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Old 02-15-2017, 09:27 PM   #1
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Does anyone use a battery shutoff switch?

I killed my last RV battery last fall by leaving a light on in a storage area in my camper without it plugged in. I checked on it after a few weeks, and found I'd completely toasted my battery, it won't even hold a charge anymore.

I don't want to do that again.

Does anyone use a battery shutoff switch? Do you put it on the negative or positive side?

What kind do you use?
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Old 02-15-2017, 09:36 PM   #2
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Ive owned a camper that had one pre installed. it was on the negative side. Never really used much because between trips things like the propane and co2 detector slowly drain any ways. Usually a battery would recharge and recover. How old was the battery? wonder if it was at the end of it's life and the two events took place at same time?
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Old 02-15-2017, 09:37 PM   #3
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You can put it in either the pos or the negative lead, whichever is more convenient.
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Old 02-15-2017, 09:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
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Ive owned a camper that had one pre installed. it was on the negative side. Never really used much because between trips things like the propane and co2 detector slowly drain any ways. Usually a battery would recharge and recover. How old was the battery? wonder if it was at the end of it's life and the two events took place at same time?
2 years old. My smart charger will say its charged, and my multimeter will say it has 12.5 volts. Then I connect a headlight bulb to it (floating crappie light) and it works. Then I remove it, and remeasure voltage, and its 0.01. After 5 minutes, it slowly comes back up to 12 volts.
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Old 02-15-2017, 10:21 PM   #5
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there are the factory installed battery disconnects which still allow CO2 and other small draws and will eventually kill your battery

or there are battery installed disconnects, that shut everything off

I use one at the battery to keep from draining my batteries with the parasitic draw and roaching them. I do have a factory installed one in the trailer, but it is never used
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Old 02-15-2017, 10:44 PM   #6
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present trailer came with switch always use it with no dead battery. previous unit I just disconnected neg cable at battery
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Old 02-15-2017, 10:51 PM   #7
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I use an
inline circuit breaker

connected to the negative cable.
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Old 02-15-2017, 11:37 PM   #8
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Yep, negative is usually easier. Never have understood why you would install a cutoff that doesn't cutoff everything. Seems like the name would be different, like ... 'do nothing switch' or half-ass cutoff
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Old 02-15-2017, 11:41 PM   #9
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Yep- I installed mine on the negative side for simplicity. Removing the cable from the battery was hassle as my batteries are under a storage hatch floor.

I bought an inexpensive switch from eBay as my install was inside.

http://learntorv.com/dead-battery-in...ry-disconnect/
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Old 02-15-2017, 11:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
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there are the factory installed battery disconnects which still allow CO2 and other small draws and will eventually kill your battery

They're the biggest problems and why people install disconnects. I guess the argument is the safety aspect- in case someone forgets to reconnect the battery and they're without those protections.
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Old 02-16-2017, 09:31 AM   #11
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installed one on the negative battery cable. prior to that the batteries would drain even with the factory installed cutoff switch. there are several parasitic drains on the battery. some have been mention but I found a few more on our trailer. anything that has a remote control fob has a control unit still connected to the battery in order to monitor for the fob keys being pressed (slide outs, fireplace, level up control board). my batteries would drain down while the trailer was in storage. now that I have a true disconnect switch the batteries have always had a charge in them when I go over each month to run the generator and check things out.

one word of caution: you must ensure that the batteries are connected before you move the trailer in order to supply voltage to the brake safety breakaway switch. in my case, I do not worry about this as I have to connect the batteries to raise the level-up legs which must be done before moving. but if you have to manually raise the legs I could envision a trailer being moved with the batteries still disconnected. another option would be to leave the breakaway switch leads connected to the battery so they cannot be disconnected. they will not drain the battery as they are not a load on the battery if the switch is not activated.
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Old 02-16-2017, 01:33 PM   #12
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I installed Perko disconnect switch because I've had them on my boats for many years and trust them. My switch has Off, one, two and all positions to control two banks of 6V batteries. The switch is connected to my positive wiring.

I also installed a Perko on/off switch to my convertor as well.
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Old 02-16-2017, 01:35 PM   #13
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I installed one about a foot away from my Battery when I was installed a second battery..
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Old 02-16-2017, 01:42 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mountndream View Post
there are the factory installed battery disconnects which still allow CO2 and other small draws and will eventually kill your battery

or there are battery installed disconnects, that shut everything off

I use one at the battery to keep from draining my batteries with the parasitic draw and roaching them. I do have a factory installed one in the trailer, but it is never used
The factory installed battery disconnect in my Silverback kills power to all the parasitic drains in the trailer including the propane detector.
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Old 02-16-2017, 01:46 PM   #15
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Manual cut off switch

I use one similar to this on my cars. That way I don't have that continuous battery drain for any items, (clocks, sensors, vehicle's computer, etc.).
Got it on Amazon. I place mine on the Negative terminal.
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Old 02-16-2017, 02:01 PM   #16
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Electrically it makes no difference whether you use negative or positive.

However, for safety, all negative ground systems with metal chassis, the main disconnect should be on the negative side. Boats are usually on the positive side.

In all vehicle manuals they say to disconnect the negative terminal of the battery as the first step. The reason is that people used to remove the positive cable with a wrench and would accidentally touch the metal frame or hood and blow up the battery in their face.

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Old 02-16-2017, 02:16 PM   #17
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I use the factory batt switch and then attach a battery tender to maintain charge. My thoughts are the charge portion of the converter might be a bit rough on the batt. Any other thoughts on this?
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Old 02-16-2017, 02:33 PM   #18
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I have a 2017 5ver with 2 new batteries that purchased independently to ensure I had new stock, a parasitic drain will fletten them in about a week. Installed a cut off switch (screwed to side of battery box) on the negative side, and fixed the problem

https://www.amazon.ca/Marinco-701-Ba...cut+off+switch
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Old 02-16-2017, 02:38 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lugoismad View Post
2 years old. My smart charger will say its charged, and my multimeter will say it has 12.5 volts. Then I connect a headlight bulb to it (floating crappie light) and it works. Then I remove it, and remeasure voltage, and its 0.01. After 5 minutes, it slowly comes back up to 12 volts.
You have a bad battery.
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Old 02-16-2017, 04:00 PM   #20
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I installed one at my battery box on the negative side of the battery. I have accidentally forgot to turn it off and the battery was dead in 2 weeks.

I also added a small solar cell to maintain the battery
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