Rolling up and down windows while camping: when should I start the tow vehicle? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-20-2021, 12:58 PM   #1
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Rolling up and down windows while camping: when should I start the tow vehicle?

If I am camping somewhere where I need to roll up the TV windows every night, and then roll them down the next morning, is it better to start the TV before I roll the windows up or down, or is it better to just turn the key part way and let the tow vehicle battery handle that? How much battery energy does it take to roll up all 4 windows? How does that tend to compare with the energy to start a 2012 4Runner? (I am assuming that if I start the car first, then the alternator is supplying the power to the window motors, but if I don't start the car then the power to the window motor comes from the TV battery.) Are there other considerations? Which is the better choice?
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Old 06-20-2021, 01:15 PM   #2
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Doesn’t matter one way or the other if the tow vehicle has a good battery.
If it doesn’t, you should get a new one. Vehicle or battery
Iowa. Dave
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Old 06-20-2021, 02:04 PM   #3
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It makes no difference.

I would not start the car. I think it's better to not run an engine for like 20 seconds and then shut it off. Cars run with excess fuel right after they are started, and this can wash the oil off the cylinder walls and if you shut down immediately, it doesn't get replaced.

All that said, it still probably doesn't make any difference one way or the other.
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Old 06-20-2021, 02:38 PM   #4
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These days I’m never sure whether somebody is pimpin me or they are serious.
But oh well.
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Old 06-20-2021, 04:38 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Iowa Dave View Post
Doesn’t matter one way or the other if the tow vehicle has a good battery.
If it doesn’t, you should get a new one. Vehicle or battery
Iowa. Dave
I have a good battery. I do this everyday, and I am wondering what the pros and cons are. What Alan mentioned suggests that not starting the car could be best. I am hoping to get replies with concepts like ampere-hours or sulfation or other technical stuff. I am not asking about one time. I am interested in the long-term effects over a year or two.
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Old 06-20-2021, 05:08 PM   #6
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Thanks for replying, a lot of people do not. Now that you have indicated legitimate technical concerns regarding battery life you may be able garner some accurate information from experts. My battery experiences are varied I owned a 2002 Dodge Dakota. Bought new in August 2002. Traded it in on a new Toyota in May 2012. Had the original battery in it yet. Never any special treatment. Sat out in temps to -25F several winters. Never failed to start. 166,000 miles. The Highlander battery lasted about three years. Bought a new great big Delco. Had a dead cell after 11 months. Got full free replacement and even a more premium battery. Ran it 3 more years and traded it in 181,000 miles. The 2018 is three years old now original battery and working fine. I think some battery life is luck of the draw. Other times with the trailer batteries keeping them watered up , having a controller that exercises them properly, having them not bounced around which can loosen the plates, all makes a difference. Good luck on your batteries.
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Old 06-20-2021, 05:16 PM   #7
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Turning the ignition to “on” without starting the vehicle couple of times a day to raise or lower windows won’t hurt anything. I doubt will even decrease battery life appreciably unless you do it many days in a row without driving the vehicle.

On the other hand, starting the car just long enough to lower or raise the windows could actually be worse for the battery because of the initial starter draw. But more important, it’s definitely bad for the engine, the starter, the exhaust system, and the environment.

This is surely a no-brainer.
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Old 06-20-2021, 11:31 PM   #8
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Starting the car takes much more power than rolling up the windows. You're not just running the engine to supply power to the window motors from the alternator, you are running the engine to make up what power gets used in the entire process of starting, rolling the windows, etc. So, you must run it long enough to at least make up the power that was used. But that won't be enough to warm the engine completely, so you should run it enough to get it up to full temp and get rid of the condensation in the cylinders from running cold and the moisture left in the exhaust system, which is slightly acidic and promotes rust. Bottom line: With a good battery, you could probably run the windows up and down 50 times before it became a problem. Are you willing to start the car 50 times with all of the wear and tear on the starter, the seat cushions, the lights and all that is associated with running it and running it long enough to make up for an imagined problem? So, once a week start it up and go do some sight seeing to make up for seven times of rolling the windows up and then down. Starting the engine for 30 seconds, over and over, is way counterproductive.

Option two: Install an Anderson plug to charge the trailer from the TV. This will also allow you to charge the car from your suitcase system, by plugging into the Anderson plug on the tow vehicle. Problem, if there actually is one, solved.
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Old 06-20-2021, 11:38 PM   #9
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Option three: remove the power windows and install manual crank windows.
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Old 06-21-2021, 10:35 AM   #10
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Option Five

Roll the windows up before you shut off the motor; roll them down when going somewhere....you might forget to close the windows some day, inviting a bear to find that candy bar wrapper... a bear can literally trash your seats, tho kinda funny to watch if it's not your car.
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Old 06-22-2021, 01:35 PM   #11
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Thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Turning the ignition to on without starting the vehicle couple of times a day to raise or lower windows wont hurt anything. I doubt will even decrease battery life appreciably unless you do it many days in a row without driving the vehicle.

On the other hand, starting the car just long enough to lower or raise the windows could actually be worse for the battery because of the initial starter draw. But more important, its definitely bad for the engine, the starter, the exhaust system, and the environment.

This is surely a no-brainer.
Thanks very much Jon and everybody. Sounds like starting the car for a minute is definitely a bad idea. That makes perfect sense now. I guess on was unsure how much rolling up 4 windows would deplete the battery; apparently not enough to worry about. Maybe 25 amps for a total of 30 seconds?, which is not a lot of amp-hours on paper. I appreciate the sense of certainty, because, truth be told, sometimes I would just start the car and run it for one minute to roll up the windows, and now I see that that is a bad idea and that I don't need to be so overly concerned about battery depletion at these insignificant levels.
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Old 06-22-2021, 01:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raspy View Post
Starting the car takes much more power than rolling up the windows. You're not just running the engine to supply power to the window motors from the alternator, you are running the engine to make up what power gets used in the entire process of starting, rolling the windows, etc. So, you must run it long enough to at least make up the power that was used. But that won't be enough to warm the engine completely, so you should run it enough to get it up to full temp and get rid of the condensation in the cylinders from running cold and the moisture left in the exhaust system, which is slightly acidic and promotes rust. Bottom line: With a good battery, you could probably run the windows up and down 50 times before it became a problem. Are you willing to start the car 50 times with all of the wear and tear on the starter, the seat cushions, the lights and all that is associated with running it and running it long enough to make up for an imagined problem? So, once a week start it up and go do some sight seeing to make up for seven times of rolling the windows up and then down. Starting the engine for 30 seconds, over and over, is way counterproductive.

Option two: Install an Anderson plug to charge the trailer from the TV. This will also allow you to charge the car from your suitcase system, by plugging into the Anderson plug on the tow vehicle. Problem, if there actually is one, solved.
Good points. Thank you, Raspy, as usual.
PS. Your signature line always makes me chuckle.
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Old 07-25-2021, 09:01 PM   #13
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I have found that starting the engine on the truck to be a waste of diesel fuel while I cranked up the windows. My arm and wrist didn't work a bit better with the engine running!

Charles
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Old 07-25-2021, 09:24 PM   #14
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Yes This

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Originally Posted by CharlesinGA View Post
I have found that starting the engine on the truck to be a waste of diesel fuel while I cranked up the windows. My arm and wrist didn't work a bit better with the engine running!

Charles
Charles you are my kind of guy.
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Old 07-25-2021, 11:04 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesinGA View Post
I have found that starting the engine on the truck to be a waste of diesel fuel while I cranked up the windows. My arm and wrist didn't work a bit better with the engine running!

Charles
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