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Old 09-12-2011, 10:12 AM   #41
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I just called the RV dealer where I purchased the Roo. A new "basic" Group 24 battery runs $77 (plus tax) and an additional battery box is $12. I assume I can find a local source for the additional lengths of wire to connect the two in parallel.
This is certainly the way to go. Buy equal length cables with eyelet terminals from an auto store like Auto-Zone of pep Boys. Try to hook it up so the Plus wire from the camper goes to one battery and the negative (ground) goes to the frame from the other. This will allow equal resistance through both batteries and they will charge and discharge equally. If you hook the camper's wires to the same battery; one will have less resistance than the other and be overworked compared to the other. (see graphic)

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For roughly the same amount could I higher capacity Group 27 or 31? Ex. if $100 gets me a single high (enough, see above thread) capacity Group ZZ battery, I'd ditch the cheap-o 24 that came with it.Thoughts?
Most likely you will wind up with much less total capacity using a 100 dollar group 27 or 31. I would wait to see if the pair of 24's work out "good enough" for now and re-attack the issue when they need to be replaced. They must ALWAYS be replaced in pairs once you start using them as a "cell".
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:44 PM   #42
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BackInAction, just wondering why you calling your RV dealer for a battery and battery box.
both of these can be bought at a Walmart, for a lot cheaper.

if you dry camp a lot, like we do, i suggest a two battery setup, over a single Group 27.
i went with two Group 24 12v batteries, instead of two 6v golf cart batteries.
one reason is they were shorter and fit under my electric tongue jack motor and the other reason is that if one went bad, i could still use the other. can't do that with a 6v system.
i can go 4-5 days with my setup.
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:52 PM   #43
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X2 what bikedan said and i also have a solar battery maintainer that i have connected when not connected to shore power.

Sunforce 5-Watt Solar Battery Trickle Charger : Solar Power | RadioShack.com
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Old 09-12-2011, 02:17 PM   #44
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BackInAction, just wondering why you calling your RV dealer for a battery and battery box.
both of these can be bought at a Walmart, for a lot cheaper.
From what I've read, if you want to use two batteries (in parallel) you are suppose to get the same make/model. The original battery is only 3 weeks old. So, I assumed I'd buy a second from the RV dealer. Otherwise, I'd end up with two different make/models.
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Old 09-12-2011, 02:19 PM   #45
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it's better to have matching batteries but as long as you get another one with similar specs, you'll be fine.
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Old 09-12-2011, 02:50 PM   #46
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OK, I'll stop by a couple of store (walmart, autozone, etc.) and see what they have. I'll let you all help me decide if what I found is "good enough".
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Old 09-12-2011, 03:26 PM   #47
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I just received word from "Worldwide Battery" on some details of the Group 24 included with my camper...

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That is a 24 Deep Cycle made by Exide with 140 min. reserve capacity and 80 amp hour, with 500 marine cranking amps.
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Old 09-12-2011, 10:36 PM   #48
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OK, I'll stop by a couple of store (walmart, autozone, etc.) and see what they have. I'll let you all help me decide if what I found is "good enough".
Late business dinner, so I didn't get to WalMart until the wife fell asleep. Here's all they had in Group 24xxx:
  1. 24DC 75 A-H 500 CA* $59.94
  2. 24DP 105 A-H 675 CA* $68.97
  3. 24MS ?? A-H 625 CA* $58.94
* The price tag said CCA not CA like the battery's label.

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My existing battery's...That is a 24 Deep Cycle made by Exide with 140 min. reserve capacity and 80 amp hour, with 500 marine cranking amps.
So, I'd say #1 above is most like the one I have now.

Thoughts?
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Old 09-13-2011, 06:00 AM   #49
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BIA,

As you found out AH in a True deep Discharge battery does not relate well with the CCA number in a DP or Car Battery.

DO NOT buy your battery based on the highest CCA number.

CCA has almost nothing to do with storage capacity and battery life under constant load.

High CCA batteries have thin wafer plates to give up their charge in a "burst" (high cranking amp) while deep storage batteries keep their charge longer because their plates are thick and much more sturdy; thus slower to release their charge (lower CCA).

Also "Reserve Capacity" (RC) is not Amp Hours, but you can use it if nothing else is given to compare two batteries. RC is minutes till dead of a fully charged battery when a 25 amp draw is placed across it. The bigger this number is; the better. But AH has to do with plate construction ONLY.


http://www.propickupmag.com/files/20...ison-Chart.pdf
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Old 09-29-2011, 08:13 PM   #50
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As the OP, here's summary of my plans...
  • I bought another cheap-o Group 24 (and battery box) to match the one that came with the camper. I will wire them in parallel.
  • Added battery on/off switch for storage
  • Will take my small genset for morning recharge (via camper's converter) and to allow my wife to make her coffee.
  • After thinking about it more, I just might swap out 2-4 of the lights with LEDs so I don't have to be as crazy about limiting light use.
  • I'm still not sure about which heater to go with Mr Heater Buddy or the Wave. I'll probably get the Mr. Heater because it is just easier to setup/use. Plus it is half the cost.
I really think this setup will do more than what I need. Besides these two planned trips. I'm hoping if all goes well, my family will be willing to try some more dry camping (SF, NP, NF and a few of the nearby SP).
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Old 09-29-2011, 08:35 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by BackInAction View Post
As the OP, here's summary of my plans...
  • I bought another cheap-o Group 24 (and battery box) to match the one that came with the camper. I will wire them in parallel.
  • Added battery on/off switch for storage
  • Will take my small genset for morning recharge (via camper's converter) and to allow my wife to make her coffee.
  • After thinking about it more, I just might swap out 2-4 of the lights with LEDs so I don't have to be as crazy about limiting light use.
  • I'm still not sure about which heater to go with Mr Heater Buddy or the Wave. I'll probably get the Mr. Heater because it is just easier to setup/use. Plus it is half the cost.
I really think this setup will do more than what I need. Besides these two planned trips. I'm hoping if all goes well, my family will be willing to try some more dry camping (SF, NP, NF and a few of the nearby SP).


I just bought some cheap 912 led replacements for .99 free shipping for 2 from hong kong for that reason. when no power is available .
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Old 09-29-2011, 11:19 PM   #52
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Have you considered a small 10,000 BTU kerosene heater such as this one - made by and sold through Northern Tool. No condensation issues and can be used at home for emergencies. Five gallons of K-1 should run it for two full days +, not just nights.
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Old 09-29-2011, 11:37 PM   #53
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BTW & FWIW Just in case you were thinking about using a 20 lb cylinder and a connection hose.

From Mr. Heater Manual:

This Heater may be used in a recreational enclosure or temporary construction work enclosure with a remote refillable propane cylinder ONLY when the cylinder is located outdoors and the Heater is used with Mr. Heater Hose No. F273701, F273702 or F272702 and fuel filter F273699. Fuel filter must be replaced annually. (NOTE: Do not operate without the fuel filter as fuel contamination may damage the heater.) Or use gree
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Old 09-30-2011, 06:35 AM   #54
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I just bought some cheap 912 led replacements for .99 free shipping for 2 from hong kong for that reason. when no power is available .
Where did you order those?
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Old 09-30-2011, 08:41 AM   #55
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This Heater may be used in a recreational enclosure or temporary construction work enclosure with a remote refillable propane cylinder ONLY when the cylinder is located outdoors
This recommendation seems a bit odd given that the heater will run with attached 1# canisters. Why are attached 1# canisters "safe" but a remotely connected 20# is not? I suspect it is a CYA move. To cover the case in which some idiot would place his 20# tank right in front of the heater.

That said, I have no plans to use a remote 20# setup.
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Old 09-30-2011, 10:24 AM   #56
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Have you considered a small 10,000 BTU kerosene heater such as this one - made by and sold through Northern Tool. No condensation issues and can be used at home for emergencies. Five gallons of K-1 should run it for two full days +, not just nights.
I must correct my above post - wasn't thinking too clearly when I wrote it.
Burning kerosene does introduce water vapor that results in condensation, just like propane.
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:51 PM   #57
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I'm the OP, here the results of our trial trip over Thanksgiving... (3 nights with hook-ups and 2 nights without)

Setup:

I added a second cheap-o Group 24 battery to my camper, purchase 5 10-light LEDs for use in a few select over-head lights. And 3 smaller LED replacements for the bunkend fan/light combos. I brought along by Honda EX700c generator, that I ran for a ~2 hours each day, but I suspect I could have used it less if I had had a "better" battery meter to monitor usage/capacity. I also purchased a Mr Buddy Heater (the largest one).

Lessons learned...

  1. Turn off the "auto" mode of the refrigerator before starting the generator.
  2. My generator won't run our toaster. Never tried to use it with my wife's coffee maker as she switched to something instant from Starbucks a friend of her's recommended.
  3. The heater consumed both 1# containers over night and kept the camper (with the rear bunkend closed) at 55-58F when the overnight temps were near ~35F on its lowest setting with its built-in fan turned off.
  4. I really need to get pop-up gizmos. Bunkend condensation is the bane of winter camping in a PUP and/or HTT. Especially when dry camping (not using electric heaters). Even with the roof vent open an inch and a side window of two bunkends cracked a bit. The moisture under the roof of the bunkends was quite annoying.
  5. The 10-light LEDs were more than bright enough for our needs (especially when used in pairs). I plan to buy a few more to expand coverage (over dinette). The smaller lights in the bunkend light/fan setups were too dim to read by, but did kids though it was good enough for their needs.
  6. I pulled the fuse for the radio, but I wonder if the LED in the control center indicating a missing fuse doesn't draw more power. I don't know if this was the cause, but my water heater didn't work until I re-inserted the radio fuse.

In general I think we could have used the batteries more than we did and we ran the generator more than we needed.

The Elkmont CG within the Smokies was great we camped right along the creek. It was maybe 20% full (and 50% of it was closed off for the season). The kids had a blast and more importantly, my wife said "why don't we camp like this more often" followed by "I think we could do this for a few days." I just about choked on my Smore when she said that.
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Old 01-25-2012, 12:25 AM   #58
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Battery requirement

Although we currently travel in a Bershire 390Bh class A, we spend 7 years in a Trail Lite Bantam (Hybrid TT).

Our experience was as follows keeping in mind that at that time most of our camping was in Western Canada;

Our biggest draw came from the furnace even though we would have it turned off during the day and only on at a very low temp at night.

Our next biggest draw was our 12v TV and VCR.

Refrig. would have been right up there but we alway ran it on propane.

For many years, we ran our trailer with a single 12v battery. If we were careful, we could get two days from a single charge. At which point we would need to start up the van and run it for a period of time.

Since most of the places that we camped at that time did not allow generators, we found that we became captive to semiservice sights.

We found that the best alternative was to to with 2 x 6v deep cycle batteries (high quality). The cost of doing this is marginal. In Canada the cost of the batteries is approx $130 each plus the cost of a second battery box and a small amount of cable.

By moving to 2 6 volts, we were able to get about a week out of one charge.

This along with a genset or small solar panel will be a good option
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