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 > Adding a second battery?

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TheFitRV James

Utah

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Posted: 05/21/13 12:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I second (third? fourth?) the recommendation to abandon your current 12v battery and go with two 6 volt golf cart batteries. I did this in our B, and I couldn't be happier. We can go for 3 days easily.


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Tiggs

Pennsylvania

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Posted: 05/21/13 12:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thank you, all! I'm going to look deeper into getting the best price for 6V batteries, as long term, these seem the most economical and I'll keep the existing 12V for the TV or back up.


Carolyn

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westend

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Posted: 05/21/13 02:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

FWIW, A GC2 6 volt battery has the same footprint as a Grp24, only the height is different. If you have a double Grp. 24 box, the conversion to two 6 V's may be as easy as removing the original battery cables, adding a 10" cable between the 6'ers, and reattaching the cables. You may have to muck about with the top because of the height difference. I recently bought two Sam's Club 6v's., I'm hoping I got the best bang-for-the-buck.


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pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

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Posted: 05/22/13 03:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi,

If there is room for three batteries then there is an advantage to using 12 volt jars.


Regards, Don
Full Time in a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp hours of AGM in two battery banks 12 volt batteries, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

RoyB

King George, VA

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Posted: 05/22/13 08:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Up to this camping season I have been using three each 85AH Interstate 12VDC batteries (TOTAL 255AHs) in my battery bank. My concept for camping off the power grid is to decide what all I want to run from both 120VAC using an INVERTER and 12VDC direct connected to the battery bank. Then I need a battery bank large enough to handle this load for just one day/night camping run.

At 8AM the next morning I will connect my trailer shore power cable directly to the 2KW Honda generator 120VAC receptacle using a RV30A-15A long adapter (WALMART). This will allow my on-board SMART MODE Charging technology converter/charger to re-barge my battery bank up to its 90% charge state in around three hours. Now I can do all of this all over again for the next day/night camping run... The only problems I sometimes run into is the camp ground does not allow enough time for me run my generator for that long of a continuous time so I have to split that up in a couple of allowed generator run times during the day. By early evening I am ready to go with a good 90% charged up battery bank.

We have been doing very successful for the past few years camping off the power grid and get to run just about everything we run at a regular electric camp site with the exception of air conditioning and high wattage microwave. Also when it is cold the propane fired furnace and its 12VDC high current fan makes it very interesting to keep up with the battery drain over night.

It does take some planning to be successful about it.

Roy Ken


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GoPackGo

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Posted: 05/23/13 01:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have 6-6 volt batteries in my boat (trawler) as a house bank. You do get more power out of a pair of 6-volts vs one 12 volt battery but I believe the best thing about them is that they are TRUE deep cycle batteries and can be discharged repeatedly (no more then 50% is recommended) and then recharged many more times then most any of the commonly available 12 volt RV house batteries that are available at Walmart, etc. Trojans are always rated very high, but they are not cheap. I got my 6 volts from Sams; Costco also has them at a good price. I have 'heard' that if you want Trojans, then try to find a distributor who supplys golf cart businesses (OK, I'm in Florida) and you may be able to get better pricing.

K3WE

Missouri

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Posted: 05/23/13 05:56pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When I once made a post like this, someone replied like this:

The 6V system is typically a LITTLE better, but not worth spending extra $$ to switch over....

As I've thought about this over the years- it was extremely good advice- the A-hour difference is typically not earth-shattering while the $$ to completely replace things is.

The other goofy twist is the option to have an "A-B-Both" switch that could concievably help you with a backup scenario or keep you from being dead if something happened with one battery.

austinjenna

Columbus, Ohio

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Posted: 05/24/13 04:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have 2 12v batteries in mine simply because I had them. I have a 100 watt solar panel on the the roof to keep them topped off while they are in the storage yard and a battery cutoff switch as well.



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wintersun

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Posted: 05/25/13 03:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I would consider 6v batteries if I had space for four of them. With two 6v batteries if one cell fails the entire battery setup is compromised. Not a big deal with a golf cart or electric forklift where replacing a battery at the shop is no big deal but not something I want to worry about in the boonies.

Less than 12v batteries are done to minimize weight. Two 60 lb. batteries are easier to manage than a single 120 lb. 12v battery with the same AH capacity overall. Batteries are also available in 4v and 2v types.

If you have a flooded lead acid battery already and want to add a second battery it should also be this type and not an AGM or gel type of battery. Flooded lead acid type work best in normal RV situations where batteries may not be fully recharged after each use. Their primary shortcoming is less power in temperatures under 40 degrees where AGM batteries function much better.

Flooded type are going to be the cheapest to own over time so if you have the room and the space is properly vented and you don't mind periodically checking the fluid levels in the cells and adding distilled water from time to time then these are the ones to get.

A first step though should be to add an accurate charge metering device like the one from TriMetric. I would not rely on the RV manufacturer's meter to provide an accurate picture.

MrJoelieC

Milford NH

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Posted: 06/03/13 12:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This Topic is extremely helpful thanks for the same question I had and the good responses!

I think that since I will probably not Boondock for more than a long weekend I think 2 12 volts are in my future. Mostly based on Price and availability.

For now I will see how the single 12 volt does and if needed I can quickly turn the truck around and throw a charge on until I can get a 120 watt Solar.. I have the LED lights on order already so hopefully that will help..


Cheers!

MrJoelieC


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