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Old 02-02-2013, 08:19 PM   #1
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Signs of house battery going bad

I've never had a house battery in a vehicle until I got my '07 SMB. With minimal use of my battery's, power, 130 watts of solar on top and occasional plugging in to my 110v at home, my house battery seems to have worked quite well. Now, at 5.5 years old, the Blue Sky panel shows the voltage to hang around 11 to 12 unlike when it was new. It used to max at 14.02 and stayed between 12.5 and 14. I noticed in my last trip (in cold weather) that the microwave would cause the inverter to trip after only a couple of minutes of use. And, the Espar furnace would have a hard time firing up. It finally occurred to me that perhaps those few volts less in the battery might cause that. I don't believe I'm having any other electrical system failure. Are these typical signs of battery fatigue? Maybe it's time for a new one.
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:22 PM   #2
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Re: Signs of house battery going bad

Stick a fork in it, it's done!

You don't say what kind of battery, but if it won't charge well past 12 volts, it's toast. 5 years is a pretty good life for a deep-cycle vehicle battery, she doesn't owe you anything at this point.

Time for a new one.
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:25 PM   #3
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Re: Signs of house battery going bad

My house battery is original 2004 and seems fine.

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Old 02-03-2013, 08:10 AM   #4
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Re: Signs of house battery going bad

Got similar symptoms, not taking any chances, new batts before Spring. Mine are over 4 years old, and, have had some really deep cycles. I'm thinking my recent isolator fail may have shortened their life.
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Old 02-03-2013, 12:58 PM   #5
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Re: Signs of house battery going bad

Jeffery, five years is fairly reasonable. To see how good it is, cover the solar panels, give the battery a good days worth of hard charge, then let it sit with no charge and no load on it at all (nothing on in the van) for a day or two. Also make sure all the battery connections are sound. If the voltage drops to 12.5, the battery is about half way gone, but if it drops to 12.2 it's history. 12.8 indicates a battery with most of its life left and as the resting voltage lowers (while testing like stated above) it's basically like the battery is getting smaller (the amp hours drop) and won't power things as long. Colder weather also has more of an effect on it as well. You might be able to equalize the battery to gain back some of its life but I'd check with the manufacture before doing that. There are some other ways to bring back life to some AGM's but it can be risky (fire /explosion wise)
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Old 02-03-2013, 01:55 PM   #6
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Re: Signs of house battery going bad

Thanks everyone, it is an AGM 4D, probably a Lifeline.
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