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Old 10-18-2018, 04:00 PM   #1
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A winterising question from a newbie.

Ok, I had the water system part done. The pink stuff is flowing from all taps and is resting in the tanks. This part is done.
I removed all that needed to be removed from inside the trailer.
The remaining question is the AGM battery.
Should I move it inside or can it say outside with a battery tender?
What do you recommend? What do you do? If I can avoid hauling this heavy beast inside... I'll be smiling
Thanks in advance for your support
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:09 PM   #2
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We leave the batteries in both our trailers in the trailers all winter .
Both trailers are plugged in and every week we turn the power on to the trailers for four hours to charge the batteries . We have never had any problems with the batteries over charging or becoming depleted .
Solar is another solution but that means climbing up on a ladder every time it snows
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:23 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by allenmaloney View Post
Ok, I had the water system part done. The pink stuff is flowing from all taps and is resting in the tanks. This part is done.
I removed all that needed to be removed from inside the trailer.
The remaining question is the AGM battery.
Should I move it inside or can it say outside with a battery tender?
What do you recommend? What do you do? If I can avoid hauling this heavy beast inside... I'll be smiling
Thanks in advance for your support
I have solar and a pair of AGM batteries. Good AGM batteries should loose about 1% of charge every month if totally disconnected. I leave mine connected to the propane detector which probably pulls another 4 to 5% of the charge out of the batteries but I do make certain the main disconnect switch is in the off position.

30 minutes of solar a week is enough to make up the lost power, keeping the batteries at 100% full on average. A full battery will not freeze (although there may be some room to worry in Alaska or Montana). I'm in warm Colorado and never have pulled my oh-so-heavy size 31 batteries for the winter. (And our typical snow storm melts in just a few days.)

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Old 10-18-2018, 04:23 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by allenmaloney View Post
The remaining question is the AGM battery.
Should I move it inside or can it say outside with a battery tender?
What do you recommend? What do you do? If I can avoid hauling this heavy beast inside... I'll be smiling
The risk to the battery of cold weather is freezing, and a charged battery will not freeze. With power available to run a maintenance charger ("battery tender"), the easy and effective solution is to just leave the battery in place with the charger attached and running. In cold weather there will be very little self-discharge, and so the charger will need to do very little to keep the battery suitably charged. That's what I do, and that's what I would do if I were down south in Montana.
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:23 PM   #5
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Allen, Do you have roof-mounted solar? We keep our 21' under a carport, and the roof solar still gets enough sun to keep the battery topped off, and you shouldn't have to worry about your battery if it maintains a full charge - one way or another. Back to your RV antifreeze, based on reports of others, also be sure to: 1) pour some into the galley sink and shower drain traps (actually, our galley sink trap has a drain plug in the bottom, so I just drain ours instead), and 2) remember to winterize the toilet and outside shower faucets, if you have those. Some have mentioned water trapped just inside the city water attachment and needing to push a center relief tab to release that water on down into the system (or something like that, I just blow ours out with compressed air). Also, someone once reported water trapped between the water heater cold water input one-way valve and the lower winterizing valve. So after draining the water heater, I always un-screw that cold water connection a bit to let any water drain that might be trapped in there, but it has never amounted to much of anything in our camper. I hope that all makes sense.
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:30 PM   #6
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The risk to the battery of cold weather is freezing, and a charged battery will not freeze. With power available to run a maintenance charger ("battery tender"), the easy and effective solution is to just leave the battery in place with the charger attached and running. In cold weather there will be very little self-discharge, and so the charger will need to do very little to keep the battery suitably charged. That's what I do, and that's what I would do if I were down south in Montana.
Does the factory battery charging system have a desulfator mode? If not, that might be one justification for pulling the battery (or disconnect and leave in place) and over-wintering it on a maintenance charger that periodically desulfates the battery. Or so it seems....
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:33 PM   #7
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Allen, Do you have roof-mounted solar? We keep our 21' under a carport, and the roof solar still gets enough sun to keep the battery topped off, and you shouldn't have to worry about your battery if it maintains a full charge - one way or another.
Yes, I have the standard Escape roof mounted solar. ( I also have an equivalent portable - 150 watt - that I use for various tests when bored.) For example, last fall sometime, I tossed a sheet over the portable with it laying flat. It still produced 0.075 amps (75 milli-amps). That is enough to offset the self-discharge. But you may want to disconnect the vampire (power eating) propane detector while under a car port if no direct solar reaches the panel all day.

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Old 10-18-2018, 04:38 PM   #8
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Does the factory battery charging system have a desulfator mode? If not, that might be one justification for pulling the battery (or disconnect and leave in place) and over-wintering it on a maintenance charger that periodically desulfates the battery. Or so it seems....
I wouldn't worry about desulfation, but anyone who is concerned should use a suitable maintenance charge (or "battery tender") instead of just leaving the stoc converter/charger running. The WFCO 8955 does not have a desulfation mode; left without any loads turned on it will just float at 13.2 volts indefinitely.
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:39 PM   #9
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Yes, I have the standard Escape roof mounted solar. ( I also have an equivalent portable - 150 watt - that I use for various tests when bored.) For example, last fall sometime, I tossed a sheet over the portable with it laying flat. It still produced 0.075 amps (75 milli-amps). That is enough to offset the self-discharge. But you may want to disconnect the vampire (power eating) propane detector while under a car port if no direct solar reaches the panel all day.

--
Alan
Hey Alan, My earlier post was for "Allen", the OP, but thanks for your additional interesting information. By the way, "Alan" is my middle name, so I'm right there with you!
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:41 PM   #10
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Hey Alan, My earlier post was for "Allen", the OP, but thanks for your additional interesting information. By the way, "Alan" is my middle name, so I'm right there with you!

Whoops.
Too accustomed to miss-spellings of "Alan".
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Old 10-19-2018, 08:23 AM   #11
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I lived in Alaska 34 years and never had a battery freeze. 12 of those years were in Fairbanks where -65F was normal. Usually we had 3 vehicles, 1 of which was the winter car. The other 2 were just left outside to become snowbanks. We neither disconnected the battery nor charged the battery on either outside car. Fairbanks has 9 months below freezing, so this was a long time with no charging. As the temp drops the self discharge rate becomes less than the 2-4% per month. And batteries freeze when they are far below 50% of capacity. If we had a marginal (5 year old) battery it might not start the vehicle in the spring, but never was the case cracked.

Now that we live in AZ we do things slightly different. We just pull the negative lead on the vehicle battery and let it sit for 6 months or less. One motorcycle battery that is marginal did not start the bike this spring, but it is 4 years old. Replacement planned next May.
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Old 10-19-2018, 08:55 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by War Eagle View Post
Does the factory battery charging system have a desulfator mode? If not, that might be one justification for pulling the battery (or disconnect and leave in place) and over-wintering it on a maintenance charger that periodically desulfates the battery. Or so it seems....
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
I wouldn't worry about desulfation, but anyone who is concerned should use a suitable maintenance charge (or "battery tender") instead of just leaving the stoc converter/charger running. The WFCO 8955 does not have a desulfation mode; left without any loads turned on it will just float at 13.2 volts indefinitely.
Not sure if it is enough, but the Progressive Dynamics WildKat main board replacement I installed does have what they call desulfation. The charger indexes to 14.4V every 21 hours for 15 minutes.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg WildKat charge profile.JPG (82.3 KB, 15 views)
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Old 10-19-2018, 05:08 PM   #13
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Thanks everybody for the inputs

I should not be surprised but I am always impressed by the overwhelming response and support whenever one ask a question on the forum.
Allen
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Old 10-19-2018, 08:10 PM   #14
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I lived in Alaska 34 years and never had a battery freeze. 12 of those years were in Fairbanks where -65F was normal. Usually we had 3 vehicles, 1 of which was the winter car. The other 2 were just left outside to become snowbanks. We neither disconnected the battery nor charged the battery on either outside car. Fairbanks has 9 months below freezing, so this was a long time with no charging. As the temp drops the self discharge rate becomes less than the 2-4% per month. And batteries freeze when they are far below 50% of capacity. If we had a marginal (5 year old) battery it might not start the vehicle in the spring, but never was the case.
And you gave all that up for Arizona?
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