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Old 02-24-2021, 12:54 PM   #1
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Lithium batteries

Hello all, I've been a member of this forum for quite a while, but I tried to private message CMHM thanking him for his information on lithium batteries and asking a couple questions. The forum says I can't private message until I'm a trusted member of the forum. It said to introduce myself, so here goes.

We have a 2019 International Signature 25FB. I'm wanting to upgrade to lithium batteries. We do not have solar. CMHM had some great information.

My questions are: Should heavier cables be installed between the new converter and the batteries? Someone mentioned protecting the alternator in the tow vehicle. Can someone explain that to me?

Thank you very much.

Gordon Opp Lincoln, NE 402-617-1129. gordon.opp@woodsbros.com
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:25 PM   #2
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Just to touch on the tow vehicle issue: https://amsolar.com/rv-battery-accessories/98-altclitow
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:51 PM   #3
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Hi Gordon,

Here is a video from the series, Ask an Airstreamer. I found it informative and you might as well.

https://www.airstream.com/ask-an-air...power-systems/

BTW I visited a supplier we had in Lincoln often in my working days. Nice city (except in winter then not as nice)!
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Old 02-24-2021, 11:16 PM   #4
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Lithium batteries

No you do not need to change cables if all you are doing is dropping in new batteries and a new converter.

Regarding your tow vehicle, you will need to simply pull the 30A fuse for the trailer 7-way plug 12v constant charge line. This fuse is located under your hood in the engine bay or in your glovebox or what have you. Check your manual.

Why? Lithium’s have higher voltage than the lead acid battery in your tow vehicle. You will actually reverse current and drain your lithium’s if you leave them connected to the tow vehicle without the engine running. Plus your alternator does not put out the correct voltage to charge lithium when it is running. There is a list of other issues but those are the main ones.

That is the simplest and most economical approach (pull the fuse). If you want to charge your batteries from the tow vehicle then you need to add a DC-DC converter to the system.
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Old 02-25-2021, 03:17 AM   #5
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Welcome to the forum, Gordon.

FYI these "add lithium batteries" search results should lead to some helpful threads/posts IMO:

https://www.google.com/search?q=add+...=airforums.com

Also the Electric etc. forum, and its Batteries etc. sub-forum would be good places to look for information:

https://www.airforums.com/forums/f37/
https://www.airforums.com/forums/f449/

Good luck.

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Old 02-25-2021, 05:06 AM   #6
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Old 02-25-2021, 09:20 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wulfraat View Post
No you do not need to change cables if all you are doing is dropping in new batteries and a new converter.

Regarding your tow vehicle, you will need to simply pull the 30A fuse for the trailer 7-way plug 12v constant charge line. This fuse is located under your hood in the engine bay or in your glovebox or what have you. Check your manual.

Why? Lithium’s have higher voltage than the lead acid battery in your tow vehicle. You will actually reverse current and drain your lithium’s if you leave them connected to the tow vehicle without the engine running. Plus your alternator does not put out the correct voltage to charge lithium when it is running. There is a list of other issues but those are the main ones.

That is the simplest and most economical approach (pull the fuse). If you want to charge your batteries from the tow vehicle then you need to add a DC-DC converter to the system.


There is a jumper in the Airstream’s DC panel that ties in the charge line from the vehicle. In mine it goes to CB3. Removing that jumper is a better idea than removing the fuse in your TV, IMO. That way your trailer will be fine with any TV and your TV will still be fine for any trailer.
If the OP doesn’t have solar though, it’d probably be a good idea to just add the DC/DC converter so they can charge while towing.
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Old 02-25-2021, 12:14 PM   #8
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I just watched a LoLoHo video where they upgraded the alternator in their Tow vehicle after adding Lithium batteries and solar.

Changing from lead acid to Lithium batteries is more of a process than a battery swap.
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Old 02-25-2021, 09:00 PM   #9
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Hi Gordon,

Sorry you couldn't direct message me, but I am as new to this as you are. The PDF I attached to the other post is basically what is given to Airstream dealerships for the upgrade.

The part with the tow vehicle is new to me, and seems very important. Could anyone explain what happens if the fuse is not taken out?

Thanks
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Old 02-25-2021, 09:07 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CMHM;
The part with the tow vehicle is new to me, and seems very important. Could anyone explain what happens if the fuse is not taken out?



Thanks

See post #4 above
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