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Old 11-14-2007, 05:23 PM   #1
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Electric Question

Erma, my Classic 30', is wintering at my son's place in western MD. Although I've winterized it and pulled the batteries, I've got this bad case of aluminitis - I'd still like to work on it and sleep over on occasion...OK, maybe more than on occasion...

In any case my question is, will it hurt to hook it up to shore power without the batteries being in it?
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Old 11-14-2007, 06:13 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Cat
Erma, my Classic 30', is wintering at my son's place in western MD. Although I've winterized it and pulled the batteries, I've got this bad case of aluminitis - I'd still like to work on it and sleep over on occasion...OK, maybe more than on occasion...

In any case my question is, will it hurt to hook it up to shore power without the batteries being in it?
TC,

Probably not, but you should be VERY CERTAIN that the loose battery cables are secure and heavily insulated, as your converter will be looking to put a charge into your batteries as soon as you plug in.

The other option is to disconnect the battery cables from the converter but depending on how it's wired, this might also cut off your entire 12VDC supply. You'll have to check at the conerter to ascertain this.
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Old 11-14-2007, 07:04 PM   #3
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for just this reason I like the fuse blocks that are designed to use the rectangular automtive fuses. I have two batteries in the Caravel and all I have to do is pull their fuse (each one is on its own)--no dangling wires! The fuse block is right inside the rear access door, so it's a snap.

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Old 11-14-2007, 07:09 PM   #4
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TC,

If I was going to use the trailer every few weeks for a day or so I would just keep the bateries conected.Will they run down if you arn't pluged in,with every thing off?If not why not?

Doug
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Old 11-14-2007, 07:14 PM   #5
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no, they won't run down any faster if they are connected, given you have a totally vintage Airstream--no modern stuff.

The problem is that everything modern these days has some little dodad that's sucking a milliamp here or there so its touch switches can detect when you're turning it on (like a car radio, if that's what you've installed as an update). Plus, you'll walk away more than once with a light on, or a indicator glowing, etc. and you'll have a totally DOA battery, and damaged, too, when you get back.

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Old 11-14-2007, 08:47 PM   #6
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And don't forget that a standard liquid cell lead-acid battery has a very high internal resistance that will cause it to self discharge, even with absolutely no wires connected to it, in about 3-4 weeks.

If you have access to even a 15 amp circuit and have a newer 3-stage converter/charger in the tralier, just leave it plugged in with the battery disconnect switch in the ON position and the converter will keep your batteries topped up and ready for you when you get there.

If you leave the disconnect switch in the OFF position, the charger is effectively removed from the battery charging circuit and the things will run down on their own anyway .
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Old 11-14-2007, 08:48 PM   #7
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If you intend to use the trailer every couple of weeks and have access to shore power why remove the batteries at all? There are millions of vehicles that stand out in the winter for weeks or more without removing the batteries. Yes if the trailer was going to set for 3 + months in winter weather removing the batteries is a good idea but if you plug in as you intend the batteries should be fine. My car sets out in Jersey for 2 1/2 months in Jan. and Fe b while we are down south.

Another consideration of running on the converter without batteries is the fact that you will be running the lights at a higher voltage, not the best for the life of the lights.
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Old 11-14-2007, 08:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HowieE
...Another consideration of running on the converter without batteries is the fact that you will be running the lights at a higher voltage, not the best for the life of the lights.
HowieE is right! IF you still have the old Univolt original converter, their voltage regulation is terrible. You'll want to get a modern (and very lightweight) converter. They run fine with or without a battery in the system.

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Old 11-14-2007, 09:25 PM   #9
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hey kids the op (tomcat) has a 2003 classic unit...

no univolt (parallax 2 stage),

yes there are phantom loads

still, it could be plugged in all the time OR used on shore power without the batteries...

and there isn't any vulkem in it either

cheers
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Old 11-14-2007, 09:37 PM   #10
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after enough 2Buck, "classic" sorta resembles "vintage," ya know....

we're supposed to study the gosh darn avatar and stuff to the left? who'd a thunk it?
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