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Battery questions from a newbie


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8 minutes ago, newbiestarter said:

I own an Elddis Avante 550 2019 model, when the caravan is on the drive I would like to remove the Leisure Battery and top it up using a smart battery charger. 

I would want to use the mains hook up whilst the caravan is in situ on the drive without the battery installed - the question is - would this affect the alarm system ?

My understanding is that the alarm has its own 12 volt battery installed....

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12 minutes ago, charlieboy2608 said:

My understanding is that the alarm has its own 12 volt battery installed....

Didn't know that !Lets just say my Leisure Battery is drained of power totally ( for example  due to a defunct cell ) any idea how long  the separate battery supply to the alarm would last which suggests there is a separate unit somewhere in the caravan ?

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I'm the OP and I really appreciate the replies to my newbie message. Earlier I said that the battery had reached 14.5V and was coming back down but it turns out that I was incorrect. It's actually going back and forth between 14.5V and 14.4V every 15 minutes or so. It's now been on charge (on 12V STD mode) for maybe 11 hours or so and it got to 14.4V hours ago.

 

I'm not sure what to do now - should I leave it on overnight?

If I stop charging now and leave it at 14.4V, will that damage it?

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Edited by Gavin Smith
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Now it is at 14.4 volts it should be fully charged so I would stop charging it and in any case I do not like leaving things plugged in overnight. Then in a day or so see what the voltage is, ought to be about 12.7 volts which is still fully charged, if lower charge it up again.

 

As for the alarm battery, ours is inside the alarm box under one of the front seats and needs a screw removing so the box cover can be pivoted open. Ours is a 12 volt type and failed after a few years so was constantly trying to be charged from the main battery and flattened that. A new one was £18 from Toolstation and is the same type as in our house alarm. For now I have it removed from the caravan and every now and again charge it up in the same way as the main battery but at a lower amp rate. Other alarms like the Sargeant one appears to have a lower voltage battery and they are expensive. When new, the alarm battery on its own lasts for weeks.

Edited by Paul1957
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If it is a smart charger then it is ok to keep on charge.   The original picture it looks like a bog standard generic car battery, I would be tempted to replace it.  

This is a good price https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/LFD90-Varta-Leisure-battery-90ah-12volt/251264657900?epid=1536983798&hash=item3a808a69ec:g:u~sAAOSwhJteIWwR

I have had 2 of these fitted for the last 2 years.   We spend most of our time off grid.  I would also be very tempted to replace your bulbs with Led equivalents as saves a considerable amount of power as well.  A 2 or 3 watt led will replace a 10W halogen makes a difference and quite cheap these days. 

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21 hours ago, newbiestarter said:

Didn't know that !Lets just say my Leisure Battery is drained of power totally ( for example  due to a defunct cell ) any idea how long  the separate battery supply to the alarm would last which suggests there is a separate unit somewhere in the caravan ?

If the alarm is not constantly used (not just setting it) eg getting in and out of your van I would think maybe 2 years.

If you have your caravan instruction booklet it may specify which alarm is used/and its position inside your van otherwise contact your dealer?

Edited by charlieboy2608
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On 21/01/2020 at 14:36, David 38 said:

What is different about that charger?

 

My Halfords leisure charger has a swith for sealed type or normal.

My smart charger does not have a switch.

 

http://www.thelongestlecture.com/charge-agm-battery-with-normal-charger/

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Your battery is marketed as a leisure battery. I had the same make but higher capacity.

 

Caravan club looked at these a few years back and found that many that were marketed as leisure were in fact no different from a standard car battery. This battery i think falls into this category.

 

Having said that, i have never been precious over the batteries used and will usually get 7 years out of mine. If you are going off grid then invest in a good quality dedicated leisure battery. If you rarely go off grid then use what you have - it should be good for a long weekend in summer if you are easy on power. I used a back up 75Ah car battery in the past in autumn for a weekend off grid and it had plenty of spare juice by Sunday but i was careful.

 

Re venting i suppose you should use venting hoses but in 17 years of caravanning i have not and never had an issue - just my opinion.

 

Regards

Lee

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On 21/01/2020 at 19:32, newbiestarter said:

I own an Elddis Avante 550 2019 model, when the caravan is on the drive I would like to remove the Leisure Battery and top it up using a smart battery charger. 

I would want to use the mains hook up whilst the caravan is in situ on the drive without the battery installed - the question is - would this affect the alarm system ?

 

Is there a specific reason why you want to remove the battery at home?

My van is connected to EHU all the time at home and the battery stays in-situ with the van charger turned on all the time.

Never had a problem with that over the last 30 plus years.

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If it helps, I have used this website in the past. They offer free next day delivery.   https://www.batteriesontheweb.co.uk/product/110ah-platinum-motorhome-sd6110l-deep-cycle-leisure-batteries/?removed_item=1   The battery shown is just an example NOT a recommendation   I have no connection with the company other than as a satisfied customer  :)

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Thank you for all the advice and pointers. In the end, my little 75Ah battery seems to be knackered, it's not holding much of a charge. I'm not hugely surprised.

 

I decided to bite the bullet and I bought a new one - I chose a Numax XV31MF 105Ah battery https://www.tayna.co.uk/leisure-batteries/numax/xv31mf/ which I thought was decently priced.

 

One last question - should I pop it on the charge before using it for the first time?

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From your Numax web link.

"

Preparation Checks

Before you plan to use your battery, you should always follow the steps below to make sure it's ready for use.

1. Give your battery a top-up charge

As we know from above, you should have stored your battery in a charged state to avoid sulphation. However, even though the battery will be charged you should always perform a top up charge before touring. This will ensure the battery is in peak condition."

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4 minutes ago, Gavin Smith said:

Thank you for all the advice and pointers. In the end, my little 75Ah battery seems to be knackered, it's not holding much of a charge. I'm not hugely surprised.

 

I decided to bite the bullet and I bought a new one - I chose a Numax XV31MF 105Ah battery https://www.tayna.co.uk/leisure-batteries/numax/xv31mf/ which I thought was decently priced.

 

One last question - should I pop it on the charge before using it for the first time?

  I'm very happy with the service provided by Tayna Batteries.   :)

     John.

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