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Old 03-25-2015, 03:14 PM   #1
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Estimate of battery life when boon docking

I just wanted to get some informal poll answers on how long you can comfortably boon dock without recharging batteries.

I have a new 2015 27FB Serenity. I have used it several times at RV parks with hook ups but still haven't tried boon docking. I am thinking about going camping without hook ups and I currently have no idea how long I can expect the standard batteries to work. We don't have solar yet or a generator, so we will have to make due with just what we can eek out of a newly charged set of batteries.

Our habits include watching tv on satellite system, using toilet, not a lot of cooking and hoping to not have to run the heat. All of our lights are led and our televisions are the new led samsung models.

Are we talking about being able to have power for two days, three nights or more like 5 - 8 hours?

Any info would be appreciated, thanks.
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Old 03-25-2015, 03:33 PM   #2
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It all depends on how much power you consume. Satellite TV is going to eat up a lot. We have friends with 160 watts of solar, and they still have to run their generator every day when watching four to five hours of TV. They are using two big golf cart 6vdc batteries in series.

Personally, I suggest getting a generator that is capable of running your AC before going out and expecting to have a couple days of boondocking and watching TV.
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Old 03-25-2015, 03:35 PM   #3
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We get a few days with no problem. Your big use is the TV and satellite system, which we don't use. The TVs use the inverter to supply 110v to the TV, which then drops it down to a lower voltage- not a very efficient use of batteries. Of course you could just use your generator to either charge up the batteries when needed or while you watch the TV.
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Old 03-25-2015, 03:36 PM   #4
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oops- I thought you had a generator.
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Old 03-25-2015, 03:50 PM   #5
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We can go 3.5 days with no TV. I'd guess 2 days with some TV.
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Old 03-25-2015, 04:09 PM   #6
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If we were to camp without power and do all our normal activities - and anticipate furnace use - then we'd be pretty much limited to one night - I think two would be a stretch.

But when we're on battery only we do modify our activities - we remove our TV and DVD player from the equation by taking along one of those batter booster units that you can plug into - it easily handles a nightly movie - charging the unit is done the next day from the tow vehicle in our daily travels.

You can also take a lot of the water pump needs out of the loop by simply washing dishes outdoors and flushing the toilet from a bucket - we limit our water pump use to showers.

If you you anticipate some cool weather and furnace use then a duvet may allow you to not use the furnace at all - and daytime heating, if needed, may be able to be done with a portable indoor-safe infra red propane heater - they are inexpensive and will do the trick.

If you have to it is real easy to conserve power by eliminating activities requiring power or finding other ways to carry them out.

Enjoy your trip.

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Old 03-25-2015, 04:48 PM   #7
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You could run a "test". Next time you go camping unplug your AS and see how long you can make it. Just watch your batteries and make sure they don't get below 50%.


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Old 03-25-2015, 05:17 PM   #8
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You could run a "test". Next time you go camping unplug your AS and see how long you can make it. Just watch your batteries and make sure they don't get below 50%.
That's a good idea.

Our SeeLevel system measures the battery voltage. I think 12.7 is the fully charged voltage and I believe for non-agm batteries the lowest voltage you should take the batteries is 11.9 v.

Is that correct thinking or am I wrong with these guideline numbers?
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Old 03-25-2015, 05:23 PM   #9
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Depending which chart you look at, 12.06v is 50% state of charge.
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Old 03-25-2015, 05:34 PM   #10
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Depending which chart you look at, 12.06v is 50% state of charge.
OK, thanks.

So a good guideline would be to not let the batteries drop below 12 volts if you want to try to get a reasonable life from them.
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Old 03-25-2015, 05:37 PM   #11
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OK, thanks.

So a good guideline would be to not let the batteries drop below 12 volts if you want to try to get a reasonable life from them.
That's my "bogie"
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Old 03-25-2015, 05:56 PM   #12
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I get easy five days, with showers, few lights, fan to clear bathroom after shower, fridge fan. We dont watch tv, use ipad to read or netflix, use fluffy down in winter, rechargable fan for Summer. I ccould use a few more things, but don't need to. I have two batteries and a 19'.
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Old 03-25-2015, 06:27 PM   #13
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I'm w/Sbb I can easily get 4 or 5 days because when my wife and I camp w/o hookups which, is most of the time, we think like when we tent camped... conserve! We converted to all LEDs, use LED candles at dinner etc., minimal heat unless necessary, we listen to music when not around the fire or read under led. You really don't' need much when your camping.... You're camping. Now if you like bothering others everyday, you can run the generator daily - I prefer not to. When you're "cramping" in an RV park w/hookups you can live it up....or whatever you call that.


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Old 03-25-2015, 07:33 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by RVDreamer View Post
That's a good idea.

Our SeeLevel system measures the battery voltage. I think 12.7 is the fully charged voltage and I believe for non-agm batteries the lowest voltage you should take the batteries is 11.9 v.

Is that correct thinking or am I wrong with these guideline numbers?
I was told this is a marine-type lead acid wet cell not a car-starter type battery, you can go to near full discharge, which I think is like 10V.? . I plan to use the heck out of mine and perhaps get an AGM to replace when they junk. They'll be toast in 3 -4 years anyways, so why not USE them hard.

The propane alarm won't go bezerk till 5V apparently.
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