The Long Ranger Wireless PA has been in the field for over 30 years and remains popular with school marching bands. Every fall after summer break, and again after winter break, like clockwork, we see a fleet of Long Rangers coming in for service with easily-preventable battery-related issues. And in case you were wondering, premature battery failure is not covered by warranty. Here are five things to consider to make sure that your Long Ranger is ready for another semester:
- At the end of each use and especially before extended breaks, store your Long Ranger in a safe, dry place that is ideally under 77°F. At 77°F, Long Ranger batteries are estimated to last about 5 years (3 years with the Long Ranger IV) with regular charges. For every 15°F rise in temperature, battery lifespan is cut by 50%. We know that some of you live in warmer climates; our temperature suggestions do not apply to operating environment.
- As a best practice, charge the batteries before putting the unit away; and again every 30 days if left unused.
- Never allow the batteries to completely run down. This is the best way to ensure long battery life and prevent premature failure. The 12-volt lead-acid battery should last for 6-8 hours during normal-use conditions.
- If the batteries have completely run down, don’t give up right away - they may be able to be saved. In the LRIV, an almost-new 12-volt battery that appears to be “dead” can possibly be saved by prolonged charging – up to ten days. And don’t worry, all Lectrosonics equipment contains circuitry that prevents over-charging.
- If you decide to change the battery in your Long Ranger, refer to Tech Note 1012 or Tech Note 1021 depending on which battery you currently have installed. We no longer use the individual 6-volt batteries at the factory, however you may be able to source them locally. To convert the battery from two 6v to one 12v, you should refer to Service Bulletin 1001. These Tech Notes cover important removal and replacement tips. For example, a battery pack connected backwards will result in costly damage. During factory service on all Longer Ranger models, a new 12-volt battery is included with your repair fee.