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Old 01-12-2006, 07:40 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by davidz71
I experimented many times over the last 4 1/2 years with the battery system in my '77 Excella 500. I started with 2 new grp. 27 Delco Voyager maintenance free batteries. Some said that you had to be careful about overcharging because once the water boiled off there was no way to replace it. I understood that so I used the solar panel and batteryminder while at home and just the solar panel when boondocking. I was told that the 5 watt would not keep the batteries charged yet I moved from ultraconservative to conservative to use of several fans on all day and one on all night. The batteries never waivered. Having said that, I would watch the batteries closely with some type of meter or gauge to make sure that you are not discharging them further than 50%.

Thanks for the experience. I'm going to try the solar charger and keep my eye on the meter readings. If they don't stay up, I'll just plug her in to house current periodically, or use one of my tapering chargers.


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Old 01-16-2006, 05:06 PM   #16
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Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. It's snowbird season here in SW FL and I've been putting in 12+ hour days. There are several brands of charge rate monitors that are 'smart chargers' for use with a solar system. I'll check into them as soon as I have a minute and get back to you. BTW, one way to avoid the maintenance issue on your batteries is to go AGM. A bank of 4, 6-volt golf cart AGM's connected in series/parallel will way out perform a similar sized pair of 12 volt batteries, and you can even discharge them to 80% depth once in a while. That would kill an ordinary battery. PM me if you like.

Lew Farber...RVIA Certified Master Tech...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician
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