Battery maintenance - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-30-2013, 09:26 PM   #15
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I bought the trailer the beginning of August and it had no battery so I decided to go with golf cart 6v. I went to Sams club and bought two of theirs. I really should carefully run it down to 50% and then let my charger charge it from there.
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Old 09-30-2013, 09:32 PM   #16
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John
Check out this thread. http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...ase-58644.html Looks like Thom has covered a lot of the issues you are bringing up with his Parkliner batteries.
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Old 09-30-2013, 09:35 PM   #17
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Talking

Brian,

I am not trying to split hairs. I am trying to make sure that when I go camping I have the power I want and paid for.

If you bought tires and they are supposed to be rated to 3000 lbs at 60 lbs of pressure, but you can't get them aired up to 60 lbs then you have just paid for 3000 lbs of load rating but are actually getting less. AND if you accidentally load it to 3000 lbs (that IS what you paid for right?) and they aren't aired up to that you are damaging your tires.

Everyone understands that.

The same is true for my batteries. I paid for two 220ah batteries so that I could safely and repeatedly draw 110 ah out of them if I need to. Except I can't because the charger doesn't charge them all the way.

How do you call that splitting hairs?

I understand that perhaps you don't care, but that doesn't mean that no one should care, or that I am silly for asking for a charger that will not kill my batteries. I'll tell you what I will do though, I will send you the bill when I need to replace them. How about that?
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Old 09-30-2013, 09:51 PM   #18
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We turn our generator on every day because we make coffee and toast in the morning not necessarily to charge the battery. I don't know the number of days before 50% discharge. You really get spoiled by a 3300 watt generator with electric start that runs off your 80 gallon fuel tank.

Generally when you have a system that works well, you don't spend much time investigating it. I don't fuss too much over what works well enough and certainly it did not destroy my batteries. Though I hadn't thought of it as boondocking yearly service meant the motorhome would sit unplugged for a week or two without power, with the power door being regularly operated. It never dropped too low.

(One stupid NH law is that all Motorhomes have to be inspected in the same month causing a backup at the better truck service centers during inspection month.)
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Old 09-30-2013, 09:54 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Eddie Longest View Post
John
Check out this thread. http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...ase-58644.html Looks like Thom has covered a lot of the issues you are bringing up with his Parkliner batteries.
Eddie
Eddie, it looks like he never got the PD to work correctly which does not surprise me. Finding a programmable smart charger is my goal. I had already about concluded that none of the PDs were the answer. Anyone want to buy mine?
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Old 09-30-2013, 09:57 PM   #20
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Norm, I should have so much money!
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Old 09-30-2013, 10:11 PM   #21
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BR (before retirement) we bought a fully programmable charger at work for charging F-16 back-up flight control batteries. It cost about $6-8K. They do make them, cost is just the issue.
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Old 09-30-2013, 10:27 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by jwcolby54 View Post
I bought the trailer the beginning of August and it had no battery so I decided to go with golf cart 6v. I went to Sams club and bought two of theirs. I really should carefully run it down to 50% and then let my charger charge it from there.
Not sure what that would prove. If it was me I would want to confirm the issues besides the fact the convertor in the trailer is not a smart charger and doesnt charge the battery as high as you want isnt actually with the condition of the batteries themselves. My comment was in regards to what I would think of as a fairly large drop in your battery voltage after using only a few LED lights for a few hours.... suggests to me that either the batteries resting voltage (unplug the trailer from power once its been charge full (or to the point your current convertor allows) and then let it sit for a couple of hours or more) - make sure you dont have any parasitic loads such as smoke detector connected. Perhaps the voltage wasn't as high as you thought it was prior to running the test or perhaps the batteries have at some point been run right down & no matter what convertor type you put on them they are going to run down faster than you might expect - that can happen if they were sitting in a warehouse for a long time.
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Old 09-30-2013, 11:42 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwcolby54 View Post
Brian,

I am not trying to split hairs. I am trying to make sure that when I go camping I have the power I want and paid for.

If you bought tires and they are supposed to be rated to 3000 lbs at 60 lbs of pressure, but you can't get them aired up to 60 lbs then you have just paid for 3000 lbs of load rating but are actually getting less. AND if you accidentally load it to 3000 lbs (that IS what you paid for right?) and they aren't aired up to that you are damaging your tires.

Everyone understands that.

The same is true for my batteries. I paid for two 220ah batteries so that I could safely and repeatedly draw 110 ah out of them if I need to. Except I can't because the charger doesn't charge them all the way.

How do you call that splitting hairs?

I understand that perhaps you don't care, but that doesn't mean that no one should care, or that I am silly for asking for a charger that will not kill my batteries. I'll tell you what I will do though, I will send you the bill when I need to replace them. How about that?

One should know that battery science isn't exact. Those numbers are approximate numbers. Trying to be exact in a non-exact world leads to frustration and disappointment. There's so many variables that it really difficult to control the battery manufacturing to the exact specifications. A 220 amp hour battery could test to 230 amp hours for even higher. Most likely not less than. Another specification that could be a bit different that it appears is the maximum charge voltage of 14.8 Volts. NOTE: I said maximum charge voltage.
I understand that the way specifications are often written you can get the idea that those numbers are exact, they never are exact. A bit of understanding of the technology then allows you have an understanding of how the specifications really are, minimum or maximum.
Batteries will take a bit of under charging, but not over charging. Therefore the biggest concern is that the charging circuit doesn't overcharge the battery. (DEF> Overcharging = boiling out the electrolyte.)

As far as using 110 Amp hours of battery, the better use of resources is to reduce the amount used. My poor little trailer has a single 74 amp hour battery to power the furnace fan and a few LED lights I rarely use 37 Amp hours in a week.
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Old 10-01-2013, 05:33 AM   #24
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I think the problems in this thread are two fold maybe?

Fist of all nobody seems to grasp the idea that the OP DID BUY AGM BATTERIES ALREADY!
They are more expensive and do require different charging routines to get the most out of them and help make up for the extra investment in the special technology they offer.

This is true,isn't it?

The Second problem is that the OP DID BUY AGM BATTERIES ALREADY!
They are more expensive and do require different charging routines to get the most out of them and help make up for the extra investment in the special technology they offer.

The problem is that the charger he already had will not properly charge them to optimum performance yet they were bought anyway and with no good plan maybe to using them in the system in the trailer. I don't think they can be hurt by undercharging them but they will also not be charged to their capacity without different charging gear?

There are plenty of chargers sold that will cater to the needs of the AGM battery and both not undercharge providing maximum output and will not overcharge providing longer life.

These same chargers can also act as a converter/power supply and replace the converter already in the trailer and in fact they can also be had with built-in sophisticated Inverters and Genset Power Transfer Switching too on board.

The only practical down side is that they can be much more expensive and to many not be worth the extra cost and hassle to install vs. the advantages they might provide with Batteries that are also more expensive than many think they need.

The Power system is a SYSTEM and each chain will only be as strong as the weakest link.

Like most systems.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:10 AM   #25
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Ed, I am the op. I bought flooded cell batteries, two golf cart 6v batteries. Someone else mentioned agm batteries.

Let's be clear here, the problem is that
1) The charger in my scamp WILL NOT correctly charge ANY battery!
2) The manufacturer knows that!
3) The manufacturer sells the base charger knowing that it doesn't work correctly and then has the gonads to advertise an add on 'wizard' that will 'fix' the shortcomings of the charger he just sold me. He tells me all this right in the literature for the wizard.

Ed, this wizard thing 'costs' $25 retail. NOT $6000!!!

I am amused and mortified that all I am hearing is how the manufacturer is such a good guy for doing all this and all the reasons why this behavior is ok. It is NOT ok. How many of our list members don't have a clue and think their charger is working just fine when in fact it is killing their battery.

Furthermore I'm hearing all the reasons why correct charging just isn't possible. C'mon give me a break. Correct charging is already being done in solar chargers. Not EVERY solar charger, but none the less it is possible, easily and cheaply.

The first thing that we need is to stop making excuses for the manufacturers. They can and do make enough excuses. And we all know about excuses... everyone has one!

Ok, go back to sleep everyone, I didn't mean to cause distress.
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Old 10-01-2013, 07:13 AM   #26
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OH,Sorry then somehow I thought that you got AGM batteries at 6v from Sams?

I just reread your initial post and you never do say that you got AGM but you never say otherwise either?
It seems sort of natural to assume that you did as this is what you mainly talk about in the post.

Either way read my posts,I am agreeing with you!

The Charge Wizard thing especially astounds me.

Nothing that I said changes now except there are even more and less expensive charging options open to you that can and do work well by any standard.
I have never suggested anything different than you about the effectiveness of the standard RV in built converters and for the same basic reasons that you state.

The difference is that I know this going into a new battery purchase but evidently you did not?

So either buy a decent and effective charger or keep what you have.
You may not be fully conditioning your batteries but you are also not doing a lot of harm to them.

I also suggest getting a good battery monitor if you want to see what is really going on with the batteries,it can be very revealing beyond what a simple meter can tell us.

I use a Link system again from Xantrex but there are other good ones too and as long as they use a Shunt to measure loads they should each provide similar info.
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Old 10-01-2013, 08:25 AM   #27
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Ed, I will be doing this. I am going with a solar system, and there are solar chargers which do fine job of intelligently charging the batteries, I just wanted to avoid buying a new 120v AC charger AND a solar charger.

I am in a spot at the state park where I have 120vac and SHADE. So I buy my solar system for when I go dry camping and yes, it does a fine job of keeping the batteries charged when the solar panels are getting sun, but while I am hooked up to AC (in the shade) the solar system will probably simply do nothing whatsoever.

While you say "not doing a lot of harm" that is not necessarily true. A battery sitting at a partial charge, with the solution slowly separating back into water and sulfuric acid does appear to actually damage the batteries. So I need an AC powered charger which correctly handles the charge duties.
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Old 10-01-2013, 03:38 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwcolby54 View Post

Let's be clear here, the problem is that
1) The charger in my scamp WILL NOT correctly charge ANY battery!
2) The manufacturer knows that!
3) The manufacturer sells the base charger knowing that it doesn't work correctly and then has the gonads to advertise an add on 'wizard' that will 'fix' the shortcomings of the charger he just sold me. He tells me all this right in the literature for the wizard.
Its like in all things in life you get what you pay for

Cars are sold with various levels of add ons - some additional safety items some not. Depends on how much your willing to pay for the added convenience & features. Some people although they know those added features may benefit them in some way others feel they are not worth the price and they are simple happy with the lesser product. Manufacturers know that so they build cars with various level of features.

Scamp sells a trailer that most folks if using a car analogy would class as a economical family sedan. Its not going to have the same components and features as a higher end luxury class sedan. For the price of the Scamp I dont think it would be reasonable to expect it to either.

The old converter in my Scamp has meet my needs of several hundred days of camping over 6 years - about 50% off grid. It charges the battery up and even though not all the way I do get by camping for a number of days without needing to throw out the solar panels to recharge. Still got 5 years of use out of my old battery before I started to even notice it wasnt holding a charge as well as I would like it to and replaced it. I will be replacing the converter with a so called smart charge one shortly but to be honest I don't really expect that based on my usage and practises that its going to make a really big difference to my daily camping routine or to how much more life I get out of the battery. If I get a few extra years out of the battery due to using a smart charger that would be great but if it doesn't well its not the end of the world and not the first time I have wasted $25 dollars when one considers thats about the same price as 2 glasses of wine in a bar in these parts ;-)
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