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Old 05-10-2011, 12:38 PM   #15
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No, it will likely only charge the starting batteries well.
If your coach has a Bi-Directional Isolator Relay Delay (BIRD) the coach batteries will charge with the engines alternator.
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Old 05-10-2011, 01:15 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Wanabee FTer View Post
If your coach has a Bi-Directional Isolator Relay Delay (BIRD) the coach batteries will charge with the engines alternator.
If his RV is old enough/basic enough to not have any battery monitoring its very unlikely there is a good relay/isolator and heavy enough wiring between the starting and house batteries. Also, it sounds like he only idled the engine.
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Old 05-15-2011, 02:36 PM   #17
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Print out everything ole HANDYBOB has to say about batts, solar & life in general. You'll be way ahead of the crowd!


The RV Battery Charging Puzzle HandyBob's Blog
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Old 05-15-2011, 03:06 PM   #18
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Be very very careful when you get extreme advocacy, such as with Handy Bob.

The tendency in such an approach is to go a bit overboard and to presume that everybody has exactly the same circumstances.

Such websites are a good way to see what some people worry about - even to an obsession sometimes - and that can be a clue about where to direct your efforts so you can understand why and use that knowledge to your best advantage.
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Old 05-15-2011, 05:09 PM   #19
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I said Handy Bob, not Handygod!

Nevertheless There is a ton of good info on his blog. At the very least a good place to start learning.
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Old 05-15-2011, 09:27 PM   #20
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BrianL,
If it were not for Handy Bob's Blog I would still be in ignorant bliss and my inadequet solar system would still be rapidly killing my batteries.

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Old 05-16-2011, 12:08 AM   #21
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If all you have is one resource, such as HandyBob, you are still in a state of ignorant bliss.

He has some good stuff on his web site but unless you can qualify it, you don't know what is properly applicable to your particular situation.

I have no criticisms of any particular website and I am sorry to see that it appears I came across that way. What I did suggest was to be careful when you encounter certain behavior.

There are no magic bullets in regards to batteries and low voltage RV systems, no one size fits all, no absolutes. Everything is a trade-off and you need to know the factors involved and how important they actually are and how to measure or assess them. You also need to know just how fine a line can be drawn as many things battery have very very fuzzy lines.
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Old 05-16-2011, 10:40 AM   #22
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I fully agree! It is a wise person who looks to a number of good sources for information and then takes what seems to fit, and adapts it to their needs. What Bob taught me really helped! I never want to get into the minute details of storage batteries. All I really wanted was to keep my batts up and supplying a modicum of 12V power while in the boondocks

I do know that we just finished 4.5 weeks pure boondocking in S Utah. Having follows Bob's advice, and others, I installed one panel just to keep two deep cycle batts charged - AND we didn't have to do anything else to have all the 12v power we needed.

In the past I'd be running our Honda 2000, through a good automotive type charger, every few days for three hours just to have lights.

Ive been boondocking since the mid 1970's and keeping batteries charged has been such a pain!!! Not any more!

Next to installing an electric jack, getting a simple solar set up is the best thing I've ever done to our 23' trailer! No, The solar is first, then the jack
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Old 05-16-2011, 11:29 AM   #23
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With my back ground in water pumps and AC what Handy Bob said is the only thing I came across that made any sense. I have since found other sources that do. No I am not in ignorant bliss any more as far as my solar system and batteries are concerned. My solar system was not working as it should have been after being installed by "EXPERTS" and now after I renovated it, as per Handy Bob' information and instructions, it is working better than the books say it should. Yes I agree with you that you should not take all that is written as gospel.

However Handy Bob's blog is gospel now that I know the difference. After much searching I found the truth.
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Old 05-16-2011, 02:15 PM   #24
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However Handy Bob's blog is gospel now that I know the difference. After much searching I found the truth.
I believe religious discussions on the forum are prohibited.
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Old 05-16-2011, 11:12 PM   #25
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Nothing religious about what I said and none was intended.
Webster's 9th New Collegiate Dictionary:Gospel --Something accepted as the infalliable truth or as a guiding principal.

Handy Bob guided me to solar success! Now I know it to be the truth!
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Old 08-28-2011, 04:24 PM   #26
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I boondocked over the weekend with a dead cabin battery (lights very dimm). I have a nice coleman battery operated 2 bulb lamp I used. It was all I needed having a Class B. I use rechargable battery's for this.
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Old 09-15-2011, 08:17 PM   #27
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We used to do a lot of snowmobiling; no plug ins ; now With most converters used as a battery charger You will be old and gray before they get the battery Charged; the newer Inverters will charge up to 75 amps; But not the older converters;; I purchased a good Battery charger and hooked it up so it charged the batteries when the gen was running. The furnace fan has a 5 amp draw; We would set in 37, Below Zero temp . And NEVER had any problem, we ran the gen 1/2 hour in the morning, and1/2 hourin the evening, If you don't have an inverter of at least 1500 W; they charge 75 amps.If you don't hvae an inverter. Put a good Battery charger on it, And your troubles will go away;I know A lot of the posters asy start your engine. I say Start your engine if you are going down the road; your gen/battery charges the batteries. life is good;A point i would like to make. Someone asked my a question over a year ago; I thought it was repaired. He emailed me last week and asked me the same question. said he had read some conflickting POstings;;Good batteries. GOOD battery charger.It should put in about 20 amps.. DON"T buy that crap that charges 4 Amp; life is good
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Old 10-14-2011, 03:52 PM   #28
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Heating options

First off, I would recommend buying a good quilt and turning the heat down to about 55. If you still have issues, check into something like MrHeater and choose a size that suits your needs. You should only need this occasionally and this to me would make more sense than loading up your electric system to something that you don't usually need. I agree with changing at least your more commonly used lights with LED lights and look for things that you don't need on, but bleed your battery system. Wish you well with all the info.
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