Charging a AGM Battery

Last week I forgot to Turn of my chassis battery switch. Yesterday I went to check on something in the motor home and the steps would not come out. Nor would the Motor Home start. The chassis (Starter Battery) was dead. I had left the radio and a couple of other things on. Normally I disconnect the battery using the Chassis disconnect switch by the door when I am not going to be using the Motor Home or when it is stored. Senior Moment I guess. I thought no problem I will get the Battery Charger and recharge the battery. Little did I know what I was in for. I hooked up the battery charger and it kept cycling on and off. I checked the terminals and they were clean and the charger was hooked to the correct polarity. Hmm What to do. the battery was almost dead. The battery charger needs 10.5 volts to run. This is a safety feature of the battery charger. Oh well I will use my 10 amp trickle charger. same thing with it. So I decided to remove the battery and bench test and charge it. (what a job). The battery sits way down to the left of and between the radiator and grill, (see Picture below). 

 

The battery weighs 50 Lbs. I had to bend over the opening and reach way down to unhook the battery using a 10 MM and 6 MM socket and end wrench. I got it all loose and now the hard part getting it out. I bent over the opening with the hood up and started to lift the battery out. It was awkward and heavy, I was barely able to get it up to the lip of the opening, and had to tip it on its side. It was a good thing that it is a sealed AGM battery (which I did not know at the time). After getting it out, that was when I noticed that my right arm was bleeding. The metal fins of the grill just inside the lip opening had cut the inside of my right arm from my elbow to arm pit. (see picture below of fins.

The red arrow shows the metal fins. I doctored my arm and cleaned the cuts and applied some disinfectant. Got the battery on the bench and discovered that it was a AGM Battery. I did not have a AGM Battery Charger and none of the 3 battery chargers would start because the voltage in the battery was almost dead. So I did some reading about AGM batteries. There are 3 methods of charging a Dead AGM Battery when you don’t have a AGM Charger. I will only cover the one that I used.

I took a set of battery cables and hooked to a good wet cell lead acid car battery in my jeep and hooked the other end to the AGM battery making sure pos to pos and neg to neg. I then took my 10 amp automatic battery charger and hooked it to the agm battery. I Left this setup for one hour checking to make sure the battery or the cables were not getting to hot to touch. The voltage from the jeep battery tricked the battery charger in to running because it could see 10.5 volts or more. After an hour I checked the voltage of the AGM Battery, with everything unhooked, making sure I had the 10.5 volts so the charger would work without the jeep battery. I continued charging the AGM Battery until I had at least 12 volts. I checked the wires and the battery to make sure it was not getting to hot to touch. This in case there was a internal short which if badly overheated could cause the battery to explode. I then installed the battery in the motor home and started it up to finish charging it. I did use a piece of carpet over the lip when reinstalling the battery. I learned a couple of lessons today. I also wonder how many people have replaced a AGM battery because they could not get it to charge after being run down.

Mel

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Computers and Eye Strain

Computers and Eye Strain

I sit for long hours at the computer both day and night. Lately I have noticed that My eyes tear a lot at night while sitting at the computer, and sometimes during the day too. I was having a hard time sleeping after sitting at the computer for several hours at night and sometimes I would have a headache. I happened to run across an article about something called Blue Light and Eye Strain. My Monitor is a Sanyo 26 inch HDTV and even though it has automatic Light adjustment for Day and Night viewing I found it was not enough to protect my eyes from Blue Light. Another symptom was having a hard time going to sleep on many nights and headaches, which I never had before.. In reading the Article, it stated that the blue light fools the body into thinking it is daylight when in fact it could be the middle of the night. It will often time strain the eyes as well as make it hard for you to go to sleep, especially if you have spent long hours at the computer.

What is the answer you may ask. I found a neat little Utility called “F.LUX” for Windows 10 and Linux. What it does is filter out the blue light according to the time of day or not. You set it up according to your Location and it will take care of the filtering according to the time of day or night. There are several other Utilities that do the same. There are other Physical filters that slip on the screen to do the same thing, But I like this handy little utility and it does the job for me. There is also one for Chrome Browser called Midnight lizard that you can add to your chrome browser. The “F.LUX” has been a blessing especially on my Laptop with the glaring white screen. I would suggest that you read up on Blue Light and eye strain. Save Your Eyes.

Mel

My Year End Update for 2016

My Year End Update for 2016

Reflecting Back over the past year, it has been a bad year for us as far as Rving goes. My Motor Home has hardly moved since a 3000 mile trip to Texas in Oct – Nov of 2015. In 2016 We were able to make a round trip of 500 miles to Nevada and back to our home in Utah. Except for Safety Inspection and emissions testing the Motor Home has Sat in the Driveway. I have went out and started it up and ran the generator every month. I have made several Modifications and updates to it averaging at least one a month. Unfortunately With Doctors appointments and my DW’s eye appointments, we just have not been able to take the motor home and go. My Wife developed Macular Degeneration in her eyes and the Eye Doctors are trying to keep it from getting any worse. The shots in here eyes have helped but the left eye still is leaking and the Eye Doctor is trying to save her sight, So we have had to stay close to home for her appointments.

To keep busy I make Mods and updates on the motor home. It has been ready to go for over a year. I keep hoping that we can get away to a warmer climate at least for a month or two. For 20 years we were Snowbirds going to Yuma Arizona and Texas every year for 4 or 5 months during the Winter. For the past 4 years we have only been able to go for a month or 6 weeks, But not this year. I keep hoping, but it doesn’t look like we will be able to go until spring if at all. It has been hard for me not being able to go Rving especially after almost 50 years of Rving. I am 78 years old and was hoping to get another 3 to 5 years of Rving in before my time is up. Time will tell. You can read about all of the Modifications I have made this year to our Motor Home.

Mel

Install a Riser for the Throne (Toilet)

toilet.JPGAs we get Older it is harder especially for us older folk to Get off and on The Throne. I’ve found over the years that most RV’s have small toilets and many are way to low for a tall person. I always hated the small round ones and replaced all of the toilets in my Sticks and Bricks Home with tall 19 inch Elongated ones. The one in my Motor home was elongated,but not High enough in such a small space, and was hard to get off of without my old joints complaining. I finally decided to do something about it.

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Dually Valve Stems and Balancing Beads UPDATE

DSCF0004.JPGAs Promised here is an Update on the Dually Valve stems and the Tire Balancing Beads I had installed on my Motor Home. In my last post I was waiting for the special Dually Valve Stems and the Balancing Beads that I ordered from Camping World and Amazon to get here. They arrived right on time.

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Valve Stems, Tire Balancing Beads, and a Motor Home

84731n-valve.jpgTrying to check or air up the dual tires on my Motor Home, has always been a chore. I have a Thor Four Winds Hurricane 31D with a Ford F-53 Chassis with steel wheels, and wheel covers. I always had to take off the wheel covers to try and check the air pressure. Cut hands trying to get the valve caps off reaching through the wheel hand holes. What a chore it was.

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Mattress Update

mat.jpegThe New Dynasty RV Mattress that I ordered from Amazon Came today. It was packed really well even though the box was beat up that it came in, the mattress was protected with a very heavy plastic bag, and another layer of plastic under that. I unrolled it on the Bed in the motor home following directions and being careful not to cut into the mattress. Be for warned  It will unroll upside down.

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