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Old 10-16-2017, 04:44 PM   #1
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Batteries - keeping them charged over the winter

We have winterized our 2018 Classic and have left it our seasonal campground. We have taken the two GPL-27T Lifeline batteries out of the AS and brought them home to our apartment. We are know that we have to get something to keep them charged over the winter, but we are not sure what that something should be. What type of charger? Does one charger do both at the same time? Recommendations of a brand? I looked through the posts, but saw nothing specific to this question. Hope you all have some help for us. I don't want to have to replace these!
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Old 10-16-2017, 05:19 PM   #2
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I recommend the Noco G7200. It can charge both of them and take into account their composition.

http://www.ourflyingcloud.com/2017/09/new-charger.html
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Old 10-16-2017, 06:16 PM   #3
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dewalt makes a very good and inexpensive , charger, booster and maintainer
DXAEC80CA

it can even do two batteries at the same time
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Old 10-16-2017, 06:29 PM   #4
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Hi

You do *not* want something designed as an automotive battery charger. They are often designed to do all sorts of nasty things to the battery, just to get a dead one back to life. That "back to life" may only last a week, but it's long enough to enough to let you buy a new one.

Get something designed only as a trickle charger. There are a lot of brands, Battery Tender is one of many. They will keep the battery "ok" but will not do anything nasty to it. They will not rejuvenate a dead battery or one that needs charging. They will just keep a good battery in good shape.

Bob
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Old 10-16-2017, 07:35 PM   #5
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it does trickle mode also
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Old 10-16-2017, 07:42 PM   #6
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You don't need to keep the batteries hooked up to the charger all the time. Nor do you need to charge both at once.

Lifeline AGM batteries have as one of their selling points the fact that they'll only self-discharge by about 2% per month if disconnected. So each battery would only have to be hooked up to a trickle charger for a couple of days each month, if they were close to a full charge when disconnected from the Airstream.

I assume that since they're at your apartment, you can keep an eye on them, and hook them up to the trickle charger or disconnect them as needed.

So don't get more charger than you need, especially since storage space in an apartment is limited to begin with. A small single-battery trickle charger designed for AGMs (or with a selector switch for wet-cell/AGM charging profiles) is all you need.
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:13 AM   #7
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it does trickle mode also
Hi

The chargers that "also do trickle" try to guess at what they should do. Should I trickle or should I nuke the battery? Like any guess, sometimes they get it wrong. You already know the answer - just trickle, don't do anything else. If that's all the charger knows how to do, it will always "get it right".

Bob
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:36 AM   #8
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If ours were fully charged,(24hrs, Vector DSC @ 2a/hr), they lasted the entire Winter stored out of the AS.

2 grp27 Lifelines.

Bob
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:19 AM   #9
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I use Battery Tender- a trickle charger.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:40 AM   #10
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I use this device for my AGM batteries: BatteryMINDer Charger-Desulfator - 12 Volt, AGM Batteries, Model# 2012-AGM

I disconnect the batteries from the camper (Moroso 74103 Battery Terminal Disconnect Switch) when I use it and it fits nicely inside the battery compartment, so I leave it there all the time. I also flip the circuit breaker for the on board charger/converter.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:53 AM   #11
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I have regular batteries
I use Battery Tender
Amazon has them. I use the one that charges both.
It is a trickle charger/maintainer. So you can leave them on all winter if desired. It shuts down when batteries are fully charged
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Old 10-17-2017, 12:33 PM   #12
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First, I have to take issue with the phrase 'trickle charger.' Trickle chargers are what we used before the smart chargers came along. They produce a constant charge rate without regard to the state of charge of the battery. They are not good for batteries.

A high powered 30 amp and 80 amp charger is not at all a good idea for maintaining batteries for long term storage. As noted they are not smart enough to know what to do with any given battery. It the charger decides the battery is very low on charge it may turn on the full charge rate and cook the battery. Those chargers are good only for getting a discharged battery enough of a charge to start an engine.

Smart chargers sense the state of charge of the battery and control the output accordingly. Some will actually turn off the charge current when the battery is fully charged and restart the charge current when the battery charge drops.

A low amperage, under 8 amps, smart charger is all that is needed to keep batteries healthy over the winter.

Lyle
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Old 10-17-2017, 12:38 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenflag View Post
I have regular batteries
I use Battery Tender
Amazon has them. I use the one that charges both.
It is a trickle charger/maintainer. So you can leave them on all winter if desired. It shuts down when batteries are fully charged
That's supposed to happen with the Dual Pro charger in my boat, for my trolling motor batteries. What I have learned is, if the battery doesn't reach full charge, the charger never cuts off and just boils the batteries dry. I had two of my batteries go dry when I probably could have gone another boating season with them.

So what I do now is to put the charger on a timer (heavy duty, outdoor timer). I have it set to turn on only on Friday for a half hour. Since the batteries (3) are already charged, having them on a timer ensures the charger won't boil any of them over, should they not be able to reach 100%.
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Old 10-17-2017, 01:27 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by FCStreamer View Post
I recommend the Noco G7200. It can charge both of them and take into account their composition.

http://www.ourflyingcloud.com/2017/09/new-charger.html
Why the 7200?
I was planning on ordering the 3.5 amp version just to maintain the batteries.
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Old 10-17-2017, 06:23 PM   #15
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Why the 7200?

I was planning on ordering the 3.5 amp version just to maintain the batteries.

I tried the 3500 and it was taking way too long to charge the batteries. The 3500 is rated for batteries up to 100ah. Since I was charging two Group 27s, I have around 210ah.

I kept the 3500 to charge other batteries I have but got the 7200 for my AS batteries. I am much happier with it. YMMV.
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Old 10-17-2017, 07:42 PM   #16
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last season i used a harbor freight maintenance charger that cost like 10 bucks.

The label show it put out 15 vDC and 500 mA. I put it on batteries which were at 12.63 volts and it never went above that number even when i checked it 2 weeks later. I think it does some sort of voltage regulation and with only 500 mA it not going to boil your batteries.

It does a good job of keeping the batteries charge with out boiling them.

I put two batteries with a bit of wire between them and charge both all winter with caps off and never saw any liquid on top.

https://www.harborfreight.com/automa...ger-42292.html

you can find them on sale all the time for 5 bucks
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Old 10-17-2017, 07:45 PM   #17
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Just fully charge AGM batteries and then disconnect the negative lead to the TT frame and let them sit for the winter. If, they are in serviceable condition when you start, they will last a lot longer than winter. Lewster discovered this by accident with Lifelines he forgot about in his storage facility. Trickle charges have progressed to the point they have smart circuits, if you select the right type battery on the charger, you can leave it on forever. If you have Lithiums, just bring them down to 50-60% charge, isolate them from all loads and charging, and forget them until you want to use them again. They will last as long as you will need them. You get the longest overall battery life doing the above.
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:48 PM   #18
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The battery tender brand works very well, and keeps my lead acid batteries in good shape over the winter. I bring my batteries home, put them in the security of the garage, a and hook them up (one at a time) every couple of 3 months or so when they get to around 12.3 volts.

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Old 10-17-2017, 09:10 PM   #19
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Batteries through the winter

Been reading so many posts about this and decided this year to leave the battery in and plug into shore power with a timer so they power goes on for about 2 hours a day.

I don't want to go through the trouble of disconnecting and storing.

Hope this works.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:47 PM   #20
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I've had four Battery Tenders over the years for the motorcycles, and they didn't last like I hoped. I know Deltran has a warranty, but they charge for labor and you have to ship the tender on your dime.
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