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Old 02-12-2024, 12:04 AM   #21
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2021 30RB Classic
West Sacramento , California
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c to dc converter

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverCabin View Post
Much like Bob (the OP here) I have been looking at a similar scenario. Rarely, do I find us camped with temps below 32F, but it happens. We woke up to snow and 27F two years ago in Colorado. My interest, though, is saving the weight since I tow with a very capable F-150 in every way except payload. So I am doing a similar search for batteries that have BMSs that control charging when the temps drop and that will fit in my stock battery box. I will take a good look at what has been recommended above.

I have an additional question for you with more experience. The PD4655 (which I installed last year) will charge lithium batteries to 100% state-of-charge (SOC). I was told, however, that the stock electrical system in my truck will only charge them to 80%SOC. Getting to 100%SOC requires a DC-to-DC converter. Getting to an 80%SOC is acceptable to me as we usually end up plugged in when we stop for the night or the night after. But, recently, I was told that without a DC to DC converter on the truck side of the umbilical, I would kill the alternator. Is this correct?

Randy
There are several problems using the TV to charge lithium battery bank:

The 12v wire to your7 pin plug wont support the amperage needed if your batteries are drained which could be 50-100A

Modern trucks have variable voltage output alternators which may not maintain the needed voltage for charging

Your TV does not know the charging requirements of lithium batteries

A dc to dc converter connected to the battery via heavy gauge cable will buffer your TV system from the battery ban. I use a Redarc unit in he battery box of my AS. After driving a few hours they are topped off.
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Old 02-12-2024, 07:21 AM   #22
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I've been kicking this around since last season, asked a number of questions here only to feel like each time I peel the onion and find another layer when it comes to the battery question.

There are few questions that the BB batteries are really top notch and use top end cells. I was really looking at the Renology batteries, but then after Will P pulled one apart and it had pouch cells (read not very serviceable) I went back to square one. Looked at Lion and a few other ones out there, which only made my head hurt. What I found though, for a really good battery, with bluetooth and a heater, you might save $300, which is not really enough to make me go full on Chinese, understanding that even the BB cells are from China, but like the big 3 making EV, they source and specify certain specs and maintain that quality, for the most part, which makes the BB all that more appealing. I mean I know exactly who I'd be dealing with in terms of BB, the others? Many that Will pulls apart have very similar insides, which then begs the question for at least a few of the Chinese battery packs, who is the company behind them? Mind you not all are as mysterious, still, I too find myself wrestling with this and one thing I am not eager to pursue is changing out my connector types form the standard clamp on terminals to the variety that I see out there.

I know, great 1st world problems, right?
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Old 02-12-2024, 12:10 PM   #23
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As far as heaters go, lithium batteries will discharge down to -4F or so before the BMS will cutoff. With low temp charging the cutoff is around 32F or so. So, at 28F for an overnight low or even colder, it's likely that the batteries won't get that cold but if they do, they won't charge, but you still have power. If it warms to 40s during the day then they will warm up and start charging again.

So, even if it stayed below freezing for a couple of days, batteries would still be working. We don't anticipate camping hardly ever under these conditions and for this reason I didn't get batteries with a heater. In our case, it's a waste of money especially since I moved the batteries inside. But if you do a lot of winter camping, it makes sense.
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Old 02-12-2024, 12:31 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfranklin View Post
I've been kicking this around since last season, asked a number of questions here only to feel like each time I peel the onion and find another layer when it comes to the battery question.

There are few questions that the BB batteries are really top notch and use top end cells. I was really looking at the Renology batteries, but then after Will P pulled one apart and it had pouch cells (read not very serviceable) I went back to square one. Looked at Lion and a few other ones out there, which only made my head hurt. What I found though, for a really good battery, with bluetooth and a heater, you might save $300, which is not really enough to make me go full on Chinese, understanding that even the BB cells are from China, but like the big 3 making EV, they source and specify certain specs and maintain that quality, for the most part, which makes the BB all that more appealing. I mean I know exactly who I'd be dealing with in terms of BB, the others? Many that Will pulls apart have very similar insides, which then begs the question for at least a few of the Chinese battery packs, who is the company behind them? Mind you not all are as mysterious, still, I too find myself wrestling with this and one thing I am not eager to pursue is changing out my connector types form the standard clamp on terminals to the variety that I see out there.

I know, great 1st world problems, right?
The lithium battery rabbit hole is large, long, and goes very deep. Hence there are tons of threads on it in the AS Forums and all over the place and things keep changing as well. There's not only picking the batteries but then the wiring, getting the right charger, and TV DC-DC charging if you add that. So, yes head spinning is normal. (The developing world also has to deal with this if they are using solar, so maybe not only first world, but then they probably don't have an AS).

I was a fellow traveler down the hole last year about this time trying to figure out what batteries to put in our new Globetrotter. I had some experience with the Chinese HQST batteries in our Bambi and in the end I picked those since they have low temp charging cutoff, a domestic warehouse, 10-year warranty (for what that's worth), and responsive customer service. We have a shunt so I didn't need Bluetooth.

After spending a small fortune on the Globetrotter, our budget was stretched also. For the price of 1.5 BBs I could get four of the HQST. As I said before we camp at most three months out of the year, the batteries are not going to go through a lot of cycles. I am a lot less risk averse than some people, so I accept the tradeoff and maybe it's a "false economy", time will tell.
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Old 02-12-2024, 01:55 PM   #25
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Re: heated lithium batteries:
I have no idea if most or all of the brands with internal battery heat work this way or not, but I've been interested in SOK batteries so I read through most of their literature. They way they do it makes sense, though it's perhaps less than optimal from the point of view of time before charging starts.

SOK's built-in heaters only work when there's incoming charging current... the BMS decides whether the battery is too cold or not, if it is it sends incoming power to the heaters and doesn't start charging the battery until it's warm enough to accept a charge, so none of your battery reserve is wasted on heating the batteries BUT you won't start charging the battery immediately on starting a generator or getting sun on your solar panels if the BMS has to wait a while for heat.
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Old 02-13-2024, 06:12 AM   #26
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I like Will's channel and he gives some really good information; however, he is also wrong at times. I remember when he was all GO on Bluetti and how they listened to him and his advice on what was needed, etc. I bought one! Then he turned on them and started bad mouthing them. When I shared it with my father (a long retired electrical and mechanic guy) he said, yeah what he is saying is kinda how it works but that isn't necessarily a flaw. Will is also bias on Battleborn. He goes to the factory, etc.

You mention finding that one brand was pouch cells and not serviceable. That doesn't matter if you have a warranty. The latest tech supposedly is some kind of membrane cells. To the end user, warranty matters most. We would not normally be servicing a battery.

As for Chinese, well, they pretty much make most basic components for the batteries. I purchased Lions. Will liked them and during his Lion review he liked everything but the case. He went on about how the case was not sturdy and the posts were too small. But then he also had a newer beefed up Lion model there and continued to bash it on the older model even though he said they improved this and that when he referred to the newer model continuing his review on the old version. The thread caps on the Lion do have a screw thread in the middle but the cylinder makes contact around the whole of the post. If it breaks. There is warranty and a lifetime one too. I would also look at the SOK brand others are talking about. I hadn't heard about them.
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Old 02-13-2024, 08:38 AM   #27
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I added Li batteries last fall. I chose Expion batteries. The sizing was a factor in fitting the batteries in my rig, which has limited space. So far I have been satisfied.
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Old 02-13-2024, 09:51 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverCabin View Post
But, recently, I was told that without a DC to DC converter on the truck side of the umbilical, I would kill the alternator. Is this correct?

Randy
That is complete BS, the umbilical has at most a 30 amp fuse that will blow long before any possible alternator damage. This myth was started by misunderstanding of a true fact that a much more robust connection to the batteries can damage the alternator, such as can be had in a motor home.

Plus the DC to DC converter normally goes on the trailer side to be close to the batteries.
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