How to Charge Rv Battery from Vehicle; Compatibility of Batteries

RV battery is the most vital component of the internal configuration of your system. Every electrical thing inside the vehicle from vent fan to HVAC system to your refrigerator, everything needs RV battery to power.

Significant knowledge about the RV batteries is important to understand its functions and operational system. Usually, two separate systems comprise the RV battery: one is a 120-volt AC system and the other is a 12-volt DC system. In the case of driving a motorhome coach, a regular battery will be there to start the engine similar to the normal passenger car.

The 120-volt device is the most efficient battery that is used majorly to operate large machines such as your rooftop air conditioner or your refrigerator. To run this battery, you need to be connected with the power inverter or use an electricity generator that is able to charge such a high-capacity battery. This 120-volt battery charges while you are driving or running a generator. There are different varieties of RV batteries that includes

Deep cycle batteries are the one that works exactly like the batteries in golf carts and boats. These are a type of lead-acid battery. It works on the same principle as a car battery to generate and maintain power. The only difference is the amount of current, a deep cycle battery generates a stable current for a longer time whereas, car batteries generate a larger amount of current. Different subtypes are available of deep cycle batteries such as flooded wet-cell batteries, absorbed glass mat (AGM) batteries, and gel-type batteries.

Lithium batteries are an alternate option for a lead-acid battery, including the deep cycle batteries with the most recent RVs. The majority of the campers switch to lithium batteries which are a bit expensive but the advantages it provides are worth the cost. Lightweight and smaller than other batteries and does not need the old traditional maintenance as other batteries. The battery life of lithium batteries is much longer than other batteries as they complete 5000 cycles which is significantly more than 400 cycles off leaf acid battery.

Usually, vehicles used for recreational purposes are kept for a long time during winters which cause the battery to discharge naturally, and if not taken care the battery will eventually lose its abilities. If you take care of the battery and regularly charge it then it will not get affected by the winters as the charged battery cannot freeze.

While purchasing an RV battery, people often told customers that their RV battery bank will get charged with the vehicle so they can stay without a generator or electrical plug for some time. A 7-way connector easily charges the trailer batteries if it is directly connected to the main operational battery of the vehicle.

There are certain methods of charging an RV battery while driving. Implementation of the right method at right time will be helpful in peaceful driving. A mentioned earlier, the RV battery is a 12V power unit. The deep-cycle unit of the RV battery supplies enough energy to operate all the electrical appliances and HVAC systems. This 12V battery is enough to keep your vehicle going. An alternative of solar power can be used but in case of an emergency, a battery has to be there for quick recharging.

How to charge an RV battery from the vehicle?

To charge an RV battery from the vehicle you need some accessories along. A voltage controlled-relay (VCR), Anderson plugs, and high amperage cables are required to charge the RV battery while driving. Begin the process with VCR by arranging connections in a way that when the relay disconnects it immediately parallels the start and auxiliary batteries. Just when the relay gets disconnected the two batteries will remain side by side.

When the engine of the vehicle turns off, the relay will activate. Switching off the engine will disconnect the batteries of the vehicle and the voltage will go back to the default stage.

Via plugs and cables, connect the RV battery to the vehicle‘s battery. Good quality hardware should be used so that they can handle a large amount of energy, they will be able to build reliable connections and minimize the voltage drop. The quality of plugs and cables also matters to make the charging process effective. High-quality cables and plugs speed up the charging process and help to make the most of the RV battery.

Maintaining a strong and secure connection eliminates the chances of disconnection when driving an RV on uneven surfaces. If the connection between the cables and batteries is not reliable then the RV battery will easily get depleted.

Short circuits are another possible cause of losing battery power. To avoid such incidents, it is suggested to use rubber boots to fall on the breakers. The risk of fire hazards can be prevented by affixing a 50amp auto reset circuit breaker to the positive terminal of the battery. Make sure to not overcharge the RV battery while driving, add distilled water to suppress the excess amount of electrolytes.

The Right Way to Store the RV Battery

The right way to store RV battery is essential to understand after knowing the correct ways to charge them. The correct way of storage will maximize the charge. As people do not take care of their RV in winters, the batteries got deteriorated easily. Proper maintenance of the battery keeps it working at its highest capacity and expands the life of the battery.

There are certain tips that help you in storing RV batteries in the right way. At first recharge the battery completely to 100 percent and then release the connectors disconnecting it from the vehicle. If left associated with the vehicle, parasitic drainage will occur as variety of vehicle’s components keeps draining the battery including alarm, watch, stereo, and more, even when the battery of switched off.

If there is some evidence of rust in the battery, then consider removing it. If left there when corroded, the rust will spread causing damage to vital parts. Terminals should be cleaned properly using the wired brushes. Add distilled water after checking the levels of electrolytes. When the battery is charged, the water penetrates, keep the level below 90 percent to avoid overflow.

Disconnect the battery and store it in a cool dry spot. The storage location’s temperature should be between 32 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. When storing a battery for an extended period of time, make sure to check it on a regular basis. To keep it operational, recharge it at least once a week. If the battery unexpectedly gets frozen, don’t try to instantly recharge it. Attempting to charge it will trigger it to burst, so you should take it to a mechanic.

RV battery is a great option when driving a coach. It powers all the appliances of the coach. A bulk of the energy is used by kitchen appliances like microwaves, coffee makers, and toasters. The air conditioner also utilizes a large amount of energy and only a coach battery is not enough to operate these appliances. RV battery is design to operate for a longer time so you can use the facilities while driving a coach. If the energy gets drained, the RV battery can be charged from a vehicle on the go which makes traveling easier.  



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This is William Parker, an RV lover, and an adventurer - in short, Beaver Instincts. I am also a professional content creator who knows fairly well how to compare different products, services, and sites. Announcement: Invest in Our Blog to get up to $20K per month in passive income. Email

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