Your RV battery is without a doubt one of the most important things in the RV. Without it, none of the appliances in the vehicle are going to work, as everything in an RV relies on a 12-volt system to function.
RV’s use a specific battery known as a deep cycle battery. These are designed to store a lot of power so they can continue to work for long periods of time.
Sadly, a lot of RV owners don’t understand this important item properly. On average, a deep cycle battery should last around 5 years, but there are so many RV owners who end up changing the battery every one or two years, wasting a lot of the power, and also resulting in unnecessary spending.
RV’s will not function at their full potential without this power, so it’s important to understand and know how to maintain an RV battery, so here are 7 things you need to know about it.
To determine the true state of your battery’s charge, you’re going to need a monitor. Once you have that, make sure that It has been disconnected for 24 hours before reading the voltage. Remember that some factors may affect the voltage, such as temperature and gravity.
Sadly, for gel type you can’t just stick a hydrometer to test voltage, so you have to rely on educated guesses. But if you have a monitor for the batteries, make sure to check the voltage regularly, as this is the best way to determine what that’s charge is. Get more explained info to this link.
For 6V RV batteries in parallel, here’s a chart for voltage and charge:
- 100%- 12.80 and higher
- 75%- 12.55
More often than not, RV’s go into storage during the winter season, since no one really takes cross-country road trips during the winter. But over time, a battery will go flat if you don’t take care of it while it’s in storage.
The best way to avoid this problem is to remove it and bring inside with you while the RV’s in storage. While the battery is at home with you, make sure to check the voltage every month, if the voltage goes below 80% you have to charge, but an overnight charge will suffice.
If you can’t take it home, however, there are some precautions you’ll have to take instead, such as unplugging all appliances from that and charging it regularly.
Pay Attention to Its Charge Level
There are so many RV owners out there who buy a battery and pay attention to it when it needs to be replaced. This shouldn’t happen, as neglecting that is probably what leads to it having to be replaced much sooner.
For starters, make sure to check up on it’s charge every now and then, and remember, an RV battery should not go below 50% charge. If this happens to be below 50% charge then make sure to charge it right away as if It goes below 20% charge it will never function at 100% again.
Simply by understanding this rule, and following it strictly, you can extend an AGM’s life and make it last up to 7 years!
Pay Attention to Temperature
Hot temperature is bad for batteries. When the temperatures are high, these take a beating, so when it’s hot outside make sure to check on it.
To avoid killing your battery when it’s hot, make sure to check the electrolyte levels, and to make sure that their water levels are fine. If the levels aren’t right, adjust that accordingly.
Proper charging of batteries is done in stages. For the first 90% use a bulk charge, so this is for the first couple of hours. Once that is done, move on to an absorption charge, to prevent any water and gas loss in the battery, and finally, a float charge to keep that at 100%. Most chargers are three stage chargers that do this automatically.
Be Patient and Attentive
Charging a battery takes some time. More than a couple of hours. Charging a deep cycle that can hold that much power may take a whole day, and that’s fine. Don’t be impatient. But also remember to check on that as overcharging can be very bad for it.
Do Routine Maintenance
This is probably the most important thing to know about RV batteries. They don’t sustain themselves. To bring out their full potential, and to extend the life as long as possible, routine checkups, maintenance, and charging have to be done, and it can’t be forgotten.
As long as you’re keeping up the maintenance and check-ups on the battery, rest assured that you won’t have to be spending money every spring for a new!
Going on road trips with family or friends is an indescribable type of fun. It’s even more fun in the comfort of an RV. But RV’s, just like any other vehicle needs to be properly cared for, or else the RV will end up losing its life sooner than expected, and the battery is one of the most important things to look out for. But as long as you take care of it, for years to come, you’ll be enjoying road trips, and the crazy comfort.