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Old 08-30-2018, 12:24 PM   #1
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Lithium? 12v? 6v? Help!

I have an R-Pod. The original two batteries were Marine, but they’re shot even though they had little use and were kept charged. Every dealer has a different suggestion, from converting to one bigger battery to switching to four 6-volt batteries, to going lithium. I know nothing about this. What works best for users?
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:44 PM   #2
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Do you do a lot of "dry" camping? No hook ups...

How do you charge your batteries if the above is true?

4 - 6 volt batteries seem like a lot for that camper, but depends on your usage. I think lithium is cool, but very expensive.

I currently have 4 - 6 volt golf cart batteries and have little to know issue. I prefer to dry camp and use solar to charge. My battery usage various depending on the situation but I do have a 2000 watt inverter wired in.

So really you need to figure out what your needs are and go from there. I'd think 2 - 6 volt batteries or 2 - 12 volt batteries would work great unless you have demanding needs.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:44 PM   #3
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That's about like asking, "What car should I buy?" The answer depends dramatically on how you drive and what you plan to do with the vehicle.

For batteries, it depends on how you camp, how frequently you camp, how many days you camp at a time without shore power, and a host of other questions. I only need a cheap, el-crappo 12 V battery for my camping, but I wouldn't necessarily recommend it to you ... because I have no idea what your needs are.

Depending on what you do, a simple 12 V lead-acid battery might be fine. Or, it might be better to get a massive bank of eight 6V batteries.

If you get a single 12 V Group 29 battery, it can have as much as 120 Amp-Hours. That's a good capacity. If you go with two 12 V batteries, that would double the capacity to 240 Amp-Hours.

If you go with 6 V, you have to get 2. Most 6 V batteries have around 210 Amp-Hours. If you double them, you get a total of 210 Amp-Hours. So, capacity will be about the same.

Really good 12 V deep cycle batteries tend to be more expensive than really good 6 V batteries. But, mid-grade 12 V batteries from common outlets tend to be cheaper ... and, well, cheaper.

6V tend to be taller with a smaller footprint than 12 V equivalent. Weights are similar.

Batteries shouldn't be discharged below 50% of capacity (that may not hold true for Lion batteries, though). They should be kept in climate-controlled area and maintained with a proper charger.

Search here and you'll find a lot of information about batteries.

Good luck.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:46 PM   #4
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First, do you dry camp or boondock a lot? If so, a pair of 6v golf cart batteries or TRUE deep cycle 12v batteries. True 12v deep cycle batteries are harder to find and common as 6v.

If you don't do either and always have electric hookups, then a cheap 12v marine battery is fine.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:54 PM   #5
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What works best for users?
It depends on what you do with your R-Pod.
If you are always doing full hook ups with only eventually sleeping over at a Walmart when in transit, buy a group 24 AGM battery and you will be fine.
My camper is way bigger with 3 slides, we sleep over at Walmarts when in transit frequently and that is what I have, but we are always have full hook ups when camping....
If you intent to do boondocking, the size of the battery will depend on what you want to run and for how long.
I'd say a 8D AGM battery will be good for almost a week on a small camper like that if you don't run heavy things like an electric coffee maker, etc (assuming you have an inverter).
If you want full functionality (including AC), the cheapest way is to have a generator or you can spend more than what your camper is worth on lithium batteries and a heavy inverter for that.
For reference, I thought that a group 24 battery was too small to support my camper overnight (Walmart) for I have 3 slides, etc.
I bought a Victron 701 battery monitor and I found out that on those occasions I use 20% of the battery capacity.
So for us, a group 24 is perfectly fine for that is the biggest draw that we will require from the battery.

Hope this helps.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:59 PM   #6
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Thanks, especially about apostrophe misuse. I was an English major and the force dies slowly in us.
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:06 PM   #7
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Thanks for the advice!

We never do hookups, and our trips usually are only a few days. We live in the Cascades, so donít need to go far for a great outing. We also have two generators for really blistering days. Generally donít even hook them up.
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:10 PM   #8
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We never do hookups, and our trips usually are only a few days. We live in the Cascades, so don’t need to go far for a great outing. We also have two generators for really blistering days. Generally don’t even hook them up.
In this case I recommend a single 12V 8D AGM battery....
There are things that are way more fun were you can use your money than batteries...
Have fun!
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:39 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Jim Black View Post
We never do hookups, and our trips usually are only a few days. We live in the Cascades, so donít need to go far for a great outing. We also have two generators for really blistering days. Generally donít even hook them up.
Sounds like you need a to start with a good battery monitor to know when to charge your batteries. Lead-acid batteries should not be discharged below 50%. Lithium can be used below 25% if they have a BMS.

Lithium is a great way to go if you can afford them. I love my Battle Born LiFePO4 Batteries. They will last ten years or longer if properly taken care of. That is why I installed my Victron BMV-712 battery monitor. I also installed solar to help with the recharging.
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Old 08-31-2018, 12:50 PM   #10
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The 8d battery is going to weigh ~160#, 2 6v golf carts ~60#ea=120#. Can you handle the 8d? The 8d gives ~250AH (125 usable) The 6v ~225 AH (112 usable). Check the cost difference and I believe you’ll find that extra 12AH is pretty pricey, and a lot more effort to install. Numbers are approximations, if you want exact do your research for the specific product you’re interested in.

I switched from 3 Lifeline 8d to 4 Battle Born Lithium in my Foretravel, then put the 8d back in when I sold it. I don’t see ever going back to acid batteries.
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Old 08-31-2018, 01:07 PM   #11
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I love my lithium! Best for many reasons but weight and no gas fumes or leaking are reason enough. They pay off over time since they last many years over any other. Quick to charge . They dont like freezing cold weather but neither do i so no problem there. Go get em!
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Old 08-31-2018, 01:24 PM   #12
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Based on your response to how you use batteries, one or two good 12V AGM batteries might work best Lithium are nice but very expensive unless you need the benefits.
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Old 08-31-2018, 09:28 PM   #13
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Lithium Ion and Lithium Polymer batteries

While it is true that lithium type batteries have a much greater storage capacity per cubic inch, there are a couple of caveats.
First, before purchasing a battery/batteries for your RV, make certain that they have a CHARGE/DISCHARGE safety circuit! This will prevent over charging, as well as over discharging. If you draw one down below roughly 3.0 volts per cell (The nominal charged voltage is 3.7 volts) chances are excellent that you will permanently damage the battery, rendering it impossible to recharge. (Been there, done that). Considering the nominal LiPo or LiOn voltage is 3.7 volts, I'm assuming a 12 volt package will contain three cells, for an awkward voltage of 11.1 volts, or four cells for 14.1 volkts, making minimum safwe discharge voltagesd 9 volts or 12 volts.
Hopefully, this info is helpful! Personally,. I like multiples of 6 volt golf cart batteries.
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Old 08-31-2018, 10:04 PM   #14
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I suspect that your RPod has a WFCO converter, as did ours. We had exceptionally poor battery life with a single 12vDC marine battery, until we replaced the power converter with a Progressive Dynamics converter...problem solved. With our previous two trailers, we had similar poor battery performance from single 12vDC batteries, usually not getting more than a season out of a battery. We didn't know about the difference that a converter could make, but did get two 6vDC batteries. The golf cart batteries are true deep cycle batteries as opposed to marine batteries. The two 6's lasted eight years with no problems. Wonder what they would have done with a better converter?
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Old 09-02-2018, 06:25 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Black View Post
I have an R-Pod. The original two batteries were Marine, but theyíre shot even though they had little use and were kept charged. Every dealer has a different suggestion, from converting to one bigger battery to switching to four 6-volt batteries, to going lithium. I know nothing about this. What works best for users?


Hmmm......I have an RPod and I don't think 4 6v batteries will fit in the battery area without putting a new battery rack on the tongue. Also, 6v batteries are better because there is more lead which equates to more amps and this means lots more weight on the tongue. Marine batteries are not the best for RVing, as they are not designed to be deep discharged.

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