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Is my math wrong?? My 200 watt panels are not even close to 200 watts..
Are your batteries inside a warm area or outside? (under the frame, in a hitch box, wherever)

If outside in those 14° temps, most lead acid batteries will have a drop in performance, both charging and discharging.  
About to be 'vanless' after FOUR years...
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Where in the system are you measuring the voltage? At the battery terminals or somewhere down the line?

Life is tough. Its tougher if you are stupid.
You can ignore reality, but you can't ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.

2017 Dodge Ram 1500 reg cab 5.7L Hemi and 1993 18ft Kit Road Ranger 5th Wheel, 200w solar.
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theyre in a FREEZING area.. theyre inside but it gets so cold in here my water freezes... no way to keep them warm...

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Is it sunny now? What's the battery voltage now?
You cannot establish security on borrowed money
8 of Ten Cannots, Rev. William John Henry Boetcker, 1916.
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#25 long as they stay charged they won't freeze, but if the state of charge gets TOO low they can freeze, which might crack the battery case.

At any rate, they will under-perform when below 32 degrees.
About to be 'vanless' after FOUR years...
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Checking voltage level on a battery to see it's state of charge (SOC) is tricky at best too.
After charging the battery will show a "surface charge".

Voltage is best checked when the battery has been sitting unused for several hours after charging. (8-12)

While charging the voltage will show the controller more than the batt volts but a good time to check the charger output . Which also will vary as the battery charges.
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(12-31-2017, 09:42 AM)MrAlvinDude Wrote: I see the same rapid voltage fluktuations on some of my old batteries. And on new small scooter and motorcycle batteries.
Scooter and motorcycle batteries can be a small as 4Ah to 12Ah.

This is one of the reasons that voltage meters is not the only (or optimal) way to determine how much energy is actually stored in a lead acid battery.

The voltage only shows how well, those parts of the surfaces of the battery plates that still works, are charged.

But if you are down to only 10% of the plate surfaces are still functional, then you are down to only being able to store 10-20Ah of energy is those "old" batteries.

It seems that some lead acid battery designs can only be "deep cycled"  2 to 10 times, before they are worn to the level where they have less than 10-20% of their original capacity left. Even if they show being charged to voltages way higher than 12.6V

I have no idea of how many deep cycles your particular batteries can withstand, but  it sounds like they have been "deep cycled" more than 10 times.

For some AGM batteries I have seen  claims of three times as  durable. But if that is just three times more of 2-10 times, then it is still only 30 deep cycles before they are toast.
So my thinking is, that low cost sealed batteries, may still not have very many times they can endure the deep cycle, even if they claim to be better than......

So the advice to never take a lead acid battery below something like 12V (or even 12.2V) is probably good advise for most lead acid battery designs. And in particular for sealed designs.
It all depends on the battery. Vague general warnings do no good. Read up on the exact unit being used. All other information does not apply.
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The following 1 user says Thank You to GotSmart for this post:
rvpopeye (12-31-2017)
Abby let's eliminate (or confirm) physical damage:

Using a flashlight if necessary, from above, look down at all four sides of each of these house batteries to see if they have a 'bulge' or an obvious outward curve, or 'wavy' look, on any of the sides of the batteries.

We all hope and assume that they are OK....but let's just make sure of it.
About to be 'vanless' after FOUR years...
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Checking directly on the terminals. Positive one battery, negative the other. Two batteries in my system. Now that I type that.. wondering about doing each side...

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Ok, will check this (for bulges and cracks) as soon as I hope back there..

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