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RV Battery Maintenance Tips

RV Battery Maintenance Tips
from Courtney's Corner

Ever wonder why you take your RV out of storage after a few weeks
 and find that the batteries are deader than a door nail?

Here are some helpful hints on correcting the problem.

Come in today and have a
FREE battery test done!

Routine Maintenance Tips:

  • Battery cables should be intact, and the connectors kept tight at all times. Always use insulated tools to avoid shorting battery terminals. Regular inspection is recommended.
  • Batteries should be kept clean and free of dirt and corrosion at all times.
  • Water used to replenish batteries should be distilled or treated not to exceed 200 T.D.S. (total dissolved solids parts per million). Particular care should be taken to avoid metallic contamination (iron).
Deep-Cycle Charging Tips
  • Battery chargers should be matched to fully charge batteries in an eight-hour period. Defective and unmatched chargers will damage batteries or severely reduce their performance.
  • Avoid charging at temperatures above 120 degrees Fahrenheit or ambient, whichever is higher.
  • If needed, batteries should always be watered after charging unless plates are exposed before charging. If exposed, plates should be covered by approximately 1/8 inch of acid.
  • As batteries age, the maintenance requirements change. This means longer charging time and/or high finish rate (high amperage at the end of the charge). Usually older batteries need to be watered more often and the capacity decreases.
  • Lead-acid batteries should be brought up to full charge at the earliest opportunity. Avoid continuously operating batteries in a partially charged condition. This will shorten the life and reduce the capacity.
  • Extreme temperatures can substantially affect battery performance and charging. Cold reduces battery capacity and slows charging. Heat increases water usage and can result in overcharging. Very high temperatures can cause "thermal run-away" which may lead to an explosion or fire.
  • Inactivity can be extremely harmful to all lead-acid batteries. If seasonal use is anticipated:

  • Completely charge the battery before storing and before starting after storage.
  • Remove all electrical connections from the battery, including series/parallel connectors.
  • Tip:


    You went through your pre-storage checklist and made sure all breakers and lights were off but your batteries are still DOA. You even plugged in the RV and charged the battery for a few days to make sure it was topped up before storage. What's going on?

    Battery Disconnect Switches:
      Call your Giant RV Parts department for more info

    Almost every RV has some sort of parasitic current draw on the 12-volt electrical system. The most likely offenders are the LP gas detector, the refrigerator, and the radio. Even an inverter, although switched off, can have a small current draw. Over time, these seemingly harmless draws can eventually bring even the largest of battery banks to their capacity death. A simple device called a battery cut off switch will prevent this from happening.

    Battery switches come in a variety of sizes and functions. There is the simple cut off switch that goes in between the positive connection to the battery and the battery itself. One type has a removable key that is turned to break the connection and you can take the key with you. This prevents someone from maliciously switching back on your power when say your RV is in storage

    • WATERING - MONTHLY CHECK THE LEVEL IN EVERY CELL AND FILL THE BATTERIES TO THE CORRECT LEVELS AS REQUIRED. The use of a battery-watering gun will assist in accurately completing this task. Water should be added, if needed, after the charging has been completed unless the tops of the internal plates are exposed. In that case, water should be added before charging.
       Be sure that a water suitable for watering batteries (colorless, odorless, tasteless, and suitable for drinking), preferably distilled water, is utilized. If you have any doubt as to the suitability of the water, have it tested and add an appropriate water line filter, if required.
      It is most important that all battery cells be filled to the correct level in order to obtain good battery life and minimize corrosion to the electrical system and vehicle.
      After watering spray the tops and sides of the batteries, the battery wiring and the battery racks with baking soda solution; let the solution stand for at least five minutes to allow the neutralization to take place.
      Rinse the entire area with a low- pressure spray of clean water. Do not wash electrical components with direct stream of high pressure water.
      If any evidence of corrosion is evident (green powered foam), spray again with baking soda and let the solution stand for at least 5 minutes before rinsing; repeat if required.Never wash batteries without first neutralizing the entire battery area with a baking soda solution.


    Great Battery Maintainer by Go Power!


    Trickle charger

    • 10 watts
    • 0.65 amps of charge power
    • Regulator not required for batteries over 60 amp hours
    • 3.5 lbs
    • 14" x 12.5" x 2"
    • All mounting hardware included
    • 10-year warranty

    Download Installation Manual

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