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Old 08-12-2015, 02:32 PM   #1
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Electrical Plug in during Storage?

I would like to do what is best for my battery while I will not be using my AS Bambi for a couple of months. Is it best to plug it into shore power or just use the electrical shut off from the switch inside the trailer and shut it all down? Thanks, Cameron
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Old 08-12-2015, 02:36 PM   #2
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I keep mine in the garage, fully charged, on a battery maintainer that is connected to a mechanical timer that runs two hours a day. When I go get the trailer I install the batteries and they are fully charged and good to go.
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Old 08-12-2015, 02:49 PM   #3
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The "Store/Use" switch in current trailers doesn't cut out the propane detector. I don't know if the one in your y2k trailer works differently... if the batteries are really physically disconnected and fully charged at the beginning, they should be fine sitting for a couple of months. If you're still running the propane detector with the switch off, you'd do better to physically disconnect at one of the negative posts.

If you have an upgraded 3-stage converter-charger it should be OK to leave a trailer with good batteries plugged in and the converter will go to "float" without hurting them.
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Old 08-12-2015, 04:29 PM   #4
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What would you do if you were camping for multiple months in the same location?
I see no difference between staying for three months in 1 spot in Florida or 3 months in my driveway.


Gary
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Old 08-12-2015, 05:03 PM   #5
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What would you do if you were camping for multiple months in the same location?
I see no difference between staying for three months in 1 spot in Florida or 3 months in my driveway. Gary
Gary, you are 100% correct. If you leave your Airstream-supplied single-stage charger plugged in for three months and don't switch to the "store mode" on a regular basis, either in a campground or in your driveway, you will fry your batteries!
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Old 08-12-2015, 05:55 PM   #6
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Gary, you are 100% correct. If you leave your Airstream-supplied single-stage charger plugged in for three months and don't switch to the "store mode" on a regular basis, either in a campground or in your driveway, you will fry your batteries!
Yep.....Florida 'lectricty is the same as the rest of the country.

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Old 08-12-2015, 06:25 PM   #7
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So, I should unplug it, cut the power at the switch inside the trailer and if I can, disconnect CO2. Plug in every month or so to charge up the battery? Does this sound like a reasonable way to go. I don't believe it has a 3Way converter/charger but I will check the manual. Thanks for all you input. Glad to hear any additional thoughts. CU
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Old 08-12-2015, 11:53 PM   #8
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So, I should unplug it, cut the power at the switch inside the trailer and if I can, disconnect CO2. Plug in every month or so to charge up the battery?

Sort of, don't worry about the switch inside, just disconnect the terminals directly from the battery, set them to the side and leave it. As long as it stays relatively warm it will be ready for you in a few months. Don't need to charge every month or so though it doesn't hurt, just not necessary. Stored my truck this way many times for long deployments(8-10mos) just disconnected battery, when I got back I'd just reconnect and she started right up, that battery lasted 8 years.
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Old 08-13-2015, 08:14 AM   #9
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Gary, you are 100% correct. If you leave your Airstream-supplied single-stage charger plugged in for three months and don't switch to the "store mode" on a regular basis, either in a campground or in your driveway, you will fry your batteries!

That's good to know, how many years will it take to " fry" my batteries? We have gone to Florida the last 3 years for 3 months and have had no problems. The batteries still hold a full charge for several weeks when the trailer is unplugged.


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Old 08-13-2015, 09:35 AM   #10
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I have my trailer plugged in except when traveling. I check the batteries twice a year.
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Old 08-13-2015, 10:40 AM   #11
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I turn the interior switch to "store", and put the battery on a BatteryMinder, Avoid Battery Sulfation with a Desulfating Battery Charger | BatteryMINDers. Battery is always ready to go, and I do not mess with unhooking a battery terminal.
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Old 08-13-2015, 11:07 AM   #12
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I would like to do what is best for my battery while I will not be using my AS Bambi for a couple of months. Is it best to plug it into shore power or just use the electrical shut off from the switch inside the trailer and shut it all down? Thanks, Cameron
Your trailer batteries will be ok if you plug in full time, BUT you must do the proper maintenance while it is plugged in. You must check the batteries. If you let them go dry they will be ruined.

Your options are:
1. leave it plugged in, you go by and check.
2. leave it plugged in, use a timer to limit the charge.
3. leave it unplugged, you go by and plug it up occasionally
4. leave it unplugged, forget about it till next trip (battery may be dead)

add edit: Even if you would change to a multi-stage converter, you still have to check the batteries' electrolyte.
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Old 08-13-2015, 12:21 PM   #13
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I use AGM batteries instead of wet cells. The current ones are 6 years old. I store our trailer for 6 months in an unheated barn in sub freezing Michigan weather, and it's always ready to go in the spring; first thing is to operate the electric tongue jack. No problem.
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Old 08-13-2015, 12:49 PM   #14
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Gary, you are 100% correct. If you leave your Airstream-supplied single-stage charger plugged in for three months and don't switch to the "store mode" on a regular basis, either in a campground or in your driveway, you will fry your batteries!
AnnArborbob,
I'm curious, I have solar, but prefer to be plugged in to electrical outlet because I'm running my fantastic fans and keep a dehumidifier running (since I live near the coast). How often should I be switching to "store mode"?
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Old 08-13-2015, 12:50 PM   #15
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Even disconnected batteries will slowly discharge. I remove mine from AS, take home, and charge once a month.
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Old 08-13-2015, 03:45 PM   #16
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If your batteries have removable caps, once in storage, remove them once a month and check the electrolyte level. Have a bottle of distilled water available to bring up any low levels. Using a Battery Tender / Battery Minder should reduce the amount of water that gets boiled off yet still keep your batteries charged.
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Old 08-13-2015, 04:12 PM   #17
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Not sure about all the models, but my store switch does not isolate the converter from the batteries. With the 30amp cord plugged in I would have to either disconnect the batts at their terminals, or unplug the converter from 120v.

I choose to leave the 30amp cord hooked up, unplug the converter (to prolong its life, theoretically) and use a 15 watt solar panel to keep the batts alive.

If I want to work on a project, I still have 120V to the outlets. If it's dark out, I just throw the store switch on for the time I'm in there.
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Old 08-14-2015, 07:43 AM   #18
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AnnArborbob,
I'm curious, I have solar, but prefer to be plugged in to electrical outlet because I'm running my fantastic fans and keep a dehumidifier running (since I live near the coast). How often should I be switching to "store mode"?
If you have factory solar, you can keep the switch in "store mode" the entire time you are on shore power (whether in storage or in use.) The shore power will let you run everything you want in the trailer (AC & DC) and since the solar is not disconnected from the batteries when in store mode (yeah, go figure, right?) it will keep the batteries topped off at all times. Simply switch to "use mode" when you are not plugged into shore power and want to use the trailer.
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Old 08-14-2015, 08:45 AM   #19
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I have never fried any batteries, they usually last 6 years, I do check the electrolyte level every couple of months, and add distilled water if needed, a maintence is all they need.
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Old 08-14-2015, 09:14 AM   #20
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When we are not traveling in Lucy, she is stored in the alley behind our house. We leave her plugged into 30 amp during storage. We have been doing this for the last ten years. We leave the refrigerator on, and run minimal climate control. We have not experienced any ill effect from doing this.

Brian
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