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Old 12-19-2013, 12:18 PM   #11
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I think that constant shore pwr can overdo it on the batteries.
Gonna X2 here as well. Agree with all the above With this addendum:

What will kill the batteries is constant charge (of any kind-shore-trickle-tender-whatever) without monthly checks on water levels! As you keep the battery charged, chemical reactions occur that evaporate the water in your battery. You really need to top off the battery every month to keep it in prime condition.

As an aside, most modern RVs will have a Battery cut off switch that removes the battery from the RV household circuit - some full timers use this feature. Personally, I have my 50AMP hooked up 24/7 to my house when I am not on the road. This lets me run my tank heaters and my portable oil heater inside my 5er and avoid winterizing
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Old 12-19-2013, 12:37 PM   #12
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Never had water level problems with the tenders like you would have with a trickle charger. Is it not harmful for the converter if the battery main switch is off and shore power constantly applied?
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Old 12-19-2013, 01:51 PM   #13
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This might be help for some. Not written by me.
·Converters vs. real battery chargers
As stated above, the converter in your RV really isn't designed to be a decent battery charger. It's main purpose in life is to provide 12 volt power for your rig while you are plugged in to an A/C outlet. Since the converter is designed to not exceed a voltage of about 13.5 volts, it will never fully charge your batteries. Also, after it has succeeded in partially charging your batteries, it will then commence to boil off electrolyte, as the "float" voltage is too high (should be about 13.2 volts max.). If you plug your rig into A/C power for months at a time, you MUST keep a close eye on your battery's electrolyte level. It is very common for a converter to boil a battery dry in a month or two. Don't let it happen to you! If you must live with your converter, it is a big help if you unplug it or switch it off when the rig is in storage and attached to A/C power. Just run the converter overnight once a month or so and it will be much easier on your batteries. Another significant disadvantage to the converter is that most units aren't capable of delivering their rated amperage to the batteries to charge them. Older converters will only manage about 10 or 15 amps and will put out significantly less when powered by a generator.

A much better choice is to replace your converter with a modern 3 stage battery charger. These units are fully automatic and can be left plugged in continuously without damaging your batteries. They provide much higher charging current than a converter and will fully charge your batteries in short order, even on generator power. Many better inverters include a 3 stage battery charger as part of the unit. You can also buy just the charger and replace your existing converter with it, as it will handle all the functions of the converter and keep your batteries in shape too! Unfortunately, these chargers aren't cheap... you can expect to pay from $50 to $400 for one, depending on ratings and features. Still, if you need to replace a failing converter or are considering getting an inverter, don't miss the chance to get a 3 stage charger. They really are worth the money if you use your batteries a lot.


·Winter Storage
Most RVs used for recreation are stored for long periods of time in the winter months. This storage can be very hard on your batteries if you don't take care of them. Batteries in storage self-discharge over time. This is a natural phenomenon and will cause your batteries to slowly go flat. Deep discharges drastically shorten your batteries life. Extremely cold temperatures can cause your batteries to freeze if they aren't adequately charged. A battery close to fully charged is far more resistant to freezing than a partially charged battery. Freezing will normally kill a flooded cell battery dead. Some of the gell batteries and most of the AGM type batteries are more resistant to damage from freezing, but it's better to prevent it. To avoid all this potential mayhem, some charging current will have to be applied to the batteries periodically during the storage period.

To keep your battery safe through the winter storage period, consider removing the batteries and storing then in a warmer place, like a garage. Check the voltage once a month and do an overnight recharge if the voltage falls to the 80% state-of-charge point. .
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Old 12-19-2013, 02:06 PM   #14
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Mikegjax, is there any chance you have the source of that that you can link to?
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Old 12-19-2013, 03:46 PM   #15
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I am looking for it. No luck yet.
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Old 12-19-2013, 04:05 PM   #16
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Doug and Mike, I think that is copied over from the 12 volt side of life webpage, that we often link to.

The 12volt Side of Life (Part 1)

The original page is from around 2002, and some converters have gotten better since it was published.
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Old 12-19-2013, 04:50 PM   #17
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Searched and searched to no avail. My bad. In the future I will post the links to anything I snag.
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Old 12-19-2013, 04:53 PM   #18
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wmtire, that is it! Thanks.
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Old 12-19-2013, 07:28 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wmtire
Doug and Mike, I think that is copied over from the 12 volt side of life webpage, that we often link to.

The 12volt Side of Life (Part 1)

The original page is from around 2002, and some converters have gotten better since it was published.
Can a GFCI supply be used in parallel with GFCI circuits? Though I've read here they will trip each other... Posed in threads as as garage supply.
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Old 12-19-2013, 08:47 PM   #20
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Can a GFCI supply be used in parallel with GFCI circuits? Though I've read here they will trip each other... Posed in threads as as garage supply.
Connect power to the LINE terminals of your first outlet. Connect the LOAD terminals of that outlet to the LINE terminals of the next outlet. If you are installing a third, connect the LOAD terminals of the second outlet to the LINE terminals of the third outlet. Subsequent outlets are connected the same way.
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