Going to add more batteries (1 Viewer)

Lampie

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Nov 2, 2007
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This is something I have wanted to sort out for a while and now have the time to do it.

My Coachmen Santara only has 1 x 85a hr battery on domestic side and is a total waste of time. So I wish to replace it. I would like to keep the location the same ( under step as you enter ) . To remove old battery tray and replace with larger on is not a problem but I am concerned that if I add more batteries the access to them for maintainance may be a problem as you may only be able to see two under the step.

So what I would like to know is

1/ How many batteries shall I add ( was thinking 3 or 4 x 110a hr )

2/ What type of battery ie sealed or not

3/ What size charger should I have

4/ What is best make and best place to buy from.

Any advice much appreciated


Regards

Lampie
 
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Lampie

Lampie

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Nov 2, 2007
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I don't know too much about batteries just know that what I have is a waste of time, just would like peace of mind to know power would be there when needed. We mainly hook up anyway but this summer we might try something different and it is not always right to be running the on board genny.

Regards

Lampie

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hilldweller

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My Coachmen Santara only has 1 x 85a hr battery on domestic side and is a total waste of time. Lampie

We manage with 85Ah. I think it lasts about 3 days though we've not run out ever.

You stick in 300Ah and you've quite a charging problem. A quick guess says a full 24 hours of hook up to charge them fully ( though you shouldn't let them get that low ).

I don't want to interfere but should you be looking at your usage ?

And don't forget the weight of 3 or 4 batteries, could that be a problem ?
 
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Lampie

Lampie

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From what I have read on various forums most RV's have more batteries than mine, just thought if I replace this 85a hr one again then why not go larger.

Reagrds

Lampie
 

scotjimland

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Hi

Sorry , but I have to disagree with John, IMO GEL are a waste of money for an RV, buy the cheapest FLAs (flooded lead acid) you can find, and don't waste money on 'branded' batteries.

I have 4 x 85ah cheapo FLA batteries and they are still going strong after four years.. total cost was £120 and they have been abused.. often ran way below what is considered good for them.

Re charging.. what do you have at present ?

If it's the bog standard RV charger/power supply unit running off the 110v supply it won't perform well on the 50hz from the tranny, pretty useless at the best of times... if you want to upgrade consider replacing with a decent 50A four stage charger such as Sterling.. spend money on the charger rather than expensive GELs

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Jul 29, 2007
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So what I would like to know is

1/ How many batteries shall I add ( was thinking 3 or 4 x 110a hr )

2/ What type of battery ie sealed or not

3/ What size charger should I have

4/ What is best make and best place to buy from.

Any advice much appreciated


Regards

Lampie

1 as many as you can fit in

2 ordinary batteries are the most cost effective

3 30-50amp

4 Phoenix batteries at the shows, charger from Sterling.

Brian RV's aren't built to be economical with power, just running my heating overnight would kill an 85amp.

Olley
 
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hilldweller

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From what I have read on various forums most RV's have more batteries than mine, just thought if I replace this 85a hr one again then why not go larger.
Lampie

Sorry, I realised afterwards that you had a monster. The American Way :)

If you have the space and weight is not a problem AND you don't want to live off solar then it's a whole different ball game.

Excuse me now, I'll crawl back into my little Burstner and mutter things about Yanks and global warming :)

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Lampie

Lampie

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Nov 2, 2007
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Do you lads have the sterling charger if so where did you get it and what model. Mine is just the original 110v one thought might have to change it. Seen some 110a hr for sixty quid on sale locally at moment would you go for them ?.

Regards

ampie
 

hilldweller

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Brian RV's aren't built to be economical with power, just running my heating overnight would kill an 85amp.
Olley

Yes I've got the message. I'm not sure what the message is though it paints a picture of the good old US of A total disregard for efficiency.

Do they have to be that inefficient ?

It's all very well when things are working but what you are saying is that if your charger fails you'll freeze to death sooner rather than later.

Me, envious of the massive interior luxury ? Oh no, no, no, honest.
 

hilldweller

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not only that, there is the plasma TV , entertainment centre , outside flood lighting, extractor fan.. etc etc :roflmto::roflmto:

And the meek shall inherit the Earth, some guy said. So that's your inheritance screwed.

UltraLeds will sell you a bulkhead LED fitting that would do justice to a football pitch and all on 300mA.

I still manage a dish washer and washing machine on 85Ah. Mind you, she does moan a bit.

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Jul 29, 2007
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Do you lads have the sterling charger if so where did you get it and what model. Mine is just the original 110v one thought might have to change it. Seen some 110a hr for sixty quid on sale locally at moment would you go for them ?.

Regards

ampie

Hi lampie price sounds OK for the batteries, I got my 50amp sterling charger from Yacht bits I think Link Removed

I think someone's a little jealous. ::bigsmile:

Olley
 
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Lampie

Lampie

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Thanks Olley

Found that site while searching for sterling chargers they do seem to be a good price from them compaired to sterling direct. Do you have the remote panel with yours as well or did you not bother with it. Think I may go back and get the batteries as they are only on offer till end of month.

Be interested to see what others think of the charger.

Thanks again

Lampie
 
Jul 29, 2007
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Hi Lampie I got the 50amp pro-digital charger, didn't bother with the remote pad as I already have a xantex battery monitoring system.

GT used to reckon Sterling where the bee's knees; no higher recommendation. ::bigsmile:

Olley

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Lampie

Lampie

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Thanks Olley


I think a trip to see Sterling might be the thing to do and have a look at it , they are not that far away, no point putting batteries on without a good system to look after them .

Like the fact that it would work in 110v at the right Hz off genny as well, and that you can change the way it draws power if on small supply.

Anyone else with one love to hear your thoughts.

Regards


Lampie
 

pappajohn

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Hi

Sorry , but I have to disagree with John, IMO GEL are a waste of money

Lampies problem was access to the batteries for maintainance Jim.

he said if he replaces the original, understep battery tray with a bigger one, he said thats no problem, to take 4 batts then he cant get to the two rear ones without removing the tray.
 

scotjimland

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Hi John

I see your reason for suggested GEL ..

however, if I were fitting I would still make some provision for maintenance .. GEL or otherwise.

Jim

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Wall-E

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Jan 21, 2009
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Adding Batteries?.

Hi Lampie,
There is a six page spread in this months (February) MMM magazine about adding batteries to Motor Homes by John Wickersham.
He as come to the conclusion that is best (If room available) to use ONE large capacity Marine or golf buggy battery, than adding one, two or three extra leisure batteries. His reasoning is that it is that all the batteries have to be the same size (Amps), in the same condition, all being capable of receiving the same level of charge. also the weight of all the single batteries will be far greater than, one large capacity battery and that the vehicles/habitation battery charging set up, will be able to cope much better. With a lot less wiring to boot and only one battery to anchor down. read for yourself, don't shoot the messenger.
Wall-E.
 
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Lampie

Lampie

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Nov 2, 2007
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For me to make a larger tray is not a problem there is loads of space , and I would make it that I could lower it down to service the new batteries but it would not be a five minute job. Just wondered if sealed batteries would be easier. Having looked at the chargers suggested I can see why it would make sense to buy normal batteries and buy a good charger. Good to get the feed back from you guys ...... thanks

Lampie
 
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Lampie

Lampie

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Wall E

Good point be interested to find out what kind of size / amp hr you could get and for how much. If I were to have more than one then they would be all the same type / size as I am not adding but replacing. Will look into your idea as you say easier to wire up never know may work out fine.

Thanks

Lampie

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scotjimland

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He as come to the conclusion that is best (If room available) to use ONE large capacity Marine or golf buggy battery, than adding one, two or three extra leisure batteries. His reasoning is that it is that all the batteries have to be the same size (Amps), in the same condition, all being capable of receiving the same level of charge. also the weight of all the single batteries will be far greater than, one large capacity battery and that the vehicles/habitation battery charging set up, will be able to cope much better. With a lot less wiring to boot and only one battery to anchor down. read for yourself, don't shoot the messenger.
Wall-E.

Can't argue with the logic, space and budget would be the determining factors, the cost of a 195AH Trojan Deep cycle is around £400 so in order to have around the same capacity I already have would cost an eye watering £800 :whatthe:
Link Removed

Some RVs use 6v batteries in series / parallel configurations, but it really it all comes down to budget.. and if I get five years out of four cheap FLAs costing around £200 - £250 I see no point in spending almost four times as much.. they won't last four times longer ..
 

Tiderus

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This is something I have wanted to sort out for a while and now have the time to do it.

My Coachmen Santara only has 1 x 85a hr battery on domestic side and is a total waste of time. So I wish to replace it. I would like to keep the location the same ( under step as you enter ) . To remove old battery tray and replace with larger on is not a problem but I am concerned that if I add more batteries the access to them for maintainance may be a problem as you may only be able to see two under the step.

So what I would like to know is

1/ How many batteries shall I add ( was thinking 3 or 4 x 110a hr )

2/ What type of battery ie sealed or not

3/ What size charger should I have

4/ What is best make and best place to buy from.

Any advice much appreciated


Regards

Lampie

Hi Lampie, I may be able to help. I fitted two AGM 160 amp, longlife ,energy batteries, from Phoenix batteries on to my Allegro v8 diesel. They have a 10 yr life span and are totally sealed for life. Godfrey did me a deal and they lasted and lasted. I then bought an Arapaho and had two fitted again. These extended the user time a lot, but had to make a simple support for the box base as they broke away whilst driving. They are heavy and only just fit, but never looked back. I was told by Sargent electronics not to fit Gel batteries at all, as they will cause problems. Now I have a bessacar 789 and fitted the same one from the Arapaho. This gave me four days use at the show, with no charging, with a tv, and blown c/h on a lot of the time. So didn't use the generator at all. Once again I made a battery box support just in case. Hope this is of help. Now transfering them again in March. Hope this is of help. Rgd's Tiderus.
 
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Lampie

Lampie

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Thanks all for your input :thumb:

Had chance to have a bit of a look on net for batteries and chargers have any of you got or seen Link Removed. They look good , light , sealed good performance if you believe what you read. Was thinking might go for 1 x 270 a hr and a 20a charger.

Thoughts folks.


Lampie

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scotjimland

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Thanks all for your input :thumb:

Had chance to have a bit of a look on net for batteries and chargers have any of you got or seen Link Removed. They look good , light , sealed good performance if you believe what you read. Was thinking might go for 1 x 270 a hr and a 20a charger.

Thoughts folks.


Lampie

Hi

Re sizing of charger .. An old rule of thumb says that the recommended size of the battery charger can be worked out by multiplying the capacity of the battery by 0.1 to give the recommended current in Ampere.. however with modern four stage chargers with clean current and well controlled voltages this can be as much as four times that..

In your example a 270ah battery with 20A charger is a little on the low side but would do the job.. but if it were me I would choose say a 40A charger which would provide spare capacity for any future expansion of the battery bank..

Something else to consider, the smaller charger will take longer but if your on EHU it doesn't really matter but if you are planning on wild camping presumably you will use a genny for re charging, so a bigger charger will require fewer hours on the genny..

Edit

To give you an idea, I have 4 x 85 ah batteries and with heavy use need recharging every three or four days. I have a Victron 70A charger and use a 2kw Honda genny for recharging.. if the batteries are really low it can take up to six hours to reach full charge.. rather than doing that I prefer to run the genny daily for a couple of hours .. less damage to the batteries.. and less earache :roflmto:

Jim
 
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Jul 29, 2007
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After reading the website papa put up I will stick to cheapies. My three 180ah sealed cost around £100 each from phoenix, about 2 years ago.

After doing a fair bit of reading only Trojan batteries seemed to be universally give a thumbs up by users, and Phoenix offered me a 200ah trojan for around £200 if memory serves correctly.

But £600 for batteries, when I had other toys to buy! no way. ::bigsmile:

Olley

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Boo

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Anyone got a solar panel charger? how do they proform? whats the cost?

Cheers

Boo
 
Jul 29, 2007
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Hi Boo I have 2x130 watt panels, good in Spain/south France ect. in summer and not to bad over here, but petty useless over here in the winter apart from trickle charging the batteries.

Expensive, around £500-£600 each for that size of panel, I only got mine because they where S/H. Looked after they have a 20 odd year life span.

Olley
 
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Lampie

Lampie

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Just to let you know what I did in the end .

Sterling 40a pro charger ( brought at NEC show good price )

Electrosol battery 270a hr . Just fitted better and read other stuff that said they were ok but thanks for the link on the bad stuff.

Let you know how it goes on in time.

Thanks again all for the input.

Lampie :thumb:

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