Camping is a lot of fun but it can easily go from fun into the worst experience of your life unless you prepare beforehand. For the adventure-seekers who don’t mind going all natural, away from civilisation and technology, kudos to you for appreciating camping the way our forefathers did. The rest of us who seek that bit of comfort in the RV same as we have at home, we can’t leave without the 12 volt batteries. Since we depend on them throughout the whole camping trip, it’s advisable not to take to the road before you actually learn some more about them having in mind they are versatile, and there are more types of them as you’d get to see when purchasing.
The often used RV battery is the flooded-cell known for the cost-efficiency and capacity. Their design, functioning on water, requires frequent servicing, such as cleaning, and filling up specifically when the weather is hot, and this might be considered one of the disadvantages to those reluctant to waste time on all the maintenance.
Somewhat similar in design, the gel batteries function on jelled electrolyte as opposed to the liquid one, making them less demanding than flooded-cell but with an additional cost. Soaked in fibreglass matting, the AGM batteries don’t need water to work which guarantees no maintenance necessary, yet they are costlier than both flood-cell and gel.
What’s good to know about the three is they’re all deep-cycle, and what’s specific about this type is it’s created to provide power continuously for a longer period of time. The latest in terms of RV batteries is the lightweight design of lithium-ion famous for the amount of power stored, but it’s not something for the pocket of most campers yet.
Now that you know the different types of 12 volt batteries available for sale, it’s important to remember you shouldn’t leave them discharged for a longer period if you want to ensure their lifespan; anything below the capacity of 50% means urgent charging is needed, and when you do charge remember to always wear eye and hand protection to avoid accidents with the harmful battery acid.
When you park the RV over the winter season, don’t forget about the batteries! As mentioned, the batteries can go flat and it’s the same even when the RV isn’t in use. Frost is another aspect that damages them so it’s good to look after them, charge them, store them at home away from the RV, and monitor the voltage regularly every month.