"New" battery - low voltage

Discussion in 'Wiring' started by dkellogg3, Jan 13, 2018.

  1. dkellogg3

    dkellogg3 New Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    Hey folks.... first post! ...and brand new to campers!

    Picked up a '99 Coleman Utah CP for a song... so of course it needs a few things (other than a storage trunk rebuild). battery is d-e-a-d...... so I bought an everstart 27DC. got it home and checked the voltage... (-)11.71v (yes negative!) when connecting red dmm probe to + post and black probe to - post). whats with the (-) number? Even if it weren't negative, is the 11.71 normal for a "brand new" battery off the shelf? it has sticker on it 9/17, so I was assuming that was the manufacture date and that it would at least be in the 12v range.

    anyway... so I went to charge it nice and gently with a craftsman 2 amp smart charger. when I hook up the battery the "check battery" light comes on. Tried Schummacher SE40M. attach battery leads and before plugging in ammeter is switching back and forth between over 15 amps and 0 amps.... along with an internal clicking that I assume is some sort of breaker.

    This all seems just wrong to me. bad battery? Just go ahead and return it? Not a problem, and just hook it up to the se40m and let it run for a while?

  2. SteveP

    SteveP Well-Known Member

    May 21, 2015
    If you're absolutely sure you are hooking the wires to the correct posts take it back for exchange. I've fixed a battery with reversed charge before but that is unacceptable in a new battery.
  3. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

    Jul 18, 2013
    Thornville, OH
    +2 on what Steve said. I would expect to see 12.6V or greater. Double check your volt meter across your auto battery. I would expect to see 12.5 to 13.v on you auto.

    PS Some of the small battery tenders will not charge if the voltage is to low. They are meant to tend the battery not to be a charger. Years ago I read the specs of a tender I had. If memory serves me right the threshold was12.2V
  4. dkellogg3

    dkellogg3 New Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    I checked on my tractor and it was +12.44.

    Thanks for the input.
  5. mstrbill

    mstrbill Active Member

    Mar 17, 2013
    Austin , Texas
    And remember black is positive and white ground when you hook it to the trailer.
    Customer likes this.
  6. mandinga

    mandinga Member

    Mar 4, 2014
    Ottawa, ontario
    I would return that battery asap. It has more than one issue already.

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