Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 06-02-2008, 10:42 PM   #1
3 Rivet Member
 
jacarape's Avatar
 
2006 25' Safari
orlando , New Mexico, Utah, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 154
Battery Maintenance, replacement or bad charger?

Hi all, I apologize if this has been discussd, a search didn't show anything specific.

I have a 2006 Safari with no battery capacity, it won't even run the fridge for 15 minutes, so I'm running a Honda EU2000i 15 hours a day to keep a freezer full of elk edible.

I'm a little confused, the manual says that the batteries are 12v, but then they're wired in series, so they'd be a 24v system, but then everthing runs on 12v. (?)

My battery capacity was about 12 hours not running the heater and decresed to 0. In a flash of brilliance, duh, I didn't add any water until I think it was to late. Now under charge they consume all of the water I add, and get very warm.

Tomorrow I'll get to Wally World for a volt-o-meter and check the output of the charger. I checked with the $0.97 gravity tester and the cells are dead or float 1 ball. I'd hate to buy batteries and have a bad charger, then ruin another set.

At the very least, this is a reminder for other newbies to check your electrolyte level.

Thanks for any advice-michael
__________________

__________________
I'm a true bum, working less and living longer.

WBCCI #3841
jacarape is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2008, 11:00 PM   #2
Desert Fox
 
1985 31' Sovereign
Tucson , Arizona
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 250
Smile Hi

Turn on your gas. Your fridge schould work on that. It is better than killing your batteries.
Your fridge schould have gas only botton on it.
Regards Russell
__________________

__________________
RUSSELL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2008, 11:40 PM   #3
2 Rivet Member
 
ricknach's Avatar
 
1978 25' Tradewind
San Bernardino , California
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 39
Images: 19
Once a battery has been run dry they will not hold a charge even if you fill the battery with water. To keep batteries from being distroyed you need a multi stage charger and you must check your batteries at least once a month. At this point your batteries are gone but if you are going to leave your charger on all the time you will have to get a three stage charger or risk damage to any new batteries that you put in.
__________________
ricknach is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2008, 11:47 PM   #4
More than one rivet loose
 
thecatsandi's Avatar

 
Currently Looking...
Keymar , Maryland
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,754
Quote:
Originally Posted by RUSSELL
Turn on your gas. Your fridge schould work on that. It is better than killing your batteries.
Your fridge schould have gas only botton on it.
Regards Russell
Even on Gas it requires 12V to operate.
__________________
Michelle TAC MT-0
Sarah, Snowball

Looking for a 1962 Flying Cloud

thecatsandi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2008, 11:48 PM   #5
More than one rivet loose
 
thecatsandi's Avatar

 
Currently Looking...
Keymar , Maryland
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,754
Quote:
Originally Posted by jacarape
Hi all, I apologize if this has been discussd, a search didn't show anything specific.

I have a 2006 Safari with no battery capacity, it won't even run the fridge for 15 minutes, so I'm running a Honda EU2000i 15 hours a day to keep a freezer full of elk edible.

I'm a little confused, the manual says that the batteries are 12v, but then they're wired in series, so they'd be a 24v system, but then everthing runs on 12v. (?)

My battery capacity was about 12 hours not running the heater and decresed to 0. In a flash of brilliance, duh, I didn't add any water until I think it was to late. Now under charge they consume all of the water I add, and get very warm.

Tomorrow I'll get to Wally World for a volt-o-meter and check the output of the charger. I checked with the $0.97 gravity tester and the cells are dead or float 1 ball. I'd hate to buy batteries and have a bad charger, then ruin another set.

At the very least, this is a reminder for other newbies to check your electrolyte level.

Thanks for any advice-michael
Dry= destroyed. You need new batteries. Flooded cell batteries need to be checked monthly and replacing your converter may help.
__________________
Michelle TAC MT-0
Sarah, Snowball

Looking for a 1962 Flying Cloud

thecatsandi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 12:35 AM   #6
Rivet Master
 
Mexray's Avatar
 
1978 28' Ambassador
Morada , California
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,583
As mentioned above, once you've overcharged your batteries with the fluid at a low level, they are damaged and must be replaced.

I'm confused about the frig...running it on 12 volts DC is normally used only when you are hooked to your tow vehicle and you are on the road (the alternator will put out enough current for the frig). The 12 volt setting uses a high amp hour rate and will indeed run down your batteries quickly.

Run your frig on propane when stopped - that's what it's designed for. Of course you'll use the AC setting when your have external AC power hooked up.

As to the battery wiring...your two 12 volt batteries are hooked in PARALLEL (pos to pos, neg to neg) so that the voltage remains at 12 volts. If your batteries are hooked in SERIES (pos to neg) you'll indeed have 24 volts, and have BIG problems and nothing would work in your trailer. I think it you look close you will see that they are hooked in Parallel...as they should be.

The fan in the heater does use lots of current when running, and can be another battery killer...if it's really cold and it runs most of the time, you'll need to recharge your batteries every morning.

A 3 stage converter/charger can help make your batteries last a lot longer...charging quickly, and preventing overcharge and the water loss you mentioned. I don't know if AS began installing 3-stage units in 06, or not. Check out vendor's such as BEST CONVERTER for upgrade units...that was the first thing I did for our older AS.
__________________
Ray & Pat; Morada, CA
Mexray is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 06:39 AM   #7
Rivet Master
Commercial Member
 
lewster's Avatar
 
Vintage Kin Owner
Naples, FL , Hood River, OR
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 7,278
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mexray
As mentioned above, once you've overcharged your batteries with the fluid at a low level, they are damaged and must be replaced.

I'm confused about the frig...running it on 12 volts DC is normally used only when you are hooked to your tow vehicle and you are on the road (the alternator will put out enough current for the frig). The 12 volt setting uses a high amp hour rate and will indeed run down your batteries quickly.

Run your frig on propane when stopped - that's what it's designed for. Of course you'll use the AC setting when your have external AC power hooked up.

As to the battery wiring...your two 12 volt batteries are hooked in PARALLEL (pos to pos, neg to neg) so that the voltage remains at 12 volts. If your batteries are hooked in SERIES (pos to neg) you'll indeed have 24 volts, and have BIG problems and nothing would work in your trailer. I think it you look close you will see that they are hooked in Parallel...as they should be.

The fan in the heater does use lots of current when running, and can be another battery killer...if it's really cold and it runs most of the time, you'll need to recharge your batteries every morning.

A 3 stage converter/charger can help make your batteries last a lot longer...charging quickly, and preventing overcharge and the water loss you mentioned. I don't know if AS began installing 3-stage units in 06, or not. Check out vendor's such as BEST CONVERTER for upgrade units...that was the first thing I did for our older AS.
Just a couple of clarifications:

All RV appliances like refers, air conditioners, water heaters and furnaces need 12VDC as control voltage. This current operates all of the control boards in these appliances and without it....they simply won't work! Not to be confused with the 12VDC that the 3-way refers use for maintaining temps using a 12VDC heating element while on the road that some folks prefer instead of using the LP.

The Parallax converters that the factory uses are NOT 3-stage units, but I believe are 2-stage. Better than the old Univolt, but still not optimal!

And jacarape, If you have problems maintaining your battery's electrolyte levels, you might consider buying a couple of new AGM batteries that never need water, along with a new 3 stage charger for your '06. It's one of the first mods I made to my '06 19CCD!
__________________
Lew Farber...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician...RVIA Certified Master Tech ...AM Solar Authorized Installation Center...AIRSTREAM Solar & Electrical Specialist...Micro Air 'Easy Start' Sales and Installations
lewster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 07:05 AM   #8
3 Rivet Member
 
jacarape's Avatar
 
2006 25' Safari
orlando , New Mexico, Utah, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 154
Thank you everyone for the replies, I'll cruise over to Wal-Mart for replacement bateries. It has been 20 years since I've had to maintain a "home" and have gotten lazy. I'm full timing and working in National Forest near Ruidoso NM. I had hoped to meet some streamers here but due to the dry conditions the forest has closed.

Lew thank you for the suggestion on the mods. I guess the best interim solution is to switch to store when the batteris are charged while on shore power/generator.

See you on the road-michael
__________________
I'm a true bum, working less and living longer.

WBCCI #3841
jacarape is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 07:20 AM   #9
Rivet Master
 
davidz71's Avatar
 
1986 25' Sovereign
Southern Middle , Tennessee
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 3,148
Images: 23
If you are going to use Walmart, make sure the batteries you purchase are the Everstart deep cycle Marine.
__________________
Craig

AIR #0078
'01 2500hd ext. cab, 8.1 litre gas, 5 sp. Allison auto
3.73 rear end
Mag-Hytec rear diff cover
Amsoil Dual by-pass oil filtration system
Amsoil synthetics all around
265 watt AM Solar, Inc. system
davidz71 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 08:46 AM   #10
Rivet Master
Commercial Member
 
lewster's Avatar
 
Vintage Kin Owner
Naples, FL , Hood River, OR
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 7,278
Quote:
Originally Posted by jacarape
Thank you everyone for the replies, I'll cruise over to Wal-Mart for replacement bateries. It has been 20 years since I've had to maintain a "home" and have gotten lazy. I'm full timing and working in National Forest near Ruidoso NM. I had hoped to meet some streamers here but due to the dry conditions the forest has closed.

Lew thank you for the suggestion on the mods. I guess the best interim solution is to switch to store when the batteris are charged while on shore power/generator.

See you on the road-michael
Be careful when you do that......as you are effectively disconnecting the batteries from your system when the switch is on 'store', and they WILL lose their charge within a few weeks.

It will, however, not have any chance of 'boiling' the batteries when they are not connected to the charger.

Better solution might be to keep the disconnect switch in the 'store' position (do this before you plug in the trailer) and than connect a good, 3-stage 'automatic' battery charger to the batteries. I have done this when in storage, and it keeps the batteries properly charged and you won't have to worry about the electrolyte levels, although you should always check the levels in a liquid cell battery every week or two in any event.
__________________
Lew Farber...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician...RVIA Certified Master Tech ...AM Solar Authorized Installation Center...AIRSTREAM Solar & Electrical Specialist...Micro Air 'Easy Start' Sales and Installations
lewster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 09:13 AM   #11
1 Rivet Short
 
1989 25' Excella
By The Bay , Rhode Island
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,547
Images: 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by lewster
Be careful when you do that......as you are effectively disconnecting the batteries from your system when the switch is on 'store', and they WILL lose their charge within a few weeks.

It will, however, not have any chance of 'boiling' the batteries when they are not connected to the charger.

Better solution might be to keep the disconnect switch in the 'store' position (do this before you plug in the trailer) and than connect a good, 3-stage 'automatic' battery charger to the batteries. I have done this when in storage, and it keeps the batteries properly charged and you won't have to worry about the electrolyte levels, although you should always check the levels in a liquid cell battery every week or two in any event.
Hey lew, does "boiled"= ruined?

Or just "dry" = ruined?

If you boil your batteries, full of fluid, while on the charger over night, are they trashed?

Thanx, Bill
__________________
*Life is Good-Camping all around the Continent*
*Good people drink good beer-Hunter S Thompson*
BillTex is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 09:41 AM   #12
Rivet Master
 
1975 29' Ambassador
Reno , Nevada
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 1,351
Quote:
If you have problems maintaining your battery's electrolyte levels, you might consider buying a couple of new AGM batteries that never need water
The excess charging voltage that causes electrolyte loss will also destroy AGM batteries. Being sealed only means you can't replenish lost electrolyte.

A general rule of thumb for when you have allowed the electrolyte to get too low, the level where battery damage starts to be a real concern, is when the plates get exposed to air.

Quote:
Now under charge they consume all of the water I add, and get very warm
the warmth is a danger indicator.

One way to interpret these symptoms is that a battery cell has gone bad and shorted. That would cause warmth on charging. It also reduces the battery voltage so normal charging voltages will be too high for the other cells resulting in electrolyte loss.
__________________
bryanl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2008, 11:58 AM   #13
4 Rivet Member
 
sander17's Avatar
 
1996 28' Excella
Okemos , Michigan
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 305
Images: 42
Talking Fun with Chemistry

For some fun with science, you could try to fix the old batteries. Flush them out with water to dislodge the crud that is shorting out the plates and refill with sulfuric acid solution. What fun! Do you feel lucky?
Or, just swap them in at Wally-world and let them dispose of them. How boring!
__________________
Dave
Okemos, MI
T.V.:'05 Dodge Ram 2500 4x4 Quad Cab Cummins
AIR#2276
sander17 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-04-2008, 10:16 AM   #14
3 Rivet Member
 
jacarape's Avatar
 
2006 25' Safari
orlando , New Mexico, Utah, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 154
Hi folks, I replaced the Interstate SRM-24 batteries with the Everstart 24DCP-4.

Now it's time to start munching on some of that elk, any takers?
__________________

__________________
I'm a true bum, working less and living longer.

WBCCI #3841
jacarape is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
battery charger question crdouger Batteries, Univolts, Converters & Inverters 2 03-29-2008 10:51 AM
battery charger ALANSD Batteries, Univolts, Converters & Inverters 8 09-16-2007 06:52 PM
HF Battery Charger dmaiden Batteries, Univolts, Converters & Inverters 10 11-03-2006 12:33 PM
Battery Charger luckydc Batteries, Univolts, Converters & Inverters 10 02-07-2006 09:04 PM
Converter/battery charger ARGONUT Batteries, Univolts, Converters & Inverters 0 11-23-2003 05:28 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:39 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.