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Old 11-26-2013, 10:20 PM   #1
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Battery

Looking to boondock! Did a weekend this year. But was always worried about running out of power. Thinking of getting another battery. Maybe solar charger? LED lights? Where do you get good LED's? What size of solar charger?
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:37 PM   #2
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Look at a couple of things first. How many days at a time? How many times a year? What do you typically run while on battery? That'll get you in a position to determine what type of power and how much of it you'll need. What is the most you're willing to spend? One size doesn't fit all here.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:39 PM   #3
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Do a search for led upgrades. I got mine from amazon.

BestDealUSA White Light Panel 48 SMD LED + Interior Bulb + T10 + BA9S Adapter Dome lamp 12V
http://amzn.com/B008IY9ZKG

I got the bright white ones- a little getting used to cause its a blue white light. Really cut down on power usage.

If you don't have a generator, then a second battery is a must.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:39 PM   #4
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Need a lot more info
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F-250 . stealth 3210 solar pannels, fantastic fans. and life line batteries
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:47 PM   #5
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Mostly weekends. 2 to 3 nights. Radio on most of the day. Outside light on most of the night 9 to 2am. Other than that lights on just when I'm inside the trailer. Just want to be worry free.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:58 PM   #6
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I would suggest two deep cell batteries around 200+ Ah's each and bring along a generator.
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Old 11-26-2013, 11:00 PM   #7
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got my LED's on Ebay there are lots to choose from. Search this site topics there has been lots of discussions on whats best.
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Old 11-26-2013, 11:04 PM   #8
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I make it 2 - 3 nights on a pair of group 24 marine batteries discharged to around 60%. The radio and outside light will push that over the time you say you'll use them. Keep in mind that if you drop those batteries to less than 50% charge very often, you'll be replacing them shortly. Same thing for not keeping them charged fully.

I would skip the outside light and opt for lantern power instead. The LED upgrade is a good idea, depending on how many you want to replace. I always used a battery powered lantern for inside when I was unplugged. Regarding solar, I probably use roughly what you are, maybe a little less. I figured once that it would take a minimum 80 - 100 watt panel to replace what I used in a day (and probably only 75% of daily usage)...assuming I could find a sunny enough spot. For the cost of the panels, controller, and wiring it was more cost effective to replace the group 24's with a pair of 6V golf cart batteries (my trips are about the same as yours, it might be another story if I were looking to run on battery for 4+ days)...which is what I'll do when these start to go. For 2 - 3 day trips, there's no reason at all to drag along a generator.
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Old 11-26-2013, 11:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zwicker View Post
Mostly weekends. 2 to 3 nights. Radio on most of the day. Outside light on most of the night 9 to 2am. Other than that lights on just when I'm inside the trailer. Just want to be worry free.
Two quality batteries should get you through, but you could do the math on this by getting some amp draws for those things. LEDs will be a big saver. Not sure how much the radio draws.

Solar is good for trickle charging batteries in storage. Bigger systems for actually charging the batteries while camping can get fairly complicated when you get into charge controllers, wire sizing, pannel selection, etc. But a good size solar system sure would be nice for dry camping.

We have gone 4 days on 2 deep cycles when conserving as much as possible.
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Old 11-26-2013, 11:38 PM   #10
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You can get good LEDs at RVLEDBulbs.com - RV LED Bulbs, RV LED Lights and Light Accessories. At checkout, enter the code FORUM an get q 10% discount.

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Old 11-27-2013, 12:21 AM   #11
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Another source option LED Lights, Bulbs & LED Lighting Accessories - SUPER BRIGHT LEDS
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:27 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Batts-toy View Post
I would suggest two deep cell batteries around 200+ Ah's each and bring along a generator.
x2!

are you actually going to be "boondocking" or at a campground that doesn't have hookups, which is "dry camping"? makes a difference in generator recommendations.
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Old 11-27-2013, 06:03 AM   #13
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Boondocking.
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Old 11-27-2013, 07:11 AM   #14
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Just go & see what happens. When your run out of power, go home. Make a change, maybe that outside light to an LED & try it again. Keep making changes until you get it the way you want. Pretty soon you will be up to a week at a time with out power, water or sewer. Besides,it is just a good excuse to go camping.

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Old 11-27-2013, 07:54 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Batts-toy View Post
I would suggest two deep cell batteries around 200+ Ah's each and bring along a generator.
Radio all day can be a real drain on your batteries. I am with Batts-toy here; but weight of two giant batteries may be too much for your rig.

A smaller bank of 150-200AH total and a small generator with dedicated battery charger would be better for your situation.
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Old 11-27-2013, 12:11 PM   #16
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Just go & see what happens. When your run out of power, go home.
I understand what you're saying, but not everyone will. I knew a guy that just ran his batteries down until the lights started to dim and that's when he called it done. He replaced his batteries once a year and thought that was normal.

I would suggest, if going this route, to take a multimeter with you and check the voltage once a day to get a feel for it. Check it when there hasn't been a load on it for a few hours, maybe after a little trek away from the camper, and when it hits....say 12.25V call it done. It's not the most accurate way to check, but probably the easiest way to get a feel for it. Better idea yet, is to try that at the house and see just how much of a hit they take before you actually try it for real.
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Old 11-28-2013, 04:56 PM   #17
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Better idea yet, is to try that at the house and see just how much of a hit they take before you actually try it for real.
That is a really good idea & thanks for the clarification. I certainly would not want him to drain the battery until no lights came on.
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Old 11-30-2013, 09:54 AM   #18
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K so extra battery, LED lights, Mr Heater for cold nights( because the furnace fan sucks the juice out of batteries and loud!) Maybe a small generator for charging batteries! OR a bigger generator for running everything! So bigger generator? I would want a quiet one. Probably a Honda or Yamaha inverter? How big to run everything? And how big to run everything but the Air con?
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Old 11-30-2013, 10:18 AM   #19
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I go for a week at a time with a wife and two to three girls , I run led's inside and out two deep cell 31T lifeline batts.with a 150w solar panel. I also run a CPAP machine all night no problem
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Old 11-30-2013, 10:21 AM   #20
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I have a Honda 2000 which is nice but been hearing a lot of chatter about this champion:

Champion Power Equipment 73536i 2,000 Watt 4-Stroke Gas Powered Portable Inverter Generator (CARB Compliant)
http://amzn.com/B0041K09D8

Looks like there is a reconditioned one available for half the price.
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