If you want to know about RV batteries then you are at the right place. In order to properly maintain as well as extend the life of your RV batteries, you should have a basic understanding and knowledge of what a battery is. You should also know how it works. Batteries that are used in RVs are lead-acid batteries. This means they have a couple of cells that are connected in series. Every cell produces nearly 2.1 volts. That is how a 12-volt battery that has six cells in series, produces an output voltage that is 12.6 volts. A lead-acid battery is made of plates. Lead and lead oxide are submerged in an electrolyte that is 36 percent sulfuric acid and also 64 percent water. One thing that you need to know is that lead-acid batteries don’t make electricity. Instead, they store electricity. The amount of charge a battery can store is determined by the size of the lead plates and the amount of electrolyte.
One more thing that is very important to know is to use the right battery for the type of application for which you want to use. Chassis battery or a starting battery is the one that is used to start and run the engine. The starters of the vehicle require large starting currents for short periods to start the vehicle. One can see that the starting batteries have a large number of thin plates that can maximize the plate area which is exposed to the electrolyte. This provides a huge amount of current in short bursts. Cold Cranking Amps (CCA) plays an important role in it as the starting batteries are rated in them. For your understanding, CCA is the number of amps that the battery is capable of delivering at 0 degrees F for 30 seconds without getting dropped below 7.2 volts. One thing that you should know is that starting batteries should not be used for deep cycle applications.
We bet you have heard about house batteries. There are the batteries used to supply 12-volts to the RV itself. If someone is using them, it is important to know that house batteries need to be deep cycle batteries that are created in order to offer a steady amount of current over a long period. Starting batteries as well as marine batteries should be kept away from using in this application. When it comes to true deep cycle batteries, they have much thicker plates and they are also designed to be deeply discharged and recharged repeatedly. Also, these batteries are rated in Amp Hours (AH) and Reserve Capacity (RC).
The amp hour rating is not that hard to understand. It is basically used to denote how many amps the battery is capable of delivering for how many hours before it gets discharged. Amps times hours and now you get what we just said. In other words, the battery that can deliver nearly 5 amps for 20 hours before it is discharged, will have a 100 amp hour rating 5 Amps X 20 Hours = 100Amp Hours. This battery is the same that can deliver 20 amps for 5 hours 20 Amps X 5 Hours = 100 Amp Hours. You must also be confused about Reserve Capacity rating (RC). Well, we got your back. It is the number of minutes at 80 degrees F that a battery can easily deliver 25 amps until it drops below 10.5 volts. If you want to figure the amp hour rating, you can simply multiply the RC rating by 60 percent. RC X 60 percent.
There are two major construction types of deep cycle batteries that we would like to mention and those are flooded lead acid and Valve Regulated Lead Acid. Flooded lead acid batteries are one of the most common types of RV batteries and come in two styles. The first one is serviceable that comes with removable caps so that you can inspect and also perform maintenance or the maintenance-free type. When it comes to VRLA batteries, the electrolyte is suspended in either a gel or a fiberglass-mat. The Gel cell battery uses battery acid in the form of a gel which is clear from the name. This battery is leak proof and because of this, they work in a good condition for marine applications.
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