How to Charge an RV Heat Pump

How to Charge an RV Heat Pump
Your RV's heat comes from a heat pump. These units look like air conditioning units, and are often attached to the RV roof. Many of these units double as coolers, making them efficient and space-saving devices. Charging your heat pump means having to charge the deep cycle batteries found in the RV. The heat pumps draw their charge off these batteries to produce the heat in the RV. Do not directly connect a heat pump to the engine's battery, as this could short the system and fry the alternator.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Deep-cycle battery charger
  • Jumper cables or cables provided with charger
  • Ratchet and socket set
  • Timer or watch
Step 1
Remove the red/positive connectors and the black/positive connectors on the deep cycle RV batteries. If your system has more than one battery, remove the connections on those as well.
Step 2
Set up the battery charger where you can plug it into a standard wall electric socket. Plug the charger in but do not turn the power switch on yet.
Step 3
String the jumper cables or cables provided with the charger to the black/negative terminal of the deep cycle battery. Attach it to the negative terminal on the charger. Always connect the black/negative first, as this prevents surges since the ground comes from the negative. Attach the red/positive to the red/positive terminal on the battery charger. Attach the red/positive cable to the red/positive connection terminal on the battery.
Step 4
Turn the battery charger on. Watch the needle on the charge indicator for 30 seconds to see how much charge will be needed. Set the timer for whatever hour the charger suggests and let the charger do its work. Come back at the allotted time and turn it off. Remove the cables starting with the red/positive off the battery, and then the black/negative.
Step 5
If your RV has more than one deep-cycle battery, charge them in the same process. Attach the RV heat pump wires and connectors back to the battery(s).

Article Written By Eric Cedric

A former Alaskan of 20 years, Eric Cedric now resides in California. He's published in "Outside" and "Backpacker" and has written a book on life in small-town Alaska, "North by Southeast." Cedric was a professional mountain guide and backcountry expedition leader for 18 years. He worked in Russia, Iceland, Greece, Turkey and Belize. Cedric attended Syracuse University and is a private pilot.

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