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Old 12-08-2005, 08:56 PM   #1
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Just a quick question about my RV (which has been winterized). The temps around here are getting down to below zero on some nights (and average around 12-20 degrees) and since my RV is outside I was wondering how offten I should be starting the vehicle so that I do not kill the battery.

I was thinking once a month but with it being this colde (we are new to this degree of coldness) I am not sure if this is often enough.

Thanks for your help on this matter and have a great night.
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Old 12-08-2005, 08:56 PM   #2
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Just a quick question about my RV (which has been winterized). The temps around here are getting down to below zero on some nights (and average around 12-20 degrees) and since my RV is outside I was wondering how offten I should be starting the vehicle so that I do not kill the battery.

I was thinking once a month but with it being this colde (we are new to this degree of coldness) I am not sure if this is often enough.

Thanks for your help on this matter and have a great night.
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Old 12-09-2005, 01:38 AM   #3
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Michael, I fire up the engine about once a month during the winter storage. Let it run a good 35 - 45 minutes with several gas revs to 2,000 or 2,500 rpm. I also fire up the generator at the same time; use two 1,500W ceramic heaters in the coach to give it a "load" while running. I run the genny the same amount of time as the coach engine. After their exercise, I turn off the coach power switch and the coach batteries just sit there until the next month (neither charge nor discharge). I run an extension cord from the house to a little Battery Minder smart charger that keeps the chassis battery in top shape.
The only other comment I have is that if the weather is generally below 20 degrees F, I'll wait and start the coach on another day...
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Old 12-09-2005, 02:13 AM   #4
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Running the engine only exercises the engine. You should take the coach and actually drive it for at least 30 minutes once a month. The tranny and all of the fluids and seals get a chance to warmup. Also, take along an electric heater or two and run the generator with a load for 30 minutes.

Letting the engine idle is not good as it will tend to run richer and wash down the cylinder walls and not provide as much lubrication as it should get. Also tends to soot up the exhaust and engine. I personally fell if you can not take it and rive it, you should change the oil, top off the fuel with a fuel stabilizer, coat the cylinder walls of the engine and just let it set. Of course you should remove the bateries and put them on a trickle charger about once a week or two for a day or two.

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Old 12-09-2005, 04:29 AM   #5
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troth:

Thanks for the great tips. I'm printing them out as I type this!

Have a great day
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Old 12-09-2005, 04:31 AM   #6
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Ken:

Thanks for the advice. I am sorry to say that I am in a location where I can not drive the RV due to a fair amount of snow and Ice (my driveway is a real bear to manipulate).

I'm printing this out for future refernce (creating a newbie book for myself).

Have a great day!
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Old 12-09-2005, 08:27 AM   #7
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After replacing, I don't know, something like 20 to 30 batteries in my boat and motor home over a 25 year period I have learned about "Battery Minder" form Camping World. The Battery Minder operates much like a battery charger but it won't over charge a battery or cook the fluids out of a battery. It also cleans sulfate build-up out of a battery. Sulfate builds up and shorts out a battery and that is what causes a battery to fail after sitting all winter.

I have one Battery Minder (cost about $50.00) connected to three batteries. This spring all should be good if it works as advertised.
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Old 12-10-2005, 02:59 AM   #8
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Alas, here I am in Fairbanks Alaska and have the motorhome winterized and sleeping under 6 inches of snow so far. As with my previous MH, I pull the house and engine batteries. I then charge them in the garage and put them in the crawlspace under the house. I'll charge them every couple of months. As far as starting the engine....forget it. I'm not going out there at -20 degrees to put the batteries back in to do that. If your not going to drive it in the winter, you might as well pull them out. My dealer up here told me the same thing.

One trick we use up here is to top off the gas tank which allows little room for condensation to form above the fuel level in the tank, which in turn will prevent water to fall to the bottom of the tank.

So far I've climbed up on the roof twice (without slipping on the fiberglass surface) and swept off the snow. Up here we get dry snow and the roof gets frosty enough that your boots don't slide. ie: good grip. However, if it gets too far below zero I may not do that just to make sure nothing cracks.
Until spring, I guess I'll just have to spend my time reading my Motorhome magazines and continue reading irv2! Have fun all.

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