What’s the Deal with the Battery Disconnect Switch?

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We recently had to replace both the engine and coach batteries on our RV. There is a button on the door for battery use or store. What is that button supposed to be on? We’re newbies to the big RV.

Submitted via email


Welcome to the wonderful world of RVing! This switch is commonly called the Battery Disconnect Switch and is designed to disconnect your house batteries while being stored.

Pushing it to the Storage side is like taking off the battery cable. It ensures that if you have left a light on in a compartment or anything inside, it will not drain your house batteries. Some RV manufacturers connect the LP Leak Detector directly to the battery bypassing the disconnect, so you may still have a draw even with the switch on Storage.

To find out if this is the case with your rig, get a 12-volt test light, push the switch to Storage, then disconnect the negative terminal on one of the batteries. Touch the probe to the post and the alligator clip to the cable. If the light comes on, you have a draw.

Safe travels,
David Solberg

RV Battery Basics: A Beginner’s Guide
Testing RV Battery for Charge & Condition
Improving RV Battery Charge and Extending Battery Life

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390 Responses to “What’s the Deal with the Battery Disconnect Switch?”

  1. Tywanda Whitehead

    I have an 2024 Coleman Lantern and I’m wanting to know what is my battery controlling? What is the purpose of my battery if it shows I have 3/4 battery life, but nothing is working?

  2. Marcia Bujarski

    Make this simpler. If we are going to use only the solar powered battery is this key off or on. What else needs done the power is full nothing is running. We r sitting in the dark.

  3. bill rooney

    Love all the info

  4. Lisa Becker

    My battery disconnect switch worked fine last fall. Just plugged in the battery for the first time this year. Batteries fine because it ran the RV. But the switch won't come on.

  5. Glenn Cole

    When my generator is running and I open the door the generator shuts down. Should that happen.

  6. Ken Anderson

    I have a 2001 Winnebago do I leave my auxiliary switch on or off when I'm shoreline

  7. Derrick

    Can you put a night switch in between inverter and 4 batteries and if so were would I install it

  8. Roy

    I have a American tradition 2000 where is the Battery disconnect switch. Hello Roy, Great question! The ‘Ask an Expert’ section is currently for members of our online community. By becoming a member, you will have access to our expert knowledge. With your membership you will also receive discounts on products and hundreds of hours of Premium content. If you are interested in becoming a member, please click on the offer below: https://www.rvrepairclub.com/?add-to-cart-multi=1&products=79&skipcart=1&coupon=C44742&vscid=C44742&skipcart=365510/?nabc=0&SubscriberKeyHash={{SubKeyHash}} Thanks!

  9. James hicks

    What is the white wire with black stripe that runs from battery cargo to engine compartment near leveling jack pump.

  10. Dàmaso Rodriguez

    I just replace my two six volts batteries and the engine starts but no 12 volt power to coach and generator