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Old 07-03-2013, 04:30 PM   #1
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Upgrade from 8 to 16 house batteries?

Has anyone doubled their battery power from 8 to 16 house batteries? With the computer system I need to installing, I wanted to have as much power as possible for late night work. I was also wondering about some of those exotic monster batteries I've seen on some new Prevost. I don't want to use up all my cargo weight capacity in the process. Anyone have some experience or a solution this side of a mini nuclear reactor? Most seem to be happy with the average 8 house batteries but I know they will frustrate my late night power demands.
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Old 07-03-2013, 04:41 PM   #2
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Have you actually calculated the power draw of your computer system? How many amps will it be drawing? And how many amp-hours does your current battery system give you?
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Old 07-03-2013, 04:49 PM   #3
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my DP i pulled the 300 lb gen set out and install a batterise there i all so pulled 500 lbs of tile off the floor i have 11 solar panels on the roof set at 36v dc and a 24v SW 5000 watt inverter to run all night and the ac going down the road saves on gas if you want to add weight take it form some where else if you can
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Old 07-03-2013, 04:52 PM   #4
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You putting in a Cray? Just curious what your computing power needs are...
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Old 07-03-2013, 05:04 PM   #5
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I went from 8 to 12 but now am back to 8. Our Bus came with eight Interstate DCS-88 AGM batteries. These are 12 volt AGMs that are rated at 88 AH and are designed for mobility applications. In prior years Tiffin used 6 volt flooded batteries but in 2007 they went with AGMs due to the residential fridge. Why they chose the DCS-88s is beyond me. They should have stuck with 6 volt AGM batteries. I added 4 more, for a total of 12 batteries, which increased my battery bank capacity from 704 up to 1,056 AH.

However it was time to replace them so I just went with eight Lifeline GPL-4CT batteries, at 220 AH (at 6 volts) each. This gives me a total of 880 AH of battery capacity at 12 volts. If you want more capacity you can go with GPL-6CT batteries, which are around 330 AH. That would give you much more capacity. The difference is that the GPL-6CT batteries are a couple of inches taller.

With 12 or 16 batteries you run into cable issues, as defined by Peukert's Law. It gets very hard to utilize the full capacity of every battery due to the differences in cable length and the associated resistance within those cables. My 12 DCS-88 batteries actually didn't perform as well as the eight GPL-4CT batteries.

If you really want to go whole hog I'd suggest the eight GPL-6CTs, otherwise chances are good that the GPL-4CTs will make yopu happy enough.
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Old 07-03-2013, 05:13 PM   #6
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Newmar does that with some of the larger, higher end rigs like the Essex and King Aire, might even be able to get it in a Mountain Aire but have never checked.
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Old 07-03-2013, 10:16 PM   #7
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I suggest adding a trailer, will also give you a place for your Cray.
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Old 07-03-2013, 11:53 PM   #8
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If you really want to go whole hog I'd suggest the eight GPL-6CTs, otherwise chances are good that the GPL-4CTs will make yopu happy enough.

Ok, I see I have much to learn in this area of concern. I look to purchase my first RV in the next few months and plan to add a good solar setup and want to beef up my storage. I thought there would be issues with to many batteries. I have no idea what my power needs will be but I do know how cold the wife likes to keep herself down here in Texas. Add my addiction to having several computers going while I watch TV will also add to my needs. I saw one Prevost that had two huge what looked like 2-300 pound batteries to run on. Didn't think much of it at the time and can't find the post now.
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Old 07-04-2013, 06:54 AM   #9
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Check this web site.

http://www.technomadia.com/

Locate the section where they discuss their battery installation. They are heavy into computers and boondocking.
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Old 07-04-2013, 06:58 AM   #10
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I agree with Cruzer, if you are at a point where you want to replace your existing ones anyway (and for many of us, that's probably not the case) and can fit them, look for very heavy-duty batteries that will max your capacity with a lower number of batteries.
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Old 07-04-2013, 08:12 AM   #11
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Ok, I see I have much to learn in this area of concern. I look to purchase my first RV in the next few months and plan to add a good solar setup and want to beef up my storage. I thought there would be issues with to many batteries. I have no idea what my power needs will be but I do know how cold the wife likes to keep herself down here in Texas. Add my addiction to having several computers going while I watch TV will also add to my needs. I saw one Prevost that had two huge what looked like 2-300 pound batteries to run on. Didn't think much of it at the time and can't find the post now.
Take a look at the Lifeline Batteries website and look at the specs. The large batteries you are referring to are the 8D sized batteries. Seeing as how you are new to this, keep in mind that batteries are heavy and you need to watch out how much weight you add or else you will be overweight once you load up. Cargo Carrying Capacity is limited on a motorhome.

Also, air conditioning won't run on an inverter because it'll suck the batteries dry in no time. If you aren't plugged into a pedestal you'll need to run the generator to power heavy loads like air conditioning, in which case your battery bank size will be meaningless.

Also, solar is highly over-rated. Unless you are a real miser on power consumption, which you obviously are not, all it's going to do is extend your time between running the generator to recharge your batteries. I have 480 watts on my roof and that's all it does for me.

Check out the AGM battery link at RV Tech Library - Batteries in the RV Tech Library for info on the batteries and RV Tech Library - Solar Power Topics for more info on solar power as well as Solar Panel Installation for info on my installation. While in the RV Tech Library check out the information on modified sine wave versus true sine wave inverters. You will need true sine wave or else you'll fry your data ops center.
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Old 07-04-2013, 08:30 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by terry735001 View Post
my DP i pulled the 300 lb gen set out and install a batterise there i all so pulled 500 lbs of tile off the floor i have 11 solar panels on the roof set at 36v dc and a 24v SW 5000 watt inverter to run all night and the ac going down the road saves on gas if you want to add weight take it form some where else if you can

Wow, what a power system. You got pics? I would sure like to see that rig of yours. I'm thinking it's time to do solar this fall and am looking for ideas. I have not seen that many panels or anything bigger than a 3K inverter. Do you have any info so I can have a look online?

Thanks
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Old 07-04-2013, 10:44 AM   #13
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Greetings... thanks for the mention Moonrover.

We are full timers who work online, and thus need a decent amount of computing power. And we have designed for versatility in the types of places we like to stay - from off-grid dry camping, courtesy parking with friends with limited power to full hook-up sites.

So we designed a Lithium Iron Phosphate battery bank with a boosting inverter, that gives us a lot of juice without a lot of weight, and a lot of benefits.

Our 500AH 12v LFP system allows us to run an air conditioner (and all house systems) for about 2.5-3 hrs. Or right now, we're running our A/C off an extension cord to a 20A wall outlet, and boosting the rest from the battery bank via the inverter.

If you'd like more information on our battery setup, here's a direct link to our articles on our research and reasoning for going this route:

http://www.technomadia.com/lithium

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Old 07-04-2013, 12:18 PM   #14
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Wow, what a power system. You got pics? I would sure like to see that rig of yours. I'm thinking it's time to do solar this fall and am looking for ideas. I have not seen that many panels or anything bigger than a 3K inverter. Do you have any info so I can have a look online?

Thanks
Leo
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take a look at this solar system. Haven't heard from anyone that has it but their claims are out there.
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