Why RV Battery Smells Like Rotten Eggs?

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The benefits of camping, ah.

Sometimes, the open road, stunning scenery, and fresh air.

Ever wondered what that unpleasant scent was as you were walking around your RV (particularly at the battery box)? It somewhat has the odor of an egg that was left next to your battery for a month.

It’s important to comprehend why there is a horrible smell and the easiest way to remedy it, even if this may be a warning indicator and you need a new battery.

What Is That Rotten Eggs Smell?

Sometimes the batteries in RVs smell like rotten eggs.

This is often caused by a battery leak of sulfuric acid.

The scent will worsen if the battery is not properly maintained.

The sulfuric acid in the battery reacts chemically with the hydrogen sulfide gas leaking from the cells to produce this stench.

When the battery is cold, the scent is the greatest; when the battery heats up, the fragrance fades.

Identifying whether the scent is coming from the batteries directly or from another source is the first step.

You may take action to solve the issue after you have located the smell’s origin.

Although the scent might be rather disagreeable, it can also be a sign that your battery needs to be repaired.

The battery is often losing its capacity to retain a charge.

It’s crucial to act as soon as you detect the scent since failing to do so will ultimately result in the battery failing completely.

Related Also: 3 Myths You May Have Heard About Lithium RV Battery

What Could Cause Your RV Battery To Start Smelling?

An RV battery smell might have various origins.

One possibility is that the battery is overcharged, which might result in battery acid leakage and the stench of rotten eggs.

This article about when to charge your RV battery is really helpful.

Another option is that the battery has started to sulfate, which would explain the pungent smell.

The battery has probably been overcharged and has to be replaced if there is even the slightest indication of liquid escaping from it.

Batteries that have started to sulfate need to be changed as well since they won’t last very long when charged.

As lead acid batteries deteriorate, they release sulfuric acid and hydrogen gas.

The acid in this gas may damage wires and connections, and the gas itself can melt the plastic battery casing.

This is a result of the battery terminals corroding, and it could be time for a replacement.

Even if it doesn’t currently smell terrible, changing your battery if it is older than three years is definitely a smart idea.

The good news is that it’s not too difficult to replace an RV battery.

You may either get one online or from most dealers.

Just be sure you get the appropriate size for your equipment.

Suggestion reading: How Long Do RV Batteries Last?

Do AGM Batteries Have a Rotten Egg Smell?

When charging, AGM (absorbent glass mat) batteries may also smell like rotten eggs.

However, compared to lead acid batteries, this odor is often not as strong.

How Can You Prevent Your Battery From Smelling?

This gas may build up and overheat the battery if it isn’t allowed to escape.

Regularly checking the battery’s water level to make sure it is topped up is one approach to avoid this.

Using a battery vent cover is another approach to prevent the accumulation of extra hydrogen gas.

These caps stop any rain or moisture from entering while still allowing the gas to leave.

Additionally, you want to make sure that your battery is kept in good condition.

Regularly check the fluid levels and add distilled water as necessary.

Clean the terminals with a wire brush if they are rusted or unclean.

Maintain a properly charged battery (you can use a battery charger).

Although an RV battery’s lifetime is typically between three and five years, there are steps you can do to extend its life.

How you care for your battery has a significant impact on how long it lasts.

Here are some pointers for maintaining the health and longevity of your RV battery:

  1. Charge and discharge the new RV battery several times to break it in. This increases the battery’s ability to establish a solid electrical connection and lengthens its lifespan.
  2. Consistently maintain the batteries in your RV charged. A battery that has been discharged will begin to sulfate, harming the cells and shortening the battery’s lifespan.
  3. Avoid leaving your batteries sitting around for too long.

Recommended reading: How to Replace & Upgrade Your RV Batteries?

How Can Your Battery Be Treated If It Starts To Smell?

Here are some things you may do if you suspect that your RV battery may be beginning to smell:

  1. Verify the level of the battery fluid. Add extra water or sulfuric acid to the low fluid. If the battery is maintenance-free, you won’t be able to add anything to it.
  2. Use a wire brush to scrub the battery posts and connections.
  3. Verify that the wires are in excellent shape and are connected firmly.
  4. If the stench persists, have a qualified technician examine the battery.


There are a few things you may do in an effort to resolve the problem if your RV battery smells like rotten eggs.

Check the battery’s water level first to make sure it is full.

Add additional water if it isn’t.

Next, use a wire brush to clean the battery’s terminals.

If the scent still exists after completing these two steps, it may be time to change the batteries.

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Ryan is a RV product expert with nearly a decade of experience researching, developing, and testing RV products.

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