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Old 09-28-2016, 03:55 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 24
Battery/DC questions..

Always looking to prolong useful batteries while dry-camping, our usual mode. '14 Sunseeker 2500TS 2 Interstate size 27, 6 months old.

1. I'm a aware of these users when battery isolator switch is OFF: Refer igniter, propane/CO2 detector/alarm, water pump arm switch if left on, and, so I read here, possibly the BigFoot leveling system (even if all its indicator lights off?) This is besides the obvious stuff if left on by mistake while away. Am I missing anything?

2. I'm considering putting a battery monitoring gauge near the batteries (they're under the top entry step), to avoid having to remove the step to check with hand-held tester. Ideas on this?

On a recent dry-camp, average use, cool weather so several furnace cycles in the morning, constant refer, average water pump use, etc., batteries were down to 40-50% by getup time, each day. This after 2 1-hour generator runs per day. I thought that was pretty puny. So doing a reality check here. Thanks!!

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Old 10-01-2016, 05:01 AM   #2
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Collinsville, IL
Posts: 819
Of all the things you listed, the furnace is the battery killer. Uses more than its fair share of power.

2012 Forest River Sunseeker 2300 Chevy
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Old 10-01-2016, 05:46 AM   #3
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: South Eastern PA
Posts: 19,830
Be aware that a voltmeter uses current to read the battery. While small, it is another source of parasite current draw. Use one that has a push button to read voltage.

A ammeter is better as it shows current flow. If you get one that can read forward and reversed current flow you can monitor the charge and discharge current instantaneously. Be aware you will most likely need to install a "shunt" so that only a measured fraction of the actual current goes through the meter so it does not burn up.

Best is an actual computer monitor like the Trimetric. This system combines the two. In addition, by entering your battery's actual AH capacity, it can display the voltage, current flow, and percent of battery life remaining. It does that by tracking the current flow into and out of the battery continuously.
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