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-   -   House Battery issues (https://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=73421)

slinkblot 02-10-2019 09:30 PM

House Battery issues
 
I have a 2018 Serenity, owned it exactly 1 year and the house batteries were completely corroded. Had them replaced at the RV Service where we bought it. We went on a short trip less than 2 weeks later and noticed issues again with the batteries (not fully charging). We waited until the weekend to clean out the van and there is absolutely no power! The batteries are dead! Connected the shore power and the Magnum Remote shows a Comm fault. We are baffled. Does anyone have any ideas? We have had MULTIPLE issues with the Serenity since we purchased it December 2017 NEW. On another battery note: Has anyone changed out the rails on the battery tray? In order to do anything with the batteries, they have to be completely removed! The tray doesn't extend enough to even add distilled water to the middle and far cells.

hoosierrun 02-10-2019 11:42 PM

Re: House Battery issues
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by slinkblot (Post 739860)
I have a 2018 Serenity, owned it exactly 1 year and the house batteries were completely corroded. Had them replaced at the RV Service where we bought it. We went on a short trip less than 2 weeks later and noticed issues again with the batteries (not fully charging). We waited until the weekend to clean out the van and there is absolutely no power! The batteries are dead! Connected the shore power and the Magnum Remote shows a Comm fault. We are baffled. Does anyone have any ideas? We have had MULTIPLE issues with the Serenity since we purchased it December 2017 NEW. On another battery note: Has anyone changed out the rails on the battery tray? In order to do anything with the batteries, they have to be completely removed! The tray doesn't extend enough to even add distilled water to the middle and far cells.

I hear ya on those lead acid batteries. Went through the same thing on my Serenity (late 2016 model). After 8 months I went to check the water and Oh what a mess. My slide rails were corroded in-place. I soaked the rails with penetrating fluid, and banged and pried and never could get the slides to come out. The hold down strap ends had corroded off and it was just a mess of white powder. I was carefully able to work the connectors off (made diagram of how wires go since they use black for both + and -) and had to use small angled crow bar to lift and pull them over the battery tray edge to slide them out. These suckers are quite heavy for an old guy like me. I unbolted the battery tray and with a lot of pounding and penetrating fluid, I finally got them moving. The little bearings were caked in white powder. I spent a couple of hours cleaning up both rails and almost bought a new tray until I saw the price. After wire brushing the rails, wiping the bearings, greasing and getting everything back to almost new including cleaning up the batteries (water was not overfilled best I could tell). I got a new hold down strap and got everything back together and thought I would be good for another year. Then 6 months later I opened up the compartment and once again I had corrosion on the terminals, cables (but not the new hold down because it was now all plastic/fabric).

In early 2018, I just threw in the towel and bought a pair of Born Lithium batteries for $1850 shipped with a 10 year guarantee. After another thorough cleaning of the battery tray/compartment I installed the new batteries and never looked back. Everything inside the compartment is clean. No water to mess with, no back breaking job of removing the wet cells, no corrosion on the terminals, half the weight (I can actually lift these in and out). Because the new batteries are installed in parallel. One of the cables ended up a little tight, so I really can't pull the slide out much, I don't care. I don't think I will need to access these for several years.

The batteries have performed very well. My older Magnum 1212 charger does a fairly decent job of keeping them charged (have to un-power from shore power about once a month while storing rig). The un-powering for a few minutes is needed to get the charger to increase the voltage to 14.2, usually done just before going on a trip. That is the only issue and so minor, it's barely worth mentioning. Others have put in some expensive modifications to deal with that minor inconvenience. .

With the amount of money I have in this rig, the last thing I need to do is baby sit lead acid batteries every few months. In my younger years, yes, but that job was tough on my back and I don't need to be doing or paying someone when a good investment makes it un-necessary.

I too have had a share of annoying problems with my rig, but I hear that most of the time it is not unusual when there are so many components that make up this small house on wheels. Most of my worst problems have been with the Sprinter chassis.

autostaretx 02-11-2019 12:02 AM

Re: House Battery issues
 
It sure sounds like your battery boxes do not have proper (or "adequate") venting ... if the batteries don't have the fittings for captured vent tubes then increasing air flow in there would help a lot.

Also the typical red and green treated felt rings to help protect the post areas.

--dick

geds 02-11-2019 02:18 PM

Re: House Battery issues
 
hoosierrun - Please pardon my naivety, but wouldn't changing to maintenance free (sealed) batteries accomplish the same objective - that being prevent corrosion inside the battery compartment?

Thanks!

Old Crows 02-11-2019 02:34 PM

Re: House Battery issues
 
I'd clean up the mess and seriously consider problems with your charger or charging regime. They are being way over charged or continuously charged. They are dying a gassy death by slow boil of continuous high voltage charging. Batteries need to rest.

Once a battery begins to fail, the charger will go to bulk charge and cook the darn things because it can't tell the difference between a failing battery and one that is low state of charge.

I've had more batteries fail due to continual over charging and maintaining than by letting them cycle.

hoosierrun 02-11-2019 03:15 PM

Re: House Battery issues
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by geds (Post 740068)
hoosierrun - Please pardon my naivety, but wouldn't changing to maintenance free (sealed) batteries accomplish the same objective - that being prevent corrosion inside the battery compartment?

Thanks!

Yes, changing to an AGM battery would accomplish the same thing and many people have done that. You don't get quite the same capacity, the weight is similar to lead acid, and the life of the battery is less than lithium. It is somewhat a matter of economics, and a little gamble too. I hope to never have to replace my house batteries again. I expect to keep my rig for about 12 years, maybe longer if my health is good. With an AGM battery, I might have to replace them 2 or 3 times, and would have a little less capacity. The Serenity battery compartment is pretty tight so you are limited to what you can put in there. Good point to bring up though as some people may not be keeping their LTV more than 3 or 4 years.

israndy 02-12-2019 03:45 PM

Re: House Battery issues
 
Gads! 3-4 years and you just start to know all the things in your RV. My dad kept our Dodge Sightseer for 15+ years!! My 2007 is already 12 years old, but I got it in 2012 so I have a while yet to go, and really no intent on getting rid of it. More I am looking to add new house batteries again soon. On my second set of Costco's, but it is still quite a step up to lithiums, especially when mounted in the outdoor mount.

I have never needed to water my Costco 6v batts (though I check twice a year, probably my 3-stage charger upgrade helps), and the red-green pads do an excellent job cutting down on corrosion. My battery rack is different than you-alls, but I did need to clean off the corrosion when I got the RV and repaint. Still hose it out every spring to keep it from being a problem again. Mine has a way to bolt the batteries down that wasn't long enough for the 6v batteries, but I found an inverted nut and am a happy camper to this day. Especially with the new battery leads and the Xantrex Freedom XC 2000 watt/80 amp battery inverter/charger I added recently. Finally can microwave and run the Keurig or blow dryer, even after a night of running the heat w/o starting the engine or generator.

I wonder what the OP's issue was, though if it's really less than a year old, the dealer should fix whatever the issue is. I am sure that's why he hasn't posted again.

-Randy

rpgraves 03-05-2019 03:44 AM

Re: House Battery issues
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by slinkblot (Post 739860)
I have a 2018 Serenity, owned it exactly 1 year and the house batteries were completely corroded. Had them replaced at the RV Service where we bought it. We went on a short trip less than 2 weeks later and noticed issues again with the batteries (not fully charging). We waited until the weekend to clean out the van and there is absolutely no power! The batteries are dead! Connected the shore power and the Magnum Remote shows a Comm fault. We are baffled. Does anyone have any ideas? We have had MULTIPLE issues with the Serenity since we purchased it December 2017 NEW. On another battery note: Has anyone changed out the rails on the battery tray? In order to do anything with the batteries, they have to be completely removed! The tray doesn't extend enough to even add distilled water to the middle and far cells.

I have the same rig. 2018 Serenity with similar problems not holding a charge. Drain down quickly and we hardly use any lights, appliances, etc. Even with solar, the house batteries drain completely after seven days in driveway with battery disconnected activated. LTV says that is normal. I think itís BS.

hoosierrun 03-05-2019 12:02 PM

Re: House Battery issues
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by rpgraves (Post 747783)
I have the same rig. 2018 Serenity with similar problems not holding a charge. Drain down quickly and we hardly use any lights, appliances, etc. Even with solar, the house batteries drain completely after seven days in driveway with battery disconnected activated. LTV says that is normal. I think itís BS.


Since it is in your driveway, can't you use a socket adapter and plug the unit into a standard outlet to keep the batteries charged? That is what we ended up doing.

Be sure your inverter is turned off and the propane switch off if not needed. The propane switch is an electrically operated switch that consumes power all the time. Both Inverter and propane switch draw continuous current when left on.

rpgraves 03-05-2019 07:36 PM

Re: House Battery issues
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by hoosierrun (Post 747823)
Since it is in your driveway, can't you use a socket adapter and plug the unit into a standard outlet to keep the batteries charged? That is what we ended up doing.

Be sure your inverter is turned off and the propane switch off if not needed. The propane switch is an electrically operated switch that consumes power all the time. Both Inverter and propane switch draw continuous current when left on.

Yes, I could do that. The point is, I shouldnít have to. The solar should maintain the battery even with draws from steps, propane, stabilizers, etc.


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