Upgrading your battery system - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-12-2015, 12:51 AM   #15
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You didn't read it right, he's bumping up the amperage from 126 to 215 by replacing the existing 126A group 29 with the pair of 215A 6 volt'ers "not quite doubling" his capacity.
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Old 03-12-2015, 07:00 AM   #16
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Unless each of the 6V have 215 a/h before hooking them together...
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Old 03-12-2015, 07:34 AM   #17
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A 6 volt battery generally has around a 200-235 amp hour rating by itself. When you connect two 6 volt batteries together to get 12 volts, the amp hour capacity remains the same as the single battery (~ 200 amp hours), but the voltage is doubled to the 12 volts.

When you join two 12 volt batteries together (generally 100 amp hours each), you double the amp hour capacity ( to 200 amp hours for the bank), but keep the voltage the same 12 volts.

Which way to go can be argued about I suppose. I like the 6 volt batteries for their durability and high cycle ratings.
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Old 03-12-2015, 07:59 AM   #18
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Here is the battery I installed, actually 2 batteries :
Duracell® Golf Car Battery - Group Size GC2 - Sam's Club
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Old 03-12-2015, 04:47 PM   #19
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I'm curious, why the need to upgrade. Are you running an inverter or a compressor fridge? Raz
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Old 03-12-2015, 05:54 PM   #20
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I have always felt uncomfortable towing with the refer on propane while refueling. I'd like the option now to operate off battery, at least during daylight when there is also solar. The refer pulls 14 amps/hour and my solar is only 95 watts. My tow vehicle charge is unknown at present. It was more economical to upgrade the battery system versus adding another solar panel. In addition with the Zamp battery monitor I can watch the draw on my IPhone and determine if I have enough "gas left in the battery system" so to speak. I can now determine what my tow can add and then decide if I'm limited to daytime operation or can go at night off 12v also.
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Old 03-12-2015, 07:04 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by hwdornbush View Post
Actually, each 6v battery is 3 cells so if you really wanted to check individual things, you would need to check each of 6 cells in the two batteries. Not practical, I think. At least if one of the 6 cells goes bad, you only have to replace half of the total battery capacity.
If you can get at the batteries and they aren't no-maintenance (have removable caps for each cell and some other stuff) then hydrometer testing is worthwhile. See: Hydrometer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 03-12-2015, 11:46 PM   #22
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Jim, how is that box vented?
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Old 03-13-2015, 12:03 AM   #23
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Jim, how is that box vented?
Not Jim, but I can tell you. The battery box on the 21 is vented to the outside at the factory. You can see the vent tube in the photos.
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Old 03-13-2015, 12:23 AM   #24
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If you can get at the batteries and they aren't no-maintenance (have removable caps for each cell and some other stuff) then hydrometer testing is worthwhile. See: Hydrometer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Two 6-volts are common in Escapes as most people seem to opt for that. The caps for the three cells are all connected to each other so they are easily removed together for adding water and then the caps are twisted back into place very easily. The standard Escape 6-volt batteries are Interstate with 232 ah.
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Old 03-13-2015, 05:47 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I have always felt uncomfortable towing with the refer on propane while refueling. I'd like the option now to operate off battery, at least during daylight when there is also solar. The refer pulls 14 amps/hour and my solar is only 95 watts. My tow vehicle charge is unknown at present. It was more economical to upgrade the battery system versus adding another solar panel. In addition with the Zamp battery monitor I can watch the draw on my IPhone and determine if I have enough "gas left in the battery system" so to speak. I can now determine what my tow can add and then decide if I'm limited to daytime operation or can go at night off 12v also.
An interesting experiment. You are hoping the solar will supplement enough to make up any current the alternator doesn't supply and the extra battery capacity is insurance against a dead battery at the end of the day. I don't blame you for not running the propane while driving. I don't like the idea either. I hope it works. The extra current the panel provides might do it. Be diligent. Last season I inadvertently hit the 12 volt switch on my fridge when starting the propane and didn't realize it until the next morning. It destroyed the battery. Thanks for sharing, Raz
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Old 03-14-2015, 04:16 AM   #26
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Weight and size vs a/h

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Originally Posted by padlin00 View Post
You didn't read it right, he's bumping up the amperage from 126 to 215 by replacing the existing 126A group 29 with the pair of 215A 6 volt'ers "not quite doubling" his capacity.
Deep cycling capability which ups from a marine 12V - 80 a/h (45 pounds) to a 6V golf cart battery - 215 a/h (65 pounds, times 2 =130 pounds) comes at a weight differential price of 85 pounds which is surprising. I looked at the Costco ones thinking they'd be small but the 6V are larger than the 12V and you need 2 of them. My 13' trailer can barely fit one 18"-er in a sealed box. Battery banks challenge storage size and weight and mileage economy efforts while improving a/h. Meritorious for bigger trailers or boats maybe. I have a 12V fridge and we always freeze 3/4 gallon of water in a gallon container and this keeps the icebox cold for a weekend, we'll be using the 12V when the battery is being charged while driving or plugged in (via the converter).
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Old 03-14-2015, 10:58 AM   #27
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Actually my original battery was a group #29 which needed the larger battery box and weighed around 66 lbs, if I had to replace the box I might have not gone this route. Besides, the extra 65 lbs on curb side balances the extra weight of food in the refer on the street side.
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Old 03-14-2015, 07:26 PM   #28
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I'm with you Jim. We just returned from 9 weeks on the road with our recently installed 2 - 6 volt Trojans and 400 watts of fixed panels. Everyone talks about the performance on sunny days but I can tell you that every day isn't going to be sunny and if you go more than a couple of days without sun you will have to adjust your consumption. We did about 50% boon docking and we didn't feel deprived when we didn't have electric hook ups. Also people forget about how many things we use that consume power. Here is a list of the things we run off the batteries and charge with the sun.

Water Pump
Fantastic Fan
Bathroom fan
Lights interior (I have installed them in all of the cupboards and refrigerator)
Lights exterior (more than I need)
TV - off the inverter
Amplified speakers
Laptop Computer
2 - IPhones
2- rechargeable toothbrushes
Drip coffee maker run of the inverter
Refrigerator when traveling
Crockpot run off the inverter on full sun days

I know 400 watts sounds like a lot but they are fixed so I am probably only using about 200 watts at any given time and I don't worry about which direction I park. This is not the first solar installation I have done but it is the first one that I am satisfied with.
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