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Old 03-18-2019, 06:51 PM   #1
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2017 27' Flying Cloud
Ocala , Florida
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 72
Smile Dead Batteries - question

I have a 2017 27 FB bought new. I have a 30amp hook up at home which I leave it plugged into. Last used 2 months ago. I went to look over the camper today and noticed the batteries were dead. I have used it about 80+ nights and used to just use the battery disconnect on the neg terminal at home prior to installing the 30amp service at the house.

I thought, perhaps mistakenly the shore power would keep them charged.

Please oh wise ones... explain it to me.

I currently have a battery charger on them and it is unhooked from the 30 amp supply.

What else should I be aware of -- I plan on camping in 3 days

Thank you in advance


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Old 03-18-2019, 06:55 PM   #2
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Long Island , New York
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 9,932
Did you have the Use/Store switch on Use? Necessary for charging batteries. What does your owner’s manual say about this switch? [assumimg your model is so equipped]

“Use Store Switch” Search results for other threads and posts:

You should have the batteries tested, because you may have ruined them by letting them go dead. Are they the original batteries? Just get new ones IMO.

Good luck,


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Old 03-18-2019, 06:56 PM   #3
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2017 27' Flying Cloud
Ocala , Florida
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 72
It is on use
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Old 03-18-2019, 07:16 PM   #4
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
Long Island , New York
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Posts: 9,932
Maybe your charger/converter went bad? Does your battery monitor show about 13.7 volts when on shore power?

Are you sure the 30 amp service was on? Did other 120 volt things like outlets work? Is the circuit breaker for the converter/charger on?

Diagnosing this is above my pay grade so I will bow out.

Good luck,

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Old 03-18-2019, 09:44 PM   #5
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Paradise , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 29
I bet you cooked your batteries.

Is there any water left in them?

A proper 3 stage charger is necessary for long battery life, whatever the type , but more importantly with agm.
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Old 03-19-2019, 09:51 AM   #6
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Annapolis , Maryland
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Posts: 59
Time for new ones

I have the same trailer. My first set of Interstates crapped out in 2018.

If I understand your process, you are disconnecting the negative ground before storing the trailer with 30 amp shore power. I think this allows the batteries to sit without a charge. That might cause them to fall below 12v, which will kill the batteries.

I suggest you get new batteries, and reconsider your storage approach.
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Old 03-19-2019, 10:41 AM   #7
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2017 27' Flying Cloud
Rockaway , New Jersey
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 30
Sorry to hear this.
I also have a 2017 FC27FB, and have a 30 amp service at home. I heard that leaving it plugged in constantly will "cook the batteries" by overheating them and boiling off the water. So I would check the water levels. If it is below the plates, you will definitely need new batteries.
What I did this winter is just leave the batteries connected as usual and put the trailer on "store". The factory solar would usually maintain them above 12.7. However, if we had a string of cold cloudy days, I would put the unit on "use" and plug into the 30 amp overnight which would get them back up to at least 13.2. I never left plugged in longer than 24 hours.
This seems to work and this method was also confirmed as a good choice by Colonial Airstream.
"I thought growing old would take longer"
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Old 03-19-2019, 11:10 AM   #8
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2017 25' Flying Cloud
Apollo Beach , Florida
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If I were planning to leave my 2017 Airstream plugged in at home, I would replace the stock converter with a PD4655 from so it drops into float stage when the batteries are fully charged. I would also just buy new batteries as my original batteries only lasted for ten months.

I replaced my batteries with a pair of 6V Duracell golf cart batteries from Sam's Club, installed the PD4655 and 400W of solar to keep my batteries fully charged in storage and when dry camping. My Duracell 6V golf cart batteries still test as new after about the same time and usage it took to murder my Interstates. To install 6V batteries requires one larger battery cable connecting the positive post from one battery to the negative post on the other battery. Here is a picture of my battery installation:
2017 Flying Cloud 25FB (Miles) 234 nights 31,732 miles
400W Solar, 230AH 6V Batteries, PD4655 Converter, Champion DualFuel Generator, ProPride 1400# Hitch, 16" Michelin's
2019 F250, 6.7 Power Stroke, 4x4, 1.5" Leveled (Sully)
Sold: 2013 Casita SD17 89 nights 16,200 miles
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Old 03-19-2019, 12:46 PM   #9
2003 25' Safari
Ridgeville , South Carolina
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 4
First don't feel bad, we all have trashed batteries. When I first got my AS I left it plugged in and cooked the crap out of my batteries. Then we installed a 3 stage charger. Every time I got home from camping I would disconnect one of the terminals to make sure nothing drained them. Those AGM lasted for 5+ years until I forgot to disconnect them before putting up for the winter. If a few months go by and I haven't used it, I will throw a little charge on them with another AGM charger or connect the AS cables and plug it in for the weekend. Get a DC meter and listen to what your batteries are saying to you
Ron & Tina
05 F150 5.4
03 25' Safari
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Old 03-19-2019, 01:07 PM   #10
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2016 30' International
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Quartz Hill , California
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 217
I would guess that you fried the batteries by leaving them plugged into shore power all the time. Your Airstream needs to be equipped with a multi stage converter to keep from overcharging the batteries. I am not sure but the new Airstreams I believe are equipped with multi stage converters.
A simple solution is to purchase a Battery Tender from Amazon or your local auto parts store. Hook it to your batteries at home and forget about them until you are ready to hit the road. It is a battery maintainer. It charges at 1.5 amps I believe. When batteries are fully charged it automatically shuts down. It then maintains the batteries at full charge. My Battery Tender has dual sets of leads to maintain both batteries at once.
Trash your current batteries and buy new.
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Old 03-19-2019, 01:42 PM   #11
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Napa , California
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Posts: 43
We've killed all sorts of Interstate batteries over the years, they seem to have a prety short life. We discovered the addition of a BatteryMinder (trickle charger) really did help quite a bit. This time however on the Airstream, we have opted for solar and dry batteries and so far it has been a wise decision on our part. While you are traveling keep in mind that Costco usually has Interstate batteris in stock!
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Old 03-19-2019, 03:51 PM   #12
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2008 23' International
Chicago , Illinois
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We love our Airstream, but over the years we have gone through a LOT of battery replacements for different reasons - currently we have ours hooked up to a solar charger, and if it works as it should, it charges and floats - we won't know till our next journey if it is working properly or not - replacing batteries has become one of our more routine maintenance jobs. No power at the site where we store it, pulling the batteries from the tight box is a pain...
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Old 03-19-2019, 05:25 PM   #13
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2018 Basecamp
Fairview , TX
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Yep , sounds like you cooked your batteries. I use a Ctek battery conditioner/charger. It will monitor your battery condition and adjust the charging and conditioning so your battery will alway be in optimum condition but not necessarily at FULL charge.
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Old 03-31-2019, 09:56 AM   #14
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2017 Basecamp
Albuquerque , New Mexico
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Welcome to the club. I left mine connected while on shorepower at home for a couple months and thought everything would be fine since it was charging 13.6V. Nope. Cooked the water down and they did not recover when refilled and charged. I’ve since put solar on which has been a great solution. When at the house I plug into shorepower but disconnect the batteries. The solar charger does a great job charging and floating them as necessary so they are always ready to go and not getting fried...

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