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Old 06-25-2016, 10:48 AM   #1
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Topping up the battery

Topped up the batteries yesterday on my 17' B class. The exterior battery was low on water but easy to access. The interior battery is located under the permanent bed in the back of the trailer. Because it's inside, it's in a sealed battery box. 10 screws and nuts hold the battery box lid in a sealed position. What a hassle it is to access the screws. (You would think a hinge system would/could be used.) I guess a good mod would be an access panel on the exterior of the trailer on the battery side. A sliding battery box tray, so the battery could slide outside the trailer for service, would also help.
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Old 06-25-2016, 11:11 AM   #2
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I guess that is why later 17' models have the dual 6ers on the back bumper option.
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Old 06-25-2016, 11:15 AM   #3
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Topped up the batteries yesterday on my 17' B class. The exterior battery was low on water but easy to access. The interior battery is located under the permanent bed in the back of the trailer. Because it's inside, it's in a sealed battery box. 10 screws and nuts hold the battery box lid in a sealed position. What a hassle it is to access the screws. (You would think a hinge system would/could be used.) I guess a good mod would be an access panel on the exterior of the trailer on the battery side. A sliding battery box tray, so the battery could slide outside the trailer for service, would also help.
I recently installed the pro fill system on my trailer. Worth every penny:
https://www.amazon.com/Flow-Rite-RV2...atering+system
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Old 06-25-2016, 12:05 PM   #4
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I'd recommend a couple of potato bag clips to hold down the top............
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Old 06-25-2016, 12:52 PM   #5
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I'd recommend a couple of potato bag clips to hold down the top............
How so?
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Old 06-25-2016, 01:22 PM   #6
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Because it's inside, it's in a sealed battery box. 10 screws and nuts hold the battery box lid in a sealed position. What a hassle it is to access the screws.
I wonder if a battery box strap would work? Like the one in this picture. You could cinch it down tight.
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Old 06-25-2016, 01:28 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by J Mac View Post
Topped up the batteries yesterday on my 17' B...
The interior battery is located under the permanent bed in the back of the trailer.
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I guess that is why later 17' models have the dual 6ers on the back bumper option.
I didn't realize that Escape ever put a battery in the interior of a 17', even the second one with a dual battery option. It seems really unlike Escape to put two batteries of a dual set in different locations. Was this a factory installation, or an owner modification?
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Old 06-25-2016, 01:36 PM   #8
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The interior battery is located under the permanent bed in the back of the trailer. Because it's inside, it's in a sealed battery box. 10 screws and nuts hold the battery box lid in a sealed position. What a hassle it is to access the screws. (You would think a hinge system would/could be used.)
A hinged top would be nicer, but much harder to seal effectively - the top would need to be very rigid. If those nuts are loose, an improvement would be to replace them with insert nuts (T-nuts or rivet nuts, depending on material and thickness of the flange of the box that the bolts go through), so removing and replacing the lid would be involve only the 10 screws, with no need to use a wrench to hold nuts.

Automotive air filter housings often use multiple spring clips around the lid; for at least some of the nut-and-screw positions clips could work and would be much more convenient.

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I guess a good mod would be an access panel on the exterior of the trailer on the battery side. A sliding battery box tray, so the battery could slide outside the trailer for service, would also help.
I agree - I have this setup in a trailer and it is much better than the "buried" batteries in my motorhome. An issue might be height: the height of the batteries with wiring on top plus the height of the slide needs to fit through the hatch, and fit under the dinette set or bed platform.
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Old 06-25-2016, 01:40 PM   #9
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I wonder if a battery box strap would work? Like the one in this picture. You could cinch it down tight.
If ten screws are needed to get a good seal, then presumably five straps would be needed, spread along the length of the box or even running both ways across the top.

In their normal application, those straps don't clamp a lid well enough to seal anything - they just keep the lid from falling off.
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Old 06-25-2016, 04:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J Mac View Post
Topped up the batteries yesterday on my 17' B class. The exterior battery was low on water but easy to access. The interior battery is located under the permanent bed in the back of the trailer. Because it's inside, it's in a sealed battery box. 10 screws and nuts hold the battery box lid in a sealed position. What a hassle it is to access the screws. (You would think a hinge system would/could be used.) I guess a good mod would be an access panel on the exterior of the trailer on the battery side. A sliding battery box tray, so the battery could slide outside the trailer for service, would also help.
I'd think this would be the perfect application for a sealed battery.

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Old 06-25-2016, 04:46 PM   #11
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I didn't realize that Escape ever put a battery in the interior of a 17', even the second one with a dual battery option. It seems really unlike Escape to put two batteries of a dual set in different locations. Was this a factory installation, or an owner modification?
This was done by Reese when I bought the used trailer on Escape's lot, at their first location. I added a second battery and a 3 burner stove top ( never even used one burner yet) and an exterior shower. There's a switch under the bed that kills the power to the interior battery.
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Old 06-25-2016, 04:48 PM   #12
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I wonder if a battery box strap would work? Like the one in this picture. You could cinch it down tight.
I don't believe the black battery box you showed is sealable.
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Old 06-25-2016, 05:00 PM   #13
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Maybe i am wrong since the trailer is currently at the storage yard. But my recollection is that the batteries on the 21 (dual 6 volt) are kept in a box with a tight fitting lid, but no screws, and no tiedown strap. There is a vent hose, and some putty around the hole where the wires exit the box.

so maybe you could talk to escape and get a box like the ones they are using now, and eliminate some of the work.
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Old 06-25-2016, 05:25 PM   #14
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I don't believe the black battery box you showed is sealable.
It wasn't the box I was commenting on, it was the strap. Buytl doesn't harden, make a rope of it and run that around the top inside of your box to "seal" the two halves, cinch the box top down with the strap.
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Old 06-25-2016, 05:58 PM   #15
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It wasn't the box I was commenting on, it was the strap. Buytl doesn't harden, make a rope of it and run that around the top inside of your box to "seal" the two halves, cinch the box top down with the strap.
That's going to be one tough mother to open.
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Old 06-25-2016, 06:47 PM   #16
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It wasn't the box I was commenting on, it was the strap. Buytl doesn't harden, make a rope of it and run that around the top inside of your box to "seal" the two halves, cinch the box top down with the strap.
But if that was workable, because the top is stiff enough, it would also be workable to just leave out at least 6 of the screws.
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Old 06-25-2016, 06:53 PM   #17
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This is a photo of the batteries( 2) in the rear dinette of the 21' . The hold down is similar to what is used in automobiles. There is a wooden bar that crosses the top and is held by wing nuts at each end from a threaded bar attached to the base. The only sealant applied is around the cables in a notch at the top of the box. The lid is just plastic on plastic pressure from tightening the wing nuts.
Removing the lid and getting to the batteries is easy.
I've sat inside while the batteries were equalizing and smelled no off gassing of the batteries.
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Old 06-25-2016, 07:28 PM   #18
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I've sat inside while the batteries were equalizing and smelled no off gassing of the batteries.
And you wouldn't smell it. Batteries off gas Hydrogen which is colorless and ODORLESS. It is, however, poisonous at certain concentrations to breath and extremely explosive. That is why inside lead acid batteries MUST be vented to the outside. While you can not smell hydrogen, it can set off the propane detector if the concentration gets high. ETI uses electrical conduit sealant (available at Lowe's, Home Depot, etc. inexpensively) to seal openings in the battery box where wires enter/exit.
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Old 06-25-2016, 08:10 PM   #19
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It wasn't the box I was commenting on, it was the strap. Buytl doesn't harden, make a rope of it and run that around the top inside of your box to "seal" the two halves, cinch the box top down with the strap.
I like this idea!
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Old 06-26-2016, 01:11 AM   #20
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A fabric strap will only work with a rigid lid. Even the lengthwise bar which Craig showed depends on the lid being rigid across the width.

If I were sealing a hatch which is intended to be opened, I would use a soft foam weatherstrip, not sticky putty. For that matter, if it's opened once a year, fabric duct tape (Duck or otherwise) - discarded and replaced each time -would be quicker, easier, and more effective.
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