25Nov2014

Battery Care

Battery care is a very important aspect of RV ownership.  Batteries are the source of power and enable almost all of the appliances throughout a recreational vehicle. Making sure your batteries are properly cared for will ensure years of power and great trips.  Once you have purchased your RV you should take it upon yourself to plug it into shore power so that the batteries can receive a full and proper charge.  If you have AGM batteries you will not need to check the water level. If you have deep cycle batteries you will need to remove the caps which cover the distilled water cells and verify the water is topped off.  If the water is low you will need to add distilled water. When leaving a unit with deep cycle batteries plugged in, you will need to check the water levels consistently. If you charge a deep cycle battery with low water levels you could risk damaging the batteries.

If the unit cannot remain plugged in to shower power after the batteries were installed, the batteries should be fully charged then physically disconnected from ALL loads before the unit is stored. Once you are ready to go camping again, the batteries should be re-connected and then fully charged again. Even without any load connected, the batteries should be inspected and charged every 45-60 days at a minimum. By following these procedures, it will eliminate having a battery sulphation problem in the future.

Charging AGM batteries is a matter of replacing the energy removed during discharge plus a little extra to make up for charging inefficiency. The amount of energy necessary for complete recharge depends on many things but typically is between 102% and 110% of the discharged ampere-hours. According to Lifeline the most efficient method of charging AGM batteries is to use a 3 stage charging profile. The first stage is called the BULK charging state. The second often called the ABSORPTION charging state and the last is often called the float stage.

Airstream Trailers generally come equipped with Interstate batteries (with the exception of units equipped with solar). Interstate suggests that their batteries get a regular dose of fresh electricity to keep them in top condition. Choose a trickle charger that matches your battery’s chemistry, current, and voltage. A trickle charger is a low-current, inexpensive option that gently feeds electricity to the battery over a period of time. By doing this, you can prolong your battery’s life when it sits unused. Recharge your batteries as soon as possible after use. You can hamper your battery’s recharge acceptance and ultimately its performance by allowing it to sit discharged for several days.

By following these tips your battery life and overall camping experience will be nothing short of amazing. If you have any questions please contact our Service and Parts department.

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