Keep your battery fully charged to prevent any internal damage.
All batteries lose their charge naturally when not being charged. If the charge level drops too low then they cannot be recovered. As well as natural self-discharge, the battery may also have to support electrical loads such as security systems which will drain its power
Yuasa recommend charging your battery when in storage. Intelligent chargers can safely monitor and maintain a battery on or off of your vehicle. By using one during extended storage periods, you can prevent any damage, keep the battery at an optimum voltage and allow security systems and ECU memories to remain active.
Always check your charger’s instructions to make sure it has a maintenance mode and is safe for unattended charging.
With AGM batteries always ensure you use a charger compatible with this type of technology. Failure to do so will result in permanent damage and premature failure.
Recharge your battery as soon as it reaches 50% power.
Never allow the battery to run flat as this causes internal damage and will greatly reduce lifespan.
Your caravan probably does not charge your battery
Most fitted caravan battery chargers will only to deliver a trickle charge to prevent your battery from going flat. They do not fully charge the battery.
Before going away, you must charge your battery as advised by your charger instructions to prevent it from going flat. Usually this will be for around 48 hours.
Solar panels are an ideal way to keep your battery charged. There are many different types and set ups available and you should always consult the instructions to check suitability, operating and installation procedures.
Checking the charge level
Most modern caravans have a built-in battery monitor, however on some older models this may not always be accurate. Yuasa recommend checking the battery with a hand-held multimeter.
Prior to checking, ensure all electrical appliances and systems are switched off.
|Meter Reading||Approximate Charge Level|
|12.7V or above||100%|
|12V or lower||Discharged|
Keep it secured
Before travelling make sure that your battery is secured upright and cannot rattle around too much. Excessive vibration can cause serious internal battery damage.
Always use high quality clamps to ensure a good connection and secure fit.
Keep it clean
At least every year, or more frequently if possible, clean the battery tray, terminals and connectors. Smear the connectors with a little petroleum jelly.
Check the vent tube
If one is fitted, regularly check the vent gas relief tube is fitted correctly.
Due to their internal chemical reaction, batteries naturally lose performance over time. A battery that has been in service for some time will have experienced some natural deterioration. This deterioration will mean that when compared to a new battery more frequent recharging will be required.
On rare occasions batteries can give off a sulphurous / rotten egg smell or may become excessively hot. Both these signs usually mean the battery is being overcharged and is in danger of irreversible damage, it may also mean that the battery has encountered permanent damage by being left in a discharged state and can no longer accept charge therefore charging must be stopped immediately.
In these cases, be aware that potentially explosive gasses may have been emitted so take extreme care.
Never disconnect the charger from the batteries whilst it is connected to the mains as this can cause a spark. Always switch the charge off at the plug and leave the battery to stabilise for at least 5 minutes before disconnecting from the battery.