Winter Battery Charging Problem!

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by oldflemo, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. oldflemo

    oldflemo Funster

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    Hi we keep our MH in a secure storage site away from home. Unfortunately there is no EHU possibility there and in this continual poor weather the solar panels are obviously ineffective in keeping the Leisure batteries charged. Like others have I'm sure, they are located under the front seats and are quite awkward to remove as the seats and swivel plates require to be removed first.

    My question then is this;- Are there any gizmos available on the market which can be charged at home then taken to the MH and recharge the Leisure batteries from it?
    Thanks again
    Ian
     
  2. Boringfrog

    Boringfrog Funster

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    I removed both seats, both with swivel bases, 4 allen bolts 10 minute job. I must admit the seats are heavy, but I don't think there is any easier way.
     
  3. JeanLuc

    JeanLuc Funster

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    I have a 130 watt solar panel and it keeps 2 habitation batteries topped up at this time of year. Obviously, you need to start with them fully charged first. I checked them yesterday and the voltage was 14.2 v. It has not been plugged in to mains since November.
     
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  4. andy63

    andy63 Funster

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    Hi Ian as above.. It's a matter of removing 4 or 5 bolts... Once you have done it a time or two it's no hardship..
    That's on my transit anyway... worth looking..
    Thought the solar would do something even in winter if panel is clear of snow leaves etc..
    Ta Andy. .
     
  5. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    It depends how much sun the location gets really. Where our van is kept on our drive the low sun in December/January is blocked from the panel by buildings for enough of the day to mean that it doesn't cope on its own (especially with all the clouds and rain we've had recently). Luckily, being on the drive, I can plug it in to the mains when I need to.
     
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  6. oldflemo

    oldflemo Funster

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    Thought the solar would do something even in winter if panel is clear of snow leaves etc..
    Ta Andy. .[/QUOTE]
    Hi Andy the solar panels have provided over this extremely cloudy winter so far a very limited amount of charge and having just replaced all the batteries in the MH I just hoped there was a bit of kit on the market I had no knowledge of but it does not seem to be the case lol
    Regards
    Ian
     
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  7. andy63

    andy63 Funster

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    Hi Andy the solar panels have provided over this extremely cloudy winter so far a very limited amount of charge and having just replaced all the batteries in the MH I just hoped there was a bit of kit on the market I had no knowledge of but it does not seem to be the case lol
    Regards
    Ian[/QUOTE]
    As @GJH has said.. depends on whether the panel gets any worthwhile light I suppose... mine isn't in storage and in street the battery's always show a healthy voltage...
    Can't think of anything other than visits to run engine,or having a Genny you can run for a bit while you visit...
    Andy
     
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  8. daveandsan

    daveandsan Funster

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    Hi Ian, how far away from you is your storage? Even though my solar panel seems to cope with topping up batteries at this time of year I still like to take the motorhome out for a 20-30 mile run every 2-3 weeks because I don't think it does it any good to leave them standing for to long. This also helps keep the batteries topped up.
    Dave.
     
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  9. HymerB544

    HymerB544 Funster

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    Hi, do you really need a gizmo? I ask because we also keep our van stored securely, some 12 miles from home. Admittedly we use it at least once a month through the Winter, but sometimes it stays unused for two to three weeks. Just to be on the safe side, I drive over at least once a fortnight to check the van, including checking the state of the two leisure batteries and of course the base vehicle battery. Occasionally I will take it for a twenty mile spin down the A30, but more often than not, I don't need to do anything. But that wasn't always the case. Until I learned from fellow Hymer MHF members that there is a leisure battery isolator switch on the Electroblock, I used to bring the van home every week or so in Winter and hook it up to the house supply. Now I find that with the isolator switched to "batterie aus" when I leave the van in storage, the charge holds very well........but I still check it as often as before!
     
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  10. oldflemo

    oldflemo Funster

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    Hi Dave It is only the Leisure batteries I am concerned about. I too take the MH out every two to three weeks so no problem with the engine battery but running the MH provides nothing for the Leisure batteries
    Ian
     
  11. JeanLuc

    JeanLuc Funster

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    It should do: the alternator should charge the leisure batteries as well as the starter battery when the engine is running.
     
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  12. oldflemo

    oldflemo Funster

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    Hi I thought it would do too but I'm afraid on the Lunar Roadstar you only can charge the batteries via EHU or Solar. There is total electrical separation of the engine and habitation systems
    Regards
    Ian
     
  13. musson

    musson Funster

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    Try roadpro or someone like them, may be something or way to link batteries as other MHs
     
  14. irnbru

    irnbru Funster Life Member

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    Why would the leisure batteries run down a lot if nothing is getting used.?
     
  15. jo-ca

    jo-ca Funster

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    Cold weather for one
     
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  16. Don Quixote

    Don Quixote Funster

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    When you check the batteries was the sun down and the solar panel providing no charge? - Many MH owners assume that because they have a solar panel the batteries will be fine as they see 14.4 volts mid afternoon and assume their batteries are fully charged.
     
  17. Boringfrog

    Boringfrog Funster

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    That doesn't sound right to me?
     
  18. Lenny HB

    Lenny HB Funster

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    That does not sound right, never come across a Motorhome that does not have a split charge relay of some type to charge the leisure batteries when the engine is running.
    As others have said solar should keep the batteries top up in storage even at this time of year. Last van I had an 80 watt solar panel never plugged the van into mains. Current van I have 200 watts of solar, just fitted a new regulator so I have been monitoring it. With the cloud and rain this year output have been a lot lower virtually nothing today, but most days a couple of amps an hour or two either side of midday.
     
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  19. Don Quixote

    Don Quixote Funster

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    Guy's UK sun this time of year it is not possible to get 1 or 2 amps per hour constant. If you have a regulator that show the amps watch it and you will see it showing .6 amp then 1 amp, then 2 amps then .2 amp and so on this is not 2 amps per hour................... Therefore at the end of a UK day you might and I say might have put 6 to 10 amps back after the short daylight.
     
  20. oldflemo

    oldflemo Funster

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    I agree however it has been proved to be the case after I had Marquis Durham carry out extensive electrical tests to check the systems out.They claimed the Leisure batteries were being drawn down by the engine battery. This was proved to be erroneous and also conversely we had it proved that only on EHU or solar were the Leisure batteries being charged
     
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