Batteries, Part 1

Batteries: There are two uses for batteries, coach and house batteries. Coach batteries are those that are used to start the RV. These are normal 12 v car or truck type batteries and are designed to provide a lot of amperage for a short period of time. The house batteries are deep cycle batteries which are designed to provide a lower amperage for a much longer period of time.

Most of us will understand the coach batteries and can tell when it is time to replace them. They will last 3-5 years. You can tell when a coach battery starts to go bad in that it has trouble starting the engine, cranks slow or dies pretty quickly when the lights are left on. Maintenance and inspection will be covered below.

House batteries are a little more difficult to cover simply because of the wide range of use and types available. Let’s start with the purpose. House batteries are designed to run everything in the rig, from the lights to the fans and heaters. Almost everything in the RV uses electric from the batteries. As such these need to provide current (amperage) for a long period of time. Typically the house batteries can be called on to provide current for days at a low amperage. This type of battery is call a deep cycle battery. All RV run on 12 v DC systems. However, not all RV use 12 V batteries. Many motor homes will use 6 v batteries. 6 volt batteries are often call golf cart batteries as that is a primary use for them. 6 volt batteries are designed to provide current over long periods of time which makes them ideal for RVers who want to camp without electric for a few days.

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