03 Jun Caravan Battery Hints
A caravan battery requires regular use and when not used, needs to be stored correctly. As well as powering your caravans appliances, the batteries support the current flow from caravan chargers.
The lifespan of a caravan battery depends on good maintenance. A battery in good condition should give you more than 20 hours before needing a recharge. Anything less and it’s possibly faulty.
To prolong the lifespan of your battery, avoid using the high powered 240v appliances via an inverter such as aircons, fridges & microwaves because they drain power too rapidly. This leads to erratic and fast battery discharge. Meaning you’ll need to recharge more often, leading to faster deterioration.
Car batteries and caravan batteries work in quite different ways. A car battery provides high power quickly to start the car engine. A caravan battery is designed to release power at a lower, steady rate over a prolonged periods.
Here are our tips to get the best use from your caravan battery.
Use a Voltmeter
A digital voltmeter will help you determine whether the battery is charging and discharging power appropriately. It can also be test the voltage of your appliances to ensure that there is no leak. Fresh readings are often incorrect so it’s a good idea to let your battery rest for a few hours after charging it. We recommended taking a voltage reading at least 6 hours after a full charge.
Avoid draining the battery
Each caravan battery is designed to provide a specific number of deep discharge cycles. Whenever your battery charge falls below 75% re-charge it and never let it level fall below 50%. Ideally, it’s best to check your caravan battery charge every two months and avoid running it flat off charge, because it also damages the battery performance.
Run identical battery capacity in a series, with identical voltage in a parallel connection
When you connect your battery in a series connection with the positive to the negative terminals, you increase total voltage. On the other hand, connecting the positive-to-positive and negative-to-negative terminals will increase the total current.
To maintain long term battery capacity, connect identical batteries in a series and with identical voltage in parallel.
Watch for battery smells
A stale smell indicates leaking gases, which can lead to ignition. Always keep the temperature of your battery in check when recharging.
A sulphur gas smell similar to rotten egg indicates an overcharged battery. If the battery has been overcharged it will feel hot, in which case you should disconnect immediately from the power.
In a sealed battery, sudden overcharging permanently drains the liquid topping. In a non-sealed battery, the liquid can be topped up even after repeated overcharging, but this practice shortens its long-term performance.
Inspect annually and clean
Switch off appliances when not in use and disconnect your caravan battery when in storage. Inspect your battery annually for signs of overcharging, gas leaks.
We supply and install all major battery brands.
When was the last time you checked your caravan batteries? Premium RV Repairs can check them for you during a service check-up. Call 0415 362 134 or book online