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Old 12-30-2013, 08:26 AM   #1
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2-6v increase to 4-6v ??

We have a 2011 32V Southwind with 1200 inverter. Looking ahead to our 5 month trip soon. Should we convert to 4 6V batteries. Is it worth the $$. We do like to boondock. I know it is a decision based on what we "turn on" but over all is it worth the money,,thanks
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Old 12-30-2013, 08:48 AM   #2
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If you have the room IMO it's more than worth it. Our coach had two 8-D (one starting, one house), This summer I switched the starting battery to 2-Group 31 and now have enough room that this spring I can put in four GC-2 6 volt batteries.

Almost all we do is boondock and it will give us enough amps so no matter how cold (frequently camp down to ~15ļF or so) we can run the heater and everything else without worries.
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Old 12-30-2013, 06:01 PM   #3
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Hi ernsue,
You will have the same amount of power available, it will last twice as long. If you boon dock a lot, consider going for it. If you use full hookups most of the time, consider keeping what you have. It might not sound like much, but batteries can weigh 50 to 90 pounds each, Just depends on what size you purchase. Weight costs fuel, adds to maintenance and replacement costs.
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Old 12-30-2013, 06:09 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ernsue View Post
We have a 2011 32V Southwind with 1200 inverter. Looking ahead to our 5 month trip soon. Should we convert to 4 6V batteries. Is it worth the $$. We do like to boondock. I know it is a decision based on what we "turn on" but over all is it worth the money,,thanks
You will need to recharge these extra batteries as well, do you have a solar system installed? If not then
while boondocking you will need to run the generator extra hours to charge. If you haven't converted your
lights to LED, you will get more bang for the buck doing that....it will reduce the amp draw on your existing
batteries making them last longer.
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Old 12-30-2013, 06:31 PM   #5
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I have 2 6v T-105 Trojans. I just purchased a New Progressive 9260c converter/charger (60amp) to replace my (still working) Magnatek 950a. The new one will charge my batteries faster with the generator, making boondocking much easier.

I also replaced the interior light bulbs with LED. They draw 1/10 the amps, but put out as much light as the regular 1141's. They will last forever, and cost $4 ea. 36 led's per bulb, white light.

I also use a laptop for internet, and to watch DVDs at night. I also have a 15w portable solar panel on the dash, but am going to increase that 45w more (60w total) to help bring the batteries up during sunlight.
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Old 12-30-2013, 06:45 PM   #6
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In my opinion yes very much worth it. If you take it the next step and install an e-meter you will be able to best monitor the batteries dis-charge state and re-charge accordantly. Doesn't matter what size battery bank you have, you ever only want to dis-charge a maximum of 50%. Some say they can tell by voltage, but that is only under no load voltage. Hard to monitor in my opinion, an e-meter tells you voltage, currant amperage, and Amp Hours used, in both a amount used as well as a percentage amount used. Easy to walk by, hit the button and see exactly where the batteries are, like 65% tells me it's time to start planning on when I'm going to re-charge.
More batteries, longer amount of time until re-charge, given the same load. Then depending on the charger how long to re-charge.

So, if you have a 450Ah bank with a 100amp charger and you run the bank down to 50%, in normal math you've used 225ah's and it should take 2-1/4 hours to re-charge - IF the charger output stayed at the full 100amps, which it won't. But at the same time when you have a good meter you'll see the amperage drop off when the batteries get up around 85-95%, if it takes 2 hours to get to 90% and the amps drop off from charging high, say 80-90 amps to real low like under 15 amps, it's probably time to shut the gen off and live off that since it could take 3-5 hours to finish charging...
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:41 AM   #7
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Definitely get the extra batteries if you have room for them.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:46 AM   #8
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Add batteries, install LED lighting, consider a solar installation. Worth it if you want to boondocks a lot.
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Old 01-01-2014, 08:33 AM   #9
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I would go with 2 pair (in fact I went with two pair, only now one pair has died of old age,, so I still have a pair to work with). That is one advantage of 2 pair. actually it's an advantage of any multiple battery set up (NOTE, Each pair is 1 12 volt battery electrically).

There is one bit of incorrect info aboe.. "you will have the same amount of power but it will last twice as long" It will actually last a bit longer than twice as long since you are now drawing at half the amprage.

I can't spell worth (Term deleted by poster) but Plunket effect or Purkett effect, or some such.

Basically it says the faster you draw current the faster Still the battery dies.
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Old 01-02-2014, 09:46 AM   #10
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Thanks for the responses,,will do it. Besides the room what else will have to be done to get this accomplished,,
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Old 01-02-2014, 11:11 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ernsue View Post
...what else will have to be done to get this accomplished,,
Proper wiring.

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Old 01-02-2014, 01:01 PM   #12
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Late to the post but it is definitely worth it to add the batteries. I have two banks now and the payoff is huge in extending the stay! I put in LED's and added solar as well so my limitation for how long I can stay in the boonies is my tanks. I suck at conserving water usage.
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Old 01-02-2014, 06:09 PM   #13
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To install another pair of six volt you will need (in addition to a place to put em)

A long RED wire to connect the most positive terminal of the new pair to the most positive terminal of the old pair.

A long black wire (negative) Optional run a shorter wire to the chassis

A short jumper to connect the two remainign terminals together so the two six volt batteries form one BIG 12 volt battery.


What size wire? All wires should be AT LEAST as big as the largest wire connected to the existing batteries, if not larger.
And finally optionally, boxes for them This is optional, and you might wish to use "Vented" Boxes. depending on where you park 'em.
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Old 01-02-2014, 06:31 PM   #14
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This is definitely the correct wiring scheme.

All wire gauge should be the same. The two cables interconnecting each 6V pair of batteries should be the same length. The two cables interconnecting each 12V pair (2x6V) batteries should be the same length. This is to make the resistance balanced so each battery is used equally.

The wire gauge can be what is used in your system today, if the maximum RV load is not increasing (which I believe is the case). Make sure there is a fuse on the 12V positive cable coming off the battery bank. It should be rated at no more than the current carrying capacity of the wire gauge selected and should be as near the battery bank as possible. This fuse should already be there and shouldn't have to change; again, as long as the RV load is not increasing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jackfish View Post
Proper wiring.

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