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Old 01-23-2012, 01:04 PM   #1
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Battery

I am sitting in a campground area in Yuma and am hooked up to shore power.

This morning I noticed a strong foul smell and at first I thought it was sewage and then propane, but the smell was getting worse and then I remembered the smell of an overheated battery and sure enough my battery was very hot to the touch and smelling badly. I promptly unhooked it and the last I checked the battery was starting to cool. Is there a battery expert who might give me some free advise to what I may be looking at? I have not checked out the inline fuse so see if it is dead.
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Old 01-23-2012, 02:55 PM   #2
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Sorry, I'm not a battery expert. But I'm sure one will check in shortly. I'm curious and will follow this to see what the issue is.
In the mean time, I'd suspect the converter is trying to overcharge your batt. I don't think low water would cause this, but you might check anyway. If it's low could still be the converter has cooked the water out of it. I'm not sure how to diagnose a charging issue.
I think leaving the batt disconnected is the best choice. And I'd keep a close eye on the converter as well. Have you checked its temp too?
Another thought. Any other new elec probs (TV, micro, fridge, A/C, radio)? Check with some of the other campers to see if they've had any odd elec probs (thinking over/under voltage). Do you have a surge protector (if "yes", what kind)?
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Old 01-23-2012, 02:57 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Albertaguy View Post
I am sitting in a campground area in Yuma and am hooked up to shore power.

This morning I noticed a strong foul smell and at first I thought it was sewage and then propane, but the smell was getting worse and then I remembered the smell of an overheated battery and sure enough my battery was very hot to the touch and smelling badly. I promptly unhooked it and the last I checked the battery was starting to cool. Is there a battery expert who might give me some free advise to what I may be looking at? I have not checked out the inline fuse so see if it is dead.
I'm no expert but if it's not a sealed battery, make sure there is (distilled) water in it.
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:50 PM   #4
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Be Glad

A friend of mine had a battery short out cells internaly and the battery exploded. ( A strong argument for having your battery mounted outside..three stooges style -> things only blow up ). His was in a jeep wrangler a burnt up the hood. First thing is to check for shorts in the wring prior to applying power.
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:05 PM   #5
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Use a voltage meter to check the voltage output of your converter. Check between the disconnected wires at battery. Converter charge output to battery should be 13.5 volts.
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Old 01-24-2012, 07:37 AM   #6
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Some converters can output as high as 14.4V upon intital start up with the new three stage charging. Anything above that and your probaly going to need to replace the converter/charger. Some of the older models have three stage "smart charging" upgrades available instead of having to replace the entire unit.
In case you don't already know the converter is mounted behind and within your fuse/breaker panel.
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:17 AM   #7
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Some converters can output as high as 14.4V upon intital start up with the new three stage charging. Anything above that and your probaly going to need to replace the converter/charger. Some of the older models have three stage "smart charging" upgrades available instead of having to replace the entire unit.
In case you don't already know the converter is mounted behind and within your fuse/breaker panel.
Our 2010 22FB has a Progressive Dynamics Converter which has "Charge Wizard" built-in that does just what you described.
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:45 AM   #8
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I stopped in at a RV repair place here in Yuma and the guy asked me if I had checked my water level. I had not as I had disconnected the battery and it was still too hot to check it out, I guess I was lucky I caught it in time.

I then checked my battery and found that 3 of the cells were dry or nearly empty, my other 3 cells were, one dry and the other two low.

I checked out the cost of batteries and found the cheapest for a deep cycle battery was at Walmart and they will check out the battery and re-cycle if I have to buy a new one, plus a warranty that is good in Canada when I go home, all for 68 bucks.

This will be the 3rd battery I have gone through since I bought this rig new in 07 and I don't get out that often except for the 2 years that I have spent here in Yuma and my battery is taken out and placed on battery tender with periodic checks for water levels and filling with distilled water when needed.
I almost walked away from the deal when the dealer wanted to charge me for a battery and I now find that the last battery which was replaced after one year was a reconditioned battery which I never noticed until yesterday and I think the first battery was also a reconditioned one as they were both the same colour with no markings on who manufactured it. I know it is too late for any compensation but I will be letting them know when I get home.
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:49 AM   #9
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Some converters can output as high as 14.4V upon intital start up with the new three stage charging. Anything above that and your probaly going to need to replace the converter/charger. Some of the older models have three stage "smart charging" upgrades available instead of having to replace the entire unit.
In case you don't already know the converter is mounted behind and within your fuse/breaker panel.
Thanks for your info as to where the converter is. I hope I don't have to find out how much a new converter is although I do have an extended warranty that I have never used.
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Old 01-24-2012, 09:09 AM   #10
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If you've been checking the water levels it seems odd that they'd be dry so quick. Have you checked the charging output? I'm suspicious that your converter was trying to overcharge the batt and caused the cells to dry up. It's probably more complicated than just checking the voltage of the charger, I think the voltage will go down as the battery charges. Experts?
Keep posting! Good luck!
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