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Author Topic: Why do I keep murdering start batteries?  (Read 8996 times)
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #15 on: October 17, 2010, 01:41:09 PM »

FWIW Dina's (what Brian, Ruthi, several associates and I have {1) Use a very silly and screwed up system they don't use mostly 24V stuff like the rest but a mixture of 12V and 24V components and a really screwy way of tying them together!
I guess when the buses are new and low mileage it's all good. But after time, & miles of use & abuse things start acting up and cause phantom draw's. Every Dina I have been around with comparable age/miles on it as Brian's, MANY of Carl's, Bobby's and ours it seems they get worse about this as time goes on.
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #16 on: October 17, 2010, 01:42:49 PM »

Quote from: Ace
That or just run the bus more often.     Smiley

Wink
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
belfert
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« Reply #17 on: October 17, 2010, 02:41:04 PM »

Ace, I do have a three stage trickle charger.  I just didn't plug it in right away after I got back from my trip.  I've been using (or trying to use) the bus once a week or so recently, but once a week doesn't seem to be enough to keep the batteries up.

I lost two sets of batteries the first two winters I had the bus as they would get down to essentially zero voltage and freeze.  The batteries made it through the last two winters with no issues after I got and used a Battery Tender Plus.

Ed, you have a much older bus than mine.  There probably isn't anything that would draw power when the bus is turned off.  I have all kinds of stuff that doesn't go through the disconnect as BK described and it draws power constantly.

I'm going to see if a 10 amp charger for a day or two won't revive the batteries.  I would like to put off new batteries as long as I can.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
zubzub
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« Reply #18 on: October 17, 2010, 02:51:46 PM »

Maybe work out how many amps you bus draws while sitting, and make sure your charger keeps up  Personally I would just disconnect the ground as well as  and install a smart "ish" charger.....actually it's cold up here, in the winter anything that isn't being used has the batteries stored inside above freezing.....a bit of a PITA with a bus but worth it.
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Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #19 on: October 17, 2010, 03:29:46 PM »

Maybe work out how many amps you bus draws while sitting, and make sure your charger keeps up  Personally I would just disconnect the ground as well as  and install a smart "ish" charger.....actually it's cold up here, in the winter anything that isn't being used has the batteries stored inside above freezing.....a bit of a PITA with a bus but worth it.

Zub,
Problem with these Dina's is that you can't disconnect the ground as easily as one would think with the way they tap the center post for the 12V side and connect it to a board of relays and so on it creates a "floating" ground which still allows them to drain!

Brian yes put the 10 Amp charger on them for about 8-10 hrs (like before leaving for work) and then check them and see how they are. If they need more either leave them hooked up a while and check them every couple hrs. Or disconnect the charger and re-hook it again in the morning !I'd be-careful about just hooking it up and leaving it unattended for several days straight! By unhooking it over night you would be giving the batteries time to cool and absorb what you charged that day with out cooking them. I actually disconnect all 4 of ours and charge each one for 2-4 hrs each before reconnecting them. And then we are good for a long time (until a driver leaves the batteries on etc.) after that.
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
robertglines1
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« Reply #20 on: October 17, 2010, 03:51:49 PM »

Brian know it's not your fault,sounds like the nature of the beast..If one must just pull the cables.cheaper than batteries..The 54 dollar battery come from local oil/fuel supplier.no name on them.but they hold up..Bussler Enterprizes is their name..I get my 40 wt there in bulk also for 7.50 gal rated for 2 stroke use( Shell) they serve contractors and farmers in our area.also get my upper cyl lube there for 5.50 gal it treats 300 gal..They are a delco dealer also and said these hold up just as good :I agree..My bass boat type charger is one unit sold by bass pro shop and is wired directly to each bat.stays plugged in when hooked to shore power.   Bob
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Bob@Judy  98 XLE prevost with 3 slides --Home done---last one! SW INdiana
belfert
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« Reply #21 on: October 17, 2010, 04:23:55 PM »

I just threw the charger on at 10 amps as the bus was only at 20 volts and wouldn't start.  The bus is sitting in the middle of my driveway right now as I didn't put it away earlier.  The batteries apparently didn't get charged enough from my trip at noon.  I'll turn off the charger shortly and try to remember to turn it on when I leave in the morning.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #22 on: October 17, 2010, 04:27:11 PM »

Craig is right, I just replaced a "green knob" battery cutoff that was not!

The only truly reliable battery cutoff is one directly on the battery because, as a few have posted, there are many tiny trickle circuits in newer buses and autos.
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PD4107-152
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Ash Flat, AR
Ace
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« Reply #23 on: October 17, 2010, 04:48:46 PM »

Things to look for are a clock, radio, map light, and don't forget your ecm. Any and all of these will drain your batteries even with your batteries turned off. If during the conversion process, you eliminated anything like seat isle lights but didn't cap odf the existing wires, you could have a low voltage short. Just some things to think about!
My only cure was like I said, the on-board charger!
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Ace Rossi
Lakeland, Fl. 33810
Prevost H3-40
TomC
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« Reply #24 on: October 18, 2010, 08:03:22 AM »

If you don't use your bus much, you should consider going the other way and installing AGM batteries.  With all the money you've spent in the last few years, AGM batteries maintain there charge a lot longer then standard wet batteries.  Size 31 starting batteries are made in AGM-they require no maintenance and since they don't out gas, the terminals never get corroded.  Good Luck, TomC
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boogiethecat
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« Reply #25 on: October 18, 2010, 09:26:28 AM »

HEY GUYS  GOOD 24V CHARGERS FOR CHEAP

I just put two and two together and remembered that a local surplus place just got in a LOT of really nice smart chargers, 24 volts at I believe 10 amps, maybe even some 20 amp ones, and he only wants $35 bucks each plus shipping!  As I recall they are three stage, and he also guarantees them.  The reason they're so cheap is that around here nobody wants them, 'cause everyone wants either 12 or 36 volts.  So give the guy a call and maybe your problems can go away!!!

talk to: Bill / Escondido Surplus / 760-746-7493 

I'm also putting this in as a separate thread...

Cheers
Boogiethecat
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1962 Crown
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Jeremy
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« Reply #26 on: October 18, 2010, 09:31:46 AM »

I don't believe having AGM batteries will help at all where the drain is caused by an electrical load.

I've never seemed to have much luck with batteries either, although again no doubt due to operator abuse. I discovered a few weeks ago that my three 'new' house batteries have been ruined by being allowed to sit discharged for a long period. They're actually about three years old now, but I think of them as 'new' because they've barely had any use since I bought them. By way of an experiment I've spent (possibly wasted) good money on a de-suplhator device to see if I can revive the batteries to any degree - as and when I get around to trying it I will report the results.

In Brian's situation, two things occur to me - firstly, it sounds like the batteries are/were still quite young, and have only been allowed to go completely flat once, and for a short period. I'm curious to know whether this is enough to kill them - I'd have thought they should only have been slightly harmed by this, and should recover enough to still be useable.

My second query is prompted by Brian's post saying "the bus was only at 20 volts and wouldn't start". We've all tried to start vehicles with a partially-flat battery, and inevitably it achieves nothing other than a completely-flat battery. I'm curious as to whether this action itself actually damages the battery - certainly, a very high load on a battery will cause damage (buckled plates etc), but I don't know whether you get the equivalent damage from a 'normal' load on a flat battery.

Jeremy
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belfert
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« Reply #27 on: October 18, 2010, 09:54:57 AM »

I have four group 31 batteries.  I have actually only purchased a total of five batteries even though I am on my third set of batteries.  Three of the four batteries in my first replcement set were replaced under the one year warranty.  They wouldn't replace one of the batteries because it showed a little bit of charge and I just bought a new one.

Ace, my ECM, clock, and other stuff are still on even with the battery disconnect shut off.  Just as BK described, there are many battery connections in a Dina and isolating everything would be difficult.

Do AGM batteries really last any longer if there is a constant draw on them?
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #28 on: October 18, 2010, 10:04:53 AM »

Quote from: belfert
Ace, my ECM, clock, and other stuff are still on even with the battery disconnect shut off.  Just as BK described, there are many battery connections in a Dina and isolating everything would be difficult.

Brian that is exactly why Carl changed his set up to the 2 8D's and I am going to do the same in the near future!. Wink
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
Ace
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« Reply #29 on: October 18, 2010, 11:26:17 AM »

Brian you already answered your own question as to WHY? You just stated that the clock, ecm, etc. i@ still on after you disconnect the batteries. If you know these and other items stay on, it doesn't take rocket scientist to know WHY your batteries go dead after sitting! These and other items are what is referred to as phantom drains.
Only way to fix it is either search and destroy, run the bus daily as it was designed or make it a permanent habit to hook it/them to a good float charger when you park it. Not a cheap battery tender. Your wasting your time otherwise!
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Ace Rossi
Lakeland, Fl. 33810
Prevost H3-40
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