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Old 08-12-2013, 08:28 AM   #1
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Dry camping house battery run low

Our first dry camping and we ran down the house batteries over night. We tried to keep things off using one or two lights and little else. How long should the batteries last? I have 2 deep cycle fairly new batteries.
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Old 08-12-2013, 09:01 AM   #2
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Our first dry camping and we ran down the house batteries over night. We tried to keep things off using one or two lights and little else. How long should the batteries last? I have 2 deep cycle fairly new batteries.
I have two 7 year old 6v GC batteries and they last almost 3 days. We do have all LED lighting as are the two 12v TVs. We use no inverter and just run the genny briefly to make coffee or warm something in the micro. So I have to assume your batteries are very weak, or you use an inverter to run 120v items.
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Old 08-12-2013, 09:16 AM   #3
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Yes we left the inverter on. The fridge is on and the water pump runs when needed. We had a 220v light on a few hrs.
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Old 08-12-2013, 10:16 AM   #4
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Yes we left the inverter on. The fridge is on and the water pump runs when needed. We had a 220v light on a few hrs.
Leaving the inverter on is fine, depending on the inverter's efficiency of course. Mine goes to sleep when there is no draw. Are you saying you are running the fridge (cooling it) on 120? If so, you do not have enough battery power for that. By the way, you said you had deep cycle battery's but didn't say which make nor type of deep cycle. I have just got to learn just how you found a 220v circuit in your RV, please do tell! Ed
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Old 08-12-2013, 04:51 PM   #5
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Fridge is on LP and I do not know where the 220 came from. Turned off most everything snd left for 5 hrs. House batteries were down to 10.1 volts. Leaving Tuesday and hope to find a town where I can get them checked. Heading to Montana then Banff.
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Old 08-12-2013, 05:05 PM   #6
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At 10.1 V the batteries are toast Deep Cycle Battery FAQ One very important needs is to monitor battery state of charge by measuring the goesinta and the goes outa using a battery monitor i.e Trimetric or Victron to make sure you do not get below the 50% SOC mark.
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Old 08-12-2013, 06:51 PM   #7
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Have your batteries tested for amp draw, someplace like Interstate Battery will do it free. It will determine battery condition. ALL inverters use some 12V power even when in sleep mode according to my IntelliTec inverter manual. Use this website to help manage your amp usage when dry camping.
how many appliances in your RV are plugged in while using your inverter? All modern televisions draw power when off and still plugged into a receptacle. If you wish, you may buy an inductive amp meter for the 12V system, and know anytime you clamp it around a positive battery cable, how much amperage the coach is drawing from the battery bank. It is a good diagnostic tool.
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Old 08-12-2013, 08:03 PM   #8
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Have your batteries tested for amp draw, someplace like Interstate Battery will do it free. It will determine battery condition. ALL inverters use some 12V power even when in sleep mode according to my IntelliTec inverter manual. Use this website to help manage your amp usage when dry camping.
how many appliances in your RV are plugged in while using your inverter? All modern televisions draw power when off and still plugged into a receptacle. If you wish, you may buy an inductive amp meter for the 12V system, and know anytime you clamp it around a positive battery cable, how much amperage the coach is drawing from the battery bank. It is a good diagnostic tool.
X2. If you plan on doing much dry camping at all, a 12v monitoring system is a must after which you will know how long you can go with the loads you want to use. I have a Victron, it is good. A good battery charger, and a small quiet generator ( or larger if you are going to use the AC) are good ideas also. solar panels are also an option but are much buckage.
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:38 AM   #9
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We got in and had the batteries tested, they werejunk. 2 new batteries later and we are on our way again.
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Old 08-14-2013, 06:33 PM   #10
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If you are going to do a lot of boondocking, look at upgrading to 4, 6 volt batteries.

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Old 08-15-2013, 07:28 AM   #11
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Expectations in boondocking. How much stored power and power generation via generator or solar. We camped eight days on the north shore of Lake Superior this summer in a camp site with shade much of the day. We have one 150AH Lifeline AGM and a 180W high voltage solar panel with a Morningstar MPPT controller. We are feeding a WAECO 12V refrigerator LED lights and a 300W Morningstar Sursine inverter used only for the TV/DVD. 12V stereo with XM receiver, fans are computer case fans. We have an Eberspacher diesel heater, and if we want AC then the generator has to come along. Any appliance using resistant heat including a coffee maker are out. We use a French press, water heated using the cook top... At the end of eight days we were down to 65% state of charge (we lost a little ground each day because of shade) I have another 140W panel that can be put out in the sun which would have brought us up to 100% SOC each day. You balance need vs. wants, and you can do with a lot less than you think and sitll be very comfortable.
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Old 08-15-2013, 08:15 AM   #12
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Thanks for the information. We have a solar charger and generator. I just wondered why we died after a few hours. I thought the batteries were good but test showed they were junk. For now I have 2 new ones, I may/ may not change to 6 volt.
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