Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-01-2019, 07:45 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
sc68z28's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Riverside Ca.
Posts: 4
WFCO 8955 w/ LiFePO4 charging ?

New here and to travel trailers in general. I have ordered a Battle Born 100ah battery for our new 2019 Forest River Cruise Lite 201BHXL TT. No plans for boon-docking (if that is the right term) so one battery for now. The TT has a WF-8955pec power converter/charger.

Are these compatible? Has anyone else here used a LiFePO4 battery with the charger that comes in the WF-8955 ?

From what I have read on the WFCO site. The charge specs look just right for this battery, but Battle Born told me I would need a different charger for there battery. Something about cell balancing. Hence the question.

I have a good working knowledge of automotive charging systems and all the test tools needed, but do not completely understand bulk charge and float volt requirements for LiFePO4 batterys.

Any thoughts, thanks ---Bill.
sc68z28 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-01-2019, 08:30 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: North of Seattle, WA
Posts: 9,328
Quote:
Originally Posted by sc68z28 View Post
New here and to travel trailers in general. I have ordered a Battle Born 100ah battery for our new 2019 Forest River Cruise Lite 201BHXL TT. No plans for boon-docking (if that is the right term) so one battery for now. The TT has a WF-8955pec power converter/charger.

Are these compatible? Has anyone else here used a LiFePO4 battery with the charger that comes in the WF-8955 ?

From what I have read on the WFCO site. The charge specs look just right for this battery, but Battle Born told me I would need a different charger for there battery. Something about cell balancing. Hence the question.

I have a good working knowledge of automotive charging systems and all the test tools needed, but do not completely understand bulk charge and float volt requirements for LiFePO4 batterys.

Any thoughts, thanks ---Bill.
The WFCO, unlike Progressive dynamic' units doesnt have a way to force the higher voltage needed to fully charge the Battleborns.

Progressive Dynamic's does sell a replacement converter unit that will fit in your existing power center.

The existing converter will charge the battleborn battery, it just wont give it a full charge. You'll still come out ahead of the lead acid for run time as you won't have to stop at 50%.
__________________
"A wise man can change his mind. A fool never will."

"You only grow old when you run out of new things to do"

2018 Flagstaff Micro Lite 25BDS
2004 Nissan Titan
TitanMike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-01-2019, 10:01 PM   #3
Fulltime family RVer
 
ependydad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 19,905
What makes you not trust the battery manufacturer?

If it’s in email, do you mind sharing what they actually said? I’ve been charging my BB batteries with a standard charger for quite a while now but only because my converter is hard to change in this new rig.
__________________
2018 Ram 3500 DRW/crew cab/long bed/4x4/4.10 gears pulling a 2017 Spartan 1245 by Prime Time
Checkout my site for RVing tips, tricks, and info | My family and I have fulltimed since June 2015
ependydad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 12:09 AM   #4
Retired Old Fart
 
dward51's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: McDonough, GA
Posts: 815
You just spent how much on the Battle Born? Upgrade to the correct charger also.

The Progressive is a drop in replacement for the WFCO - it replaces the converter and DC distribution panel part of your WFCO assembly. The AC breakers and overall housing is the same. Runs about $200 for the upgrade.
__________________
Just the 2 of us in a...
2015 Freedom Express 246RKS
2002 GMC Sierra 1500
dward51 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 03:55 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
rk06382's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Alaska
Posts: 1,291
Quote:
Originally Posted by dward51 View Post
You just spent how much on the Battle Born? Upgrade to the correct charger also.

The Progressive is a drop in replacement for the WFCO - it replaces the converter and DC distribution panel part of your WFCO assembly. The AC breakers and overall housing is the same. Runs about $200 for the upgrade.
Progressive Dynamics Lithium Converter Replacement Units:
WFCO - LITHIUM REPLACEMENT
WF8955 - PD4655LIV (55-AMPS)

I would like to add that you also need to get a Battery Monitor like the Victron BMV-712. I could not tell if my Battle Born batteries were fully charged or almost dead. Now with my Victron BMV-712, I now can know the available amp hours.
Click image for larger version

Name:	Screenshot_20180819-180640.jpg
Views:	77
Size:	117.8 KB
ID:	206166
__________________
Robert
2018 FR3 28DS | Boondock 90% of the time
Samlex EVO-3012 Inverter/Charger | 600ah Battle Born LiFePO4 | Victron BMV-712 & MPPT 100/50 | 800W Renogy Solar | Fan-Tastic Fans | Blue Ox TruCenter | SnapPads | SumoSprings | Koni Shocks
Solar Power & Battle Born batteries
rk06382 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 10:49 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: North of Seattle, WA
Posts: 9,328
Quote:
Originally Posted by rk06382 View Post
I would like to add that you also need to get a Battery Monitor like the Victron BMV-712. I could not tell if my Battle Born batteries were fully charged or almost dead. Now with my Victron BMV-712, I now can know the available amp hours.
Attachment 206166
I'd like to emphasize this as well. Installing LiFePo batteries renders the OE battery LED type battery monitor even more useless than it is with lead/acid batteries. The LiFePo batteries have a nominal voltage that's higher than the float voltage of a Lead/Acid battery so the OE monitor will show as "Charging" until the battery is almost fully discharged. Their discharge voltage curve is so flat that even using a digital voltmeter won't really tell you anything about battery state of charge. All the Tech Publications on Lithium batteries stress the need to use a "Coulomb Counter" for monitoring. The method of counting Coulombs, (a unit of charge transported by one ampere in one second) measures current flowing in or out of the battery over time and calculates remaining energy in the battery.

FWiW, there are a lot of inexpensive Battery Monitors on the market but do they really have the capability of measuring the energy moving in measured time units? Do they have the ability to take into account the Peukert effect?

Would pay to check before buying solely based on price. There's a really good reason the Victron, Xantrex, and other similar monitors cost what they do and why some can be bought for $20.

On the other side of the coin, charging, a Victron, etc will show when the battery is at or very near full charge. With others you really don't although no damage is done. The BMS int he battery will shut charge current down when the battery has reached full charge although most chargers won't get near the shut down voltage unless it's a Lithium charger. The BMS is there for those that use Service Station battery chargers that can often hit 16 volts when cranked to max.
__________________
"A wise man can change his mind. A fool never will."

"You only grow old when you run out of new things to do"

2018 Flagstaff Micro Lite 25BDS
2004 Nissan Titan
TitanMike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 11:25 AM   #7
Junior Member
 
sc68z28's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Riverside Ca.
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by ependydad View Post
What makes you not trust the battery manufacturer?
The girl I spoke with by phone at BB did NOT seem sure of her self. Left me with the impression I'd have to try it and said I probably did not have to replace the charger, but that cell balancing could be a problem. Again I do not understand the cell balancing part.

Yes, $200 to $300 with the monitoring is no big deal. Next Question would be which one, the girl at BB did not know The fact she did not know, again left me with the impression she was not sure of herself and did not know what I was working with.

I will assume the # PD9160A , since it is a close match in amp output to the WF-8955? Guess I'll give Progressive Dynamics a jingle .

---Bill.
sc68z28 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 11:49 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
sc68z28's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Riverside Ca.
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by rk06382 View Post
Progressive Dynamics Lithium Converter Replacement Units:
WFCO - LITHIUM REPLACEMENT
WF8955 - PD4655LIV (55-AMPS)

I would like to add that you also need to get a Battery Monitor like the Victron BMV-712. I could not tell if my Battle Born batteries were fully charged or almost dead. Now with my Victron BMV-712, I now can know the available amp hours.
Attachment 206166
Thank You, answers several questions .
---Bill.
sc68z28 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 01:22 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
mlmay12's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Escondido, CA
Posts: 609
Quote:
Originally Posted by sc68z28 View Post
The girl I spoke with by phone at BB did NOT seem sure of her self. Left me with the impression I'd have to try it and said I probably did not have to replace the charger, but that cell balancing could be a problem. Again I do not understand the cell balancing part.

Yes, $200 to $300 with the monitoring is no big deal. Next Question would be which one, the girl at BB did not know The fact she did not know, again left me with the impression she was not sure of herself and did not know what I was working with.

I will assume the # PD9160A , since it is a close match in amp output to the WF-8955? Guess I'll give Progressive Dynamics a jingle .

---Bill.
She was probably referring to equalization, Battle Born states "Equalization is not recommended for our batteries". They state that it can be turned off on most Chargers. I would go with the PD Charger as stated in prior posts.
__________________
2016 Dynamax Isata 3 24FW
2016 Jeep Willys JK
Yellow Labs Buddy Biscuit Eater, Mr. Jake (RIP), Casey Girl (RIP)
USN-RET/DOD-RET
mlmay12 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 01:32 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: payson, az
Posts: 2,839
to titanmike:

your post about the need for a amperage based battery monitor was most enlightening! i have read many posts about LeFePo batteries for rv's. many are pretty good but i do not recall ever reading about the need for an amperage based battery monitor as opposed to a voltage based monitor. what you posted makes sense to me. thanks for sharing
__________________
2015 cardinal model 3825fl
2015 dodge ram 3500 dually
CHICKDOE is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 01:52 PM   #11
Site Team
 
Flybob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 11,839
Not sure about the specifics of your specific battery, but LiFe and LiPO batteries need to have balancing circuitry to insure a long life. Many of the direct replacement batteries have the balancing circuits built in. If they do not, they need a charger with balancing capability. Essentially a balance charger monitors the voltage of each cell during charging and manages the charge by cell to insure all the cells are equal. You can use a non balancing charger, but the cells will continually get further out of balance until the battery fails. Also the battery must have the ability to access the voltage of each cell. All that said. All the Battle Born batteries I have seen do not have a balance port and do not need a balanced charger.
__________________

2015 Freedom Express 248RBS
TV 2015 Silverado HD2500 Duramax
TST Tire Monitors
Honda 2000I + Companion
2 100W solar panels
Flybob is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 02:02 PM   #12
Junior Member
 
sc68z28's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Riverside Ca.
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by TitanMike View Post
I'd like to emphasize this as well....
The WFCO, unlike Progressive dynamic' units doesnt have a way....
Thanks Mike, both your posts helped a lot. Very well written and insightful.
I will get the monitor and charger ordered up.

For the others, with posts intending to belittle me (You just spent how much on the Battle Born?) I can only say... Thanks for the warm Welcome.

---Bill.
sc68z28 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 02:07 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
W5CI's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Carlisle, Arkansas
Posts: 1,368
Why would you waste your money on a BattleBorn is you aren't planning on Boondocking? that is what they are built for
__________________
2005 Cedar Creek 30RLBS/TrailAir Hitch/ MORryde 7K IS/Disc Brakes/ PI PT-50 EMS/ RV Flex Armor Roof
2015 RAM 3500 DRW 6.7 Cummins 3.42/ Garmin 760RV
40 Gal TransferFlow fuel tank/ TST 507
Amateur Radio W5CI 2019 Days Camping 25
2020 Days Camping 7
W5CI is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 05:45 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: North of Seattle, WA
Posts: 9,328
Quote:
Originally Posted by W5CI View Post
Why would you waste your money on a BattleBorn is you aren't planning on Boondocking? that is what they are built for
Weight is one consideration that favors LiFePo batteries. Another is the ability to mount them inside, on their side, or even top if you want.

Another consideration is that they will more likely than not be the last batteries anyone will need to purchase as the number of cycles possible is around 10 times that of Lead Acid and you can use the entire battery, not having to stop at 50%.

If one wants/needs 100 amp hours of usable energy they will have to use 2 12 volt batteries in parallel. Average weight ~ 100-120 lbs. OR 2 6 volt batteries in series with an average weight of 130-140 lbs.

ONE Battleborn (for example) will provide a full 100 amp hour energy source and weight ~30 lbs. Half the number of batteries and ONE FOURTH the average weight.

As for someone "not planning on boondocking" they often find themselves in the worst circumstances battery wise. Because batteries aren't as essential in their camping they might not be as well maintained. Those people may stop at a rest area or "Wally World" on a cold evening for some snooze time and find that around half way through the night the Furnace goes on strike.

Just think, a battery that needs no more maintenance in the form of watering or cleaning the blue-green fuzz off terminals due to corrosion.


What's not to like about a LiFePo battery?

Something tells me that those who poo-poo LiFePo batteries (no one in particular in mind) are also the ones who are always saying "you get what you pay for" in other threads regarding less expensive (polite way of saying "Cheap") items.

I'm a recent convert and I have to say, I really got what I paid for. Longer times between generator runs (if solar panels aren't charging), higher voltage to system throughout the discharge cycle, no maintenance, lighter weight, and better yet, no more holes in my favorite shirts from drops of battery electrolyte that always seem to go flying when popping the caps on my old batteries.
__________________
"A wise man can change his mind. A fool never will."

"You only grow old when you run out of new things to do"

2018 Flagstaff Micro Lite 25BDS
2004 Nissan Titan
TitanMike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 05:58 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: North of Seattle, WA
Posts: 9,328
A note for those who already own Progressive Dynamic's 9100 series Converters, PD sells a device that attaches to their converter that changes it to a constant voltage charger with your choice of voltages from ~14.2 to 14.6. if you convert to LiFePo batteries.

Less than $20.

If you own a PD 9200 series converter with Charge Wizard Pendant, just push the button and it forces the charger into the 14.6 volt output.

Learned this from a phone conversation with a PD Service/Technical Engineer.


The LiFePo batteries, when charged at a steady voltage of 14.6 v will accept up to the max output of the Charger until the battery voltage starts to reach full charge. Current will drop and when full charge is achieved current will drop to zero.

The Battleborn batteries, as well as others I'm sure, are pretty much impossible to over-charge as the BMS controls this, shutting off charge current when voltage exceeds 14.7 or current is more than it's allowed limit. Ditto for over temp of battery cells. In short, there's no more need for the charger to really manage charge parameters. At least that's what I've gathered from speaking with people at both Battleborn and PD.
__________________
"A wise man can change his mind. A fool never will."

"You only grow old when you run out of new things to do"

2018 Flagstaff Micro Lite 25BDS
2004 Nissan Titan
TitanMike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2019, 07:20 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: payson, az
Posts: 2,839
wouldn't it be nice i progressive dynamics would sell a pendant for the 9200 series that simply forced it to the 14.6 voltage without having to even push a button? set it and forget it. but this would eat into their sales of the dedicated lithium chargers so let's not hold our breath.
__________________
2015 cardinal model 3825fl
2015 dodge ram 3500 dually
CHICKDOE is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2019, 09:09 AM   #17
Denver, CO
 
garbonz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 2,102
Ok, a little bit of reality here. LiFePo batteries of any kind including BBs, which I have, degrade if held at 14.6 volts for a period of time. So regardless of what charger or converter or controller you use, make sure you turn all that off if you are not using the batteries actively.

Storage should be at 40-60% SOC and unconnected. In fact the less time spent at 100%, the better. The Progressive Li charger are way to aggressive, and using the BB shutoff feature routine is an extraordinary bad idea.

The BB folks are marketing these batteries and they are wonderful, but they are not really drop in and forget, especially if you plug in all the time.

YES, get a battery monitor, AND keep the BB batteries in their mid range SOC.

Also, read this web link top to bottom, and then make a decision on what to do.

https://marinehowto.com/lifepo4-batteries-on-boats/
__________________
2017 Fuse 23T
garbonz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2019, 09:59 AM   #18
Site Team
 
Flybob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 11,839
X2.
The care of Lithium batteries is very different than lead acid. I consider them less forgiving than traditional LA batteries.

The recommended storage for LA batteries is to charge fully and disconnect load.
Lithium batteries will degrade if this procedure is followed. If storing them for any length of time, they should be discharged to 40-50%, then monitored regularly to insure they do not drop below 25%
__________________

2015 Freedom Express 248RBS
TV 2015 Silverado HD2500 Duramax
TST Tire Monitors
Honda 2000I + Companion
2 100W solar panels
Flybob is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2019, 10:41 AM   #19
Senior Member
 
mlmay12's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Escondido, CA
Posts: 609
Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by garbonz View Post
Ok, a little bit of reality here. LiFePo batteries of any kind including BB’s, which I have, degrade if held at 14.6 volts for a period of time. So regardless of what charger or converter or controller you use, make sure you turn all that off if you are not using the batteries actively.

Storage should be at 40-60% SOC and unconnected. In fact the less time spent at 100%, the better. The Progressive Li charger are way to aggressive, and using the BB shutoff feature routine is an extraordinary bad idea.

The BB folks are marketing these batteries and they are wonderful, but they are not really drop in and forget, especially if you plug in all the time.

YES, get a battery monitor, AND keep the BB batteries in their mid range SOC.

Also, read this web link top to bottom, and then make a decision on what to do.

https://marinehowto.com/lifepo4-batteries-on-boats/

Wow, longest article I have ever read. Admittedly it is very full of good information, even though it is geared to the marine industry and seemingly a little outdated mainly referencing the older practice of building a lithium battery system from scratch instead of using drop in systems such as Battle Borns. It does provide much updated information also.

It provides tons of information that I believe should be followed. On my 2016 Isata 3FW I have 2 Battle Born 100AH batteries and replaced my PD Converter with the Lithium recommended model that puts out a constant 14.6V. I agree 100% with Garbonz that this voltage potential should not be left on the batteries. Because my solar controller did not have a lithium profile I replaced it as well and have 400W of solar on my roof.

I have never left my converter on when my batteries reached full SOC of 14.6v. I control this with the AC circuit breaker that powers my converter by switching it off as soon as the batteries reach full charge and this has been working well. I have been allowing my solar system to maintain my batteries at 13.4V but plan to install a switch after reading these comments and this article to make it easier to disconnect the solar system to better control the SOC for storage at the 40% to 60% level.

I have been very happy with the lithium batteries so far and hopefully they will last for quite some time.
__________________
2016 Dynamax Isata 3 24FW
2016 Jeep Willys JK
Yellow Labs Buddy Biscuit Eater, Mr. Jake (RIP), Casey Girl (RIP)
USN-RET/DOD-RET
mlmay12 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2019, 10:58 AM   #20
Denver, CO
 
garbonz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 2,102
Quote:
Originally Posted by mlmay12 View Post
Wow, longest article I have ever read. Admittedly it is very full of good information, even though it is geared to the marine industry and seemingly a little outdated mainly referencing the older practice of building a lithium battery system from scratch instead of using drop in systems such as Battle Borns. It does provide much updated information also.

It provides tons of information that I believe should be followed. On my 2016 Isata 3FW I have 2 Battle Born 100AH batteries and replaced my PD Converter with the Lithium recommended model that puts out a constant 14.6V. I agree 100% with Garbonz that this voltage potential should not be left on the batteries. Because my solar controller did not have a lithium profile I replaced it as well and have 400W of solar on my roof.

I have never left my converter on when my batteries reached full SOC of 14.6v. I control this with the AC circuit breaker that powers my converter by switching it off as soon as the batteries reach full charge and this has been working well. I have been allowing my solar system to maintain my batteries at 13.4V but plan to install a switch after reading these comments and this article to make it easier to disconnect the solar system to better control the SOC for storage at the 40% to 60% level.

I have been very happy with the lithium batteries so far and hopefully they will last for quite some time.
Yep, that is the best way to handle these. On my Ford Transit based MH, I also have a switch to turn off the alternator feed, which I rarely need, since that alternator is very aggressive and keeps the AGM's chassis batteries charged. I cringe whenever someone says they use the upper voltage shutoff on the BB BMS to turn off the charger.

Did you all see the recent YouTube from "Mortons on the Move", as they tour the Battleborn plant and even make their own batteries. First look I have had into the Innards of the BB's and it is very impressive.
__________________
2017 Fuse 23T
garbonz is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
charging, wfco

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


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Forest River, Inc. or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:56 PM.