Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Tech Issues: Solar and Lifeline
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landyacht318

Near a large body of salty water

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Posted: 04/30/19 09:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The only complaints I've heard about Lifeline AGM battery owners come from those who rely exclusively on solar for their recharging.

The slow ramp up of solar, as opposed to flipping a switch for instant max amperage from the charging source applied at the battery's most depleted state, seems to frustrate them. I know it does my Northstar AGM.

So you have 440AH of AGM capacity with only 400 watts of Solar. While that ratio might be almost acceptable for flooded batteries, it is not for AGMs, especially those which say right in the user manual that deeper discharges require the ability to apply higher amperage, or the ability and wherewithall to apply an extended constant current charge after the normal absorption stage ends.

Beware of 'monitors' they drift, they need proper calibration, and occassional rezeroing, once the batteries are known to be truly full.

Its good you noticed the voltage sag under relatively light loads, you can recover a substantial amount of performance from these newish batteries if you can meet that minimum charge rate and perhaps hold higher voltages for extended periods.

But to keep them from falling over again, you will need to occassionally be able to Zap them with higher amps from their most depleted state and then hold absorption voltage until amperage tapers to 2.2amps or less.

A 20% charge rate, for 440AH of Lifeline AGm battery, is 88 amps.

Thats a heck of a lot more than 400 watts of solar, which is what, 24 amps on noon June 21?

So how are you going to get that 88 amps?

Be glad you are not cycling 440AH of Odyssey AGM batteries, they want no less than 40 amps per 100Ah of capacity, when cycled to 50% State of charge.

Lifeline at least states that constant current overcharge at the end of a regular absorption cycle can be effective in preventing the premature walk down in capaacity of batteries that see only low and slow charge rates. I do not recall seeing anything in Odyssey literature regarding what to do if one cannot meet that 40% charge rate when deep cycling.

I own a Northstar, similar to Odyssey, if I dont feed it high amps somewhat regularly, it protests with low loaded voltage and requires extremely long aborption stages for amperage to taper to prescribed levels, indicating full charge..
Been cycling it for 5.5 years and ~1100 deep cycles now, and the high amperage recharge is a big part of being able to achieve that.

I'm gonna discharge it a lot tonight and instantly hit it with a ~70% charge rate until amps taper to 0.4 @14.7v.

It's what your lifelines are Craving.

BFL13

Victoria, BC

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Posted: 04/30/19 09:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

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BFL13

Victoria, BC

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Posted: 04/30/19 09:39pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You need 88 amps for 20% of 440AH, but you can split the bank and do half at a time at 44 amps or so, which gives you a chance if you have a charger that can hold the 14.4ish voltage all the way till you are down to 0.5/100.

You can do that with one of these for a mere $125 approx. It will run on a 2000w inverter -gen. For the 100 amp version to do all 440Ah at once, you need a 3000w gen to run that big guy.

https://www.boatandrvaccessories.com/pro........er-converter-battery-charger-w-led-light

JimK-NY

NY

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Posted: 04/30/19 09:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

campigloo wrote:

Hi y’all
.....
I finally got my Renogy system up and running........2000w pure sine wave inverter charger. ......Ran the a/c tv, 160w for about a minute and the voltage plummeted. ..........


Do I understand you tried to run an AC unit from your batteries using an inverter? If so, no wonder your batteries are not performing.

time2roll

Southern California

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Posted: 04/30/19 10:04pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When the monitor said full charge.... was the voltage 14.6+ and current in less than 500 milliamps?


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2oldman

Ca

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Posted: 05/01/19 07:21am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JimK-NY wrote:

Do I understand you tried to run an AC unit from your batteries using an inverter? If so, no wonder your batteries are not performing.
I wondered about that too but decided he meant the tv on inverter...as in ac tv.

* This post was edited 05/01/19 08:19am by 2oldman *

JimK-NY

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Posted: 05/01/19 09:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

landyacht318 wrote:

The only complaints I've heard about Lifeline AGM battery owners come from those who rely exclusively on solar for their recharging.

......


I used a set of lifeline batteries for 7 years including 2 years of full time use. I have a compressor NovaKool refrigerator and my wife uses a CPAP so our use of electricity was pretty high.

For 6 of the 7 years my solar controller was the original cheapie with a fixed charge at 13.6 volts, regardless of temperature. The RV charger was even worse. It was also single stage at a fixed 13.3 volts. At the start of the 7th year, I got a new multistage solar controller and then realized I was chronically undercharging the batteries. At the end of 7 years of good battery performance, I should have done an equalization, but instead decided I was losing capacity and started over with new batteries.

MEXICOWANDERER

las peñas, michoacan, mexico

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Posted: 05/01/19 10:04am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Or go to Harbor Freight and buy their 2 cycle 800 watt generator

Then buy a MEGAWATT-400 watt power supply. Set it for 14.4 volts

When the sun goes down, the Megawatt comes online and runs until it out of gas.

If the batteries are real low this combo will stuff around 400 amp hours into the bank. If used and the batteries are sucking less than bulk maximum the generator will run longer before conking out.

This will zot a lot of amp hours into the batteries for less than 200 dollars after the sun goes down.

campigloo

Baton Rouge, La

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Posted: 05/02/19 08:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for all the help guys.
I’m coming to the rude awakening that my hopes of having a plug and play system using my solar panels and good batteries is just a pipe dream. It’s becoming more and more evident that to get close to what I wanted flooded deep cycle marine batteries are the way to go. Anybody want a deal on some Lifelines?

2oldman

Ca

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Posted: 05/03/19 07:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Flooded batteries don't like being undercharged either. Lithiums don't mind.

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