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Old 02-16-2018, 01:08 PM   #1
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Best Way To Keep Batteries Charged

Whatís the best way if you store your trailer in an area that doesnít have access to 110v?

During the trip the generator will charge to 90% and ideally one can leave at 90% charge. Do you just leave in storage at 90% and charge back to 100% by bringing the trailer home the night before and plugging it in? I would think itís bad for the battery to sit at 90% charge.

I have read itís good to charge back to 100% every 10 discharge cycles or so.

Could pull the batteries each time and take hoe to charge but thatís backbreaking.

Any ideas? I canít be the only one with this issue. Or am I the only one who has thought it through and cares?
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Old 02-16-2018, 01:12 PM   #2
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I have a small solar panel that hooks to batteries and has kept them charged. also have a disconnect switch on them, so things in trailer don't pull on them. obviously you need sunlight where you are storing your trailer.
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Old 02-16-2018, 02:38 PM   #3
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A small portable solar panel (40W) that I pop onto the roof of the TT in the storage yard. This keeps the battery topped up and ready to go all summer long.
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Old 02-16-2018, 02:46 PM   #4
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A small portable solar panel (40W) that I pop onto the roof of the TT in the storage yard. This keeps the battery topped up and ready to go all summer long.


Would you mind sharing a link to the one you have? Does it have a charge controller?


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Old 02-17-2018, 03:48 PM   #5
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Sure,

The panel I have is Coleman branded in Canada, but I'm fairly certain it is not branded Coleman in the US, although I have seen what appears to be the same panel and controller on Amazon.com, just with a different brand. I would take a look at the photo at Canadian Tire here Coleman 40W Folding Solar Panel | Canadian Tire and compare to what you find online at Amazon.

This is solid (non-flex, crystalline) panel and works well for us. I get great sun at the storage lot so don't have to move it, it slides right into the storage bay on top of my bins, and it is easy to move around the campsite when wilderness camping to keep it in the sun. I just used a couple of zip screws to attach the controller (included) to the side of my battery box, with the leads hanging out the lid.

And don't let the price scare you. These are regularly on sale at 70% off; a bit less than C$90.00 - about US$70.00

ETA: couldn't find it on Amazon this time, but there are ton on eBay right now, pretty much all shipping from Canadian sources.
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Old 02-17-2018, 05:14 PM   #6
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90% isn't terrible for storage. Guess it depends on the voltage that translates to.
I also store my trailer where it doesn't have 110v power, so I'm sure my batteries are less than 100% when I park it usually. I disconnect the batteries and don't worry too much. I am quite careful about plugging it into shore power at home overnight before I leave for most trips though.

If for some reason I suspect the batteries aren't fully charged, I do run my generator on day 1 of a trip. If I have started with a full charge I usually wait until day 3.
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Old 02-17-2018, 06:12 PM   #7
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a wet battery looses approx. 1% of its storage capacity a day, so you can count the days for re-charging. A dead battery will freeze and if it goes below the 11.9 Volt mark for a longer time, the hold charge quality of the battery will go down.
The saying: 'maintain it or loose it'
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Old 02-17-2018, 06:45 PM   #8
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Whatís a good deal/place to get a 100W solar panel and charge controller that I can expand up to 400w at a later time?


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Old 02-18-2018, 07:44 PM   #9
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When parking our travel trailer for months I installed a disconnect switch. I just flip the switch when parking and when I go back could be months I close the switch and the batterys are still charged. Then when I would take the trailer home I would plug it in and charge the batterys up.
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Old 02-19-2018, 02:17 PM   #10
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When parking our travel trailer for months I installed a disconnect switch. I just flip the switch when parking and when I go back could be months I close the switch and the batterys are still charged. Then when I would take the trailer home I would plug it in and charge the batterys up.
This is a very commonly used strategy and it works great for most people.
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