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Old 10-23-2021, 03:01 PM   #21
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contact Tom Dansby at tom.dansby@gmail.com
He is a progessional installer and will answer your questions. Tell him Mike from the Colorado Columbines said to call.
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Old 10-23-2021, 06:40 PM   #22
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You truly need to use a battery disconnect switch when unit is not in use. My dual CG2 batteries will go months without charging and stay 80% or better. They are simple lead acid, true deep discharge batteries. Think golf cart usage.

Even with batteries disconnected, you can use a small solar charger to keep batteries fresh. I prefer a Battery Tender though , as that's what they are designed to do.
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Old 10-24-2021, 05:47 AM   #23
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Battery setup

This is the solar battery tender I use for the chassis battery. It hangs in the southern-facing front window. It connects to a solar controller because I could never tell from the documentation whether it had a built-in controller or not. It then connects to the port I installed in the dash which connects through the firewall directly to the battery. I installed marine grade battery cutoff switches on both the chassis battery and the house batteries. The charging connections connect to the battery before the cutoff so I can charge them while the batteries are disconnected.
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Old 10-24-2021, 03:33 PM   #24
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Good!!
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Old 10-25-2021, 01:36 PM   #25
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I have 400w of solar which will keep mine up all year but I have to check and add water every month. It is one thing on my calender to do every month.
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Old 10-25-2021, 04:59 PM   #26
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Does 400w keep your batteries up dry camping....generally or are you supplementing that with generator time.
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Old 10-25-2021, 11:18 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by PJ & Janna View Post
Does 400w keep your batteries up dry camping....generally or are you supplementing that with generator time.
So far it has. I only charge 2 6v batteries but we don't use much power, like little to no tv but i have a 12v compessor refridge. I really only turn on the generator to run the microwave because it is not on the inverter yet.
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Old 10-26-2021, 03:28 AM   #28
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We are starting to see the big shift as manufacturers start to sell units with solar and lithium. I just swapped out my AGM for lithium. Although I had two hundred amp hours I could only use half of that because of the lead battery chemistry. Lithium allows up to 80 percent discharge. I paid 15 bucks for a plug-in switch for my intellipower charger that allows it to boost for lithium. Long-term will get a different charger. All the lithium seems to be coming from China for the innards. However, buy with research and a warranty. In some cases the battery management systems are North American.I did pay $1,100 per battery, for the 200 amp variety. I’m using it for the first time this week and am enjoying the peace of mind. Don’t have to worry about sunshine or who I will offend with the generator. I’m just trying a portable solar panel and will have to ramp that up with a permanent panel too. Over a ten-year cycle the math for lithium adds up showing it is as cost-efficient as lead (or damn close). In the end it is about what you need and actually use on the road. I know I want to camp in places that don’t have electric. I can’t use the air conditioner or microwave but a lot of times that’s no issue. Lithium holds its charge over a winter although you should never use them without warming them up above freezing. People have come up with great ways to have the batteries heat themselves.
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Old 10-26-2021, 08:31 AM   #29
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@Bluztoo - What is the $15 switch that you added? Does this let the existing charger top off the lithium?
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Old 10-27-2021, 07:33 AM   #30
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Just FYI those little suction cup style solar panels aren't much good for a vehicle battery. Assuming it's working at 100% (which they don't...), you will get less than 0.42A current from it which will not do anything. There are lots of Watts to Amps converter tools online. They sell solar panels by watts because 5 watts sounds better than 0.42 amps... That being said, I pull my 6V batteries every fall, bring them in the garage, make sure the water levels are still good and put them on a NOCO battery maintainer. Hope that helps.
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Old 10-27-2021, 07:57 AM   #31
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2.5 years in, we leave it plugged in. No battery/ converter problems so far. But we don't boondock, only need batteries for incidental use between hookups. So no solar needed.
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Old 11-05-2021, 09:42 AM   #32
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TomC_AZ - it's called a pendant and it's on Amazon. Look for Progressive Dynamics booster. Basically it allows you to push a button and put it into boost mode to fully charge lithium. Long term you obviously want a lithium charger but this will do if you don't mind pressing the button.
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Old 11-05-2021, 11:18 AM   #33
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I like that push button boost. Good idea.
Another idea, if you have a WFCO converter, you can swap out the charging section with one that has a switch for lead acid or lithium. Easy to do. Only a few wires instead of rewiring your whole power center.
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Old 11-05-2021, 11:41 AM   #34
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I looked into this and mine is all built in, its the WFCO WF-3735. It appears that I cant just swap out that component and would need a whole new power center. Which by the way I cannot find as Jayco uses (at least on mine) the smaller GE circuit breaker model. No one seems to have it.
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Old 11-05-2021, 11:54 AM   #35
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Yikes!
I guess that leaves you with replacing the power center. Either with a new WFCO unit or a Progressive. The only hassle is the re-wiring. But if you can get your old unit out far enough, you can swap the wires one at a time. Doable.
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Old 11-05-2021, 02:21 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSchmidt View Post
They sell solar panels by watts because 5 watts sounds better than 0.42 amps...

I agree.


I bought a 20 watt panel off Amazon and I monitor the state of charge. 20 watts is a nice sized panel to keep the Ford battery topped off.
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Old 11-28-2021, 09:52 PM   #37
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I have a 2022 171BH. I have a single battery that in my opinion, stinks. I wasnt planning to upgrade to Lithium but Battle Born has a great sale. Their 100a/h battery is $699. Im strongly considering that. Two questions, is the 30A Solar Charge Controller that comes with the factor Solar able to control these, and second, is there enough room on the front of the RV to store these two batteries. I think a Group 24 is roughly 9-10 while the Lithium is 12.75. Thoughts? Thanks! Andy
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Old 11-28-2021, 10:36 PM   #38
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The solar wont be an issue. If you go with two batteries at some point you might want another 190w panel on the roof but not needed right away with only two batteries.

Our dealer only gave us one group 24 battery as well and it just wasn't enough. The battle born is more of a group 27 so the existing battery box may not work (assuming they went cheap on the box as well), you would need to measure it. I replaced mine off amazon as it was cheaper than autozone etc. but you would need the box thats one size bigger per battery or a double sized box.

Two batteries will fit up front, the question is would you want $1300 sitting up front in plastic boxes or would you want to move them into the passthrough space for more security? If you move them you would need to figure out how to reroute the battery wires and keep the batteries secure. Good thing is no need to worry about venting with those batteries they dont off gas like AGM/LA do. I'm not sure if anyone on here has done this move with one of the newer models.
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