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Old 09-04-2014, 07:50 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Posts: 22
Spartan TH Battery Problems

We do a lot of dry camping in our 2015 Spartan FW TH but are having trouble keeping our batteries at a decent charge level. Over night starting with either a full or 2/3's charge according to the battery level indicator, the battery will drop to "E" on the indicator. With nothing drawing power except the normal parasitic draws on the battery, it seems like I am constantly having to fire up the gen to keep the batteries above the "E" level. The dealer installed 2 group 24 batteries when we purchased it but they apparently do not keep up with the parasitic draws. It looks like I am going to have to fork out some money for a more adequate battery set up. It seems to me that the dealer (General RV in Draper, UT) should have installed batteries that would last through the night without dropping off so much.

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Old 09-04-2014, 08:23 AM   #2
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Location: Nampa, Idaho
Posts: 124
Are your batterys actually low or is the battery gauge just reading that way. I would suggest a volt meter when the battery gauge drops to low and see what state they are. Those cheap indicators are not very accurate.

Good Luck

Wayne, Donna and Moab
2016 Ford S/D Platinum
2013 Sanibel 3500
Honda 3000 si
4 6 volt batterys
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Old 09-04-2014, 09:14 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Posts: 22
I have never hooked them up to a volt meter. I will try that next time out to check the levels. I guess in my past RVs, I have not had this problem before and am trusting the indicator levels to much.
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Old 09-04-2014, 01:18 PM   #4
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Edmonton
Posts: 34
Maybe try to unhook the batteries for the night if you're not using them. Then check again in the morning. Will tell you if it's something in the trailer or the batteries are bad
Patrick & Cecilia
2012 GMC Sierra 2500 HD Crewcab Duramax
2014 Forest River Tracer 2750 RBS
Honda eu3000 Generator
2015 Nights Camped : 37
2014 Nights Camped : 33
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Old 09-04-2014, 02:17 PM   #5
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Posts: 5,173
From all the information I've accumulated over the past year+ from this forum, is that the number one first thing to install if your going to do a lot of dry camping is a good battery monitor.

The little one that comes with the trailer just has a scale of L, F, G & C which stands for Low, Fair, Good, and Charging respectively. You'll note there's no concept of Full, Empty, 2/3rds, etc... on that scale. That's because the onboard monitor doesn't know what kind of capacity is left in your battery. It only knows about a point in time measurement (which I believe it does by checking the voltage.) I used to get the scale wrong too until I started hanging around on these forums.

A good battery monitor (the TriMetric name seems to come up alot) is supposed to be essential to getting a good grasp of how many AmpHours you're actually using, how many you have left, and how long you need to recharge to put back what you used.

The next step is to kill as many of those parasitic draws as possible. A good place to start is the sticky thread:

Battery gone in 36h, where to start?

This thread covers a feature in some of the Dometic fridges to combat condensation, but has a tendency to kill batteries. Killing that feature is supposed to save a few Amps draw.

Swapping to all LEDs can reduce your lighting draw for the entire trailer to under what a single bulb used to draw, and putting your radio on a switch can combat the draw used for the radio's memory (at the expense of memorized radio stations.)

Note: These are all just tips I've read from various dry-camping threads, but I haven't actually tested any of them. My DW doesn't dry camp. From what's claimed on here though, some of these guys can go a while by optimizing their rigs for dry camping.
There's no use crying over spilt milk... unless it's on your keyboard.
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