is in fact true or not. I have been using one for some years now, alternating between batterys in our two rods and the Trillium. SEEMS to be working O.K!!!
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Old 10-07-2007, 10:42 AM   #6
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I've beeen told by some fellow hot rodders that these maintainers work best IF the battery is up to full charge before you connect them...
That would make sense to me for a simple float power supply, which just maintains a voltage which is suitable for long-term operation.

A better battery maintainer is both a multi-stage charger and a float power supply, so it would bring the battery up to fully charged then reduce its output to the float level to maintain the charge. My Schumacher and the Vector which Pete linked (now the Black&Decker BM2B) both operate this way.
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Old 10-29-2007, 03:56 AM   #7
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That would make sense to me for a simple float power supply, which just maintains a voltage which is suitable for long-term operation.

A better battery maintainer is both a multi-stage charger and a float power supply, so it would bring the battery up to fully charged then reduce its output to the float level to maintain the charge. My Schumacher and the Vector which Pete linked (now the Black&Decker BM2B) both operate this way.
I just got The Juicer Battery Charger from Wal*Mart made by Bell and it also said in the directions that it will charge and maintain the battery....
I am have mine pluged in 24/7 in the basement for the winter hibernation.
The whole thing is about the size of a coffee mug and just plugs into a wall socket and the leads go to battery.
The charger itself has a red lite when in charging mode or a green light while maintaining mode.
It said you can leave it on all the time but it feels warm to the touch is this OK or should I maintain the maintainer???
Gerry the canoebuilder
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Old 10-29-2007, 07:50 PM   #8
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It's probably warm because whatever is doing the 120VAC to 12VDC change is less than perfectly efficient and the heat reflects this, just like a power brick for a laptop or cell phone or whatever. No worries, Mate!
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Old 10-30-2007, 06:57 AM   #9
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Here's another three stage float charger that has been recommended by others a few times on this site and could also be used for other stronger type charges if needed......... it has a 2-12-25-75 amp charger and is very small.
Joe

http://www.boatandrvaccessories.com/VEC-1095A.htm
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