Which battery is best? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-06-2014, 05:26 PM   #1
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Which battery is best?

I'm going to replace an old group 24 (Northern?) battery on our 2011 Scamp 16. It's about 4 years old and works okay but we are taking an extended road trip with many stops including both with and without electric. Lots of devices charging, and I'd like to attempt a Cpap machine prior to leaving to see if that will be a possibility while boondocking. (Big fridge doesn't run on battery, kids will always be using lights in their respective corners, fan will be on a lot)
Can I upgrade to a group 27 without any further electrical upgrades to the trailer or TV?
Which battery will be the best bang for my buck?
What is the best overall battery?
Should I consider two batteries? Will they fit with two propane tanks?
Thanks in advance!
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Old 05-06-2014, 05:29 PM   #2
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Hi Josh,

Would a small portable solar panel be worth looking into, perhaps?

Rick
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Old 05-06-2014, 05:45 PM   #3
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To answer the real question: I suggest either the Group 27 or two if there is room. And above that, if you are going to be on the road, I suggest buying Wal-Mart batteries, not because they are "Better" but because it's a lot easier to get warranty service on the road. Just be sure to keep your original receipts.
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Old 05-06-2014, 07:05 PM   #4
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battery suggestion

Another battery option is one or two from NAPA. There are lots of Napa stores out across the country, they offer a good warranty and I think the price is competitive with wallmart.
Steve
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Old 05-06-2014, 09:19 PM   #5
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A Wal Mart group 27 or a 29 will do fine with no upgrades to you electrical system.
I have 5 Wal Mart batteries now.
The newest one is 3 1/2 years old and they are still all going strong.
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Old 05-06-2014, 09:38 PM   #6
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I changed to a group 27 on my Scamp with no need to change anything other than the battery box to fit it. It was a tight fit behind the propane tank though & I only have a single tank so can't be sure how yours might be set up. You might want to buy a box to dry fit before buying the actual battery. Last battery I purchased came from Costco and its seems to have done pretty well .. on year 4 & can still get by for a few days of dry camping without any issue. But its also never been drained below 50% which is probable the #1 best thing you can do for our batteries performance. I do have a small solar panel to boost it back up as needed, with that I can stay out pretty well endlessly as long as there is sunshine. ;-)

Edit to add: the second best thing you can do for battery performance is change out your lights to LED if you haven't already done so.
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Old 05-16-2014, 06:00 PM   #7
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Everything they said

and my 2 cents? If your batteries are outside undercover of battery box? Stick with good old wet cell deep cycle that can be charged with any good smart charger or typical installed charger (Progressive Dynamics converters etc... as seen in many rigs)

My Parkliner came with fancy AGM Optimas in an interior (now vented) box. They are fickle and should be charged on a dedicated (very) smart charger or they won't really be happy for as long as they are designed.
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JALEE View Post
I'm going to replace an old group 24 (Northern?) battery on our 2011 Scamp 16. Lots of devices charging, and I'd like to attempt a Cpap machine prior to leaving to see if that will be a possibility while boondocking.
Should I consider two batteries? Will they fit with two propane tanks?
Thanks in advance!
If your CPAP draws a lot of current you might consider eliminating 1 propane tank and use the space for a 2nd battery. I don't know the Scamp 16 layout, but I do know propane usage and monitoring is more predictable than battery usage, especially with kids involved.


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Old 05-16-2014, 08:38 PM   #9
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Thanks for the advice. After lots of reading I think I am going to go with two flooded deep cell group 27's and I'll try to be vigilant about maintenance. (I carry distilled water anyway for the Cpap!)
I'll see if I can find a deal on an Interstate. Otherwise I'll go Walmart for the reasons listed above. What is the specific model or name/#?
I want to screw two aluminum flat bars or angle irons across the tongue behind the propane tanks and bolt the battery cases down. That way they can overlap the tongue a bit on either side and the batteries will fit. Does anyone see a problem with that?
Also I thought I read on a thread somewhere that scamp had a poor quality inverter at some point. Does anyone know if that was remedied by the time the 2011 models came around?
Finally, is it expensive to convert to LED? Are they as irritating as I imagine? Or am I opening up a can of worms!
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:46 PM   #10
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Do not use aluminum. In contact with steel it will cause a corrosion problem (electrolysis) when wet, and the steel dissolves. LEDs have evolved greatly, get them in "warm white" for a whole lot less than they cost even 2 years ago. Many will chime in with a current online source, I'm sure.

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Old 05-16-2014, 08:48 PM   #11
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Look at your Power Center and tell us what one is installed. Progressive Dynamics would be good.

If you check with boat supply houses you can get a single battery box that will hold two batteries.

LED's aren't near as irritating as a dead battery. You can just change the light bulbs in one fixture to find out if you like the color, it's a plug & play change out.
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:58 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by tractors1 View Post
Do not use aluminum. In contact with steel it will cause a corrosion problem (electrolysis) when wet, and the steel dissolves. LEDs have evolved greatly, get them in "warm white" for a whole lot less than they cost even 2 years ago. Many will chime in with a current online source, I'm sure.

Charlie Y
Hmmmm

I guess we better tell all those owners with aluminum tongue boxes, not to mention all the pick up owners with aluminum truck boxes, that they are headed for trouble.

I think that if you use a non-metallic spacer between the two surfaces it does just fine.
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Old 05-16-2014, 09:11 PM   #13
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A non-conductive spacer would work fine. They came with my aluminum pickup box.

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Old 05-16-2014, 09:36 PM   #14
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My 13 foot scamp came to me with a group 24 battery and 2 propane tanks. I changed to a group 27 battery. I added a painted board under the old battery location and screwed it to the cross rails not the frame. Then i screwed down the new battery box to the plywood. With the 2 propane tanks and a side jack there isnt enough clearance for the battery box top to not rub the trailer body it is very close. I had to use a heat gun to reform the side bubbles on the lid. If you mount 2 batteries on top of the frame this situation gets worse due to the shape of the body. Another issue is weight you have more than doubled the weight on the tongue for which it is not designed for. Some people have cracked the frame where it meets the body so you have to really keep an eye on that area. I use a solar panel instead of a second battery. Be careful where and how many holes you drill into the frame. Make sure your tug can handle the increased tongue weight.
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