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Old 08-28-2012, 08:57 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bakken View Post
It shouldn't hurt anything.
Would I do it? No.
X2.
Also I have mine on a battery tender Jr. Cost $25. Power useage ¢¢ very
minimal.
I figure if my onboard power center goes out it's gonna be pricey so why
power it up all the time for no reason. Battery tender does the job nicely.
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Old 08-28-2012, 09:04 AM   #12
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Any advice for those of us who do not have garages and live in Eastern Canada (cold winters, lots of sub-freezing temps). I could bring the battery into the basement but I would be worried about gases. I have an un-heated shed with electricity - if I was to place the battery there and buy a battery tender would it be able to handle the temperature swings throughout the winter? This will be our first winter for the trailer.

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Old 08-28-2012, 09:31 AM   #13
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A fully charged battery in good condition will not be harmed by
extreme cold. I leave my batteries on the tender all year round and
never remove them from the trailer. I realize we don't have the cold
in KY that you do but my answer stands.

I'm allergic to work in general and heavy lifting in particular.
I see no good reason to carry those heavy suckers if I don't have to!

Do check water every few months. My battery fluids are still OK after a
year on the tender and that includes several camping trips.

Randy, if you don't have power at the trailer you can bring the
battery into your shed or basement.
A battery on a tender in your basement will outgas very little.
Also don't fall for the old wives tale about batteries being damaged
by sitting on concrete. It's not true anymore. Today's plastic case
batteries don't care if you sit them on the concrete.


My 2 plain old 12v marine RV deep cycle/crank batteries worked
just fine when we dry camped 5 days this summer.
They are 4 years old.
I'm still on my original truck battery and it's going on 9 years old.
Battery tenders really help prolong the life of batteries in vehicles,
RVs, boats, etc that only get occasional use.
You can find battery tender Jr online in the $25 range.
My 2¢
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Old 08-28-2012, 09:38 AM   #14
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Generally I keep my trailers plugged in all the time, but I don't think it's a good idea to be continually charging, or trust the trickle chargers, so I shut off the master switch - usually I go 3 weeks off, 1 week on.

If I'm unplugged, then definately turn of the master switch as a dead battery is the result in just a few days.
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Old 08-28-2012, 10:08 AM   #15
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Thanks for the info and tips guys.

Greatly appreciated.
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Old 08-28-2012, 10:43 AM   #16
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I like to disconnect the batteries through the disconnect switch rather than charge them continuously.

Here's the math I did last November when I winterized. I have two 6-volt T-145 Trojan batteries in series (260Ah). I live in Wisconsin and its winter so assumed I should lose about 8% of my battery capacity each month or 0.69Ah per day (260 * 8% / 30 days).

But, that estimation was slightly conservative compared to what I really got last winter. After two months with the batteries disconnect, my multimeter showed 12.6volts, which is about 89% charged.

As mentioned, its important to leave them disconnected starting with a full charge if you opt to do it this way.

The reason I do not charge all the time in the winter is that I leave the batteries on the trailer, do not trust the WFCO converter, and do not wish to check the water in the batteries that often.
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Old 08-28-2012, 10:46 AM   #17
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Two options--

Like you, I'm never sure about the quality of my 3-step converter. Who really knows if this will boil the battery or not? Too many possibilities exist for failure, and I'm unable to account for each one at every moment. You know what I'm referring too I'm sure; over and under voltages, lightning, etc.

1. Consider a timer built to handle the maximum peak current and voltage your converter requires, 3-step or not. Set the converter for a couple of hours each day. With a surge protection system and a timer, and of course a 3-step charger, perhaps the battery will last more than a year or two?

2. Unless you need a battery in your rig all of the time, perhaps taking it out and storing it in the basement or garage and off the concrete floor (with posts protected against shorts and surfaces against dirt and grime), and checked on once a month for fluid, charge, etc, might work for you? I find it easier to do this rather than hiking in the snow for a quick check, but it requires a bit of effort to remove and replace the cells and another charger-- except the charger doesn't have to be plugged in all of the time.

Mike
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Old 08-28-2012, 01:53 PM   #18
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Thanks for the input on this subject, I was wondering about the batteries being plugged in all the time and what it could do to them. I worked on the Fire Dept. and our trucks were plugged in all the time in the station and I saw several times where the batteries got fried. I may look into a battery tender and go from there.
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Old 08-28-2012, 07:23 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KyDan View Post
....I figure if my onboard power center goes out it's gonna be pricey so why
power it up all the time for no reason...
You know, that's a very good point I hadn't considered......and now see a good reason for a battery disconnect....
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Old 08-28-2012, 07:42 PM   #20
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We are plugged into shore power 24/7/365 except when we are on the road. When temps get down to freezing at nights before we head to FL, we have an electric Eden Pure heater we turn on and also use the furnace blower w/out the furnace being activated.

All water tanks are mt, so we don't even turn the tank heaters on.
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