Batteries

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by jhbgaiem, Apr 6, 2008.

  1. jhbgaiem

    jhbgaiem Read Only Funster

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    I am trying to find out about batteries. We are two oldies who want to go further and stay longer in our camper which is a McLouis Sterling on a Mercedes chassis.
    We want to be free from the necessity of camping sites. We each use a laptop and we watch TV and DVDs etc. We live in Spain.
    The Camper has only one leisure battery. I want to add a solar panel and perhaps a battery. What do you people think?:RollEyes:
     
  2. Digger Driver

    Digger Driver Read Only Funster

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    I have 3 batteries in my van and as far as i know you can add as many as you like providing you connect them correcty!
    Positive to positive and negative to negative!
    This will keep them 12 Volt and increase capability with every battery!
    The more you add the more strain you put on your charging system but mine will power my laptop and TV for a couple of days plus my use of water pump and lights!
    With your power demands i would think about a generator as a back up too!
    Thats a lot of power you will need!
    I would seriously think about running a thick core cable direct from the engine battery to your pack with a breaker switch too as the smart charging system on most motorhomes only trickle and will take ages to charge to capacity!
    With a direct thick core cable like a modified jump lead you can switch over and charege your pack in an hour with the engine idling!
    You just have to remember to let the engine run after you switch the power off to the pack for 10 minits to re-charge your engine battery and don't switch over till you have your engine started when your pack is flat!
    Sounds complicated but its really very simple!
     
  3. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    hi jhbgaiem,
    i could never last a weekend using battery alone so i bit the bullet and bought 2 new 110ah batteries, both new , same make and the same age as this can have an adverse effect on charging and capacity if theres a considerable age difference.:Angry:

    the original is under the passengers seat and this was replaced with 1 new one, the other found a new home under the dinette seat (with a drop vent in the floor)joined together (+ to +, - to - )with 50amp cable with a 30amp fuse at each end of the 'live +' wire. the cable size is to compensate for voltage drop over 3mtrs length.

    i also invested in a 2.6kw genny for those longer stays off hookup.:thumb:

    living in spain you would probably benifit from a largish solar panel instead of the genny as you get a lot more sun than we do most of the time.:cry::Sad:but saying that theres nothing to beat mains voltage.

    whichever option you go for , enjoy your van as we all do.:thumb::thumb:

    john.
     
  4. johnsandywhite

    johnsandywhite Read Only Funster

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    :Cool: Hi jhbgaiem. Although we are on a Camp site. We still use our Solar powered batteries for the majority of our power needs. We had 7 years of Wild Camping. So we have always had Solar panels and extra batteries.
    We currently (pun intended) have 8 x 100 ah batteries charged by 2 x 125 Watt Solar panels and a Solar Boost 2oooE (Gives extra charging current) controller. :Wink:
     
  5. jhbgaiem

    jhbgaiem Read Only Funster

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    thanks for all the advice - one more thing, is it better to have two solar panels rather than one. for example 2 x 60 rather than 1 x 120?
     
  6. johnsandywhite

    johnsandywhite Read Only Funster

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    :Cool: It basically depends on the room on the roof and where you can put them to best catch the Sun/Daylight. :Wink:
     
  7. Gonewiththewind

    Gonewiththewind Read Only Funster

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    More expensive:Rofl1:panels dont drop in price with equality to the wattage.
    eg 130 W = £500
    50 w = £350

    Don
     
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