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Old 09-02-2019, 01:46 PM   #1
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Up-Coming In-Depth RV Lithium System Install - Mike Mas

Up-Coming In-Depth RV Lithium System Install - Mike Mas

Hello iRV2 Users - As mentioned in my “Lithium Verses Onan Generator” article, I’m nearing completion of my “In-Depth RV Lithium Upgrade” article. This install will be applicable to type; B, B+, C, or A motorhomes. In fact, I’ll be installing a lithium system in a Newmar DP shortly, therefore, I wanted to outline some of the key components of the install in advance.

Key Components - Of this lithium upgrade article consist of a pair of Lithionics 400ah lithium packs (800AH) providing over 10 kilowatts of lithium power. The cells are regulated and protected by a Lithionics Advanced “Never Die” Bluetooth BMS module. The secondary component is Xantrex’s 3012, 3 kw inverter, with 150 amp lithium protocol charger.

Six Separate Charging Sources - The article will provide needed steps for typical 110 & 12 volt RV re-wiring, as well as the complete “Master 12 volt Wiring” for the systems 6 separate charging sources; Xantrex, Solar, Alternator, Generator, Shore Power, and Auxiliary 50 amp stand alone lithium charger. The system also includes its own “self powered” automatic spark proof 300 watt space heater for the battery compartment for cold weather operation as well as thermostatically controlled exhaust fans for summer use.

RV Appliance Group - Another key element of my install is; the coach is outfitted with a non-electric powered appliance group. This provides additional run time between lithium charge cycles. To accomplish this, the coach is complimented with an economical propane powered 3-way refrigerator which eliminates the near constant battery draw to operate a 12 volt or 120 volt compressor. The 3-way propane fridge also eliminates high levels of unwanted heat generated by the compressor and worse the systems "Condenser" which is improperly located in the coach, rather than venting the heat outside as the 3-way fridge allows, thereby increasing AC work loads during summer. With lithium systems, it's important to note, that present so-called “Residential” refrigerators are merely a cost cutting method, worth only a fraction of the cost of a 3-way fridge. These household refrigerators are not conducive for the confined closed in space of an RV. Another asset to reduce power, is the alleviation of the power consuming (1800 watt) electric cook top, which is replaced with economical propane burners.

Onan Generator - This coach includes a 4 kw propane generator which operates on its own propane tank instead of the RVs fuel tank. Having a Onan generator available on a lithium system offers many advantages. Typical of a generator at your home for emergency power, an Onan generator provides the ability to self-charge the lithium pack without running the main engine, or a backup power source to keep you on the road should the lithium system have problems.
More importantly, since extended 2nd alternator lithium charging is now prohibited by nearly every RV engine diesel manufacturer, having a propane powered generator is now more important than ever should the need arrive.

Lithium Batteries - The systems lithium power is supplied by Lithionics Battery Company. Lithionics is the only company to offer full UL approval on their batteries and BMS systems. The Lithionics battery is controlled by their “Never Die” Advanced BMS system which offers features such as; CANBus interface, Ampseal connector, serial port, Ethernet TCP and IP interface. Another BMS feature is its real time Bluetooth monitoring of battery vitals to include each cells temperature, voltage and balancing, to include logged events or faults, right from you phone. The advanced BMS also provides data for the RVs interior SOC gauges and remote controls, as well as provide needed triggering to control alternator charging logic of the Charge Mate Pro.

The Xantrex 3012 Inverter - Is network controlled by a Xantrex SCP Control Panel for system monitoring and full control. The network also includes an Xantrex wireless Combox for displaying battery data and history on Ipad devices or for control of the entire system, such as charging, discharging, generator control, etc. from any remote location in the world from your phone.

4G Internet Access - The system is accessible from any remote location via the Internet. In fact, the coaches battery vitals, alarm system, or cameras can be viewed by a third party while cruising down I-95. The systems network is transmitted to a MoFi 4500 wireless 4G router, which also creates its own WiFi signal for the coach. The 4G WiFi router is also interfaced to the RV’s “Ring Alarm System” and Logitech Circle camera system.

Solar System - The RV’s solar system includes a 400 watt panel group using a Victron Bluetooth controller for IPhone monitoring.

Alternator Charging - For engine alternator charging, instead of a typical “on and off” timed event battery management module, the system uses a Charge Mate Pro Isolator /Charger module. Lithionics advanced BMS, provides the needed triggering to the Charge Mate Pro to manage voltage and amperage from the engines alternator for proper lithium charging. The module also offers an emergency remote controlled start feature, for starting the engine from the lithium battery if needed.

2nd Aux Charger - This lithium system also includes a secondary 110 volt lithium charger system for supplement charging of the lithium batteries should the shore power be to low to run the AC, the charger will provide supplement power as the lithium pack runs the major loads.

Split AC System - While not part of this lithium install article, I’ll be following up with another article titled; Permanently Deleting Roof Top AC Units”. This article will cover a broad range of installation techniques of installing a separate split AC unit, integrated into the coaches interior to eliminate the power hungry 15K btu “Roof Shakers” and noisy fans on roof top units. Years ago, in the 80's, I took a 8k btu wall AC unit, separated the condenser and evaporator, then mounted the condenser and fan in a case on the back bumper, then mounted the evaporator and fan inside in a cabinet in the RV. My 24 ft trailer might very well be one of the first true split AC units in an RV. Modern split units cool much more efficiently, have quiet fans and consume less amperage to cool the same space when compared to our dated roof top units. It's time to move forward and delete all roof shakers! My old Winnebago Journey DP had its AC unit in the belly, it worked perfect for years.

Presently - The entire lithium system is up and running great. I’m formatting and writing the article, as well as producing a video on the install and I'll post it here on the IRV2 Forum.

Enjoy - Mike Mas


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Old 09-02-2019, 02:06 PM   #2
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Looks expensive but I'm going to follow anyway and learn....

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Old 09-02-2019, 02:06 PM   #3
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That looks fantastic.

Great work and will read the entire article when it comes out.

As I will be transitioning to a 2002 Monaco coach at the end of the month this looks like it has real possibilities.

Keep up the great work.

Terry & Pat
2002 Monaco Windsor 40PKD. Marjorie 2.
2015 Equinox V6 Roadmaster tow setup
1996 Fleetwood Bounder 36S P32, AKA Marjorie in storage till spring then for sale.
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Old 09-02-2019, 07:30 PM   #4
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Mike, nice clean job...what is the year and model of the Newmar your starting on next?
2019 LA 4579 Full-time
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Old 09-02-2019, 08:08 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Jason Bell View Post
Mike, nice clean job...what is the year and model of the Newmar your starting on next?

Thanks for the reply's guys - My friend is just about to pull the trigger on a new 35 ft New Aire which we'll do the conversion on.

Thanks Mike
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Old 09-02-2019, 08:52 PM   #6
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I'll be following for sure and looking forward to reading it.

Lenny and Shawna 2015 Newmar Dutchstar 4366 43' Tag 450 Cummins, Freightliner Custom Chassis Towing a 2016 Ram 2500 4x4 Diesel 8 ft bed with Blue OX. 2014 Harley Ultra Limited with 3 Beagle Hounds
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install, lithium

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