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Old 11-12-2019, 08:26 AM   #1
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Second house battery placement

Snow day here in Indiana. Drinking some coffee this morning and wanting to know about a place to install my second house battery. I have a 22 class c and the first battery is under the door entry way stairs. No room for a second one there. There is an outside storage area that is toward the rear of the coach and right beside the current house battery. Do I just put in there and drill a hole and run my cables through to connect to my current house battery? Crash course for me in learning all the Rv systems.
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:33 AM   #2
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I have 2 group 31 AGM batterys in my SunSeeker step.
Standard width door and steps. Just may have to rearrange a few things that may/ not be in the way.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:52 AM   #3
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Yes, its that simple, run a positive cable with fuse or breaker on each end to the original house battery.

Run the negetive to a chassis point for ground or over with the positive, to a negetive point.

Use 4 gauge wire and a 60 or 80 amp fuse, if you can't guarantee the cable will not short against metal, otherwise a fuse on a short battery to battery run isn't needed.

If installing an inverter, check to see what gauge wire they call for.
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:17 AM   #4
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Good advice above.

Keep the two batteries close together. Use heavy gage wire.
The two batteries should be closely matched in age, brand, and brand chemistry. There are ways to arrange the wires so resistance is the same for each.

Fast charging and discharging through small differences in wire and connector resistance can cause one battery to carry more load and fail faster. One bad battery has the tendency to damage the one good battery. Balance is the key.

Fusing the one battery is useless to prevent an uncontrolled short. When the fuse blows, the remaining battery will power the short. Just make sure a short cannot happen.

I have a 50 amp breaker on each battery. The breakers also serve as disconnect switches.
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:59 AM   #5
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My Four Winds had 2 batteries under the step.

If you do put another battery in the storage compartment it needs to be sealed AGM. Flooded batteries need to be ventilated. Now you have miss match on batteries so both need to be the same type. I would remeasure and see if 2 batteries can fit.
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:49 AM   #6
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Second Battery

We have a 24' Tioga Class C with the battery box at the top of entry stairs . It had a 27 series 12v battery which took up most of the box .

Determined that if the batteries are installed side by side , two 24 series 12v deep cycles would fit . Also found two 6v batteries that will fit.

Be aware , if using two 12v batteries they need to be connected in parallel , with the hot lead from number one battery connected to coach circuit and the ground from the number 2 battery connected to frame . This is necessary to balance the charge to both batteries.
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Old 11-12-2019, 12:32 PM   #7
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Don't get overwhelmed about the cable lengths, balancing and miss matched battery advice.

Its a $100 battery. Even without following the rules, it will last 4+ years. $25 a year isn't bad for electricity.

I bought a old MH with 1, 12 volt house battery under the steps. I added a pair of 6 volt, series wired, batteries, in a compartment on the other side or the MH.

I drilled up into the under seat storage area and installed a 4 stage converter/charger and a 1000 watt inverter in that compartment. I used 2 gauge cables from the series wired 6 volt batteries, up to the inverter.
Since the power center was there, I tapped into the wires from the under step battery and disabled the 1 stage converter/charger that came with the MH.

Now the under step battery and the 2- 6 volt batteries were being charged with the new converter/charger and powering the inverter.

Although I broke every rule of multi battery insulation, I traded that MH in after 6 years of 7 to 8 month stretches of traveling, using the 3 batteries. Many night were spent in Flying J and Walmart parking lots.

I pulled all of that equipment out before trading it in and still have the pair of 6 volt batteries. I expected to install them into my new MH, but they are to tall.

One other point. On almost every MH produced since about 2000, when you start the engine, the battery isolation system combines the chassis battery to the house battery.

Often different chemistry, type and voltage, but yet the batteries last for years.
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Old 11-13-2019, 09:44 AM   #8
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TwinBoat makes a good point. I would not obsess over balancing. Do what is necessary to get the amp hours you need.


Charging chassis battery banks with house battery banks:


The systems for joint charging usually manage the two banks differently at strategic points in the charging and discharging most of the time. The house batteries are rarely used to start the engine, and the longer lower camping loads are rarely drawn from the chassis batteries.


There are many different MH systems that often combine charging chassis and house batteries. Some systems are better than others. The combined charging is not perfectly balanced. However, the two banks are often disconnected for strategic charge and discharge reasons.


Balanced charging is more important when high current charging rates are progressing. Many systems separate the two banks until charging reaches the late stage low current condition.


House battery chargers often switch to low 13.2 volt float using AGM settings for storage or 13.6 for flooded. Vehicle alternators are not used during storage and so don't overcharge.


Something you should obsess over is, the venting and draining of the new battery compartment if you build one. Flooded cell batteries need to have significant venting high in the space to allow hydrogen to rise out of the space and low to allow fresh are in at the bottom. You also need a drain line to allow spilled acid to drain to the ground and not damage compartment structures.


You can buy sealed battery boxes with 2 inch vent fittings and acid drain fittings. I have used them for sealed AGM and GEL batteries where it is less risky, but still needed for safety to accommodate malfunction conditions.


Most RV battery compartments are built with free air to the outside. If the new space you are going to use is not such a space, then a vented battery box is required. Buy one or build one. I have done both.
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Old 11-13-2019, 03:22 PM   #9
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With two different matched sets of 12V batteries, I got 2 good years from them, year #3 was marginal, and with the second set I tried year #4 which was a bad idea.

My 3rd set of batteries, I changed to a pair of 6V-AGMs. WOW, what a change for the better. Year #5 is over and they still act like new. Our RVing experience went from paranoid to sensible power management. They cost $180 each at Sam's Club.
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Old 11-13-2019, 07:15 PM   #10
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Balancing battery charging

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Gail View Post
We have a 24' Tioga Class C with the battery box at the top of entry stairs . It had a 27 series 12v battery which took up most of the box .

Determined that if the batteries are installed side by side , two 24 series 12v deep cycles would fit . Also found two 6v batteries that will fit.

Be aware , if using two 12v batteries they need to be connected in parallel , with the hot lead from number one battery connected to coach circuit and the ground from the number 2 battery connected to frame . This is necessary to balance the charge to both batteries.
It appears there is some confusion on what I was referring to when balancing batteries .

There are two balancing issues with batteries .

The 1st is banks of batteries , this is usually done with a Battery Combiner . Earlier MH's did not have the combiners as part of the charging systems but can easily be added .

The 2nd is a bank of batteries , where 2 or more batteries are combined to create a bank. This is where several things have to be considered .
The batteries need to the same type , size and be the same age .
Here's where I think the confusion is .... to balance a group of batteries in parallel it's critical to connect the positive on the first battery to the power supply and the negative from the last battery connected to the chassis ground . This is the only way to provide equal charge to each battery .
I'm sure we've all seen it , the 1st battery positive is connected to power and the negative is connected to ground . The remaining batteries in the bank are then connected to the 1st batteries terminals. This will cause the batteries to not charge at the same rate , less charge = battery draw down on the fuller charged battery .
Just my two cents , but I average 6-8 years of service life in my boat and MH.
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Old 11-18-2019, 09:19 AM   #11
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House Battery

My coach battery does not charge while driving. ?
2004 Gulfstream BT cruiser Mod 5270B
Should it be charging or can I just hook it up to engine battery so it charges
Thanks
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Old 11-18-2019, 09:35 AM   #12
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I had a couple fuses missing on mine. One for charging and one for the jump switch on the drivers seat. I added a trickle charger when on shore power. When house batterys are charging either on shore or generator, the chassis battery will also get a charge. Great sitting on solar in storage. All batterys fully charged.
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Old 11-18-2019, 10:40 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Gail View Post
The batteries need to the same type , size and be the same age .
Here's where I think the confusion is .... to balance a group of batteries in parallel it's critical to connect the positive on the first battery to the power supply and the negative from the last battery connected to the chassis ground . This is the only way to provide equal charge to each battery .
I'm sure we've all seen it , the 1st battery positive is connected to power and the negative is connected to ground . The remaining batteries in the bank are then connected to the 1st batteries terminals. This will cause the batteries to not charge at the same rate , less charge = battery draw down on the fuller charged battery .
Just my two cents , but I average 6-8 years of service life in my boat and MH.
The above statements are debatable.

Batteries can be different size and age, just not any of them bad.

With proper gauge wiring the batteries will charge balanced together, even if not wired as you suggest.

Some reading on the subject.

https://www.yandina.com/combInfo.htm#Q31
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Old 11-18-2019, 11:03 AM   #14
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Very interesting read. Makes total sense. Even reading further about multiple charging sources.
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