Leisure batteries are one of a recreational vehicle’s most essential parts, as they’re responsible for powering your kettle, lights, air-conditioning, fridge, television, and much more. Keeping your VW motorhome’s leisure battery in good condition and working to its optimum capacity is something that owners should be well-versed in. However, no matter how attentive you are to maintenance, your VW battery will inevitably start to degrade, as all batteries do. Luckily, replacement VW leisure batteries are widely available.
When buying a new VW leisure battery, though, getting a good, affordable product with the right specs and technology isn’t the only thing to worry about. You’ll also have to know how to fit the battery in your recreational vehicle.
Although you could have a mechanic carry out the VW leisure battery installation, learning how to do it yourself has benefits. For one, you save money; battery installation does tend to bump up the overall cost of replacement quite a bit.
There may also come a time when you’re away on a trip, and your leisure battery breaks down unexpectedly. If you don’t have a garage handy, knowing how to install a spare will be an advantage.
When installing a brand-new VW leisure battery, you need to know the procedure and have the right VW leisure battery kits for the task. These kits include a set of spanners compatible with the bolts on your vehicle, snips, wire strippers, and more.
To manually change your battery, follow the steps below:
- First and foremost, identify the type of battery your VW currently has. If it’s your first time buying a replacement, we recommend getting a similar model to your old one. This ensures a perfect fit.
- Access the battery’s location. Usually, this is under the driver’s seat. Just loosen any bolts and remove the metal and rubber covers.
- Unplug the negative (-ve) terminal. Carefully remove the cover on the rear battery.
- Undo the clamp keeping your battery secured, then take the battery out.
- Disconnect the -ve and +ve terminals on both front and rear batteries.
- Take the front battery out.
- Look for a small plug in the old battery. This needs to be moved to the new one.
- Insert the new battery into the cavity under the seat, then connect the breather pipe and the positive (+ve) terminal.
- Connect the rear battery +ve terminal, then the -ve terminal. Lift it into the rear battery compartment, and don’t forget the breather pipe.
- Lastly, connect the front battery’s -ve terminal. You can then re-tighten the clamps and put back all of the bolts and covers.
With your new battery in place, you’re now ready to get back on the move again.
For the best leisure battery replacements for a VW or any other make of vehicle, just visit Orius Batteries’ online store. We stock top-quality units that are compatible with the many VW motorhomes and campervans out there. Not only that, but we also offer excellent car batteries, auxiliary batteries, commercial batteries, chargers, and various accessories.
If you have any questions, just give our staff a call on 01772 348317.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How many years do leisure batteries last?
You can expect to get four to five years of reliable service out of your VW leisure battery unless you spend a lot of time on trips to sites that don’t have an electric hook up. With care, you might even get longer than five years out of your leisure battery.
How often should you charge your leisure battery?
You need to charge your leisure batteries regularly to prevent discharge. Though some batteries are more resistant to this, it’s still a good rule of thumb to charge your batteries once every three months at least. This is especially true if your van or the batteries are in storage and don’t get much regular use.
Can you use a car battery instead of a leisure battery?
No; a leisure battery is a completely different beast. Leisure batteries have thicker plates and separators, making them ideal for supplying a steady stream of power for a long period.
Car batteries are better suited to providing your vehicle’s starter motor with the quick burst of energy that’s needed to get the engine up and running. Having said that, there are certain types of leisure battery that are dual-purpose, meaning they can also be used to start your motorhome,
Can you charge a leisure battery with a normal battery charger?
You can try charging a sealed/ maintenance-free leisure battery with a regular car battery charger. However, you will need a multimeter to do so. Otherwise, it’s best to use a dedicated leisure battery charger.
How do you choose a leisure battery?
- Check your existing battery and choose one that’s similar to it. You can also go for a model with higher specs, as long as you make sure it’s compatible with your recreational vehicle.
- Measure your battery tray’s size to make sure the replacement will fit perfectly.
- Have a think about your requirements. Do you need something with a higher capacity for longer trips? Perhaps you need advanced AGM technology or higher voltage. Take these factors into account before making your final decision on a purchase.
Guide To VW Leisure Wirings And Battery Charging
There are three main ways of charging up your leisure battery. These methods differ, both in the price of the equipment needed and the circumstances you are dealing with at any given time.
- Split charge relay method - This is the most common method. Here, you use a split charge relay to connect the vehicle battery to the leisure battery. In effect, your vehicle’s alternator will begin charging your leisure battery once the main car battery is charged to 100%.
- 240v hook up charging method - With a 240v hook up, you can simply connect your vehicle to a campsite’s power supply.
- Solar power charging method - There are solar controllers available on the market that let you charge your leisure battery using the sun’s rays. Although this method lets you effectively charge your battery for free, you can’t always rely on the sun to shine when you need it!
Campervan Battery Cycles
The number of charge cycles you can expect from your leisure battery ultimately depends on a variety of factors, like:
- Battery model
- Depth of discharge
- Battery environment
- Driving habits
- Charging habits
- Overall age
Causes Of RV Battery Drain
Below are just a few of the reasons why your van battery may be draining when the van is not in use:
- External damage
- Temperature factors
- Inadequate charge
- Hidden loads, like lights being left on
- Inverter left on
- Poor connections
- Years of electrical alterations
Because leisure batteries are vulnerable to a range of problems, it’s always best to have a spare battery ready while you’re away from home so you can enjoy your trip without worrying about losing power. For all your leisure battery needs, check out Orius Batteries‘ online store now!