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Old 01-17-2018, 11:38 AM   #1
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Advice please: Battery reconditioning

Hello, I have the standard 2 6 volt battery set up. They are older batteries and I would like to get 1 to 2 more years out of them if possible. Most, 80 plus percent, of our travels we connect to shore power. Most of the battery use will be the front hitch motor leveling. I have a portable solar panel I can use for boondocking to charge.

I want to recondition the batteries to extend the life of them a bit. The questions.
1. Do you believe it is safe and reasonable to recondition the batteries with a portable 12 volt charger/reconditioner?
2. Your thoughts on doing it without removing the batteries from the front box?

Thank you
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Old 01-17-2018, 11:49 AM   #2
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i've had very good luck with the BatteryMinder one I have used with 2 trailers now. They use a high frequency pulse method rather than high voltages to maintain and desulfate batteries. I used it for a friend on an old deep cycle from his boat and it greatly improved the performance of that battery according to him.

If you go to the "about" section on their website and read their rationale and see if it makes sense to you. Amazon usually sells them bit cheaper than that website.
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:17 PM   #3
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Flooded, lead acid batteries need to be "equalized" periodically. Most good smart chargers have this functionality. It basically charges at high voltage which burns the build up off the lead plates. Additionally, making sure the batteries have sufficient levels of water helps extend the life.

Hope that helps.
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Old 01-17-2018, 03:56 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thoer View Post
i've had very good luck with the BatteryMinder one I have used with 2 trailers now. They use a high frequency pulse method rather than high voltages to maintain and desulfate batteries. I used it for a friend on an old deep cycle from his boat and it greatly improved the performance of that battery according to him.

If you go to the "about" section on their website and read their rationale and see if it makes sense to you. Amazon usually sells them bit cheaper than that website.
I agree. I have reconditioned batteries with a Battery Minder, but reconditioning doesn’t happen overnight. I managed to resurrect an auto battery that wouldn’t take a charge, but it took about 6 weeks on the Battery Minder.
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Old 01-17-2018, 04:28 PM   #5
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Makes sense Carl - seems to go along with what they state about their methods for slowly desulfating with the pulses rather than high voltage and corresponding high temperatures.
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Old 01-17-2018, 05:01 PM   #6
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Also look at BatterySaver.com. I have used their products for years on both 6v and 12v batteries alone and in series and parallel without any issues and recommend them highly. If you need help figuring out which of their units to use, or how to apply them just give them a call as they are very friendly and helpful.
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Old 01-19-2018, 10:29 AM   #7
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Thank you all for the input and suggestions.
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Old 01-19-2018, 02:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingbiscuit View Post
Flooded, lead acid batteries need to be "equalized" periodically. Most good smart chargers have this functionality. It basically charges at high voltage which burns the build up off the lead plates. Additionally, making sure the batteries have sufficient levels of water helps extend the life.

Hope that helps.
Ok this post is news to me (and perhaps others on here)
I’ve read my entire Escape owners manual and either ignored this or missed it.

Do u have a quick and dirty Way of explaining “equalizing”.

FYI I store my trailer outside. Check the trailer every week. The solar always shows 100. I checked the water levels in November and all was good
Thanks
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Old 01-19-2018, 02:45 PM   #9
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I go to Trojan Battery site for all my information. This is what Trojan says:

Equalizing

FLOODED BATTERIES ONLY
Equalizing is an overcharge performed on flooded lead acid batteries after they have been fully charged.
It reverses the buildup of negative chemical effects like stratification, a condition where acid concentration is greater at the bottom of the battery than at the top. Equalizing also helps to remove sulfate crystals that might have built up on the plates. If left unchecked, this condition, called sulfation, will reduce the overall capacity of the battery.
Many experts recommend that batteries be equalized periodically, ranging anywhere from once a month to once or twice per year. However, Trojan only recommends equalizing when low or wide ranging specific gravity (>0.030) are detected after fully charging a battery.

Step-By-Step Equalizing
  1. Verify the battery(s) are flooded type.
  2. Remove all loads from the batteries.
  3. Connect battery charger.
  4. Set charger for the equalizing voltage (See Table 2 in the Charging section). If your charger doesn’t have an equalization mode, you can unplug the charger and re-plug it back in. This also will conduct the equalization charge.
  5. Start charging batteries.
  6. Batteries will begin gassing and bubbling vigorously.
  7. Take specific gravity readings every hour.
  8. Equalization is complete when specific gravity values no longer rise during the gassing stage.
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Old 01-19-2018, 07:27 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by LarryandLiz View Post
Ok this post is news to me (and perhaps others on here)
I’ve read my entire Escape owners manual and either ignored this or missed it.

Do u have a quick and dirty Way of explaining “equalizing”.

FYI I store my trailer outside. Check the trailer every week. The solar always shows 100. I checked the water levels in November and all was good
Thanks
Larry, if you have the ETI installed GoPower solar controller as I do, it will equalize for you every 28 days. Doing nothing is way easier than following Glenn's instructions. Just keep checking the water levels.

I don't know how often people should check specific gravity. I have never done it myself.

Here is the manual link Escape Trailer Owners Community - Downloads - Solar Regulator (see p 5 & 12)
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