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Old 10-21-2008, 04:35 AM   #1
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Hello folks, a little guidance would be appreciated. I'm confused. The manual says to disconnect the house battery, via dash switch, for winter storage. My question; is this step necessary when I'll have the unit plugged into 120v all winter long? Thanks.

Peter
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Old 10-21-2008, 04:35 AM   #2
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Hello folks, a little guidance would be appreciated. I'm confused. The manual says to disconnect the house battery, via dash switch, for winter storage. My question; is this step necessary when I'll have the unit plugged into 120v all winter long? Thanks.

Peter
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:05 AM   #3
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Well you certainly do not want to disconnect the batteries if you'll have the coach plugged into 120vac all winter long. However, you do want to check out what kind of charging system your converter has. Most likely it's the standard Magnetek or Parallax unit which charges at a fixed rate. These units have a tendency to boil the water out of your batteries, so frequent checking of the cell water levels is mandatory. I'd suggest you look at some of the "smart chargers" on the market, the ones with three-stage charging and the ability to de-sulphate the battery.
Camping World offers the Intellipower 9200 series units that are "smart"; -they run about $250 and are easy to install (plug-n-play). Or there's smaller, portable units like the Battery Minder that might fit your application better. Try searching the forums for "smart charger"...
You need to ask yourself why you want the coach plugged in to 120 vac all winter. Many people simply fire it up (chassis engine and generator) about once a month and let her charge for an hour. This technique is fine and you don't have to get a smart charger. Just keep in mind that whether you're camping or parked in your driveway, as long as you're plugged into 120vac without a smart charger, you will be boiling away the battery water.
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:09 AM   #4
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Depends - here in the south, we have power to the coach all winter while it is parked under roof. The only precaution I take is heat for the plumbing bay for really cold weather since we don't winterize.

If your battery has a chance of freezing, then I would remove it and place in a non-freezing spot. Batteries will resist freezing if fully charged, but with really cold weather, you could still freeze it and crack the case.

Maybe somebody with experience in the polar north will have better advice.
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:38 AM   #5
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by John_Canfield:
Maybe somebody with experience in the polar north will have better advice. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I leave my coach plugged in all winter. I have never removed any batteries. I do have a 3 stage charger and I check the water in the fall and early in the spring. I also have a battery minder that keeps the chassis battery fully charged also. Temps sometimes get to -20 and I have never had a freezing problem.

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Old 10-21-2008, 01:18 PM   #6
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Thank you all for your insight. Yes, I have the Magnetek 7400 series converter, not a "smart" charger. I've been eying the Xantrax XADC or PD 9200 as a replacement.
My thought is to keep the coach plugged into 120v so that the batteries remain fully charged, thus minimizing any freeze concerns.
Since both listed converters are advertised as "smart" chargers I believe the boiling battery concern is moot.
Any thoughts regarding these two converters? Preference and why?
Again, thanks for your thoughts.
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Old 10-21-2008, 01:42 PM   #7
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Lt46

You can get the PD 9200 60 amp smart charger off ebay for about 170.00. I put one in last year and it really is a plug and play. Easy job. Only check my battery water 2 times a year.

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