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Old 01-13-2020, 10:51 PM   #1
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How many amp hours do you use a day boondocking?

I know this varies I just want a realistic idea of usage. Right now I have 125 ah from 2 trojans. I'm considering getting another set. I have 600w roof solar and 100 portable.
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Old 01-14-2020, 04:44 AM   #2
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The problem with lead acid batteries is that the realistic usage is only 50%, if you pull them down past say 12.2 volts, you are doing real damage to the life cycle of the batteries. In battery tech, you get what you pay for. As an example, this battery: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Is significantly better than the 2 batteries you currently have, because it has about 1200 Watt Hours worth of capacity in it's 100 Amp Hour. You can take that battery down to say 10.5 volts and charge it all the way back up using your solar and an MPPT charge controller such as this: https://www.amazon.com/SmartSolar-MP...68&sr=8-3&th=1

Which that can handle all your 600 Watts and charge the above battery quickly.

So the question becomes, how would you use 1200 Watt/ Hour?

You could cook using a 1200 Watt electric stove for an hour.

You could run a hair dryer for an hour

You could run 12, 100 watt light bulbs, for an hour.

Even the best of battery tech, is somewhat limited in what you can do, and you still need an inverter to change the battery from 12volts dc to AC for your camper.

That's why I chose Goal Zero power stations because they include the higher end battery tech, with an inverter built in. Such as this: https://www.goalzero.com/shop/portab...r-station-app/

Again, I know expensive, but I wanted a portable out of the box solution. You could essentially build your own version of this using 3 of the batteries above and an inverter such as this: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Sean

PS, I used to think this kid was an idiot (couple of years ago), but he cleaned up his youtube feed and started doing amazing content for beginners in solar: https://www.youtube.com/user/errolprowse/videos

Watch all his videos to learn more.
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Old 01-14-2020, 08:18 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m2bandit View Post
I know this varies I just want a realistic idea of usage. Right now I have 125 ah from 2 trojans. I'm considering getting another set. I have 600w roof solar and 100 portable.
Best to measure Amp draw directly, so you know.

My x213 uses about 0.8 Amps as baseline draw. With fridge on propane, it goes to about 1.5 Amps, with a few LED lights on about 2.5 Amps. Add charging devices (phones tablets) we use about 3.5-4 Amps. For us, that's all of our energy needs, so in one day we use about 40-60 Amp hours. Your solar setup would be overkill for us. In full sun, you'd have our daily usage restored within 1-2 hours.
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Old 01-14-2020, 12:19 PM   #4
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6v batteries can discharge 80% without damage. Lifepo is cool and all but the price just doesn't match the capability. I can get 500ah in 6v Trojans for less than 100ah of lifepo. When space becomes more of a concern lifepo might be tempting.
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Old 01-14-2020, 06:49 PM   #5
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Best to measure Amp draw directly, so you know.

My x213 uses about 0.8 Amps as baseline draw. With fridge on propane, it goes to about 1.5 Amps, with a few LED lights on about 2.5 Amps. Add charging devices (phones tablets) we use about 3.5-4 Amps. For us, that's all of our energy needs, so in one day we use about 40-60 Amp hours. Your solar setup would be overkill for us. In full sun, you'd have our daily usage restored within 1-2 hours.
Thanks for sharing!
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Old 01-15-2020, 01:44 PM   #6
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Thanks for sharing!
BTW, if you have a hand-held voltmeter, an easy way to measure amp draw is to put your battery cutoff switch to the off position and measure current between the two ends of the switch.
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Old 01-15-2020, 02:45 PM   #7
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I boondock all the time (99.99%) and typically I use 55 AH overnight.
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2004 Chev Silverado Duramax optioned past the max. 2009 Jayco Eagle 308 RLS 765 watts of solar, 6-6 volt batteries (696 amp hour), 2000 watt (4000 surge) whole house inverter.
31 days boondocking in 2020,157/2019219/2018 206/2017,215/2016, 211/2015, 196/14, 247/13, 193/12

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