Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-09-2013, 08:37 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Tank heaters and RV electrics

We have a 2011 Roo 21SSL and I want to do some winter camping, possibly boondocking at some point (we do have a generator). Looking at the UltraHeat solution for all three tanks, both gate valves, a couple of elbows, and the exposed fresh water lines.

All told, if I need to run everything at once that's something like 38 amps. Looking at the manufacturer's installation instructions it appears these heaters are wired directly to the battery (through the fuse box), thus routing all current through the switches. As it stands now I have only two fuses available on the power panel at 15A each, clearly not enough to handle everything.

So here are my two questions:

1) Does anyone have any recommendations for installing relays to limit the current going through the power panel (and the heater switches)?

2) Should I consider swapping out my OEM "converter" for an aftermarket "inverter"? Or should I just add a new power inverter specifically for the heaters, and maybe a separate battery as well?
__________________

__________________
dhbpac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2013, 12:31 PM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 53
We made the same question on the inverter. We decided that moving up to a new 4-stage converter/charger would do better for our battery system.
We haven't installed a power monitor system yet, but that project should be done later today.
Here's what we wound up getting:
PowerMax Boondocker Converters

TriMetric Battery Monitor
__________________

__________________
RenoRock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2013, 12:56 PM   #3
Denver, CO
 
garbonz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 1,905
Tank heaters cycle on and off according to temperature of the location so there may not be many or any times the whole 38 amps would be used. However, the original converter should go in favor of a progressive unit of 55amp or better capacity or equivalent.
__________________
2007 Chevy 2500HD Classic LBZ Duramax/Allison (Stock)
2005 Bigfoot 1500C8.2 AWESOME
garbonz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2013, 01:04 AM   #4
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Do these vendors have pretty good installation instructions & theory of operation?

Or do I need to dust off my electrical engineering degree to figure out how to install it without burning the RV to a crisp?

(I do have pretty good hands-on electrical skills, just want to make sure my theory is rock-solid before I tackle something like this...)
__________________
dhbpac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2013, 09:27 AM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 53
The 4 stage charger was simple with our install. Unplugged the RV, disconnected the battery, and found the old converter. The old converted had a regular house style plug that was plugged in behind our electrical panel. Unplugged that, plugged the new one in. Next replaced 3 wires - Positive, Negative, and ground. Reconnect battery. Finished.

Haven't done the power monitor yet - but consists of a shunt placed between the neg post of the battery and the distribution system (add a short low gauge wire for this) and connect a few wires to the shut to route to the panel (supplier sends this extra wire). Connect panel to wall, a few program items, and you're done.

I'm waiting to get a pair of 6volts this weekend and do the two projects together, I'll let you know things worked out.
__________________
RenoRock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2013, 11:07 AM   #6
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Glad to hear things are simple! Went ahead and ordered a couple of books on RV electrical systems to read up on while on vacation this week.

Thanks for the input - looking forward to an update!

(And I will update my posts when I figure it all out...)
__________________
dhbpac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-27-2013, 06:19 PM   #7
Denver, CO
 
garbonz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 1,905
My WFCo converter (which I don't use very often) is right behind my breaker box, but separate and DOES plug into an electrical box.

If you have this situation it would be a VERY simple matter to replace it with another unit. The WFCO 9855 that I have claims to be a 3 stage charger, but I have not evaluated this exhaustively. I did note that my super duper 3 stage temperature compensated charger seemed to add at least another 25 or more amps to the battery bank, so there you have it. That would suggest that the WFCO gets it to about 90% which is really not that bad.
__________________
2007 Chevy 2500HD Classic LBZ Duramax/Allison (Stock)
2005 Bigfoot 1500C8.2 AWESOME
garbonz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2013, 04:55 PM   #8
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 53
Got a smokin' deal on two NAPA 8146 batteries (226 AmpHours). Put them in series well, biggest issue was making room for the 2nd battery. Added in the same compartment with some ventilated boxes going to the vent. One of the biggest problems was finding 1.75" inner diameter hose flexible enough to use. None of the home stores carry it with enough flexibility.
2nd project was installing the shunt and wiring up the Kelvin to the new trimetric monitor. Everything works perfectly. Shows a "bank account" of usable energy as well as showing current charge/draw and battery state (charging, charged).
__________________
RenoRock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2013, 05:08 PM   #9
Phat Phrog Stunt Team
 
TURBS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Iowa
Posts: 34,337
Quote:
Originally Posted by RenoRock View Post
Got a smokin' deal on two NAPA 8146 batteries (226 AmpHours). Put them in series well, biggest issue was making room for the 2nd battery. Added in the same compartment with some ventilated boxes going to the vent. One of the biggest problems was finding 1.75" inner diameter hose flexible enough to use. None of the home stores carry it with enough flexibility.
2nd project was installing the shunt and wiring up the Kelvin to the new trimetric monitor. Everything works perfectly. Shows a "bank account" of usable energy as well as showing current charge/draw and battery state (charging, charged).
Got my flexible hose from napa.
Heater duct hose.

Turbs
__________________

__________________
TURBS is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




ForestRiverForums.com is not in any way associated with Forest River, Inc. or its associated RV manufacturing divisions.


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:45 AM.