Originally Posted by DavidnLondon
mtnguy how long do you normally have to run your Yamaha generator in order to charge the battery back up?
Any estimate on how long a charge will last if you run your lights and the dc current required to properly operate the refrigerator,water heater,and propane gas heater if they are mainly operating using gas.I am guessing each of these appliances has to have at least some dc current even while operating on gas?
I like to run the generator an 1 1/2 to 2 hours per day to charge my single battery. Even that time will not charge to 100% through the converter. The converter is meant to charge at bulk when the battery voltage is low, but switches to a lower charge rate at the battery gets close to capacity. Instead of 13.5 or .6 volts, it seems like 13.2 or.3 volts is the norm after 2 hours of charging. I have also tried using a battery charger hooked up to the generator which seems to charge a little quicker. But as a precaution, I disconnect the battery from the camper while doing that, since I don't know what the higher voltage that the battery charger will do to my appliances. That means the fridge is off during that time (even on propane), since the fridge needs 12 volt DC power to operate.
I also have a battery charger built into the generator, but have not tried that yet. I would also have to disconnect the battery from the camper. The leads sent with the Yamaha are not very long, and I would have to place the generator close to the battery to use, or get make up some longer leads. My generator usually lives and runs in the back of my truck.
The water heater and fridge both on gas do require 12 volt DC for the circuit board, as well as the water heater on gas requires 12 volt DC for spark.
During normal usage when dry camping, my battery usually gets down around 11.5 to 11.8 volts in a 24 hours period. The furnace is probably the biggest energy hog. I will run that through a cycle in the morning if it is cold, but will not run it through the night.....I will use a Big Buddy heater if it is really cold out. The water pump is probably then next biggest hog, with dish washing and showers. I try to regulate my light usage, and considering going to LEDs, but haven't found the ideal setup yet.......I tried a couple of styles and didn't like them. I may watch a little TV to catch up on the news and weather. The water heater and fridge are probably the least pull on the battery, with just operating the circuit boards.
I have also considered adding a 2nd battery, but I have a heavy trailer tongue, plus there seems to be no easy way to do that without a bunch of modifications.