OK Let's talk Lithium batteries - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-23-2021, 08:56 AM   #1
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Name: JD
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OK Let's talk Lithium batteries

I have been thinking about upgrading my Scamp to LiFePo4 batteries.
These ranges from expensive to EXPENSIVE.
I understand that the overall cost may be lower than replacing lead-Acid batteries and for the same AH rating provide more power output and less weight.
Being a DIYer I have looked at the pricing for a 100AH Dakota etc and the the 4s DIY battery setups .
I saw this battery setup on the WonderWeb:

Since I have the interior space available this "un-crated" battery would work for me.
Anyone else who has investigated this type of battery setup?
I know what the BMS does, but does it work with the EPEVER 40A MPPT controller. Since the EPEVER has a setting for Lithium is the BMS needed or is it a very good idea to limit damaging discharge, charge, and temperature (High and Low).
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Old 03-23-2021, 09:06 AM   #2
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If you want to learn about building your own battery, you can start by watching Will Prowse's videos. He builds batteries, test commercial ones, tests cells, rates and explains BMS's, etc.
https://www.youtube.com/c/WillProwse

I will probably pay the extra to get a Battleborn battery since the cells they use and the way the battery is made allows for it to continue supplying power even if individual cells fail, not to mention their warrantee.
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Old 03-23-2021, 09:30 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by redbarron55 View Post
is the BMS needed

YES!


Anytime you have more than one Lithium cell connected in series you must use a BMS to prevent both over discharge and overcharge.

That said, Those cells are about as safe as you can get in the Lithium format.


I can't answer any of your other questions.


(My experiences are based on 72+ Volt LiPo batteries in high-power mopeds application, but it applies even down to 4 cells, although the danger is lowered.)
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Old 03-23-2021, 02:07 PM   #4
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In addition to having a youtube channel, Will Prowse has also set up two websites: mobile-solarpower and diysolarforum. In the mobile-solarpower website, Will explains lithium battery components, diy battery construction, etc. In his youtube channel, he has reviewed pre-built lifepo4 batteries, lifepo4 cells, BMSs, etc. He has also provided diy lifepo4 battery builds on his youtube channel.
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Old 03-23-2021, 09:44 PM   #5
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I echo those who reference Will Prowse and his YouTube channel and other resources. Following his guidance I just completed my 4th DIY battery build, a 280Ah LiFePo4 "battery in a crate".

My 100Ah DIY battery in my 13' Scamp has been working beautifully for nearly 2 years.

The BMS is essential as it provides individual cell protection as opposed to the solar charge controller which is only aware of the entire battery.
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Old 03-24-2021, 10:15 AM   #6
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Thanks for the replies.
When you ordered the cells where were they shipped from and how long did it take?
I like the looks of the unit pictured above with the BMS, but I wonder if I should spend the extra to get the 280 AH cells now available?
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Old 03-25-2021, 12:19 AM   #7
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I also enthusiastically recommend Will Prowse. He also has a book you can download on Amazon. He has reviewed most if not all of the major lithium batteries on his YouTube channel. If you really want to build your own, heís your guy!

Iíd consider a Battleborn 100ah. Itís a high quality product, comes with a 10 year warranty, and itís prices have come down at least $50. They sell batteries with blemishes on the outside casing for $850, $100 less than last yearís price. We talking about a battery that will be stored out of sight. If you served in the armed forces, theyíll give you a discount.

And you have piece of mind that youíre purchasing quality. If you are into DIY, installation will provide plenty of opportunities.

Just sayín
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Old 03-25-2021, 12:24 AM   #8
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They sell batteries with blemishes on the outside casing for $850, $100 less than last yearís price.

They must get those at the same place that Sleep Country gets their mismatched mattresses and boxsprings.
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Old 03-27-2021, 10:06 AM   #9
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I agree with Alex! Watch Will Prowse's videos to learn everything you need to know about these batteries. There's one video where he compares the different types of batteries currently available with some surprising results. There are several build-your-own battery systems. You are braver than we are! We went with the all-in-one, turn it on & it goes Bluetti! Good luck!
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Old 03-27-2021, 11:12 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Jane P. View Post
Iíd consider a Battleborn 100ah. Itís a high quality product, comes with a 10 year warranty, and itís prices have come down at least $50. They sell batteries with blemishes on the outside casing for $850, $100 less than last yearís price. We talking about a battery that will be stored out of sight. If you served in the armed forces, theyíll give you a discount.
I forgot to mention that you get a substantial discount if you are a member of Escapees. I joined so I could get their roadside assistance plan.
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Old 03-27-2021, 01:46 PM   #11
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Just for consideration there are other battery technologies out there with similar benefits, however weight more.

I am using a sodium phosphate battery which doesnt off gas and was less $$ than lithium and more sustainable materials used.

Works great so far, 1 year into ownership. My requirements / usage is low however
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Old 03-27-2021, 08:03 PM   #12
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Just for consideration there are other battery technologies out there with similar benefits, however weight more.

I am using a sodium phosphate battery which doesnt off gas and was less $$ than lithium and more sustainable materials used.

Works great so far, 1 year into ownership. My requirements / usage is low however
Specifically, brand and model?

We're using two 6v 260 ah Soneil SiO2 batteries.

Thanks,

Perry
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Old 03-27-2021, 08:31 PM   #13
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Sorry i meant silicon dioxide

http://azimuthsolar.ca/product/12v-87ah-silicon-dioxide-battery-sio2-group-24/

I am in Canada so cold weather helped influence the decision. I can leave this battery in the rv all winter with no concerns unlike lithium
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Old 03-27-2021, 11:33 PM   #14
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Sorry i meant silicon dioxide

12V 87Ah U1 SiO2 Lead Crystal Deep Cycle Scooter Battery

I am in Canada so cold weather helped influence the decision. I can leave this battery in the rv all winter with no concerns unlike lithium
It's nice to know there are two of us using Soneil batteries.

We're not sold on the current state of lithium batteries and we want to leave them in our camper while it's in Minnesota's winters.

We've only had ours a little over a month and only four nights without hookups. The month of March we've been staying in an RV resort in Apache Junction, Arizona with full hookups. On Monday we leave and go to no hookups for 4 days, then 6 with hookups, and finally back to no hookups for our trip home to Minnesota.

Enjoy,

Perry
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Old 03-28-2021, 07:15 AM   #15
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I can't detect any real cost savings vs the LiFeSo4 batteries in my quick search. Especially taking into account the percent discharge allowable with the SiO2 Battery.
I am currently looking at a 120 Ah battery made with prismatic cells and a separate BMS. It is a little higher than the more common 100Ah, but would give usable 100Ah capability.
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Old 03-28-2021, 07:46 AM   #16
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With the DIY access to batteries you are working at the pleasure of the suppliers to get good cells to build your battery.
The quality is spotty and any warranty is tempered by the fact that these suppliers are in China with a few shipping from the US (very few).
If you have a warranty return it is a long way back to China and a long time to get the battery cells in the first place.
So you roll the dice and take your chances.
The batteries you buy in the cheaper batteries sold in a nice plastic box that looks like what you are used to seeing are made up from the same cells with the BMS installed and perhaps with or without temperature limits high and low.
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Old 03-28-2021, 08:34 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by redbarron55 View Post
I can't detect any real cost savings vs the LiFeSo4 batteries in my quick search. Especially taking into account the percent discharge allowable with the SiO2 Battery.
I am currently looking at a 120 Ah battery made with prismatic cells and a separate BMS. It is a little higher than the more common 100Ah, but would give usable 100Ah capability.
Its been a year since I looked at it, but part of the cost savings was not needing a BMS. Standard charger with adjustable float voltage is fine for my battery so I didn't need to upgrade.

However technology in this field evolved rapidly so my battery might be out of date already. LifeSo4 was more expensive by ~20% when I was looking.

As mentioned I am also a little concerned about the politics and ethics of Lithium which influenced my decisions, be it warranted or not. For electrification to really take off we need to move away from lithium or at least good alternatives.
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Old 03-28-2021, 08:44 AM   #18
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Our Escape trailer batteries are fast approaching the time for replacement and I find this thread useful and informative unlike a similar thread on a competing forum which deteriorated into a personal attack on the OP
I hope Perry’s experiment works well , I am not sold on lithium batteries ( Cost - safety -temperature limitation ) and am looking for a cost effective alternative .
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Old 03-28-2021, 10:20 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by redbarron55 View Post
I can't detect any real cost savings vs the LiFeSo4 batteries in my quick search. Especially taking into account the percent discharge allowable with the SiO2 Battery.
I am currently looking at a 120 Ah battery made with prismatic cells and a separate BMS. It is a little higher than the more common 100Ah, but would give usable 100Ah capability.
When you don't quote we're not sure who your talking about.

When you're talking about "percent discharge allowable", Battleborn batteries are around 120 ah batteries that cut out at 100 ah's, and even Battborn does not want their batteries used to 100 ah's. That's an 84% discharge rate, not the 100% they imply. It's all in the advertising. Battleborn batteries fail too. Read Trojan, Lifeline, Crown, Interstate, etc. all have their own issues, and sometimes bury the recommendations in their literature, similar to Battleborn.

Aside from the 180-200 usable ah's I should get from our 260 ah SiO2 batteries, I wanted batteries that would not freeze (yes, don't use lithium if they've gotten below 25F or they're toast), and could handle heat higher than 105 degrees (where lithium batteries degrade rapidly). We live in Minnesota (colder than 25F in the winter) and have a seasonal site where the battery storage box faces south in a valley in the summer where the battery compartment can easily get over 105F. Plus, lithium isn't exactly environmentally friendly from production to end of life. Lead and silicon are easily available and easily recycled. I was paid $32 for our dead AGM batteries, vs paying to recycle electronics.

Cost savings was not a major player in our decision to purchase SiO2 batteries.

Enjoy,

Perry
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Old 03-28-2021, 10:36 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by steve dunham View Post
Our Escape trailer batteries are fast approaching the time for replacement and I find this thread useful and informative unlike a similar thread on a competing forum which deteriorated into a personal attack on the OP
I hope Perry’s experiment works well , I am not sold on lithium batteries ( Cost - safety -temperature limitation ) and am looking for a cost effective alternative .
In another thread on that forum started by a member who wanted to know about SiO2 batteries, I posted my response and have not looked at the thread since. I figured the Debbie Downers would come out, but beat them to the punch.

OTOH Steve, I'm not trying to sell you or anyone else on SiO2, but was amazed at the closed minds in MY thread there (I ass u me that's the thread you're talking about), and the response you saw. I have an open mind. Once I get enough data on these batteries I'll be posting those observations in my thread. Of course the Downer family will show up again, but I'll consider the sources. However, it was nice to know there were others with open minds who are interested in my reasoning and observations.

There is no perfect battery out there, including lithium. One needs to do their research and buy the battery that best meets their needs, within their pocketbook.

Enjoy,

Perry
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