Go Back   iRV2 Forums > CAMPING, TRAVEL and TRIP PLANNING > Boondocking
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-27-2015, 03:43 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Palm Coast, FL
Posts: 354
Boondocking Battery Charging Question

Background: My wife and I have a new 23' TT. It currently has one 80 Amp-Hour battery. I recently installed an 1100W inverter to run the TV and a couple of other things when we boondock. At this time I don't have any solar power installed, so the only way I have to charge the battery would be when I hook the TT up to the Grand Cherokee and start the engine--I believe this will charge the battery, but somehow seems kind of inefficient with the relatively small wire.

My question: Would it be more efficient, burn less gas and re-charge the deep cycle battery faster on the trailer if I hooked up a set of jumper cables from the GC directly to the trailer battery and started the Hemi?

Thanks for your help.
__________________

__________________
Bill & Jeri
2016 Keystone Bullet 269RLS
2013 Ford Platinum F150 3.5 EB, Screw 4x4, Max tow
bfisher003 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-27-2015, 04:00 PM   #2
Registered User
 
tbbg II's Avatar
 
Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Mooresville IN
Posts: 230
This is a tough one. You may be able to charge a bit quicker, but you do have a pretty small electrical system on the TT. At least the battery capacity is small. The alternator/voltage regulator on the Jeep is designed to keep the starting battery charged and run whatever other elecrical devices in the car. It really isn't designed to charge a deep cycle battery, especially at idle speed. If you plugged a bigger device to 120VAC, you could drain the battery very quickly.


You may not be looking to spend a bunch of money, but a couple golf cart batteries would be a good thing coupled a solar set and/or a small generator. I assume you have a charger (some call it a converter) in the TT which charges the battery when plugged into shore power. The solar set up would connect directly to the battery whle the generator would connect to the shore power cord.


Camping is a wonderful thing. All the stuff from civilization gets in the way sometimes, though.
__________________

__________________
tbbg II is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 04:12 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
DAN L's Avatar
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Workhorse Chassis Owner
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2,898
bfisher003
harbor freight has inexpensive gennys and solar. i have not used either so I cannot speak about their effectiveness.
do a forum search for more info.
__________________
01 WINNEBAGO 35U W20.8.1L SW Wa, Hi. Good Sam, SKP. AMSOIL fluids. BANKS ecm program. SCAN GAUGE II w/ Ally temp. 2 LIFELINE GPL-6CT AGM Batts on their sides. TST tptts. K&N panel air filter. AERO mufflers. TAYLOR plug wires. ULTRA POWER track bar. KONI fsd shocks, toad '14 smart car
DAN L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 04:20 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Palm Coast, FL
Posts: 354
Quote:
Originally Posted by tbbg II View Post
This is a tough one. You may be able to charge a bit quicker, but you do have a pretty small electrical system on the TT. At least the battery capacity is small. The alternator/voltage regulator on the Jeep is designed to keep the starting battery charged and run whatever other elecrical devices in the car. It really isn't designed to charge a deep cycle battery, especially at idle speed. If you plugged a bigger device to 120VAC, you could drain the battery very quickly.


You may not be looking to spend a bunch of money, but a couple golf cart batteries would be a good thing coupled a solar set and/or a small generator. I assume you have a charger (some call it a converter) in the TT which charges the battery when plugged into shore power. The solar set up would connect directly to the battery whle the generator would connect to the shore power cord.


Camping is a wonderful thing. All the stuff from civilization gets in the way sometimes, though.
Yes, our trailer has a converter that charges the battery when we plug the shore power in and it also charges from the GC when driving down the road. I do plan to install another battery or two 6v batteries and at least a couple hundred watts of solar to charge the battery/batteries, but that's a few months down the road at this point. In four days we are leaving for a month-long trip out West (Colorado, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, etc.) so right now I'm just trying to come up with a somewhat efficient way to charge the TT battery when we are camped for a few consecutive days. I realize that charging the battery by running a 5.7 liter Hemi isn't the most economical way to do it, but since that's what I'm stuck with I'm just trying to figure out if it would be better to do with with jumper cables vs. using the trailer to GC wiring.
__________________
Bill & Jeri
2016 Keystone Bullet 269RLS
2013 Ford Platinum F150 3.5 EB, Screw 4x4, Max tow
bfisher003 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 06:12 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
simonsrf's Avatar
 
Tiffin Owners Club
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfisher003 View Post
Yes, our trailer has a converter that charges the battery when we plug the shore power in and it also charges from the GC when driving down the road. I do plan to install another battery or two 6v batteries and at least a couple hundred watts of solar to charge the battery/batteries, but that's a few months down the road at this point. In four days we are leaving for a month-long trip out West (Colorado, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, etc.) so right now I'm just trying to come up with a somewhat efficient way to charge the TT battery when we are camped for a few consecutive days. I realize that charging the battery by running a 5.7 liter Hemi isn't the most economical way to do it, but since that's what I'm stuck with I'm just trying to figure out if it would be better to do with with jumper cables vs. using the trailer to GC wiring.
I'm all about solar, but in your case, I'd suggest a generator for your needs. It could be running and charging you batterie(s) while you're using your electrical devices at the same time.
__________________
simonsrf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 06:25 PM   #6
Registered User
 
tbbg II's Avatar
 
Newmar Owners Club
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Mooresville IN
Posts: 230
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfisher003 View Post
Yes, our trailer has a converter that charges the battery when we plug the shore power in and it also charges from the GC when driving down the road. I do plan to install another battery or two 6v batteries and at least a couple hundred watts of solar to charge the battery/batteries, but that's a few months down the road at this point. In four days we are leaving for a month-long trip out West (Colorado, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, etc.) so right now I'm just trying to come up with a somewhat efficient way to charge the TT battery when we are camped for a few consecutive days. I realize that charging the battery by running a 5.7 liter Hemi isn't the most economical way to do it, but since that's what I'm stuck with I'm just trying to figure out if it would be better to do with with jumper cables vs. using the trailer to GC wiring.
Unfortunately, neither one is very good. I would hope the plug to the car is fused. If so, it must be a pretty small fuse because of the small wire that was not designed to recharge a depleated battery. Jumper cables are of larger gauge, but the fact that car alternators are speed dependent (low RMP, low output), to get any real charging you may need to sit in the car and depress the gas pedal a bit to increase the engine RPM's. But this may actually overcharge the TT battery, since this is also not designed to recharge a second depleated battery. Either way, depending on the amount of juice you use, you may be looking at hours of hemi running each day. Sorry to be a naysayer.
__________________
tbbg II is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 06:34 PM   #7
Senior Member


 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Big Bear Ca.(Sugarloaf)
Posts: 1,223
Get a small generator.
__________________
Mark & Carole
What a long strange trip it's been.

No longer RVing. Happy Trails to you.
Campingman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 06:38 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 5,965
The short answer is that they jumper cables are a bad idea. Batteries are not instant charge devices. They take time to absorb a charge via chemical changes in the battery. You would be a lot better off with a generator and a plan to run it for a few hours in the evening to both cover your peak load and charge the battery at the same time.

You are also over invertered or under batteried. The easy way to estimate current draw on an inverter is to multiply the 120 VAC load current by 10. That has a bit of error but the efficiency of the inverter eats the error. 1100 watts at 120 VAC is 1100/120=9.2 Amps. The 12 VDC side will draw ~92 Amps from your 85 AH battery that should not be discharged more than 50% of capacity. That would put you at less than 30 minutes run time before you are eating your battery plates.

Reality is that you probably do not need 1100 watts for the TV. Forget the coffee pot or hair dryer. I'd look at a 2000 watt generator and appropriate 3 stage charger/inverter to simulate shore power in the evening for 3 hours or so. Let the line from the tow vehicle do the 10% top off that takes a long time. That would also let you use the Microwave or A/C if needed for dinner.
__________________
nothermark is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 06:56 PM   #9
Member
 
KerrTx's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 87
Google Zamp Solar or look for it on Amazon. They make portable Solar for RV's in several configurations.
__________________
DJ
2016 Bighorn 3160EL
2015 RAM 3500 6.7L I6 4x4 CC SB SRW
KerrTx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 08:06 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 680
I appreciate all the responses, but again, I am aware of the current state of the single battery, over invertered, etc. , but guys one must start somewhere and I started with the inverter, next will be solar panels, as I said, and additional battery capability. I had a limited amount of time (and money), so I have what I have at this point in time and it will have to do for the next month, unless I just happen to pick up a generator along the way. LOL
__________________
parkerbill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 08:39 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
wingnut60's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Wherever the Suites is
Posts: 2,982
Having been in this situation early in my camping days, I can tell you that trying to charge the battery with the TV is not going to make you happy. Once the battery goes down, not much but a 120volt charger run off a gen/shore power will properly recharge it. The TV is designed to keep the battery from running down when traveling, it will not do much more than that.
Having also been in the limited money situation several times, I found that actually spending for a gen (got a cheap/loud one) was better than being without battery power.
Hope it works out--if nothing else, I believe the battery will get more charge from using cables rather than the charging wire in the trailer harness connection.
Joe
__________________
'15 38RSSA Mobile Suites
'05 36TK3 Mobile Suites--retired but not forgotten
'17 F450--trying one more Ford
'09 F450--died, replaced with '10--retired
wingnut60 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 08:57 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
mavric65's Avatar
 
Damon Owners Club
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Sacramento, California
Posts: 445
Look here
http://www.amazon.com/Renogy-Watts-M...le+solar+panel

Plug and play and can move it to be in the sun all day $280
__________________
2008 Damon Daybreak 3135,F53,2011 CR-V toad SMI Stay in Play Duo
Why wait for retirement enjoy life now !!!!!!!!!!
Me , DW, 2 kids and Kasey 8 year old yellow lab
mavric65 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 09:07 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Outdoors RV Owners Club
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Nowhere, now here. Freedom!
Posts: 3,000
Quote:
Originally Posted by DAN L View Post
bfisher003
harbor freight has inexpensive gennys and solar. i have not used either so I cannot speak about their effectiveness.
do a forum search for more info.
I have used their solar. If you know how to use solar efficiently and effectively, wait for their full kit to go on sale or coupon and buy two and a combiner (?). 90 watts of solar power max from two kits will charge OK and at good voltage. If you want more solar power, but the panel sets until you have enough, or downs the money on good PV tech and install and be pretty much done with it if you like/can afford it.
__________________
ORV 19B Full Timer, '14 Ram 2500 Diesel and a GSD. This signature updated, May 1, '17.
Currently funemployed in Vancouver WA de K7NOL 146.52Mhz Safety? (CLICK ME!)
1bigmess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2015, 09:10 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Outdoors RV Owners Club
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Nowhere, now here. Freedom!
Posts: 3,000
Quote:
Originally Posted by Campingman View Post
Get a small *QUIET* generator.
Just a little friendly reminder about gennie noise. It doesn't have to drive your neighbors crazy if it drives you crazy first.
__________________

__________________
ORV 19B Full Timer, '14 Ram 2500 Diesel and a GSD. This signature updated, May 1, '17.
Currently funemployed in Vancouver WA de K7NOL 146.52Mhz Safety? (CLICK ME!)
1bigmess is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
battery, boondocking, charging



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Lifeline Battery question RVNewbie55 MH-General Discussions & Problems 12 03-07-2015 03:51 PM
Battery question Joe Jeffries National RV Owner's Forum 6 02-26-2015 05:41 PM
Battery charging question Algoma Newmar Owner's Forum 22 02-23-2015 07:34 AM
Charging system question Milom Winnebago Industries Owner's Forum 17 09-15-2014 05:54 AM
Dimensions 2000 Watt inverter, no battery charging, need help ASAP! FIRE UP Winnebago Industries Owner's Forum 29 02-24-2014 12:36 AM

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:32 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.