Lithium upgrade on 2023 Casita Independence - Fiberglass RV
Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 03-19-2023, 01:19 PM   #1
Member
 
Name: Al
Trailer: Currently shopping
Texas
Posts: 31
Lithium upgrade on 2023 Casita Independence

I have filtered through and read many posts, I know there are a lot and from what I understand the newer 2022 and later Casitas have the Power Management Center that allows for Lithium charging, If that is the case, can I simply change out the AGM for Lithium. I understand that the tow vehicle will not charge it very efficiently but will it hurt the alternator at all and is that all that needs to be done if I don't want to charge off my Tow.

I would love to hear from someone that has actually done it instead of theory but I'll take that as well.
indysafe317 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 02:21 PM   #2
Member
 
Name: Hugh
Trailer: Scamp
North Dakota
Posts: 64
Registry
dc to dc charges

[QUOTE=indysafe317;854429]I have filtered through and read many posts, I know there are a lot and from what I understand the newer 2022 and later Casitas have the Power Management Center that allows for Lithium charging, If that is the case, can I simply change out the AGM for Lithium. I understand that the tow vehicle will not charge it very efficiently but will it hurt the alternator at all and is that all that needs to be done if I don't want


I think your would need a dc to dc charge, I have not done one yet, but this would work for you, I have 38 years experience working with starting and charging systems.

If you TV has a smart charging system you more than likely would have to add a ignition trigger wire also, to turn on the charger while driving.



https://www.amazon.com/Renogy-Batter...s%2C139&sr=8-1

hghsl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 02:29 PM   #3
Member
 
Name: Al
Trailer: Currently shopping
Texas
Posts: 31
[QUOTE=hghsl;854431]
Quote:
Originally Posted by indysafe317 View Post
I have filtered through and read many posts, I know there are a lot and from what I understand the newer 2022 and later Casitas have the Power Management Center that allows for Lithium charging, If that is the case, can I simply change out the AGM for Lithium. I understand that the tow vehicle will not charge it very efficiently but will it hurt the alternator at all and is that all that needs to be done if I don't want


I think you would need a dc to dc charge, I have not done one yet, but this would work for you, I have 38 years experience working with starting and charging systems.

If you TV has a smart charging system you more than likely would have to add a ignition trigger wire also, to turn on the charger while driving.



https://www.amazon.com/Renogy-Batter...s%2C139&sr=8-1


I've heard both I might and might not, If I did not put in a DC/DC charger, my understanding is that it just wont charge efficiently if much at all, which I am ok with. I just don't want to damage the tow vehicle system at all. Will be a 2022 F150.

I've been told that the only downside is that it will not effectively charge the Lithium battery in the Camper which I am ok with, does that sound right.
indysafe317 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 03:01 PM   #4
Member
 
Name: Hugh
Trailer: Scamp
North Dakota
Posts: 64
Registry
[QUOTE=indysafe317;854432]
Quote:
Originally Posted by hghsl View Post


I've heard both I might and might not, If I did not put in a DC/DC charger, my understanding is that it just wont charge efficiently if much at all, which I am ok with. I just don't want to damage the tow vehicle system at all. Will be a 2022 F150.

I've been told that the only downside is that it will not effectively charge the Lithium battery in the Camper which I am ok with, does that sound right.
This video will show you what you are up against trying to charge with a standard TV alternator. Unlike lead acid batteries, lithium batteries charge at a high rate during the whole charge cycle.

hghsl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 04:53 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Raspy's Avatar
 
Name: John
Trailer: Roamer 1
Smith Valley, Nevada
Posts: 2,798
[QUOTE=hghsl;854435]
Quote:
Originally Posted by indysafe317 View Post

This video will show you what you are up against trying to charge with a standard TV alternator. Unlike lead acid batteries, lithium batteries charge at a high rate during the whole charge cycle.
Please don't post that bogus video! Look into it further to understand why, instead of scaring people. That video is marketing hype that has done way more harm than good.

If you install a DC-DC charger, you will charge the lithiums correctly and there will be zero problems with the truck alternator. Zero.

An excellent way to power the DC-DC charger is with an Anderson plug and wires directly from the tow battery, with a marine circuit breaker. Typically #6 or #4 wires are used. With this you can easily get 30 amps to the house batteries by mounting the DC-DC charger in the trailer near the batteries. It's impossible to damage a truck alternator with a 30 amp load. Victron makes a very nice DC-DC charger that senses voltage from the truck and turns on or off automatically. No switching required.

It is possible to charge the lithiums directly, but not recommended, as they do not need a float charge and they do not want more than 14.6 volts. I've done it and it works, but again, not recommended as a general practice.

I don't know what charger you have, but modern Progressive Dynamics chargers can be converted to charge lithiums. A good source of information is to call Battle Born and ask them about this.
__________________
I only exaggerate enough to compensate for being taken with a grain of salt.
Raspy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 04:58 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
ShelbyM's Avatar
 
Name: Shelby
Trailer: Casita SD
Tennessee
Posts: 1,015
AFAIK the Li battery sucking the alternator to death scenario only exists on youtube.
ShelbyM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 05:02 PM   #7
Member
 
Name: Al
Trailer: Currently shopping
Texas
Posts: 31
[QUOTE=Raspy;854437]
Quote:
Originally Posted by hghsl View Post

Please don't post that bogus video! Look into it further to understand why, instead of scaring people. That video is marketing hype that has done way more harm than good.

If you install a DC-DC charger, you will charge the lithiums correctly and there will be zero problems with the truck alternator. Zero.

An excellent way to power the DC-DC charger is with an Anderson plug and wires directly from the tow battery, with a marine circuit breaker. Typically #6 or #4 wires are used. With this you can easily get 30 amps to the house batteries by mounting the DC-DC charger in the trailer near the batteries. It's impossible to damage a truck alternator with a 30 amp load. Victron makes a very nice DC-DC charger that senses voltage from the truck and turns on or off automatically. No switching required.

It is possible to charge the lithiums directly, but not recommended, as they do not need a float charge and they do not want more than 14.6 volts. I've done it and it works, but again, not recommended as a general practice.

I don't know what charger you have, but modern Progressive Dynamics chargers can be converted to charge lithiums. A good source of information is to call Battle Born and ask them about this.

If I install that way, Isn't the 7 pin connector still providing a charge as well
indysafe317 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 05:09 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Perryb67's Avatar
 
Name: Perry
Trailer: 2016 Bigfoot 25RQ
Lanesboro, Minnesota, between Whalan and Fountain
Posts: 657
Quote:
Originally Posted by indysafe317 View Post
I've heard both I might and might not, If I did not put in a DC/DC charger, my understanding is that it just wont charge efficiently if much at all, which I am ok with. I just don't want to damage the tow vehicle system at all. Will be a 2022 F150.

I've been told that the only downside is that it will not effectively charge the Lithium battery in the Camper which I am ok with, does that sound right.
In January I installed two 100 ah SOK in our new-to-us Bigfoot. Since we have a 2019 Ford F-150 with a “smart” alternator, the alternator only puts out 50 watts, or about 4 amps an hour. Ford told me that with their alternator we only need a DC-DC charger to charge at more than 50 watts and not to worry about ruining the alternator. Apparently it senses the wire size. We have a Victron BMV-712 battery monitor and have found out that 50 watts (about 4 amps) is what we get.

So far, in the two months of ownership, traveling around Arizona and New Mexico, our 160 watt roof panel and 100 watt portable have kept the batteries charged. About one out of 4 days we see 100% charge on the lithiums, but with lithiums they don’t need to be fully charged every day.

For the first time in over three weeks we’re at an electric site for a week, but then we’ll be without shore power for at least three or more weeks till we get home around April 15.

When we get home I’ll be installing an additional 400 watts on the roof and, since we’ll have plenty of charge power, as well as 200 ah’s of batteries, a switch to shut off charging from the F150 will be added.

My suggestions is to go without the DC-DC charger and see how that works for you, but to see I’d install a Victron BMV-712, however I advise everyone to install the 712. You can always add the DC-DC later.

Food for thought,

Perry
__________________
2016 Bigfoot 25RQ - 2019 Ford F-150, 3.5 V6 Ecoboost,

Previous Eggs -2018 Escape 5.0 TA, 2001 Scamp 16' Side Bath, 2007 Casita 17' Spirit basic, no bath, water or tanks, 2003 Bigfoot 25B25RQ, that we regreted selling
Perryb67 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 05:12 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Raspy's Avatar
 
Name: John
Trailer: Roamer 1
Smith Valley, Nevada
Posts: 2,798
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShelbyM View Post
AFAIK the Li battery sucking the alternator to death scenario only exists on youtube.
Yep.
__________________
I only exaggerate enough to compensate for being taken with a grain of salt.
Raspy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 05:23 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Raspy's Avatar
 
Name: John
Trailer: Roamer 1
Smith Valley, Nevada
Posts: 2,798
[QUOTE=indysafe317;854439]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raspy View Post


If I install that way, Isn't the 7 pin connector still providing a charge as well
The seven pin hot wire will provide power, but how much? I don't know the size of that wire in your rig, the length, or the power strategy of your vehicle computer. But it's safe to say, it will not perform like an Anderson plug will. For instance, the Victron 30 amp dc-dc charger is designed to have a 60 amp circuit breaker in the power circuit from the truck. It's likely your seven pin wire is only a #12, or maybe a #10 (20 or 30 amp max amperage).

You could maybe go to a smaller dc-dc charger to compensate, but that would take much longer to charge. If you are driving many miles every day, it might be viable, but charging quickly is important to avoid excessive run times. The beauty of lithium is the added capacity over lead acid, so taking advantage of that capacity is best done with a proper size charger.

Having solar is great for working alongside the dc-dc charger, where one can make up for the other's lack of capacity when needed.
__________________
I only exaggerate enough to compensate for being taken with a grain of salt.
Raspy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 05:24 PM   #11
Member
 
Name: Al
Trailer: Currently shopping
Texas
Posts: 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Perryb67 View Post
In January I installed two 100 ah SOK in our new-to-us Bigfoot. Since we have a 2019 Ford F-150 with a smart alternator, the alternator only puts out 50 watts, or about 4 amps an hour. Ford told me that with their alternator we only need a DC-DC charger to charge at more than 50 watts and not to worry about ruining the alternator. Apparently it senses the wire size. We have a Victron BMV-712 battery monitor and have found out that 50 watts (about 4 amps) is what we get.

So far, in the two months of ownership, traveling around Arizona and New Mexico, our 160 watt roof panel and 100 watt portable have kept the batteries charged. About one out of 4 days we see 100% charge on the lithiums, but with lithiums they dont need to be fully charged every day.

For the first time in over three weeks were at an electric site for a week, but then well be without shore power for at least three or more weeks till we get home around April 15.

When we get home Ill be installing an additional 400 watts on the roof and, since well have plenty of charge power, as well as 200 ahs of batteries, a switch to shut off charging from the F150 will be added.

My suggestions is to go without the DC-DC charger and see how that works for you, but to see Id install a Victron BMV-712, however I advise everyone to install the 712. You can always add the DC-DC later.

Food for thought,

Perry

Awesome, that's kind of what I'm looking for. I do not believe I need a DC/DC charger, because we usually do not boon-dock and if we do, it's only for a day or so and we have solar power and a generator so all I'm worried about is not burning up the alternator. I have read several comments that seem to back up the claim that because of the wire size and how the 7 pin works, it simply doesn't draw that much power from the alternator.
indysafe317 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2023, 05:34 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Perryb67's Avatar
 
Name: Perry
Trailer: 2016 Bigfoot 25RQ
Lanesboro, Minnesota, between Whalan and Fountain
Posts: 657
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raspy View Post
Please don't post that bogus video! Look into it further to understand why, instead of scaring people. That video is marketing hype that has done way more harm than good.


Yup, lots of flaws. First, an old standard alternator will probably burn up under their conditions. Many of today’s vehicles have “smart” alternators.

Then they run the electric motor at a high speed causing more overcharging. We don’t run our F150 at redline.

As I said in my previous post, Ford told me our alternator will limit the output according to the wire size, and a proper BMS should limit the input at the high end.

Food for thought,

Perry
__________________
2016 Bigfoot 25RQ - 2019 Ford F-150, 3.5 V6 Ecoboost,

Previous Eggs -2018 Escape 5.0 TA, 2001 Scamp 16' Side Bath, 2007 Casita 17' Spirit basic, no bath, water or tanks, 2003 Bigfoot 25B25RQ, that we regreted selling
Perryb67 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2023, 12:31 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: Bigfoot 25 RQ
Ohio
Posts: 250
I added the victron smart dc to dc charger, 18 amp version. This was what Am solar recommended that if no dedicated cable from the cab of the truck was added. The device turns off when it detects the engine is not running. This eliminates the possibility of a deeply discharged lithium battery from drawing your tow vehicles start battery, obviously that can be done with a switch or a hardwired relay. And again if you leave the tow vehicle connected. The lower resistance in the lithium could drain your starter battery under the right conditions. My 7 pin wire is 10 gauge from my Ram with an upgraded alternator, so 18 amps is an appropriate sized dc to dc. The device wasn’t expensive and it compensates fro the voltage loss of the long wire run to provide the proper charging current. I have 300 watts on the roof of solar. It augments that. I’d expect to get around 10 amps of charging. By the way the alternator demonstration by victron was meant for boat owners who have an alternator that would run at lower rpm’s for extended time, less so for tow vehicles that do not idle for extended period of times. It’s a valid concern. Victron is a sophisticated and research driven company that sells premium products and not in the business of scare tactics. I have been studying their products at length and their training videos. I have all victron in my camper except for the batteries. I’m pleased. Plenty of opinions out there and options. I would say if there is not a lot of boon docking in the op’s use lithium may not always be the best choice.

By the way Explorist Life web site and YouTube channel has a wealth of information on wire and fuse sizing, design and best practices. If you do go Litium I recommend that resource.
oldwave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2023, 09:12 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Name: John
Trailer: Bigfoot 25 RQ
Ohio
Posts: 250
Alternator charging

https://youtu.be/dzU_pQFa19s

Here is solid info on alternator charging. Solid information rather than various opinions. Worth a watch. Obviously Victron centric but good info.
oldwave is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
casita


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
NH | 2023, May 18-21: 2023 Spring Fling in New England Gerry Rallies, Get-togethers, Molded Meets (Upcoming) 110 05-22-2023 06:52 AM
WA | 2023, May 19-21: Maryhill in May 2023 paulw Rallies, Get-togethers, Molded Meets (Upcoming) 21 05-21-2023 04:50 PM
FL | 2023, Jan 13-16: January Rally 2023 Sherritini Rallies, Get-togethers, Molded Meets (Upcoming) 7 12-05-2022 12:22 PM
FL | 2023, Jan 4-11: Eastbank 2023 Baja Bob Rallies, Get-togethers, Molded Meets (Upcoming) 2 12-05-2022 06:29 AM
Bigfoot Lithium upgrade JonRaw Modifications, Alterations and Updates 30 03-01-2020 07:02 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:45 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions Inc.