How To Charge RV Battery While Driving

I have been researching on several ways of charging an RV battery while driving and I found some of the methods quite helpful. This article’s aim is to assist you with the appropriate method of charging your RV battery while driving to make your road trip or camping enjoyable.

Everyone who owns an RV always wishes to know the answer to this question, “Is it possible to charge the RV battery while driving?” and the answer is YES.

This article will offer you with the correct approach that does away with the key shortcomings of some of the known methods. This method provides the RV with the proper level of power as well as automatically cuts out at the preset level so that the RV’s battery would not be drained.

Before we get to know how to charge your RV battery while driving, let’s take a look at the key things you need to know about your RV battery.

Things You Need To Know About Your RV Battery

Everything in the RV depends on the 12-volt system to work. Without the RV batteries, the devices in your rig cannot function. The RV house batteries are the deep cycle batteries which are meant to store enough power; hence, they are designed to operate over long periods of time.

If the deep cycle batteries are properly maintained, they can last for more than ten years. Always have in mind that it takes minimal time to drain the batteries than recharging them; hence, do not lose your patience while recharging your RV battery.

While in storage, disconnect the ground wire to avoid battery drainage. Also, you should not allow the battery to go below fifty percent of charge. In case the battery goes below 50%, recharge it as soon as possible. If you allow your battery to go below 20% of charge, it may end up damaged and stop working at 100% again. If you follow this rule, the battery can last for more than five years.

The 12-volt RV batteries offer slightly more voltage when it is fully charged. Inspecting the state of charge is simple since it can be done by checking the voltage given off. In case the RV has a solar panel or an inverter, monitoring the charge can be done utilizing the battery monitor which displays the charge state. You can as well buy a digital voltmeter to determine the voltage.

The batteries are designed for their use as well as application. The battery applications include marine, automotive and deep cycle.

What You Will Need

  • Voltage Controlled Relay (VCR)
  • Good quality and high amperage cables
  • Anderson plugs

Method For Charging The RV Battery While Driving

Step 1

The method begins with the VCR which automatically disconnects as well as parallels the auxiliary and start batteries. Your relay is closed, and the truck and the trailer batteries get paralleled to the preset level.

When the truck is on, the relay is opened, and the two batteries get disconnected when the truck is off, and voltage is brought to the preset level.

Step 2

Use good quality and high amperage cables to combine the batteries so as you can minimize the voltage drop. Consider using the Anderson plugs which are designed to offer a great connection with reduced voltage loss as well as it can carry large amperage. Permit the cable to be easily detachable at the tow bar.

The fire hazard is eliminated with the circuit protection which is in the form of a 50amp automatic reset circuit breaker at the positive lines on any side of the Anderson plugs. Few rubber boots slip on the breakers to insulate from any shorting.

After knowing how to charge the RV battery while driving, you also have to know the helpful tips that will help you prevent the RV batteries from being a statistic.

Tips For Preventing The RV Batteries From Being Statistic

1. Prevent Sulfation

Sulfation starts to occur when your battery charge level goes below 80% or 12.4 volts. To prevent sulfation, it is advisable you recharge the battery when it is in the state of 80%.

Utilizing a battery charger, conditioner, and maintainer like the Battery Minder will also prevent the process of sulfation. Avoid letting the battery to go below 10.5 volts.

2. Reduce The Batter’s Depth Of Discharge

By minimizing the battery’s depth of discharge, will help in increasing the lifespan of your battery.

3. Put OFF The Battery Disconnect Switch When You Are Not Using The RV Battery

The RVs consist of the parasitic loads that discharges the battery after some time. Some of the loads are LP-gas lead detectors, clocks, appliance circuit boards, stereos, and the TV antenna power booster. In case the RV has a battery disconnect switch, ensure it is turned OFF when you are not using the RV to prevent the battery from discharging. When the battery is in storage, it is advisable to check and recharge it regularly.

4. Avoid Hot Temperatures As Well As Overcharging

Overcharging and hot temperatures can kill the batteries. During the hot weather or just in high usage, check your batteries frequently. Inspecting the electrolyte levels as well as adding the distilled water as needed can assist you in saving the lead acid batteries.


Charging an RV battery while charging is not a hard task, you can follow the above two steps to help you do that. You can as well ask for advice from your trusted mechanics on how you can easily charge the RV battery while enjoying your road trip.

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