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Old 09-05-2018, 07:11 PM   #1
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Batteries, charging etc.

Hi all,

I have an 212qbw (SLX Rocky Mountain version). I have a few questions regarding the batteries. Mine just died (sulfation I suspect from letting it completely discharge for a long period) and I chose to replace them with a couple awesome batteries I bought at Walmart. Now there’s a few things I’ve done historically that I wonder about regarding solar, shore and generator power that I’m questioning to ensure these batteries stay healthy. My questions aren’t related to the death of the original batteries.

My unit is a 2018 but so far I know nothing about the converter/charger.

1 - can I overcharge my batteries if I leave shore power connected at the house. I’m guessing yes as the converter probably isn’t smart enough to stop charging and it’ll burn off electrolyte?
2 - If I leave my solar panels connnected can they overcharge the system? Guessing no as each had its own charge controller (coleman 40w x 2)
3 - when I run the generator for an hour or two when making breakfast or whatever I need 120v power for should I be concerned about overcharging? I’m guessing this is valid based on #1 as it’s again shore power effectively.

The answer is probably to upgrade my converter controller and add an isolation switch instead of having to pull the 30amp fuse to remove parasitic loads and then I can disconnect the batteries when they’re full and I’m on shore power.
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Old 09-05-2018, 07:20 PM   #2
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Hi.
#1 No. Assuming the converter/charger is the standard WIFO. I leave ours plugged in all the time.
#2 I don't know enough about solar. I'm sure you'll hear from others.
#3 No. Like you said, it's effectively on shore power.
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Old 09-06-2018, 07:02 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lordendo View Post
Hi all,

I have an 212qbw (SLX Rocky Mountain version). I have a few questions regarding the batteries. Mine just died (sulfation I suspect from letting it completely discharge for a long period) and I chose to replace them with a couple awesome batteries I bought at Walmart. Now there’s a few things I’ve done historically that I wonder about regarding solar, shore and generator power that I’m questioning to ensure these batteries stay healthy. My questions aren’t related to the death of the original batteries.

My unit is a 2018 but so far I know nothing about the converter/charger.

Can you look at the unit and give us the make/model of the converter. We can then give you information on what you can expect.



1 - can I overcharge my batteries if I leave shore power connected at the house. I’m guessing yes as the converter probably isn’t smart enough to stop charging and it’ll burn off electrolyte?
See my firs request
2 - If I leave my solar panels connnected can they overcharge the system? Guessing no as each had its own charge controller (coleman 40w x 2)
Since they have charge controllers your batteries will be ok
3 - when I run the generator for an hour or two when making breakfast or whatever I need 120v power for should I be concerned about overcharging? I’m guessing this is valid based on #1 as it’s again shore power effectively.
Like you said, request #1, but I would say you will not have an issue. SOLAR controllers will also work with the generator running

The answer is probably to upgrade my converter controller and add an isolation switch instead of having to pull the 30amp fuse to remove parasitic loads and then I can disconnect the batteries when they’re full and I’m on shore power.
A battery disconnect switch is highly recommended for those times when you are storing the TT between outings. The SOLAR controllers connect directly to the batteries so if you throw the disconnect switch they will continue to be charged by the SOLAR panels. Understand one thing, if you throw the battery disconnect switch and you are connected to shore power, your batteries will not be charging.

You need to get a Digital Voltage Display to monitor your batteries. It doesn't have to be an expensive one, see our inexpensive model you may want to start with.
https://www.jaycoowners.com/forums/f...vel-32652.html

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Old 09-06-2018, 08:38 AM   #4
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. . . Understand one thing, if you throw the battery disconnect switch and you are connected to shore power, your batteries will not be charging . . .
Not necessarily true. Not all battery disconnect switches are wired the same.

Another poster posted this quote from their Jayco Manual:

"The Battery Disconnect switch is typically located in an enclosed exterior compartment. The style of the disconnect switch may vary per model. This switch does not shut off all power, but only shuts off the 12VDC power to the main 12V fuse panel, and the interior of the vehicle. Batteries can still be trickle charged by the converter, and there will still be power to some devices."

Our '18 Jayco Eagle battery disconnect switch operates this way. The battery disconnect switch on our trailer only disconnects power from the 12 vdc power center fuse panel. The converter will continue to charge the battery even if the battery disconnect switch is turned off. Also, high current 12 vdc devices such as electric stabilizer jacks, slide motors, etc., are typically fused separately from the 12 vdc power center fuse panel, and as such, continue to be powered even with the battery disconnect switch turned off.

I believe it would be more appropriate for Jayco to call switches wired this way a "12 VDC Fuse Panel Power Disconnect Switch" instead of a "Battery Disconnect Switch".
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Old 09-06-2018, 09:35 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by CampNow View Post
Not necessarily true. Not all battery disconnect switches are wired the same.

Another poster posted this quote from their Jayco Manual:

"The Battery Disconnect switch is typically located in an enclosed exterior compartment. The style of the disconnect switch may vary per model. This switch does not shut off all power, but only shuts off the 12VDC power to the main 12V fuse panel, and the interior of the vehicle. Batteries can still be trickle charged by the converter, and there will still be power to some devices."

Our '18 Jayco Eagle battery disconnect switch operates this way. The battery disconnect switch on our trailer only disconnects power from the 12 vdc power center fuse panel. The converter will continue to charge the battery even if the battery disconnect switch is turned off. Also, high current 12 vdc devices such as electric stabilizer jacks, slide motors, etc., are typically fused separately from the 12 vdc power center fuse panel, and as such, continue to be powered even with the battery disconnect switch turned off.

I believe it would be more appropriate for Jayco to call switches wired this way a "12 VDC Fuse Panel Power Disconnect Switch" instead of a "Battery Disconnect Switch".
And for the longest time they have been referred to in the industry and by many owners as the Salesman's switch.
In our MH it's just inside the coach door down low intended to be the first thing on and last thing off when entering or exiting.
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Old 09-06-2018, 10:41 AM   #6
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......The answer is probably to upgrade my converter controller and add an isolation switch instead of having to pull the 30amp fuse to remove parasitic loads and then I can disconnect the batteries when theyíre full and Iím on shore power.
In my reply, I was referring to the post made by the person doing the work. He was thinking of installing a Battery Disconnect Switch. On TT's you install the battery disconnect switch on either side of the battery, for a COMPLETE disconnect.
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Old 09-06-2018, 02:50 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Lordendo View Post
. . . My unit is a 2018 but so far I know nothing about the converter/charger.

1 - can I overcharge my batteries if I leave shore power connected at the house. Iím guessing yes as the converter probably isnít smart enough to stop charging and itíll burn off electrolyte?
2 - If I leave my solar panels connnected can they overcharge the system? Guessing no as each had its own charge controller (coleman 40w x 2)
3 - when I run the generator for an hour or two when making breakfast or whatever I need 120v power for should I be concerned about overcharging? Iím guessing this is valid based on #1 as itís again shore power effectively

The answer is probably to upgrade my converter controller . . .
Before you upgrade/replace your converter/charger it might be worth checking the charge voltage over the course of a day or so first. You might be surprised to find out your current converter/charger (even if it's a WFCO) is actually "smart enough" to prevent overcharging.

Your converter/charger (or solar charge controller) should drop its charge voltage down to 13.2 volts (float mode) once the battery is 90-95% charged. The actual time it takes to do so is dependent on charge current and how depleted the battery was before charging started. If the charge voltage does not eventually drop down to 13.2 volts, and remains at 13.6 volts (absorption mode) or 14.4 (bulk mode) for days (or worst case, weeks) at a time, then overcharging will occur. FWIW, no damage will occur to a battery even if it's left charging at 13.2 volts (float mode) for years at a time.

There's no chance of overcharging the batteries in 1 or 2 hours while charging with a properly operating, 3/4-stage RV converter, regardless whether you're on generator or shore power.
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Old 09-06-2018, 03:01 PM   #8
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In my reply, I was referring to the post made by the person doing the work. He was thinking of installing a Battery Disconnect Switch. On TT's you install the battery disconnect switch on either side of the battery, for a COMPLETE disconnect.
Yes, I agree, common sense says a "Battery Disconnect Switch" should offer a "COMPLETE" disconnect. Unfortunately, not everyone, including Jayco, is aware of this common sense approach

My post was simply acknowledging that many Jayco OEM battery disconnect switches do not provide a complete disconnect. For those folks faithfully using their Jayco OEM "Battery Disconnect Switch" and still finding their batteries discharged or dead, it's kind of a helpful thing to know.
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Old 09-06-2018, 04:03 PM   #9
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Yes, I agree, common sense says a "Battery Disconnect Switch" should offer a "COMPLETE" disconnect. Unfortunately, not everyone, including Jayco, is aware of this common sense approach

My post was simply acknowledging that many Jayco OEM battery disconnect switches do not provide a complete disconnect. For those folks faithfully using their Jayco OEM "Battery Disconnect Switch" and still finding their batteries discharged or dead, it's kind of a helpful thing to know.
In total agreement regarding JAYCO. JAYCO should be putting a notice (bright red ) on their battery disconnect switch, that it is not a "TOTAL" disconnect. I believe JAYCO is protecting themselves from a legal disaster by not fully disconnecting the CO detector. If JAYCO includes the CO detector as part of the disco switch, and someone forgets, for some reason, to turn on the disco switch and dies from an LP gas leak overnight, JAYCO would spend a lot of time in court and of course the UNIVERSAL catch all... "Wrongful Death Suit".

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Old 09-07-2018, 06:44 PM   #10
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Lorendo,

I have the same model, edition, and year unit as you do.

My unit has a WFCO WF-8735P for the power converter with panel which is supposed to be a smart charger converter.

I found that the unit was pretty much always staying at 13.6 volts whenever it was plugged into shore power when I was at the rv parks or plugged in at storage and never dropped to 13.2 for the float charge. This has been reported by others who have a WFCO unit. Plus the unit does not allow you to manually select a different charging stage if so needed.

In remedy, I had a Progressive Dynamics 9245C Charger/converter installed up front in the storage area as close to the batteries as I could. It actually charges and maintains the battery as recommended including dropping to 13.2 when the batteries are fully charged. Others have completely replaced the entire WFCO 8735P with the direct replacement unit by Progressive Dynamics.

Agree that you should find out what stages your charger/controller is actually going through and what voltages it is generating before before deciding what actions to take.
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Old 09-12-2018, 12:12 PM   #11
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Awesome thread! Thanks for the posts everyone.

I intend to continue investigating. So far what I've figured out regarding the incident is as follows;

1 - the old batteries were fine I think. I've charged them up but not totally sure what I'm going to do with them just yet.
2 - there is about a 1/3 of an amp parasitic draw which the dealer says is normal. That might have been enough to drain it completely when it was in storage for a month or so....still seems odd.
3 - I had pulled my brake switch like a bone head when I was dry camping the weekend I was struggling with the power so much......enough said there.....mystery solved.

Still - good info and options here. I'll certainly dig into my controller a bit to understand it and if it meets my needs or if an upgrade is best. I still think I'll pick up a disconnect switch from Lordco or somewhere and install it for ease of use during the summer months. I think I'll rig up something quick and easy so I can use my solar panels and secure them.
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Old 09-12-2018, 12:15 PM   #12
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No,no, and no would not change anything!We have similar set up in our fiver three years no issues!
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Old 09-12-2018, 03:16 PM   #13
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All good info. I just replaced my 2 year old battery as it was DEAD. We have a 2016 WhiteHawk 33 RSKS and it has no "kill" or disconnect switch. 18 days later, one dead battery.
First: replaced the battery (Duracell - done)
Secondly: researching the COMPLETE disconnect switch that mounts to the battery negative post
Thirdly: researching the 3-stage convertor that will "trickle" charge when connected to shore power to replace my existing unit.
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:21 AM   #14
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. . . there is about a 1/3 of an amp parasitic draw which the dealer says is normal. That might have been enough to drain it completely when it was in storage for a month or so....still seems odd . . .
Dealer is correct, .3 amps is pretty typical. That's enough to run one battery down to a 50% charge (minimum charge for maximum battery longevity) in about 4-6 days, or two batteries down to 50% in 8-12 days---definitely not gonna make it a "month or so". If you take the time to pull fuses you can get that parasitic down slightly lower. Until you get a disconnect switch installed certainly nothing wrong with just disconnecting the batteries at the terminal(s).
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Old 09-13-2018, 10:26 AM   #15
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I use a marine grade switch

I use a marine grade switch mounted on my battery box. It was easy to hook up and saves my batteries on my TT
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Old 10-23-2018, 06:22 PM   #16
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Very good information here, and I need to find out where my battery disconnect switch is located in my 212QBW. If I can disconnect it from my circuit board, it would save much power bleeding.


As far as solar goes, the 20amp max solar convertor allows you to throw on a good amount of solar panels. I only wish they had included a visible charge controller so I could see how it is functioning.
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