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Thread: RV Camping; Tips, tricks & repairs

  1. #1401
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    Well the "best" 6v batteries are from Trojan. But Costco ones have a very good reputation. Filling them with distilled water twice a year is pretty important, as is how they are used/maintained.
    Do you make sure they are fully charged after every trip? Do you draw them down lower than 11.8v during your trips? What do you use to charge them?

    They don't need to be hooked to a maintainer all winter, but they should at least be fully charged before storage, one in the middle, and again before you use them for the season. Most people find it simpler to just leave them hooked up to the maintainer.

    Edit, just had a thought, do you have solar? It's easy for solar to boil or overcharge them. They'll use more water on a solar system.
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    A battery maintainer IMO is a must. You need to keep a deep cycle at a reasonable charge level and keep the water high enough to not wreck the plates inside.

    I used to use 2x Trojan T-105 but someone wanted them more than me on a camping trip 3 years ago. I ended up getting 2 of these https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/m...2000p.html#srp because Canadian tire had them on for 50% off one October and to be honest they have been amazing. I store them indies in my storage room and hook them up to a maintainer once a month for a day each and havenít had a single issue. When they arenít on sale they cost just as much as a Trojan or other top tier batteries so there isnít much of a savings.
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    I don't use solar. For charging them, just having trailer hooked to vehicle while pulling there or home gives them full charge.

    I don't have digital volt meter in trailer, just the little bars on push button display, so not sure of how far down I draw them camping.

    I thought maybe Costco batteries might be the culprit, but after your replies it might be a user error issue.

    Thanks again!
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    The little bars/lights in a trailer are okay for a quick glance, but you should put a real voltage meter on them before and after trips. Most tow vehicles don't put out enough amperage to fully charge deep cycle batteries in a few hours of driving.

    My guess is that they are spending most of thier life at too low of a charge state and that's killing them.
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  5. #1405
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    Quote Originally Posted by cidley69 View Post
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    I don't use solar. For charging them, just having trailer hooked to vehicle while pulling there or home gives them full charge.
    Unless you're driving for 12 hours straight, I doubt your vehicle is charging them to their capacity.

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    Will having the trailer plugged into house for couple days prior to going camping give them full charge?
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    Yeah, 24h on "shore power" will charge basically any battery set. Assuming your trailers converter works, but they seem pretty reliable, even the cheaper ones.
    If I can, I prefer to be on shore power at least overnight before a trip. Charges the batteries, but also gets my outdoor fridge cold, which only works on 120v.
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    Probably relevant :
    Screenshot_20190824-111155_Chrome.jpg
    https://business.financialpost.com/p...iving-rv-sales

    How many of you would buy a.cabin instead of an RV if you thought the cost over 20 years was similar?
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    Iíd buy a cabin in a minute over an RV if the cost was the same, but I donít see how it could be.. but really I think the vast majority of cabins are passed down through the family as the outright cost of buying one with land is pretty nuts at this point... wish my family had a cabin to pass down!
    Last edited by Brent.ff; 08-24-2019 at 12:04 PM.

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    My inlaws bought thier place for like ten grand back in the 70s. Was bare land, and not cleared, and not lakefront. Probably the cheapest possible recreational property even then. He's spent 45 years improving it, and it's great now.

    My brother went the other way and bought a fully developed place right on the water, and the seven figures he paid are the normal cost for that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent.ff View Post
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    I’d buy a cabin in a minute over an RV if the cost was the same, but I don’t see how it could be.. but really I think the vast majority of cabins are passed down through the family as the outright cost of buying one with land is pretty nuts at this point... wish my family had a cabin to pass down!
    My inlaws had a cabin NE of Kelowna on Beaver (Swalwell) Lake, we spent a fair amount of time there when the kids were younger but when the in jaws asked my wife and her sister (also in Calgary) if we wanted, we said no. The amount of driving plus just opening up and shutting the place down in the spring and fall was a lot of effort we didn't want in such a remote place from Calgary. Literally 9.5-10 hours driving from Calgary and being off of the grid adds a lot more complexity to a cabin property.
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    I know how many hours a year of effort a trailer is. Cabin is minimum 2x that.

    I'm super lucky that I have family members with cabins at gull lake and Lake Windermere.
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    I suppose the amount of work that a cabin requires is really dependant upon how much you're on or off of the grid. The inlaw's was off the grid, no power, wood heating and cooking, propane lighting, solar water heater, outdoor biffie. Making sure animals aren't getting in, squirrels and bears. Getting firewood which isn't exactly near by. A lot of work.
    Last edited by speedog; 08-24-2019 at 07:23 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by speedog View Post
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    I suppose the amount of work that a cabin requires is really dependant upon how much you're on or off of the grid. The inlaw's was off the grid, no power, wood heating and cooking, propane lighting, solar water heater, outdoor biffie. Making sure animals aren't getting in, squirrels and bears. Getting firewood which isn't exactly near by. A lot of work.
    Gotta say, still sounds kinda ideal.. RVing is essentially the same except you gotta haul it all around. Having a cabin in proximity for weekends would definitely be better. I’ve thought about maybe some land down in the Crowsnest or around Bergen but not having a lake...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent.ff View Post
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    Gotta say, still sounds kinda ideal.. RVing is essentially the same except you gotta haul it all around. Having a cabin in proximity for weekends would definitely be better. I’ve thought about maybe some land down in the Crowsnest or around Bergen but not having a lake...
    I guess it all depends on how you define "in proximity".
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    And good luck getting a cabin site today under 50k. Then you'll fight all kinds of development permits and approvals that up to the 80s didn't exist... suddenly those 20-30k RVs don't sound too bad.

    As far as batteries go, I had my RV batteries for 7yrs. 3 years in storage. They were still good. Even 50w of basic solar on the roof to maintain and topping up the water every 3 months was all we needed to maintain them (I didn't pull them in winter - but you need to now or they're stolen I hear).

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    Quote Originally Posted by speedog View Post
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    I guess it all depends on how you define "in proximity".
    Totally. If you can get to it on a Friday night with enough time to have dinner and enjoy a beer and back on Sunday at a reasonable time... be ideal. Why the crowsnest seems to be a good idea for me, but then yes you have the same problem with developing it.. end up just leaving an RV there anyway

  18. #1418
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    I may entertain a cabin at one point but i would never, ever give up my 5th wheel. We travel to far to many different places to be tied down to one spot. The ideal situation would be a lakeside lot that i would keep my 5th on. That way we could still have the flexibility with the convenience of a permanent spot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by spike98 View Post
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    I may entertain a cabin at one point but i would never, ever give up my 5th wheel. We travel to far to many different places to be tied down to one spot. The ideal situation would be a lakeside lot that i would keep my 5th on. That way we could still have the flexibility with the convenience of a permanent spot.
    Around my inlaws place lots of people build a garage with a bathroom and then live in a trailer beside it. Can store boats etc inside. It's a decent halfway option and not too expensive.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ExtraSlow View Post
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    Around my inlaws place lots of people build a garage with a bathroom and then live in a trailer beside it. Can store boats etc inside. It's a decent halfway option and not too expensive.
    Now we are talking. 28x28 garage with bathroom and deck.

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