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Old 11-08-2012, 03:59 PM   #15
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Some generators have a 12V output at several amps that may charge the batteries faster than going through the converter. Just because your converter puts out 55A MAX does not mean that much is going to the battery. When the battery is dead you might get 55A but when it is half charged you may only be getting 10A.

Perry
On a Honda 2000, the DC Charging circuit is unregulated and only 8 amps max. It's much better to use the AC side to charge batteries.

I have noted that my setup, 3 group 27 batteries (+-240 AH) when discharged to 80% will only load a 65A 3 stage charger on it's Bulk Mode to 13-15 amps. In other words, the last 20% will take hours to approach a full chargel.
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Old 11-08-2012, 04:10 PM   #16
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When boon docking, my battery always runs out of juice, setting off various alarms and clicking sounds. I have a generator and use it during the allowed hours (usually for 15 mins or so, to minimize disturbance to other campers). I usually only run the refrigerator (propane) at night. I have heard that linking two batteries may solve the problem - is that the best way?
Since you have a 2005, if you have the original battery, it's time to replace it. Even if it's not the original battery could still be beyond it's useful life (rule of thumb: four years).

If you have the original converter in your Airstream, it takes an overnight charge (or longer) to get the battery completely topped off. With a multi-stage converter it would still take at least four hours to recharge a completely discharged (or nearly so) battery.

Running the fantastic fan or furnace are the two quickest ways to run the battery down at night. Avoid those if your situation permits.
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Old 11-08-2012, 04:46 PM   #17
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Well if you have a tow vehicle with a big alternator in it you could charge it off that in a shorter time if you use jumper cables to get maximum current.

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Old 11-08-2012, 04:52 PM   #18
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Well if you have a tow vehicle with a big alternator in it you could charge it off that in a shorter time if you use jumper cables to get maximum current.

Perry
You could, but preferably if the trailer battery is a wet-cell starting battery (which is entirely the wrong type of a trailer, but you never know what the previous owner used), and not a deep-cycle battery. The voltage regulator on the engine alternator is optimized for recharging starting batteries.
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Old 11-08-2012, 05:35 PM   #19
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Voltage is voltage. Current is Current. Try it and if it does not work try something else. I don't know of another way to get that kind of current to recharge a battery fast. Charging a battery fast is not optimum no matter what type the battery is. Running a quiet generator for several hours is probably the best solution.

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Old 11-08-2012, 05:46 PM   #20
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When we dry camp I run my Honda 2000 an hour in the morning to recharge from to past evening...tv w/satellite or movie (dvd) and/or late night book reading etc. When we sleep NOTHING (electrical) is on. Heat if needed is portable propane...no fan but never when sleeping. Then I run the charger 1 hour again late afternoon if my volt meter says that the battery is a little low. Works for us.

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Old 11-12-2012, 07:43 PM   #21
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My Avion C-11 has a small deep cycle battery that kept the furnace going all night long. I have a second large battery box, but I never put a battery in it since I haven't needed it yet. I charge the battery with a generator during the day if I expect to use the furnace all night long.
One of the biggest things that I did was to go to 100% LED lights.
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:43 AM   #22
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Thanks for the help

Thanks everyone for your advice and suggestions. Sorry for the late response but we've been camping without email/internet service (we did, however, have an electrical hookup!). I plan to purchase a volt meter and change out the lights to LEDs. My generator (Yamaha 2400) has a 12 volt output that I haven't used to charge the battery directly. I plan the experiment with this option and other suggested options (using the volt meter) next time we boondock.
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Old 11-22-2012, 09:37 AM   #23
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Use Less for Longer Battery Life at campsites

When hooked up to 110v at a campsite, you can light the place up like a Las Vegas Casino.

When not hooked up to 110v, use the lights and battery power as if you are sipping an expensive wine in short supply.

While camped off the grid, it is natural for some trailer owners to light the place up to create a city home lit atmosphere for comfort. Then the generator is started and runs all night and day. Take a look at your power use off the 110v grid and make the changes necessary to extent the battery life without a charger or hooking up later on the electrical grid to recharge.

Use less when off the grid and you will be fine.
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:44 AM   #24
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If you run your battery down to 0 volts, it will not last long and probably is ready to be replaced anyway if it is the original one. Since you don't charge it long enough, you probably are lucky to get anything out of it. Since you don't use anything but the fridge and maybe a few lights, you're almost getting away with it.

You shouldn't run the battery down below 50% of capacity. Doing that more than a few times shortens battery life substantially.

LED's will save a lot of power, but be sure to get good quality ones. Cheaper ones have a reputation of not lasting long and end up costing you more than good ones.

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Old 11-22-2012, 12:52 PM   #25
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If you run your battery down to 0 volts, it will not last long and probably is ready to be replaced anyway

Gene
A battery is considered completely discharged when the voltage drops down to around 10v not 0 volts. If you have repeatedly run your battery down you have damaged it. I agree it has lived its life.

You can also have a load test done on the battery, and check for dead cells.
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Old 11-22-2012, 02:37 PM   #26
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A battery is considered completely discharged when the voltage drops down to around 10v not 0 volts.
Correct. Another brain dead morning.

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Old 11-25-2012, 07:41 AM   #27
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I go to some remote places when I deer hunt and run the heater nonstop. The coldest morning I can remember was -12 most of the time the low is 15-20. I run 2 large deep cycle batteries and start the generator in the morning as soon as possible. However, when I get a deer I get back late around 10:00, at that point everything is dead. The batteries last about 3 years with that kind of abuse.
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