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Old 02-27-2021, 09:16 PM   #1
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2016 27' Flying Cloud
McDonough , Georgia
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Upgrading to Lithium (no Solar)

Hi - been reading the threads on batteries here - lots of info, head exploding. We plan on replacing our lead acid batteries with Battle Born LiFeP04 BB10012's, and I plan on replacing our PD4655V converter with the PD4655LIV. We are not at this time going solar.

I have a couple of questions, if you would be so kind:

1) - I have a Trimetric 2030RV battery monitor, installed 2017. Will this be OK with the new Battle Born lithium batteries?

2) We're in GA, and our dealer is Southland RV - they did the PD4655 converter and Trimetric install in 2017, and did a good job - no problems with batteries since. Would Southland be a good choice to do the lithium/new converter install, since it's been over 3 years and probably different people working there, so don't know them any more. I understand this may (or may not) require heavier wiring & maybe other considerations. Does anyone here have any recommendations on where to have it done? We're south of Atlanta, so that dealer is a good hour drive one way. We're not comfortable with electrical DIY.
Thank you for any and all help!
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Old 02-28-2021, 04:54 AM   #2
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Sorry . . . no specific answers for you . . . just checking that you realize that your tow vehicle will not charge the lithium batteries fully, and that you will have to consider other supplemental charging methods, when not connected to shore power?



The transition to lithium is on our radar too . . . so many variables!

For instance . . . "DC to DC charger" -- https://www.google.com/search?q=DC+t...=airforums.com

Good luck.
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Old 02-28-2021, 06:23 AM   #3
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I recommend contacting Ronnie Dennis of Airstream Nuts and Bolts, GMFL here on this forum. He’s in Dadeville AL, not that far from you, and he did the lithium power system for us and many others on this forum.
Joe
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Old 02-28-2021, 07:27 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OTRA15 View Post
Sorry . . . no specific answers for you . . . just checking that you realize that your tow vehicle will not charge the lithium batteries fully, and that you will have to consider other supplemental charging methods, when not connected to shore power?



The transition to lithium is on our radar too . . . so many variables!

For instance . . . "DC to DC charger" -- https://www.google.com/search?q=DC+t...=airforums.com

Good luck.

Yes, I realize that - We don't do extended boondocking, maybe 3 or 4 days at most, and can use our Honda gennie to charge - but we like the idea of being able to use more of the available capacity of our batts without worry of damage, also like the longer expected battery life. Check out Mortons on the Move Youtube vid - they did a battery comparison, actually found that lithium weren't really more $$ over the life of the batteries......
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Old 02-28-2021, 07:27 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jayseejay View Post
I recommend contacting Ronnie Dennis of Airstream Nuts and Bolts, GMFL here on this forum. He’s in Dadeville AL, not that far from you, and he did the lithium power system for us and many others on this forum.
Joe
Will do! Thank you!
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Old 02-28-2021, 07:40 AM   #6
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We upgraded our system to Lithium and but did not install solar. I am not familiar with Trimetric or Southland so no help there.

But I will suggest that you contact Ronnie Dennis (Airstream Nuts and Bolts) in Dadeville, AL (about 2hrs. from you). He is an AS Ambassador and installs lithium batteries and all the related equipment, including solar if desired. He will point you in the right direction and do the work if you so desired.

I use a DC to DC charger to charge my batteries while driving.

I love my upgrade to lithium!
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Old 02-28-2021, 08:22 AM   #7
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Thanks to everyone who responded - helped me a lot! I'm in contact with Ronnie so all is now well!
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Old 02-28-2021, 09:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kittycatcat View Post
Thanks to everyone who responded - helped me a lot! I'm in contact with Ronnie so all is now well!
Hi Kitty, I'm looking to do the same upgrade with no solar, so I look forward to hear how you make out. chat soon!
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Old 02-28-2021, 09:26 AM   #9
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Thanks to everyone who responded - helped me a lot! I'm in contact with Ronnie so all is now well!
Happy trails . . . and . . .
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Old 02-28-2021, 09:29 AM   #10
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Why would you not want solar? I have 400 watts, and wish I had room for more.
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Old 02-28-2021, 03:41 PM   #11
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Why would you not want solar? I have 400 watts, and wish I had room for more.
Oh, I like solar, just not cost-effective for our way of camping. If we did extended dry-camping, then we'd consider it.
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Old 02-28-2021, 08:48 PM   #12
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Glad you are getting with GMFL.

I have a Trimetric battery monitor with 3 Lithium BB batteries and it works great. Love the lithium batteries. It really is a game changer.

Dan
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Old 03-01-2021, 08:45 AM   #13
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Glad you are getting with GMFL.

I have a Trimetric battery monitor with 3 Lithium BB batteries and it works great. Love the lithium batteries. It really is a game changer.

Dan
Thank you for the info! Good to know - Ronnie (GMFL) also said the Trimetric would work; glad to have one less thing to buy/install.
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Old 03-01-2021, 05:19 PM   #14
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A lithium (LiFePo4) battery (above about 100 Ah) will accept and deliver current far in excess any charge or load likely in an RV (including engine starting). The latter requires only 4 or so watt/hours.

Their downside is they dislike heat above 40 degrees C and cold much below zero degrees C.

I have ample experience re this in both an RV (plus some 6 kW of solar and a 14 kW/h battery for our all-solar-house in Australia).

Collyn
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Old 03-15-2021, 06:50 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Kittycatcat View Post
Oh, I like solar, just not cost-effective for our way of camping. If we did extended dry-camping, then we'd consider it.
Adding the solar is the cheapest part of the whole install. Potentially, you could ditch the genny and go solar and DC to DC charger from the truck.That is efficient. That's what I have. Never come close to running out of power. 4- 100w panels, 300AH battleborn, DC to DC charger from the truck. I agree with previous posts, why not go solar with what you would already be spending ??
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Old 04-07-2021, 02:05 PM   #16
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This may be too late to help, but Southland installed lithium batteries on my Caravel 16RB last month and did a good job.

To have any idea what the state of charge of lithium batteries is, you need to install a shunt (I used a Victron) between the battery negative terminal and all other negative cables. Southland installed this as well. I provided the two battery cables, the shunt and a bus bar. Southland obtained a waterproof box so they could install the shunt outside of the battery box (no room inside).

The Victron shunt has no display (so no wiring into the trailer); you get the data on a phone app; same app as my Victron solar controller.

Southland’s install was done very professionally. We’ve put about 3,000 miles on the Airstream sine and the batteries have been great.
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:07 AM   #17
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Thanks to all for the advice and info -

Ronnie from Airstream Nuts & Bolts installed the Battleborn Lithium batteries and lithium-specific converter. We already had a Trimetric BMS which Ronnie re-programmed for the lithiums - it doesn't use a smartphone interface, just poke buttons on the unit itself, which I actually prefer .

Turns out Battleborn has a battery style that fits perfectly into our current (no pun intended) battery box without any modification to the box or batteries. They cost about 10% more than the regular Battleborns and worth every penny.

Ronnie did a great job!
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