Battery Problem

Discussion in 'RV Tips & Tricks' started by winnie, Apr 29, 2007.

  1. winnie

    winnie New Member

    We got a solar panel installed last year (with 2, 6 volt batteries). Hooked up the batteries last week after having them stored inside for the winter. The indicators show that the battery is fully charged, but when you turn a few things on (even a few lights) the voltage goes right down to nothing. The batteries just don't seem to have much power, even though it shows as fully charged. The batteries are only a couple of years old. Any ideas?
     
  2. TexasClodhopper

    TexasClodhopper Senior Member

    Re: Battery Problem

    You can't just store batteries away for long periods of time. Their charge has to be maintained while in storage.

    You could try putting them on a high-rate charger. Typically solar cells won't provide a fast charge.
     
  3. Grandview Trailer Sa

    Grandview Trailer Sa Senior Member

    Re: Battery Problem

    Texas is right, batteries need charging. If a battery gets discharged, you need to put it on a charger. The converter or solar panels wont fully charge the battery back.

    Hook your batteries to a charger and properly charge them, and you problems will probably go away.
     
  4. dmjaway

    dmjaway New Member

    RE: Battery Problem





    Winnie, what type of batteries do you have and do you have a good battery charging unit?

    Dave
     
  5. winnie

    winnie New Member

    RE: Battery Problem

    i had charged them a few times at home while they were in storage (and once right before i hooked them back up). the solar panel controls also showed them at fully charged (full voltage) when i did hook them up. it still seemed that the batteries weren't putting enough juice out to run a few things at once - the voltage would go right down once a few items were on. does this still sound like a charging problem? i'm just not sure what else to do given that i had put the charger on them before i hooked them up.

    sorry if i'm missing something here. just want to try and save myself a trip to the shop.
     
  6. winnie

    winnie New Member

    Re: Battery Problem

    dave, unfortunately i'm not sure of the battery brand off the top of my head. just know that they're two 6 volts. we do have a half decent charger, which worked fine at recharging before we got the solar panels. like i said in my other message, i had charged them a few times while in storage and right before i took them out again.
     
  7. dmjaway

    dmjaway New Member

    Re: Battery Problem



    You may need an intelligent battery charger that will safely and rapidly recharge your battery. Your batteries may need to be "Equalized".

    The Equalizing Mode of an intelligent battery charger, increases the charging voltagefor about 15 minutes. This increased voltage mixes up the battery electrolyte and prevents battery stratification and the resulting problems of battery sulfation.

    If you need more technical information let me know.

    Dave
     
  8. par

    par New Member

    RE: Battery Problem

    You should take those batteries to a parts store or service station. Ask them to check them under a load. You didn't say how old they were, one might have a bad cell. I've seldom seen a battery last much past five years.
     
  9. dmjaway

    dmjaway New Member

  10. winnie

    winnie New Member

    RE: Battery Problem

    ok. got the batteries tested at our dealer and they said the cells are fine, but the batteries needed charging. i put them on our charger at home for about 48 hours (trickle charge for a good chunk of that time, and 15A for the rest), but the 'fully charged' light is not coming on. got a meter to check the batteries - when in series, the voltage is reading at just under 12. separately, each is reading at about 5.8. should i keep charging them?
     
  11. bsadams

    bsadams New Member

    Re: Battery Problem

    Probably need to equalize and desulphate. A forty buck charger will do that for you. Did you by chance store them on concrete. Never want to do that. Hope you can get them back. If they had been fully discharged for a while, they may not come back. PS I'm really not an expert.

    Bob A
     
  12. TexasClodhopper

    TexasClodhopper Senior Member

    Re: Battery Problem

    Ok, Bob. Here's that question that no one can answer.

    When you say "store them on concrete" is something not to do, what is it about "concrete" that ruins a battery when it is stored on it? :question:
     
  13. Poppa

    Poppa Member

    Re: Battery Problem

    Here we go with dumb questions :laugh: When you are charging your batteries are you charging them one at a time or do you have them in series charging both at the same time, the latter is a not good thing to do. The voltage on your 6 volt wet cell batteries should read 6.6 or there abouts when charged.

    Now this is something else when you had the batteries tested did they perform a load test or just check voltages. You can have a battery that will read a full charge according to a volt meter but the plate can be crusted and the amp huor rating will decline rapidly. Just something else to look at :question:
     
  14. RustyFairmount

    RustyFairmount New Member

    Re: Battery Problem

    Are the batteries "deep cycle?"
    If not, they were not built to withstand being drained to nothing. Doing so can make it so the batteries will never take a full charge ever again.

    A lot of do-it-yourself campers don't know the difference, so when they need a new battery, they buy the cheapest one they can find. They don't buy deep cycle, and have to replace it again just a few years later. Check to make sure you (or the previous owner) didn't make that mistake.
     
  15. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Re: Battery Problem

    If the test showed that the batts were good(voltage anyway)
    Did they load test them @ 1/2 the rating???
    If they are not deepcycles then they won't last ,, u need a good batt that will discharge to almost nothing and then recharge to full capacity...
    also u need a good charger ,, not on the coach, but a good high amp charger ,, the trikle charger does good to keep the batt alive but does nothing for a dead batt ,, if the batt's are more than 4 yr's old replace them ,, with a good deep cycle batt,, i know they are pricey ,, but it's worth the money,,, IMO :)
    Bty a battery is rated in amps as well as volts ,, it may have good voltage ,, but very little amps ,, amps are what keeps the battery going to supply all the lights ,, etc ,, that u need...
    It's kinda like lifting weights ,, the more weight u put on the bar the more u have push to get that bar all the way up,, the bat is the same,, if it has more demand ,, but not enough push behind it ,, it will give up ,, just kinda an example for u ,,, sorry :) :(
     
  16. dmjaway

    dmjaway New Member

    Re: Battery Problem



    TC, Regarding today's batteries, this is no longer true. A battery placed on concrete will not discharge any faster, but a battery will discharge over a period of time wherever it is placed. If the battery has a surface layer of acid or grime which is conductive, the battery will self-discharge more rapidly than if it were clean and dry.

    According to Interstate Batteries, this the concrete situation does have some historical basis. "Many years ago, wooden battery cases encased a glass jar with the battery in it. Any moisture on the floor could cause the wood to swell and possibly fracture the glass, causing it to leak. Later came the introduction of the "hard rubber" cases, which were somewhat porous. A current could be conducted through this container, which had a high carbon content, if the moist concrete floor permitted the current to find an electrical ground. The wise advise of the old days to "not store batteries on concrete" has apparently been passed down to us today, but it no longer applies."
     

Share This Page