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Old 08-28-2010, 08:18 PM   #1
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Dropping the house battery

Has anyone out there dropped the 4d House battery? Other than using a floor jack, are there any secrets or tips I need to know? Like how much slack is in the cables? Any special tools needed to remove the cables?

I hit a "little" rock on my last trip and bent the angle iron bracket. The battery is jammed up tight to the underside of the floor now. I tried bending the frame back down but there is nothing I can use to gain purchase with the tools at hand.

Don't ask me how I did this without taking out my axle or underfloor storage box. (Not a mark on either one) I swear that rock wasn't there, it just popped up.


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Old 08-29-2010, 09:40 AM   #2
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Re: Dropping the house battery

I can't help you with getting the battery out but a thought on how you might fix it afterward. I once bent one our our nerf bars (once climbed a "motorcycle jump without problems but while on the top, half of the weight of the entire van was on one of the nerf bars which gave it a very nice arched look.)

After trying to ignore the new look for a while, I finally came up with an easy fix. I took the nerf bar off and reinstalled it upside down and then put a bottle jack under the curve. With a piece of 2x4 between the jack and the bottom of the nerf bar, I simply jacked up the van until the curve was gone. Then reinstalled the nerf bar right side up.
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Old 08-29-2010, 11:16 AM   #3
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Re: Dropping the house battery

An ATV/Motorcycle jack is priceless. I have a writeup of doubling my 4D batteries around somewhere. The bolts on the driver side are outside the frame, passenger side inside. If you take the passenger side off, the metal is bent and will hang on the frame, whereas the driver side hold it up. Taking it out you can go sideways towards the driver side, or tip it down off the passenger side (probably, I didn't do that).

The battery cables should be long enough to drop completely before disconnecting them, and you should come up with a better way to secure the battery- it used to be zip tied in by the handles, but the ties have probably broken from age by now.
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Old 09-11-2010, 10:43 PM   #4
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Re: Dropping the house battery

Last weekend I dropped the battery and repaired the bent frame. I rented a transmission jack for $35. It was a breeze with the jack. And, oh by the way, the cables are not long enough to lower the battery much more than 6-inches. (Really glad I used a transmission jack when I found that out.)

I used Jack's method of straightening out the bent frame. But even with 2.5 tons on that angle iron I still could not get it 100% straight.

In another post, John K wrote that besides the zip ties, there was sealant installed between the frame and the battery to secure it. SMB used silicone sealant on three sides (nothing on the 4th). The silicone does not even stick to the battery case. With one broken zip tie, there is basically nothing more than gravity holding the battery in place. It just lifted out of the frame with no resistance.

I sure am glad there is a top plastic cover though. Without that cover my battery would have been shorted out against the underside of the chassis with absolutely know way cutting off the current.

I did end up damaging the battery. You can see from the photos that the posts were jammed right up against the chassis causing the battery case to deform. Upon close inspection there is no leak, so I think I dodged the cost of replacement.

Besides installing bigger zip ties, and sealing all four sides of the battery case with silicone, I am installing some one-inch wide nylon strapping that runs up and over the battery and under the battery frame. Each one is 42" long.


I was able to get most of the 1-5/8" bend out of the frame by using a hydraulic jack under the tow hitch.
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Old 09-12-2010, 02:50 PM   #5
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Re: Dropping the house battery

Who makes that battery? My Lifeline has different lugs.

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Old 09-12-2010, 06:19 PM   #6
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Re: Dropping the house battery

Quote:
Originally Posted by daveb
Who makes that battery? My Lifeline has different lugs.

Dave
Its a Deka AGM 4D. Came with the '08 SMB.
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