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Old 02-10-2019, 04:44 PM   #1
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Red face 6 of one 1/2 dozen other

Hi all,
new to this forum. Waiting delivery on a 25rds. I see people putting 4 6 volt batteries on board. I called my dealer and asked if I should. He claims that the standard two 12 volt batteries should be sufficient given the unit has LED's and doesnt use much. I have a 100 watt portable solar panel set up, and I do plan on camping both on and off the grid. I am also a follower of the Tim Allen school of more power, more power! So, why are you all converting? Is it really beneficial, or are you all planning on staying out for years at a time? Just curious and trying to figure if it's something I should do. Thanks
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Old 02-10-2019, 05:08 PM   #2
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I use 6v in Series/Parallel because they can be discharged more w/o damage. I started with flooded, then AGM batteries. Don't know much about lithium.
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Old 02-10-2019, 05:44 PM   #3
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:03 PM   #4
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You will get lots of different perspectives on this and most of them are based on how a person uses their trailer and how much a person wants to spend. Some will swear you need to buy lithium batteries and do a major retrofit to your trailer. Others will claim 600 watts of solar is the minimum with 4 agm batteries. There are lots of different approaches to how to power your trailer. I have two 6 volt deep cycle batteries because that is what my trailer came with. I have a couple 80 watt portable solar panels that keep them charged just fine except for winter camping during dark cloudy days when we use our furnace. During that time I fire up a 2000 watt genny for a few hours in the morning and evening and that charges the batteries just fine. Some look down on genny usage but mine burns about 5 gallons a week which seems pretty cheap compared to spending a lot of money on an advanced system. If I was full timing my approach would be different.
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:26 PM   #5
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I set mine up for dry camping in forested areas. I have 300 watts of solar, 4 x 6 volt FLA batteries, stand alone PD9260 charger and a 2K PSW inverter. If we are camped where the sun shines it charges the bank just fine. If we are in the deep dark woods, I hook up the genny to the charger and put it boost mode, a couple hours in the morning usually suffices unless we run the furnace, then another couple of hours in the evening. We are not exactly power misers, and I do not like to see the batteries get below 12.2 volts.
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:40 PM   #6
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I would suggest to use your rig as is for a few months, see how it goes with what you have then if needed make whatever changes are needed.
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Old 02-10-2019, 09:13 PM   #7
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We have the power listed in the sig line. Our five month trip last summer was done without plugging into shore power or digging out the genny. That said our winter trips this year have been beyond the gray overcast days we designed the system for. Snow covered panels redundantly obscured solar collection* the trailer was not able to be parked to optimize solar gain in both circumstances. Ultimately we needed to plug in to keep them topped off every few days. The need to recharge was elevated by the use of the furnace.

Our batteries are Outback Nano Carbon AGM’s. I don’t need to rush to top them off they are most efficient from 30 to 80 per cent , unlike flooded cell.
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Old 02-10-2019, 09:13 PM   #8
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I will be picking on a 24RKS next week, and chose to have 4 6V FLA batteries vs the 2 the dealer has as standard.

With the current camper I have one 12 volt deep cycle. Because of this I have avoided any off grid camping.

Prior to deciding to buy a new camper I purchased two Yamaha EF 2000ISv2 generators with a parallel kit to be able to use the camper AC without shore power. I plan on converting both to run on propane as well as gasoline.

With the new camper I decided I could afford the weight of the extra batteries.

That leaves the issue of the extra cost. The lifespan of FLA batteries is heavily influenced by how deeply they are discharged. By doubling the number of batteries I reduce in half the depth of discharge, leading to a longer time before they need to be replaced, offsetting the initial cost. In the mean time, if I truly NEED to use the energy, regardless of the depth of discharge, I have twice as much energy to use.

In a sense, I look at the increased battery capacity like insurance. Its good to have it, even if you do not use it. If you wait until you actually need it, you waited too long.
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Old 02-10-2019, 11:37 PM   #9
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Boy, hopefully I won't step on toes here----"Dealers" might not be the most reliable folks for advice. These are (quite often) the ones that tell you that your 1/2 ton Squueker Mobile will pull that 35 foot, 12,000 lb. trailer-or you won't need bars, etc.
Having owned several trailers with either 2 12 volt or 2 6 volt batteries for power, I'm building a 4 6 volt system right now. It's only going to have Costco batteries and the stock charger for a while. I know that going out and actually using the heater, water pump, and a few lights on a cool night, that the 2 battery system will drain considerably. I would like to have another night usage without running the genny or hooking up.
What you're comfortable with is what's important. We're all out here to have fun, so lets git going!!!
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:02 AM   #10
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I agree, dealers are sketchy with the answers. That,s why I asked on this forum. I get much better answers here. I will use it as is but will probably end up with a 4 bank of 6 volts and a generator. Thanks to all
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:12 AM   #11
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6V vs 12V has been a debate for years now. As long as you are comparing similar chemistries there is really no difference. Deep cycle batteries have thicker plates with more zinc on them. 6V batteries have large amp-hr ratings so they have large plates and fewer of them (only 6V). 12V batteries have more smaller plates so when you put them in parallel you will double the amps and therefore the amp-hrs.
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Old 02-11-2019, 07:44 AM   #12
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Very sketchy indeed. I really hate it when dealers don't want you to spend more money. Seems they are damned if they do, damned if they don't.
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:56 PM   #13
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I have 2 6 volts and can go easily 2 days using everything, furnace, TV, CPAP etc. I have a 1000 watt Tradesman Generator I got delivered from Amazon for $200 that charges the batteries through the regular shore cord with 20 amp dogbone as long as we are not using too much other power at the time. Is slightly smaller than a bowling ball bag and weighs less than 15 pounds. Recharge every 3rd day for 3 or 4 hours.

I would think your batteries will be fine for now. Get a small generator first and see where you are at with your usage. Don't be afraid of the cheap, small generators, you only need a bigger one if you plan on running the AC or microwave. Personally I don't plan on running a generator all night for AC so it is not needed for my use. If I did I would get a 3500 watt Champion and chain it in the truck bed with a tri-fold cover to keep it from prying eyes.
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:34 PM   #14
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For almost 20 years I have done just the single 12 V battery and done OK but they do die. This time I went with the 2 6v Trojan GC batteries so they will last a while. Upgraded the charger also to a good smart one. No solar. I put a floor in my tongue before ORV offered it. See the first pages of the mods.
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