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Battery Charging during storage


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 On my previous trailer I would pull the battery and store it in my garage.  I used a battery tender trickle charger to keep it charge. I was concerned the convert would fry the batteries and overcharge them in the course of several weeks. I am thinking the converter on the new Oliver is smart enough to act as a tender and I can just keep the trailer plugged into power. I have a 30 amp  plug already wired for backyard camping. Would this group agree? 

Bill Thomas 2019 Elite II Hull # 534

2020 Chevrolet Silverado HD 2500

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A great number of our owners who are lucky enough to have an available outlet keep their trailers plugged in while in storage. Some people even run the refrigerator,  and heaters between the hulls or in the cabin.

Others, like us,  depend on solar to keep theirs charged. 

Our charger converter is designed to step down to "float" when the battery is charged. I've yet to hear of anyone who had an overcharging issue.

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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The current systems in the Oliver's are designed to manage the battery charge appropriately while on continuous shore power. Depending on battery type, you may need to perform some sort of battery maintenance. My AGM's require nothing extra. While the Zamp equipment doesn't provide a ton of information, for most of us, its sufficient., and the onboard charge/power management system works in the background keeping things up to snuff. 

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Cindy,  Russell and  "Harley dog" . Home is our little farm near Winchester TN

2018 Oliver Legacy Elite II - 2018 GMC 2500 Duramax 

"Die young - As late as possible"

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  • 9 months later...
On 12/16/2019 at 4:47 PM, SeaDawg said:

A great number of our owners who are lucky enough to have an available outlet keep their trailers plugged in while in storage. Some people even run the refrigerator,  and heaters between the hulls or in the cabin.

Others, like us,  depend on solar to keep theirs charged. 

Our charger converter is designed to step down to "float" when the battery is charged. I've yet to hear of anyone who had an overcharging issue.

Last winter I kept our EII plugged into shore power all winter.  
I had winterized pipes but didn't disconnect batteries or use a tender.
In the spring all seemed OK...however, I just this week checked with Jason about this coming winter and storage of the 4 AGM's.
I told him I planned to leave the trailer plugged in all winter.  
Here was the core of his reply about how AGM's should be stored.

"Leaving the camper plugged in is not the best way to keep the batteries charged through long storage periods.  
It is better than not having them charging at all and just sitting there and discharging through the winter.  
The best method is to get a small battery maintainer that will actually top them off full and let them discharge down a bit and then bring them back up."

He also gave me this link to Oliver posts on this topic of Winterization.

Proper Winterization & Storage Tips

I thought the progressive industries converter/charger in the Oliver would actually do that for our batteries.

Comments?

 

 

 

 

2019 Elite II (Hull 505 - Galway Girl - August 7, 2019 Delivery) 
Tow Vehicle: 2018 F150 EcoBoost, King Ranch, FX4, MaxTow Package, 10 Speed, 3.55 Rear Axle
GVWR 7,000#, Payload Sticker 1557#, Truck GCWR=18,100# ,Tow capacity: 12,200#

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That's interesting input and makes sense. For lithium batteries, I've read in a few places (including I think here from the  LifeBlue rep) that it's best to store the batteries with roughly a 50% charge on them, and that if they're disconnected from any phantom loads that will maintain fairly well for quite a long time. It would be nice to be able to simply leave them connected with the charge controller set to "dormant/storage" such that it simply tops them off as needed to keep them at roughly that level of charge.

Edited by Jim_Oker

Jim and  Yanna, Woodinville WA

2004 Ford E250 camper conversion

Oliver Elite II December 2020 delivery

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4 hours ago, ctshort09 said:

thought the progressive industries converter/charger in the Oliver would actually do that for our batteries.

Comments?

That was my thought, too. That the charge wizard on on progressive dynamics drops into a float charge after the battery is unused for a period of time.

I've not actually observed that, since we're almost always powered by the solar panels.

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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49 minutes ago, SeaDawg said:

That was my thought, too. That the charge wizard on on progressive dynamics drops into a float charge after the battery is unused for a period of time.

I've not actually observed that, since we're almost always powered by the solar panels.

Perhaps @LiFeBlueBattery will comment on this.

Ray and Susan Huff

Elite II Twin "Pearl" - Hull#699; taking delivery December 7, 2020

2013 F350 3.2l diesel Super Duty 4x4 long bed crew cab

2017 Leisure Travel Van Unity Twin Bed (sold)

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2 hours ago, Jim_Oker said:

That's interesting input and makes sense. For lithium batteries, I've read in a few places (including I think here from the  LifeBlue rep) that it's best to store the batteries with roughly a 50% charge on them, and that if they're disconnected from any phantom loads that will maintain fairly well for quite a long time. It would be nice to be able to simply leave them connected with the charge controller set to "dormant/storage" such that it simply tops them off as needed to keep them at roughly that level of charge.

Hello Jim and others,

Jim, you are correct. The best method for storage of LiFeBlue Battery is discharge to about 50%. That should be above 13.1V. Disconnect from everything and check voltage with the Bluetooth App periodically while stored. Recharge if voltage drops below 13.0V. A battery disconnect switch (see image attached) can be connected to the positive terminal to make storing or servicing easy.

As far as the PD converters with built in charge wizard go, they take good care of lead acid batteries, be they flooded or AGM. After charging, every 21 hours, a high voltage boost charge happens to help dissolve lead sulfate that forms on the less active portions of the plates while in constant voltage Float mode. There is no need for any other chargers if you leave AC power on with the PD converter.

A PV solar system controller that is 3 stage can also maintain LA batteries pretty well. I recommend a high voltage equalization stage every 1-2 months while stored to reduce level 2 bonding of the lead sulfate. That happens when the amorphous powder begins to form a crystal structure. If this is not dealt with, the battery will become irrevocably damaged. You can tell the battery is damaged by bulging of the case and pushing upward around the positive post as shown in the second image.

Battery disconnect switch Perko.png

Heavy sulfation.jpg

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Larry Crutcher, GM
LiFeBlue Battery

sales@lifebluebattery.com

(920) LiFePO4
(920) 543-3764

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2 hours ago, SeaDawg said:

That was my thought, too. That the charge wizard on on progressive dynamics drops into a float charge after the battery is unused for a period of time.

I've not actually observed that, since we're almost always powered by the solar panels.

Here's the 4 stage routine that the PD Charge Wizard performs.

BOOST Mode When you first power on, full current until you reach 14.4 Volts.
NORMAL Mode 13.6 Volts after the Boost voltage is reached. (I'm not sure how long this cycle is)
STORAGE Mode 13.2 Volts – Maintains charge with minimal gassing or water loss.
EQUALIZATION Mode 14.4 Volts – Every 21 hours for a period of 15 minutes prevents battery stratification & sulfation. After the 15 minute of charge, the converter returns to CV Float mode that they call storage.

PD terms can be confusing.
"Boost" mode is usually called Bulk mode by other manufacturers. It is unregulated voltage and current.
"Normal" mode is like the Absorb mode but they use a reduced voltage. 
"Storage" mode is normally called Float mode.
"Equalization" mode is not equalizing batteries as the term is normally used. Equalizing flooded LA batteries is done by applying a high voltage charge of about 2.58 volts per cell while monitoring the specific gravity of the cells. This is very beneficial to flooded battery life. I also recommend a short (15 minute), daily equalization charge for AGM batteries for the longest life. All customers that have practiced this have had the longest lasting batteries, some over 13 years.

(Note: None of this is related to charging LiFeBlue batteries.)

Larry.

 

Larry Crutcher, GM
LiFeBlue Battery

sales@lifebluebattery.com

(920) LiFePO4
(920) 543-3764

Lifeblue-logo3-orange sm.jpg

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