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Old 03-08-2013, 11:06 PM   #11
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Hello, With all this battery knowledge I thought I would post this here. My problem: I will be camping without hookups for the first time in my new 20' Flagstaff and I was told my one year old 550 amp battery will power my water pump and 12v lights and occasional heater use for one or two days. Is this true or was the dealer trying to sell me additional batteries and generator I don't need?
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:27 PM   #12
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We've been wondering too if we need to buy another battery. We have LED lights which should help. And we are also planning to buy a genny. I'm hoping that with the genny we won't have to add another battery but in the long run that might be best. Won't know till we try it out I guess. One place we go has no hookups available at all and we like to stay there five to ten days.
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:56 PM   #13
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EcoBoost

How do you like your Ford EcoBoost when towing. Thinking of a future purchase. Thanks.
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Old 03-09-2013, 12:05 AM   #14
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Your battery is not 550 amps HOURS and that what you need to figure out. Look for the amp drain information on this site for the items you plan to use, estimate the amount of time you will use each one and then multiply the amps the device used times the number of hours of expected use and add them all together. This will give you the total amp hours needed per day. Then figure out the amp hours of your battery and divide it in half (that is the most you can safety use). Based on personal experience a single battery in a typical RV will only last one full day without charging unless you are REALLY careful, especially if it is not a good deep cycle.

Do the calculations and you can see for yourself.
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Old 03-09-2013, 12:10 AM   #15
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I've added the 2nd battery. For boondocking, I just want the extra capacity. Attached is a photo of my connections for 2 12 volt batteries (taken so I would remember this spring). I haven't pruchased a genny yet.
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Old 03-09-2013, 06:54 AM   #16
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We boondock about 95% of our camping time. There are 2 batteries wired in parallel, with positive off of one battery and negative off the other. We also have a 4ooo watt genny. we also have a portable solar array. We don't camp for two days any more. We go out for at least a week and more than likely at least 2 weeks. Last summer we were boondocked in the Rockies for a 3 week stretch. The solar array is big enough to keep the batteries charged with the fridge, water pump, detectors and any other 12 volt use. For the 110 volt stuff the genny is used. I can also use the genny here at home to power the main parts of the house during a power outage.( which hasn't happened since the wiring was done for that). I have always used 2 batteries on any of the trailers we've owned and that's 5. If you plan on any more than a couple of days boondocking, I would go with the extra battery and then start looking for a good genny and maybe a solar array. The solar array doesn't have to be a lot of wattage but enough to keep your batteries charged. That's my take on it and I'm sticking to it.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:04 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by up2speed4 View Post
Hello, With all this battery knowledge I thought I would post this here. My problem: I will be camping without hookups for the first time in my new 20' Flagstaff and I was told my one year old 550 amp battery will power my water pump and 12v lights and occasional heater use for one or two days. Is this true or was the dealer trying to sell me additional batteries and generator I don't need?

First off, 550 CCA is not amp hours, it is "amp seconds."
30 of them to be exact. The CCA is then number of amps that battery, fully charged, can deliver in the cold for 30 seconds until dead.

There should be a "RC" (Reserve Capacity) number on that battery as well.
Post the model number. RC is used for how long the battery will last if your fan belt breaks before IT is dead.

These numbers being "on the battery" means it is most likely a dual purpose "Marine" type battery, used to start a boat's engine and run some boat items with the engine off. Not the best type for travel trailer house batteries that will never start an engine.

Amp hour rating is used to determine a deep discharge storage battery's capacity to deliver a reasonable house load over a long period of time "hours" not seconds.

The typical DP (Dual Purpose or Marine type) has between 60 and 75 amp hours capacity. 60 - 75 amps over 20 hours to discharge from "full" to 20% of initial charge remaining.

To determine "how long it will last" you will need to look at the discharge curve for your model battery. They are slightly different based on each manufacturer's construction.

Also due to something called the Peukert Effect, trying to pull more amps from battery than it is rated at (to drive an inverter or start a car) dramatically reduces the "amp hours" because the battery's construction has a hard time "serving up" electrons at that rate. Dividing that demand over several batteries means they ALL will last longer.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:23 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by QuietTimes View Post
We've been wondering too if we need to buy another battery. We have LED lights which should help. And we are also planning to buy a genny. I'm hoping that with the genny we won't have to add another battery but in the long run that might be best. Won't know till we try it out I guess. One place we go has no hookups available at all and we like to stay there five to ten days.
We have one 225SCS Trojan 12 volt battery (130 amp hr) that does just fine for extended boondocking. We use a Honda generator to top it off; usually about 45 min at breakfast (DW can also use her hair drier and the MW) and about the same amount at dinner time. We've boondocked for 2 weeks at a time in the mountains with no issues. I honestly do not see the advantage of 2 batteries for our purposes. It would get you an extra day or two initially without running the generator. But after that, you are running the generator anyway. So, for us, the extra expense (and weight) of another battery doesn't make sense. At 5 to 10 days, you are going to need a generator anyway.
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:15 AM   #19
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We have one 225SCS Trojan 12 volt battery (130 amp hr) that does just fine for extended boondocking. We use a Honda generator to top it off; usually about 45 min at breakfast (DW can also use her hair drier and the MW) and about the same amount at dinner time. We've boondocked for 2 weeks at a time in the mountains with no issues. I honestly do not see the advantage of 2 batteries for our purposes. It would get you an extra day or two initially without running the generator. But after that, you are running the generator anyway. So, for us, the extra expense (and weight) of another battery doesn't make sense. At 5 to 10 days, you are going to need a generator anyway.
Your single 225SCS is the equivelent of TWO OEM DC-24 batteries.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:18 AM   #20
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As I read about the Trojan batt,I am curious as to how a yellow top optima compares? As adding at least one more batt.is second on my list(just after buying a spare tire,I can't write my thoughts of why a 28-44,000 $ tt would not have come with a spare.) this seems deceitful by both my dealer and forrest river,but too late now,it would seem a spare tire is considered an option by FR Really!!! Anyway,is the extra $ of the optima worth it as compared to the Trojan,and is it even as good?
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