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Old 09-10-2013, 03:02 PM   #1
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Winter Battery Storage "How To"

Hi Experienced AS Owners!
This is my first year winterizing my new 23D Intl AS. I am wondering if someone could direct me to battery care for the winter months. I live in upstate NY where temps could drop down to -10 if we have a severe winter. I am assuming I must bring the two 12v batteries inside, but what about care? I have read about a battery Minder, but I do not understand its use.

Thanks in advance! I have one more trip planned to the Pinery Provincial Park this year, then the baby has to be put to bed for the winter....
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Old 09-10-2013, 03:46 PM   #2
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I've talked with Interstate regarding this. I assume you've got two interstate batteries.

They say the batteries are good down below your stated temp at least (as I recall, they said down to -33), AS LONG AS THE BATTERIES ARE CHARGE ONCE A MONTH.

In other words hook your shore power up to the trailer once a month, for 24 hours and you should be good to go.

Good luck!
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Old 09-10-2013, 05:36 PM   #3
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If you store your trailer at home, all you have to do is plug it in once a month or so. If not, then you should bring them home, store them in the basement and charge them each month. This is what I have to do and while it is always a pain to remove them and then reinstall them in the spring it isn't really such a bad system. I monitor them monthly and so far things are fine.
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Old 09-10-2013, 05:57 PM   #4
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I just keep my trailer plugged in.
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Old 09-10-2013, 05:58 PM   #5
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Thanks Aftermath.

Would you be willing to share with me just how you winterize your Safari? I did find the notes in the forum, but am not so sure I need to use an air compressor to blow out the lines....just filling them with RV antifreeze sounds ok to me.
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:57 PM   #6
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Thumbs up Welcome from WNY...

Just what I do....

Batteries out and in the "charge room" in the basement.

Don't take a chance leaving the trailer plugged in 24/7. Especially if your still using the OEM Parallax converter, (not noted for safe charging).
Look close...you'll see my P-lax on the shelf.

Pumping AF thru the lines after draining will work, the compressor is just insurance. Actually I also put 3gal AF in the fresh tank, by-pass the water heater and pump it thru all the lines, leave drains and faucets open.

Bob
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Old 09-10-2013, 07:11 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Just what I do....

Batteries out and in the "charge room" in the basement.

Don't take a chance leaving the trailer plugged in 24/7. Especially if your still using the OEM Parallax converter, (not noted for safe charging).
Look close...you'll see my P-lax on the shelf.

Bob
I was going to ask which is disconnected first - neg or pos - to remove batteries then remembered bookmarking this link:

http://www.marxrv.com/12volt/12volt.htm

Quoting from it:

"When replacing your batteries, remove the negative cable first because this will minimize the possibility of shorting the battery when you remove the other cable. Next remove the positive cable and then the hold-down bracket or clamp. If the hold down bracket is severely corroded, replace it. "

He states the opposite for reinstalling (pos first then neg).

Great resource on all things battery!!
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Old 09-11-2013, 05:15 AM   #8
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Thanks Bob,

I appreciate your assistance with winterization. Could you briefly explain your winter basement set up to a newbie like me? I want to handle things in the best way possible. I especially like your note about adding AF to the fresh water tank and pumping it thru all the lines!

Jim
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Old 09-11-2013, 06:12 AM   #9
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I use a battery tender on my 2013 A$ batteries all the time it is parked in the garage. The battery switch is on "store". I check the electrolyte level every few weeks. I have always done it this way and have never had a problem. If I could not store the trailer at home I would move the batteries to the basement or garage for the winter with a battery tender hooked up continuously. If you are parked outside and have solar panels they will keep your batteries topped off. Just keep an eye on the electrolyte level. I never use antifreeze in my water supply lines. I drain the system and blow everything out with compressed air. I have tried antifreeze but even after flushing the system to death with fresh water in the spring the taste of the antifreeze does not go away until half way through the camping season. The only place I use the antifreeze is in the drain system and in the black and grey water tanks.
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Old 09-11-2013, 06:18 AM   #10
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Jim,

As you can see I have a few batteries to maintain.....

I do store them in a well ventilated area in the basement.

The 6v Ford has a trickle charger of it's own....24hrs once a month.

All the 12v get put on the Vector DSC at 12.2v

The two Airstream Lifeline AGM's usually only require one refresh charge during the Winter.

The deep cycle boat and the 6v get a fluid check before each charge.

I also use the Deltran Battery Tender on the 6v and deep cycle during the Summer. They stay connected 24/7 checking the fluid level regularly.

Replenish with distilled water only!!
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

We don't drink from the FW tank, and do flush/sanitize it well at Spring get-ready. Our water pump is buried in the well stuffed closet, a PITA getting at to add the antifreeze from there. After draining it only takes 2 1/2gal in the tank to pump it thru the lines, the rest gets poured in the traps. Don't forget the shower head line. I also remove the kitchen faucet water filter. I check the toilet frequently adding a little AF as needed to keep the seals pliable.

If you don't have access to a compressor I wouldn't worry too much...I'm sure most of the RV lots don't get blown every fall either....I do it 'cuz I can.

Bob
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Old 09-11-2013, 08:13 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamsInSlvr View Post
Thanks Bob,

I appreciate your assistance with winterization. Could you briefly explain your winter basement set up to a newbie like me? I want to handle things in the best way possible. I especially like your note about adding AF to the fresh water tank and pumping it thru all the lines!

Jim
I personally don't want antifreeze in my freshwater tank or my water lines...it's real simple to drain everything and blow the lines with air.

The anti freeze is best left for the toilet and the pea traps.
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Old 09-11-2013, 08:43 AM   #12
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Question

...."it's real simple to drain everything and blow the lines with air."

Not if you don't have a compressor.....after all that's what the antifreeze is for. Potable water systems.

TETO

Bob
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:45 AM   #13
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Jim,

The antifreeze through the lines is the best way to go. That said, I don't do that. On my previous SOB, I had easy access to the water pump and it came with a bypass set up to pump the pink stuff directly out of the jug. Winterizing was pretty easy, took just under 2 gallons and I never had a problem.

Purchased my 25FB and noticed right off that the water pump is very hard to get at and it did not come with the bypass. Went to the dealer and asked them about winterizing and they told me they just blow the lines so that is what I do. I have done if for 4 years without any problems. I use less than a gallon of pink in the traps and tanks and don't have to worry about flushing all the lines in the spring.
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:48 AM   #14
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When I said the pink stuff goes down the drains and tanks I did not mean the FW tank. That I simply drain and leave empty. I do like to put some pink in the black and gray tanks to help protect the seals.

Yes, it is easy as long as you have a compressor.
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