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Old 11-29-2021, 06:05 PM   #1
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One or Two house batteries.

2018 GS Conquest 6320.

Looked for the batteries today and after not finding them in the step area, I found the one battery in the front left side access door.

There was only one battery.

I assume that this was the house battery and separate from the battery for the engine.

My question is, if I am correct that this is the house battery, is one battery good enough if you are not doing a lot of boon docking?

There looks like there is enough room for two batteries but there s only one there. Would it be recommended to add another battery?
If so, what would be the reasoning for doing so.

Thanks!!
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Old 11-29-2021, 06:39 PM   #2
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Without an inverter, your house battery controls the lights, ceiling fans if you have any, furnace power, water pump, fridge power, water heater power. If you aren't doing much boondocking, then 1 may suffice. That will be up to you to decide. Your engine alternator should recharge the house battery on your drive.
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Old 11-29-2021, 07:06 PM   #3
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You will have to decide if you want 1 or 2 for house.
If you never boondock the answer is easy... as is if you do it often. The challenge will be if / when you do it how long? One night with caution use of 12V should be no problem. If Wx is cool / cold and you need furnace the fan will likely be an issue.
Best is to give it a try, even o'nite in driveway to see how things go.
Take V readings at start to make sure batty is charged and see how it goes for 1 or 2 nights with different usage. Maybe even have an extension ready but not connected just in case you need to connect to 120V.
The most common small house bank is a pair of 6V golf cart battys in series to provide 12V. They are good deep cycle battys that take rugged use. They are available as flooded (least $) or AGM ( no maint but a premium $)
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Old 11-29-2021, 09:46 PM   #4
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Hi Dana,

Since you rarely boondock, I advise to just use what you have. When it's time to replace it, I suggest you consider two 6V batteries, wiring them up in series. Many RV people have two 6V including me. They work much better than two 12V batteries wired in parallel.

If deciding on two 6V batteries, make sure they will fit inside your battery compartment. They are "Z" taller with different "X" and "Y" dimensions too.

You will appreciate the two 6V batteries (especially AGM) if you later find yourself boondocking a lot more.

One thing certain, adding a second 12V battery now would not be wise because the two batteries will be unbalanced. They will charge and discharge at different rates which will offer less energy than two identical ones. You will also get messy boil-overs from one being over-charged while the other is trying to catch up. They may even be counter-productive working against each other if one is much weaker than the other. You want to replace batteries in pairs, most definitely having the exact same battery model, and most preferably with the exact same production date code. Doing so will assure a best possible balance for "even-rate" charging.

The science behind two 6V batteries wired in series is that they discharge and recharge together as one battery which is not the case with two 12V batteries.
Typical 1.5V alkaline and rechargeable batteries in small devises are most often wired in series for the same reasons.
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Old 12-03-2021, 02:22 PM   #5
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Batteries

My 2017 Melbourne 24L has the pull out compartment and its only big enough for 1 12volt deep cycle! Would it be better to get an AGM or just the largest Flooded Deep Cycle I can find?
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Old 12-03-2021, 05:32 PM   #6
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My 2017 Melbourne 24L has the pull out compartment and its only big enough for 1 12volt deep cycle! Would it be better to get an AGM or just the largest Flooded Deep Cycle I can find?
If you got one slot, if you have the pesos get lithium..
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Old 12-03-2021, 05:39 PM   #7
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It depends?? The battery is most likely a group 24 or 27. If its in good condition and fully charged you might be able to get one night running the furnace.

I would move to 2 group 31 batteries. If I decide to spend the night and need to run the furnace I don't want to be waken by the DW that the heat is not working.
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Old 12-04-2021, 05:36 PM   #8
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The right answer to this question is very much dependent on how you camp. If you always camp at campgrounds with shore power, then one battery is enough. If you occasionally spend a night not plugged in (e.g. boondocked at a Walmart, etc.) then it may or may not be enough. You should try it out with a night of driveway camping to see if one battery will last through the night. The propane furnace fan is usually the biggest draw, so try to do your driveway trial on a night that is as cold as you're likely to see on the road. If the battery lasts through the night (the heater fan is still blowing) then you should be good to go. Otherwise, you'll need at least one more battery. If you think you may spend two nights in a row unplugged, test that in your driveway. Run the generator during the day as needed to recharge your battery then see how it works for the second night.

When I tried this I found that I needed more than my single OEM battery to get through one night. Subsequently shifted to two lithiums...
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Old 12-04-2021, 06:57 PM   #9
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Just a personal preference. We use two. We have had a few instances where we had to boondock. My rig seems to eat 12 volt. Water pump, fridge parts, carbon detector we watch tv and stuff and want enough without running the genset. Its just a personal preference though. BTW my slide and generator require battery to be up pretty well to operate. I also have room for 2 12v under the step.
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Old 12-05-2021, 01:09 AM   #10
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Battery life depends on your charging system, and your use and habits? Bought my 17yo rig in 2017, replaced coach battery, it was 7yrs old. Replace my chassis battery in 2020, it was 10yrs old. An $100 Flooded will be $200 in AGM? Good Luck
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Old 12-05-2021, 07:01 AM   #11
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Battery life depends on your charging system, and your use and habits? Bought my 17yo rig in 2017, replaced coach battery, it was 7yrs old. Replace my chassis battery in 2020, it was 10yrs old. An $100 Flooded will be $200 in AGM? Good Luck
When maintained properly, 7 years from a single wet acid house battery sounds right. That was my experience with our first motorhome. With our current motorhome having two 12V wet acid batteries, the story is different. Maintaining them properly, I could only get 2 good years, 1 marginal year, and one time I forced a 4th year which made significant trouble throughout that 4 week trip.

When it was time for my 3rd set of house batteries, I was ready to try something different. I had read a lot about the benefit of a pair of 6V batteries (wired in series) compared to 12V (wired in parallel) so I modified my battery compartment to accommodate their taller height. This required the removal of the slide-out battery tray which made checking acid levels extremely difficult so I paid twice the price for 6V sealed AGM batteries.

Since that change in 2015, it has been wonderful. 6.5 years and counting, battery reserve power has always been more than two new 12V batteries. So paying double the price at $180/battery at Sam's Club has saved me money already. My local Sam's Club no longer stocks them so when the day comes to replace them, I will have to shop around.
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Old 12-05-2021, 07:32 AM   #12
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Our old Class C and our current travel trailer only have one battery. That's worked fine for us, but we almost never camp without at least a 30 amp plug. The class C had room for another battery, and I considered installing one, but i never could come up with a good reason for us.
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Old 12-06-2021, 06:18 PM   #13
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I am of the opinion that a single battery is good for day use if you are traveling from one full hookup rv park to the next, but is marginal for overnight use if you are going to need to run exhaust fans or the propane furnace extensively.
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Old 12-06-2021, 06:37 PM   #14
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Ok Dana,

I hope you are not thoroughly confused at this point.

Let's separate something here.
You very seldom stop for the night without shore power available - Correct?
If you are stopped without shore power, you don't do much - Correct?
You did not say that the unit has a generator, let's guess NO.

Ron Dittmer gave you the best set of answers.
If it is working for you the way it is, leave it alone.
If you plan to do more dry camping or boondocking (those are different, but much alike), you may want more battery. If you have a generator, you don't need more just start the generator. If there are others around, they might not like it very much so just be sure to shut that thing down around bed time.

As Ron mentioned, do not add a battery to your existing installation. At the very least, you will be disappointed, that is if neither the parallel batteries explodes for you. This is not extremely common, but it is much more likely with paralleled batteries.

So, even if you don't do anything now. Get a good set of measurements for the battery space and write them some place and maybe take some pictures. Then, when you decide like many of us to go to a pair of gold cart batteries in series, you can know that they will fit before you bring them home.

I have done a lot of this over many years, and most of it for boat owners that paid me to get it right.

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