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Old 09-19-2016, 01:30 PM   #1
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The simplest mod ever

I drilled four 1/4" holes in the bottom of my standard, plastic battery box to allow water to drain out. Whether you have the top on or not, water is going to get in through the air vents during wet driving conditions or extended rainy weather while in storage. Do yourself a favor and add drainage holes.
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Old 09-19-2016, 01:36 PM   #2
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And rot the steel supports with the acid that is created when the condensate mixes with the battery gases.


The plastic box has no drain holes for a reason!


Now, go and get yourself a new battery box to replace the one you ruined.
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Old 09-19-2016, 02:13 PM   #3
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And rot the steel supports with the acid that is created when the condensate mixes with the battery gases.


The plastic box has no drain holes for a reason!


Now, go and get yourself a new battery box to replace the one you ruined.
I disagree wholeheartedly. What happens when the box fills up? And the battery acid/water flows down the side of the box? Thus getting all over the rails?

If you drill the holes in the bottom of the box BETWEEN where it sits on the rails, this falls harmlessly to the ground below the trailer tongue, instead of making contact with any part of the trailer frame. Or allowing it to spill all over YOU as you fumble with removing the battery and box after it has filled with water.

I drilled holes in the bottom of my box the 2nd week I had it for just that reason.

Also, I may be mistaken, but most trailers employ 3 or 4-stage smart chargers, thus greatly reducing the incidence of "gassing" off or boiling over. Older converter/chargers had one charge stage. Once the battery was charged up, the charger would continue to supply a constant high voltage causing the battery to off-gas or boil over. Modern converter/chargers switch to a "maintenance" charge of 13.2V once the battery has been fully charged. Again, I may be wrong, but generally batteries won't gas off at a 13.2V charge level.
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Old 09-19-2016, 02:19 PM   #4
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I disagree wholeheartedly. What happens when the box fills up? And the battery acid/water flows down the side of the box? Thus getting all over the rails?

If you drill the holes in the bottom of the box BETWEEN where it sits on the rails, this falls harmlessly to the ground below the trailer tongue, instead of making contact with any part of the trailer frame. Or allowing it to spill all over YOU as you fumble with removing the battery and box after it has filled with water.

I drilled holes in the bottom of my box the 2nd week I had it for just that reason.

Also, I may be mistaken, but most trailers employ 3 or 4-stage smart chargers, thus greatly reducing the incidence of "gassing" off or boiling over. Older converter/chargers had one charge stage. Once the battery was charged up, the charger would continue to supply a constant high voltage causing the battery to off-gas or boil over. Modern converter/chargers switch to a "maintenance" charge of 13.2V once the battery has been fully charged. Again, I may be wrong, but generally batteries won't gas off at a 13.2V charge level.
x2, Bob, drilled my holes the same way you did. Water falls to the ground, not the frame.
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Old 09-19-2016, 02:34 PM   #5
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x2, Bob, drilled my holes the same way you did. Water falls to the ground, not the frame.
You are still sending contaminated water to the ground. Some condensate is normal. You will have 1/4" to 1/2" of water in the bottom of the battery box every year.

Part of routine maintenance is to pull the battery, safely dispose of the condensate and top up the water in the battery.

Just like we don't dump black water (grey water in most places, now) on the ground, dumping hydrogen sulfide contaminated water wherever you happen to be charging your battery is considered unacceptable.

Replace the boxes you've damaged. They are designed to contain the mess that a lead-acid battery creates.
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Old 09-19-2016, 02:49 PM   #6
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I've never had liquid in the bottom of my battery boxes to begin with. In most applications, my batteries are not enclosed at the top like they are in the camper, and even that battery isn't air tight... assuming this 'condensate' just evaporates into the air? Interesting topic though. If I had an inch of battery acid/superfund juice in my battery box, I'd assume I had a major problem with my battery. Learn something new every day. I can see how rain water could get in there while towing, I've just never seen or heard of 'battery juice' being a normal thing to see in your box.
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Old 09-19-2016, 02:50 PM   #7
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You are still sending contaminated water to the ground. Some condensate is normal. You will have 1/4" to 1/2" of water in the bottom of the battery box every year.

Part of routine maintenance is to pull the battery, safely dispose of the condensate and top up the water in the battery.

Just like we don't dump black water (grey water in most places, now) on the ground, dumping hydrogen sulfide contaminated water wherever you happen to be charging your battery is considered unacceptable.

Replace the boxes you've damaged. They are designed to contain the mess that a lead-acid battery creates.
Does the battery in your car do the same thing? Unless it's a Gel or AGM, then yes it does. Does anyone ever "recover contaminated water" from the battery tray in their vehicle's engine bay? I've never seen it done. And we're talking MILLIONS of automobiles out there on the road.

I would also contend that this "natural buildup of 1/4" to 1/2"" of battery condensate is not "normal".

Yes, I would concede that the box is designed to "contain" the mess, but under normal circumstances, there should not be a mess in the first place. When my box didn't have holes in it, it was bone dry unless it rained. Same with the box that my trolling motor battery lived in.
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Old 09-19-2016, 02:52 PM   #8
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I've never had liquid in the bottom of my battery boxes to begin with. In most applications, my batteries are not enclosed at the top like they are in the camper, and even that battery isn't air tight... assuming this 'condensate' just evaporates into the air? Interesting topic though. If I had an inch of battery acid/superfund juice in my battery box, I'd assume I had a major problem with my battery. Learn something new every day. I can see how rain water could get in there while towing, I've just never seen or heard of 'battery juice' being a normal thing to see in your box.
This is a good point. The holes in the bottom do not seal up the vents in the top. Any condensation leaves through the vent holes at the top as it is designed to do in the first place.
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Old 09-19-2016, 03:10 PM   #9
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This is a good point. The holes in the bottom do not seal up the vents in the top. Any condensation leaves through the vent holes at the top as it is designed to do in the first place.
That makes perfect sense to me. I was just looking at the battery box this weekend trying to decide if I need to do anything to it (getting ready to winterize soon)... I'm pulling my battery this winter anyway, but while it's out I was planning on adding a few weep holes (not over the frame obviously) just as a preventative measure. I think I will go ahead and do that.
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Old 09-19-2016, 03:47 PM   #10
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I drilled holes in the bottom of the battery box on the 26BH I recently sold to allow water to drain out. I will be getting my new 28BHBE near the end of Oct and drilling holes in the battery box will be one of the first things I do.

Note: I was out on a road trip about three years back and we had tons of blowing rain and needless to say the battery box filled up all they way to the top with water. The water was splashing all over the cables, top of the battery and spilling out of the box during travel. I immediately drilled holes in the bottom of the box to allow the water to escape.
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