Do I need Lithium? (1 Viewer)

Jul 24, 2023
68
68
Funster No
97,586
MH
RPMOTORHOMES Rebel
Exp
New to van life
matbic one of the advantages of lithium is that you can discharge below 50%, unlike lead acids without compromising the battery, therfore giving you more usable amps.
The spec for my 230Ah Fogstar LifePo4 states 4,000 cycles at 80% DOD.
Yes I agree the main problem with lead acid is you can’t use half the stored power without really compromising their life. But lifePo4 can be discharged regularly bellow 50% and they last a long time in a van. But if you want them to last even longer (and this is probably unnecessarily long as had been pointed out) you can do this by keeping SOC between 50 and 80% most of the time. I like Victrons approach which is to clearly state this in the technical data for their batteries.

All the best!
 
Jan 25, 2024
29
20
North Norfolk, UK
Funster No
100,876
MH
Bailey Approach 745
Exp
since 2012
I think you need to check lithium prices.

100 Ahr can be had for sub £200, and that gives you 95 Ahr useable, smaller and lasts longer.
Charging will be fine,
Just change Solar controller.

Tony
 

suavecarve

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 18, 2009
7,703
39,513
Surrey/Hants
Funster No
8,035
MH
Rollerteam 685
Exp
July 09
And 2500 cycles is still a lot of use,

View attachment 896543
This is our 640ah battery bank and we had the shunt fitted a couple of years ago.

I find 23 charge cycles quite interesting as is nearly 26,000 ah drawn.
Out of interest how do you get to that screen ? is it an added extra ?

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Nov 4, 2011
6,016
40,316
Uk
Funster No
18,763
MH
A class
Exp
2001
I changed from 2x110 amp lead acid to 2x 78amp gel, bought from a funster that had moved over to lithium, and I’m pleased with how they perform. I’m not sure if I would change to lithium, solar regulator would be ok but the mains charger would need change and b2b no doubt so I’m sticking with gels
 
Jan 25, 2021
150
67
Funster No
78,954
MH
a class 890 hymer
For the past 7 years, I've happily used my van with 2x 100ahr Banner Lead Acid batteries.
I've just have had a chat with my service chaps about lithium, they were unpersuaded that my existing charging regime would do.

Given the Banner's have provided all the 12v I've needed, he recommended replacing the current batteries with a pair of Gels.
At a quarter of the cost...
I’ve got gel, so do I need lithium? Can you sell second hand gel batteries easily?

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Sep 27, 2016
16
20
Ruislip
Funster No
45,327
MH
Bailey 745
Exp
I'm a newbiey
The reason we changed to Lithium, was because all the gels failed within a couple of years, and always in winter (we're usually off grid). We must have been doing something wrong if your gels have lasted 7 years. So cost wise in the long run lithium worked out cheaper, plus peace of mind which you can't put a price on. If we were always on hookup though, I doubt we would have changed.
 

Lenny HB

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 18, 2007
54,145
152,952
On the coast in West Sussex
Funster No
658
MH
Hymer B678 DL
Exp
Since 2008 & many years tugging
I’ve got gel, so do I need lithium? Can you sell second hand gel batteries easily?
Depends on the age of them, less than a year old they would be easy to sell.
The reason we changed to Lithium, was because all the gels failed within a couple of years, and always in winter (we're usually off grid). We must have been doing something wrong if your gels have lasted 7 years. So cost wise in the long run lithium worked out cheaper, plus peace of mind which you can't put a price on. If we were always on hookup though, I doubt we would have changed.
Two of my Gels are 8 years old & one is 7 years old all performing like new apart from age related capacity loss.
Only use EHU less than one day in a hundred we are always off grid.
 

bigtwin

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 29, 2009
5,297
10,063
Derby
Funster No
9,111
MH
Concorde
Exp
Since 2006
The reason we changed to Lithium, was because all the gels failed within a couple of years, and always in winter (we're usually off grid). We must have been doing something wrong if your gels have lasted 7 years. So cost wise in the long run lithium worked out cheaper, plus peace of mind which you can't put a price on. If we were always on hookup though, I doubt we would have changed.

Sounds like you are doing something wrong. Our Gels lasted 12 and 14 years.

Lead acid batteries (of any variety) are, in comparison with LiFePO4, particularly fickle and don’t react well if they are not molly coddled.

Ian
 
Jan 25, 2024
29
20
North Norfolk, UK
Funster No
100,876
MH
Bailey Approach 745
Exp
since 2012
Have been considering because replacing my 7 year old Banners is due, so it's sensible to consider an upgrade.
The advice I received this afternoon was that my pwm solar controller might be OK, the CBE 230v charger might be OK but sub optimal (possibly 80% capacity) but they expressed concern & doubt about the 12v charging from the alternator and the risk of overcharge damage to the lithium.
And indeed the combination of the solar/12v.

Do I feel lucky?
And back to the original question, do I need lithium
Get away from worry about alternators!

Make a one fuse mod and stop the vehicle alternator charging leisure.
Add a 50 amp battery to battery to charge lithium from vehicle battery.
If you are really fussy get a battery to battery charger with mppt.

Job done

Ant 100 amp hour of lithium can now be had for £200!

It’s a no brainier. Fit and forget!

Tony
 
Jan 19, 2020
26
22
Paisley
Funster No
68,172
MH
Hobby Toskana 75fl
Exp
Since 2007
I always think this is good info and helped me make my choice.
Again weight isn’t an issue for me.
And I’m often in Europe in blistering heat.
I fitted 2 x Varta Lfd90 in April 2016.
Cost was only £190 for 2 at the time.
They’re still performing brilliantly their resting voltage has only started to drop by 0.2v this year to12.9v
I’m a mix of hookup 60-70% and off grid 30-40%
If I was replacing I’d definitely go Yuasa L36 efb.

 
Last edited:
Mar 30, 2022
1,545
1,489
Funster No
87,744
MH
Swift Suntor 590RL
Some LA’s can deliver the same Ah and retain a better cycle life than lithium.
Lithium suffer sometimes more from deep discharge.
That is 5 years old and is talking about lithium not LifePo4.
The statement at the end says lithiums are the most dangerous and flammable batteries on the market.
LifePo4 are in fact the safest battery on the market.
 
Jun 2, 2023
30
27
Funster No
96,391
MH
Autocruise Quartet
I'd add (As someone else may have, I've not read all 4 pages) lithium is more resilient. Take your LA's (gel or AGM are still the same chemistry) down to less than 50% and you've buggered them, though you seem to have manged not to do that so far... I speak from experience:(
 
Jan 27, 2018
2,711
2,179
Northampton
Funster No
52,151
MH
Rapido & Bongone
Now for those thinking its a bit of a faff switching off batteries @ 80% and then charging 16 weeks later it can all be done automaticaly. I use thebmv712 to switch a SSR Based on SOC to charge the battery. To change requirement just change program via bt, winter, summer standby, camping.
Now where are those 100Ah Li @ £200. And can i just add it to my 3yr old ultramax?
 
Nov 4, 2011
6,016
40,316
Uk
Funster No
18,763
MH
A class
Exp
2001
Can you sell second hand gel batteries easily?
I bought 18months old Gels of a funster who had swapped to lithium 2 years ago, so I would say yes

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Nov 22, 2020
24
6
Isle of Man
Funster No
78,066
MH
Just Looking
Exp
I'm a newbie
For the past 7 years, I've happily used my van with 2x 100ahr Banner Lead Acid batteries.
I've just have had a chat with my service chaps about lithium, they were unpersuaded that my existing charging regime would do.

Given the Banner's have provided all the 12v I've needed, he recommended replacing the current batteries with a pair of Gels.
At a quarter of the cost...
Lithium are too expensive, you are carrying extra weight but it's more reliable, too many horror stories with Lithium.
 
Jan 2, 2024
522
684
Lincolnshire, UK
Funster No
100,498
MH
Peugeot boxer
Exp
2020
May I clarify something please.. my 1000w (2000 surge) pure sine wave inverter would not power my espresso coffee machine label says 1100w. I have 2x100amp LA in parallel each 20ah power. If I went with a 100amp lithium, would I have more AH power for my inverter or do I simply need a bigger inverter, or bigger lithium? Trying to understand if lithium actually provides more AH power than LA..... I think you understand what I am likely not asking corectly, to understand...!!
LA batteries struggle with high loads the voltage drops significantly under high loads so if you put a big(2000w inverter on under full load likely voltage drop may cause the inverter to shut down to protect it's self) Lithium have a rated out put on a 100 ah usually 100amp so 2 in parallel 200amp with negligible voltage drop ,also LA you should only use half of its capacity 100ah rating 50ah useable,Lithium 80%Useable up.
To answer your question neither type with your inverter will run your coffee machine
Your inverter is 1000w coffee machine 1100w
The 2000w peak is usually for a second or 2
Unless it's a quality one it will struggle to deliver 1000w for extended periods.
 
Jan 2, 2024
522
684
Lincolnshire, UK
Funster No
100,498
MH
Peugeot boxer
Exp
2020
Lithium are now only slightly more than lead acid. £2 per amp hour.
Lighter.
Don’t emit flammable gases on charging.
Well protected with built in management systems.

Tony.
I've just ordered 4x 3.2v X 320ah plus 200amp Bluetooth BMS,just under £300 after researching and as you say ready built basic 100ah £200 cheaper per ah if you buy a single 200ah...useable amp for amp same or less than cheap flooded

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