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Old 04-23-2015, 12:38 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BatteryPro View Post
US Battery makes very high quality batteries. For many years Interstate sold the U2200 which was made by US Battery. About 5 years ago they switched to a a very inferior battery from Johnson Control.

I recommend the US Battery over Trojan in your case because of the lower charge voltage (14.4 instead of 14.8 for Trojan). However I recommend the US2200 or larger instead of the smaller capacity 1800.
I agree. I have four of the US 2200 XC2 batteries, and am quite pleased with them. They are not much more expensive than the 1800s.

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Old 04-27-2015, 10:21 PM   #16
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Thanks for the help!

We replaced the 2 old dual duty marine/deep cycle batteries with new Trojan 105's ($110 a piece) and we were able to get great documentation on the batter control unit unit from Mary @ RV CUSTOM PRODUCTS. After troubleshooting it seems like the issue was just bad batteries the whole time. Just getting the documentation we were able to resolve another previously unrecognized problem we quickly resolved with a new fuse.

Now after reading countless threads on batteries, fuses and switches...the DW wants to install a solar panel to maintain the new Trojans. We will follow the advise to keep the new batteries maintained as we have added "check battery levels" to monthly maintence and pre-trip check list keep them happy. We have added a gallon of distilled water to the RV to keep them feed or at least give us something to drink as we walk about the boonies.

I will post the information provided by RV CUSTOMER PRODUCTS here in case some other "newbie" hits the same questions as to what does a BCC unit does...it is actually a pretty cool feature.

Thanks for the help and thanks for RV CUSTOMER PRODUCTS providing the documentation on my particular BCC unit.
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Old 04-28-2015, 10:02 AM   #17
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Caring for your Trojan battery

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Originally Posted by TNtravelers View Post
Thanks for the help!

We replaced the 2 old dual duty marine/deep cycle batteries with new Trojan 105's ...

...the DW wants to install a solar panel to maintain the new Trojans....
When you add a PV solar system be sure to purchase a programmable 3 stage charge controller with temperature compensation and the ability to equalize if you want to properly care for your new Trojan battery.

Happy Trails,
Larry
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Old 04-28-2015, 12:34 PM   #18
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When you add a PV solar system be sure to purchase a programmable 3 stage charge controller with temperature compensation and the ability to equalize if you want to properly care for your new Trojan battery.

Happy Trails,
Larry
Also, make sure the Solar Controller battery charge settings are correct for your batteries. Trojan recommends the Bulk and Absorption/Acceptance charge be set at 14.8V and Float at 13.2V. Everyone has their favorite Solar Controller. I have a Blue Sky Solar Boost 3024iL with the remote display. The remote display allows me to customize the settings and see the AH in and out of my batteries and battery life time AH's used. Very happy with my controller.
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Old 04-29-2015, 01:22 AM   #19
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Also, make sure the Solar Controller battery charge settings are correct for your batteries. Trojan recommends the Bulk and Absorption/Acceptance charge be set at 14.8V and Float at 13.2V. Everyone has their favorite Solar Controller. I have a Blue Sky Solar Boost 3024iL with the remote display. The remote display allows me to customize the settings and see the AH in and out of my batteries and battery life time AH's used. Very happy with my controller.
Thanks for the tips....reading all of this solar stuff will make you go blind!

What are your thoughts on Renogy 200W premium kit which has MPPT controller.

Premium Kit 200W | Renogy Store

Power wise...it should work for our demands. We are already converting lights to LED bulbs and really only need the boon dock for 2-3 days before we head back to shore power. We don't have an inverter (not telling the DW this) but I think we can fire up gen to use major appliances if required and I could always get a cheap low power inverter to power TV/DVD player based on available 12V jack I found under the TV.
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Old 04-29-2015, 07:41 AM   #20
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Regarding the voltages...

When you are plugged into shore power or running the generator chargeinging is provided by your house converter. In the 4 picture post this is most likely the box on the lower right (But I can not be sure)

What is the make and model of this unit?

Some are SINGLE stage and normally put out around 12.6 to 13.6 volts
Others are multi-stage and put out different voltages depending on battery state of charge.

Some alternator systems (Engine battery charging) are HOT. GM is known of that,, They may well put out 14 volts or more which is a bit high to my way of thinking but that is how GM designed them. Makes for a faster re-charge when you run to the corner store for a loaf of bread.

The Battery Control Center functions.

The BCC performs several functions.. SOME (yours) Include a power distribution center (FUSE BOX) but you likely understand that

It connects, Disconnects, and cross-connects your batteries.

Somewhere you have one or two switches..ONE may say USE/STORE and is often just inside the door (in the step well) but may be elsewhere..Or if you have two they may say MAIN and AUX (main is the chassis, AUX is the house) These switch(es) control the BCC disconnects USE the house batteries are connected IF you have two switches ON is connected.

There is also an Emergency Start switch or button that controls another part of the BCC but see next paragraph. May be marked AUX START or BOOST.

When the Engine is running, OR the Emergency Start button is pressed the house batteries and the chassis battery are cross connected so you can "Jump Start" the engine using the house battery.

In SOME motor homes (not all) This solenoid also closes when the HOUSE charger (Convrter) is live... Though it really is a trade name we gneraically call this a BIRD system (Bidirectional Isolator Relay Device/Delay).

Let us know the make/model of the convrter and we can advise further.
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Old 04-29-2015, 10:39 AM   #21
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Charge Controllers matter if you want long battery life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TNtravelers View Post
...

What are your thoughts on Renogy 200W premium kit which has MPPT controller....
That controler is not programmable, does not provide the correct charge voltages, does not have remote temperature sensor and does not allow proper equalization.

You need a programmable charge controller to take proper care of he Trojan battery. Examples are Blue Sky Energy (any model), Midnite, Outback, some Morningstar (but Morningstar controllers are very difficult to program and require software, a PC, a special cable and lots of understanding).

We have installed over 1000 Blue Sky products over the last 13 years and they are superb. I recommend you look at the SC30 if you are on a budget. It has all the features you need.

Larry
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Old 04-29-2015, 10:36 PM   #22
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Regarding the voltages...

What is the make and model of this unit?
WA8YXM-The particular converter/charger on our unit is a FORTRON POWER-Model # TP3SS-55.

From what I have read so far it is bulk charger (not a multi-stage) charger. It seems do to OK-not very loud (FAN WISE) but I have verified it is working. Looks kind of rough to me for a coach that is 3 years old (looked like surface rust on it) on load center surfaces but the unit works and I don't have any electrical issues.

I actually pulled the entire unit out to see I could figure out if would easier to connect solar panels to the wires leading to the battery in the compartment (or go direct to batteries-which are on the other side of the coach). Secondly-I wanted to see if I could get a feel for size and what (if anything) I could get after market might fit in this existing space. The refrigerator is almost right on time of these unit and with the 50 yards of "extra" wire in the space I don't think anything else would fit with clearance.

Thanks for the details on BCC-I need to see if the charger is equally charging the chassis battery by connecting the multi-meter tomm to see if receiving a charge (is suspect it is). All of the others features work-boost for example has enabled me to crank gen when they old batteries gave died.

I wouldn't mind replacing the charger with a Progressive Dynamics or similar charger that offers 3 or 4 stage charging if it can fit in original space-even with the solar panels planned. Anything that charges the battery faster but allows us to maintain the batteries and keep the lights on.

We have been taking pictures of everything-helps as we review/research and read as the coach is in covered storage across town while we work on improvements.
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Old 04-29-2015, 11:04 PM   #23
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Check out the link to AM Solar's solar education page. Information is good and easy to understand. There are other sites about solar such as Handy Bob which is very good. However, his ramblings are long in the tooth.

AM Solar's Educational Pages for RV Solar Systems
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Old 04-29-2015, 11:47 PM   #24
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That controler is not programmable, does not provide the correct charge voltages, does not have remote temperature sensor and does not allow proper equalization.

You need a programmable charge controller to take proper care of he Trojan battery. Examples are Blue Sky Energy (any model), Midnite, Outback, some Morningstar (but Morningstar controllers are very difficult to program and require software, a PC, a special cable and lots of understanding).

We have installed over 1000 Blue Sky products over the last 13 years and they are superb. I recommend you look at the SC30 if you are on a budget. It has all the features you need.

Larry
Thanks! We were drawn to lower cost of RENOGY kit. Like the price of the SC30-You have any thoughts on the SB3000i since it is MPPT? If we are going buy the individual components would you recommend any USA built panels-something with 200W-400W (which seems like the upper limit of both of these controllers). If we could get a solar set up for less than $800 we would be good...we have the budget since we got a great deal on this unit.

Do you know of any good links on wiring/length of lines/etc? The best open real estate we have the unit is driver side rear and the ref vent is on passenger front side (which same place and charger/converter). Vent is not an option (as we replaced it with 360 Siphon) and the DW will go nuts if I destroy her project. The driver side rear appears to be the best place where the panels will have any risk of being shaded by AC and new fans/covers.
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Old 04-30-2015, 07:32 AM   #25
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Ok I am not familure with that Charger/Converter but based on your comments I know the type.

When I got my motor home I noticed they gave me a Progressive Dynamics 9180 with optional charge wizard,, Basically the same (Functionally the same) as a 9280 The 80 is the number of amps.

I searched and searched for a better unit.... I am still searching 10 years later and have yet to find one.

For your install a 4600 might be a better choice since it replaces the "Guts" of your current unit so takes up no additional room.

Randy at Best Converters can give you more.

Question: Did my explanation of the Battery Control Center help? I know it was a bit long but I tend to.. Well.. Overtype.
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Old 04-30-2015, 12:50 PM   #26
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For your install a 4600 might be a better choice since it replaces the "Guts" of your current unit so takes up no additional room.

Randy at Best Converters can give you more.

Question: Did my explanation of the Battery Control Center help? I know it was a bit long but I tend to.. Well.. Overtype.
WA8YXM-Thanks for the information on BEST CONVERTERS. I will each out to Randy to get an idea/recommendation would be suitable to swap out for existing unit.

You explanation was perfect! It has me reviewing this set up further to understand it, benefits and see if our future planes will conflict with the system.
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Old 05-01-2015, 10:43 AM   #27
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WA8YXM-Thanks for the information on BEST CONVERTERS. I will each out to Randy to get an idea/recommendation would be suitable to swap out for existing unit.

You explanation was perfect! It has me reviewing this set up further to understand it, benefits and see if our future planes will conflict with the system.
New converter/charger on the way!

Powermax Boondocker Converters

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Old 05-11-2015, 08:18 AM   #28
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New Converter Questions

Two questions on the new converter:
- The old converter was original and was hardwired to power box-the nex converter has AC plug. Do I add an AC receptacle or just cut and strip the plug?

- Any know of decent instructions on doing this converion? The instructions with this unit as laughable.
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