There is nothing worse than showing up to your campsite and finding out your batteries are dead. As batteries are the lifeblood of an RV, it is important to keep them maintained regularly and charged fully to ensure all your appliances work properly. We have compiled a comprehensive list of battery maintenance tips to ensure your RV is always ready to go.
It is recommended to inspect your batteries annually; new batteries require a full charge before use and need to be cycled several times before they reach their full capacity. It can take 20-50 cycles depending on your battery type. If your batteries are low or dead, remember they require 2-4 days of charging from 110v power, so charging them with your tow vehicle is not sufficient.
Expert tip: Take a photo of your batteries before removing them, that way you know exactly how they should be hooked up again.
Here is a list of maintenance tips for RV batteries:
- Inspect the battery cables for damage, the connectors should be tight at all times
- The white lead is typically ground or negative of battery
- Batteries should be clean and free of dirt and corrosion
- Vent caps should be kept in place and tight during vehicle operation and battery charging
- Batteries should be watered after charging unless plates are exposed before charging
- If exposed, plates should be covered by approximately 1/8 inch of distilled water
- Check water level again after charge
If you find that you must replace a battery, note that in a situation where multiple batteries are connected in series, parallel or series/parallel, the replacement should be of the same size, age and usage level as the companion batteries.
It is important to periodically test your batteries as a preventative maintenance measure. The hydrometer readings of each cell when fully charged will give you an indication of balance and true charge level. A battery should not be discharged below 20% capacity.
Safety tip: Always make sure to use the correct charging sources. An undersized charger may cause excess gassing and heat that could possibly result in thermal runaway and/or an explosion.
Did you know that letting your battery sit for an extended period is harmful for a deep cycle battery? If your battery is going to sit for several months, give it a ‘boost’ charge regularly. In warmer climates charge it once a month and in colder climates every two to three months.
The experts in our Service Department at your local Fraserway RV dealership offers Battery Service to help you maintain your batteries, so you achieve maximum performance and a longer battery life.
Expert tip: Before calling for any service issues, verify the charge of your batteries!
Included in your service:
- Clean terminals and cable connections
- Test voltage and hydrometer test
- Inspect fluid level and fill as needed
- Apply anti-corrosive
Tip: Save the graphic for easy reference by right clicking on the image and click Save Image As when on a computer. If on a mobile device, hold down on the photo and click Add To Photos.