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Old 11-17-2018, 01:27 PM   #1
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Is your Tow Vehicle driven regularly?

Not just for a trip to the store but used for regular, longer drives where the battery is fully recharged from starting?

I always thought I was on top of my game with my Tow Vehicle. Since I only use it to tow the TT now I'd grab the dog and take a 40 mile round trip to visit my daughter something similar Didn't want the truck to sit idle and have it's onboard electronics drain the battery.

Since the last new battery didn't last as long as I thought it should I purchased a battery maintainer/charger (a NOCO Genius G1100) to make sure the battery had all it needed. Liked this model because of it has an adapter that allows you to just plug it into the "cigarette lighter" socket (one that is powered up all the time) as well as a pair of clamps to connect directly to the battery. Easy inline connector so the swap takes no time at all.

When I plugged the unit in I got a surprise. Even though I had just returned from a 4,000 mile trip with the Truck and Trailer, and the truck had been used several times since, the charger only indicated a 25% state of charge. A couple hours later it hit 50% and 12 hours later it finally hit 100%.

My message to fellow "Campers" that let their TV's sit unused for long periods of time, might be a good idea to add a battery maintainer/charger to your kit. Unlike MH's and TT's that are plugged in and have an onboard converter/charger, the TV often just sits there and as long as it starts not much thought is given to it's battery ------------ until it doesn't start.

Something to consider. Vehicle charging systems today are designed to replace the energy used by starting the engine, keep up with energy draw from accessories, but NOT to recharge a semi-dead battery. Maybe if one starts out on an 8-10 hour trip but not the usual local trips which average less than 10 miles.

Anyway, I always thought I was being good to my truck and it's battery but it became apparent I haven't since the truck is now only used to tow. My running around is done in a Chevy Volt and it's battery is maintained by a complex computer

BTW, according to NOCO, he "Genius" can be left connected as long as you want. They claim it continually monitors battery "health" and provides a desulfation cycle when it senses one is necessary. I'm sure others do as well but while shopping it appears that the NOCO is a good balance of price, features, quality. My first impression when I got it was that it's a well made unit that's also "Water Resistant" so I don't need to run if I have it connected to a battery out in the rain.
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Old 11-17-2018, 08:57 PM   #2
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My 2012 Silverado 3500 does not sit for long. I brought new and truck now has right at 150,000 miles. We went to Disney World twice last year and took the Silverado each time unhooked. DW has a 2013 Mercedes E-350 brought new, she has 30,000 miles on it. You can see which vehicle is driven.
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Old 11-17-2018, 09:09 PM   #3
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Thanks for reminding me last trip I took a few weeks ago and as soon as the smoke clears up around here I'll go out and plug mine in. I forgot to and in my case it is two batteries that need to be maintained it gets expensive if you don't.
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Old 11-18-2018, 06:51 AM   #4
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Our truck does not usually move without the camper so during the winter I would try to start it at least once a week and take it out to stretch it's legs once a month Well last year I spent most of the winter skiing out west and the poor thing sat all winter, it started right up but refused to move so I had to beat on the back of the wheels as the brakes locked up with rust, both rear axles needed some persuasion but after a few smacks all was good.
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Old 11-18-2018, 07:30 AM   #5
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Most of my tow vehicles i've had where used just for that and sat when not towing. Occasionally would drive into town and back. Most only had 30000 miles when traded after 5 years so ha never worried about batteries. I also own a Volt and best all around vehicle and in 28 months on my 4th tank of gas Later RJD
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Old 11-18-2018, 08:08 AM   #6
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Interesting thread and great information. My TV is an Expedition; it's an extra vehicle/nobody's daily-driver but we use it for hauling and traveling in addition to towing so it gets what I would consider "infrequent but regular" use. Battery never an issue but I will definitely keep all of this information in mind if in the future it sits idle for long periods.
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Old 11-18-2018, 08:10 AM   #7
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Convenience electronics like the radio memory, remote door locks, remote start, etc. all draw current from the battery. Just like your trailer's parasitic draws.

I've used a device called Priority Start in the past as extra devices in my Fords would kill the battery over a 3-day weekend if I forgot to unplug them. (Ford power ports are directly connected to the battery!) Winter business trips leaving the truck at the airport would also result in a dead battery so I installed a simple cutoff on the battery.

Doesn't get any simpler than this.




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Old 11-18-2018, 08:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck_S View Post
Convenience electronics like the radio memory, remote door locks, remote start, etc. all draw current from the battery. Just like your trailer's parasitic draws.

I've used a device called Priority Start in the past as extra devices in my Fords would kill the battery over a 3-day weekend if I forgot to unplug them. (Ford power ports are directly connected to the battery!) Winter business trips leaving the truck at the airport would also result in a dead battery so I installed a simple cutoff on the battery.

Doesn't get any simpler than this.




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Thatís a nifty little device.

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Old 11-18-2018, 08:49 AM   #9
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For the most part my trucks have also been my daily driver, but have had a few cars during those years when I had a long commute.

During those years I always made it a point to drive my trucks on my days off to run errands or other local trips.

Now my truck sits more than not, but we do switch off between the Ford Escape and the truck and whichever one is parked at the end of the driveway gets to make the daily drive.

Today it will be the truck!
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Old 11-18-2018, 08:50 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck_S View Post
Convenience electronics like the radio memory, remote door locks, remote start, etc. all draw current from the battery. Just like your trailer's parasitic draws.

I've used a device called Priority Start in the past as extra devices in my Fords would kill the battery over a 3-day weekend if I forgot to unplug them. (Ford power ports are directly connected to the battery!) Winter business trips leaving the truck at the airport would also result in a dead battery so I installed a simple cutoff on the battery.

Doesn't get any simpler than this.




-- Chuck
Would that work in our trailers?
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