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Old 04-05-2010, 09:53 AM   #1
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Karyl & I are taking the plunge and trying a season lease site this year. I've checked over the lease, no hidden surprises or unreasonable clauses. Helps that we have stayed at this campground for short visits the past three years and have gotten to know the owners.

My battery has gone bad and I'm trying to determine if I really need a battery at a season lease site? I can hook up the power jack via the truck so that it operates. Do I really need a working battery? If so, why????

My RV repair facility implies that the battery acts as some sort of buffer which will allow appliances to last longer. I'm having a hard time viewing the battery as some sort of fancy surge protector, so to speak. Yet, this repair facility has never lied to me. They have always been honest. So what am I missing???

Assuming they are correct, do I opt for a top of the line battery, say a Trojan? Or for a more inexpensive alternative?

As always, your expertise, experience and opinions are appreciated.
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Old 04-05-2010, 10:06 AM   #2
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I am far from an expert in this area, but here are my thoughts.



Any 12 volt appliance (lights, radio, etc.) will probably operate with less issues with a battery in the circuit to act as a filter to give a smoother voltage delivery. Without a battery, you are relying on the converter which, to my understanding, puts out a pulsed or rippled voltage.



I also would be concerned about the battery charging side of the converter. Will it try to charge at full current because there isn't anything there to tell it that the battery is charged? If it does that, a lot of heat would be generated.



Personally, I would opt for a lower end or medium cost battery.



You might try posting in the Technical Forum at this site also http://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm



I hope this helps.Edited by: BipeFlier
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Old 04-05-2010, 10:47 AM   #3
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Back in 2000 we bought 100 acres in Southwest Texas and we had a 31' Airstream at the time which we decided to leave there for a while since we were going down there either every weekend or every other. Two days before we were going to pull it down there the battery went dead and I did not have time to deal with it and I figured we would have it plugged in all the time we did not need one. I taped the terminals so they would not short on anything and off we went. On our third trip down for a weekend we got there and nothing inside the trailer worked (short weekend). Long story short the converter had burned out and I had to replace that and buy a new battery.



Once I did that we never had anymore issues and it was there for right at a year. I would agree with BipeFlier and put a battery in it before you take it to your new site. I think not having a battery in ours caused the coverter to try and full charge all the time as BipeFlier suggested and burned it out.
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Old 04-05-2010, 11:38 AM   #4
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two trips ago when we were out the convertor went bad and took the battery, The repair tech said for things to work right We need a battery

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Old 04-05-2010, 11:41 AM   #5
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Is there a way to test the converter to see if it is charging? I have the battery shut off switch so that when I leave the camper at deer camp (no utilties) I can turn the batteries off when I leave so they don't slowly drainbefore I come back. I've heard that you don't want to leave them charging all of the time either since that will burn them up as well. When the camper is parked at the house I have it plugged in. I leave the switch off so that is in effect the same as not having a battery in the loop. Sounds like I need to check my converter before I burn it up.



Al, to your question about the quality of the battery, I would say since all you are trying to do is complete that part of the circuit and you are not relying on the battery to run everything, I would go the cheaper route. If I understand some of the posts on here about battery life, they really take a beating when they are drained beyond 50% of their capacity over multiple times. Since you will always have shore power I don't seeit draining much at all.Good luck with what ever you choose.Edited by: Monty
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Old 04-06-2010, 04:00 AM   #6
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I do as MONTY in that I turn my batteries off when I'm at home hooked up to shore power. With my limited understanding of converters, I have a hard time believing that my converter could burn up trying to charge the batteries that aren't there. Anybody out there with actual knowledge have an answer?
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Old 04-06-2010, 12:26 PM   #7
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Just read my whole manual. No mention of this. There is allot of "DO NOTS" but no mention that a battery needs to be connected or harm will happen. I do this alot also. Disconnect my battery. No issues.. I would think that if a battery is not connected it will do nothing. A dead battery might cause issues though.. I don't know either.. I just never gave this a thought and i unhook my battery.

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Old 04-07-2010, 11:20 AM   #8
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You need the battery if towing , for the brakeaway switch.I guess you could just let the trailer roll or slide until it stopped if it came loose but insurance company may not pay off.Hopefully it won't hit anyone. If you ever had the lanyard pulled by accident I assure you the trailer will stop.Just my 2 cents
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Old 04-07-2010, 01:37 PM   #9
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If you put a volt meter on the battery then plug it into shore power and it's charging you should see an incress in voltage, Im thinking open voltage should be close to 12.xxx volts, Charging it could be as high as 14 + volts.
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Old 04-09-2010, 12:46 AM   #10
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I tested mine last night, but was confused at the results. Got 12.81v with nothing in the loop (either battery turned off or disconnected) and 13.69 with batteries on. The converted was warm when I first started looking at it, but not hot. So I always had power in the battery box, but not necessarily charging power.

So this morning I called Randy and he contacted the manufacturer of the converted and confirmed that it will only put out a charge when the battery needs it. So when there is no battery in the loop (or it is off in my case) the converter will not try to charge anything. So leaving it plugged into shore power without a battery should not cause any excessive wear and tear on the converter.
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Old 04-09-2010, 06:24 AM   #11
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Thanx for the info. I checked my owner's manual and the only thing it stated was that the converter will work without batteries connected.
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