In the past year, we’ve absolutely fallen in love with the boondocking concept and off-the-grid parking. Nothing beats parking out in the middle of BLM areas, desert, mountains, lakes, and even farms not having to rely on a power pedestal for our electrical power.
There’s lots to be said for being ‘totally self contained’ and truly meaning it!
We are putting together a multi-part Energy Management Series that will explain how we basically configured our system (in very simple terms) and how well it serves our purpose of boondocking for days, weeks and even months. This will act as an ongoing assessment and review so we encourage you to visit this blog section often for updates.
Our Heartland fifth wheel coach originally came equipped with two 12-volt batteries wired in parallel to support our onboard residential refrigerator. These batteries were grossly inadequate and barely met the requirements of stability of maintaining power to the appliance.
Leaping into the 21st Century with Battle Born Batteries…
A year after taking ownership of our coach, we replaced our former two 12-volt batteries with four name-brand six-volt batteries wired in series parallel. The standard lead acid batteries weighed 68 pounds each and were good for a total of 450 amp hours with 225 of the amp hours useable to a state of charge of 50%. An adequate system for an RV with a residential refrigerator, but hardly ideal for our future goal, which we will talk about later.
Seizing the opportunity to move forward with a much improved battery bank and energy storage system, we partnered with Battle Born Batteries (Dragonfly Energy) to come up with a much more efficient energy storage and management system.
We then replaced the four 6-volt lead acid batteries with six Battle Born 12 volt GC2 batteries (BBGC2) wired in parallel.
The 100 ah 12 volt Battle Born Battery is designed and assembled in Reno, NV. This LiFePO4 – lithium iron phosphate deep-cycle battery is great for use in an RV, Boat or Off-grid power system. These can be used in 12, 24 36 and 48 volt systems. At only 29 lbs, it packs the power of a 140 lb lead acid battery and lasts 10 times longer.
About Our Battle Born Lithium Ion Batteries…
Each battery offers 100 amp hours for a total of 600 useable amp hours.
No more computing 50% of a lead acid battery bank for allowable usage.
It is all consumable energy. These lithium-ion batteries are maintenance-free. I no longer spend my time adding water, spraying battery posts with corrosion spray or checking specific gravity of cells. I no longer have to keep a maintenance log or worry about missing my preventative maintenance in the battery box.
The new Battle Born batteries occupy almost the exact amount of space as the former lead acid batteries. They have their own internal battery management system and require no venting to outside the RV.
In addition to the new Battle Born BBGC2 batteries, we also upgraded our inverter to a Magnum MSH3012 Hybrid 3000 watt inverter charger. This inverter is designed to load share with the batteries. It is monitored by a Magnum ME-ARC50 remote control (more on these new components at a later date). Coupled with our existing Tristar MPPT-60 solar controller and six HighTec 165 watt solar panels we are now more prepared for off-the-grid boondocking than ever.
So, this is very similar to what we have…
But if you’re looking for a little more basic…
For more Battle Born packages, please refer back to our Solar & Energy Management Page for deets. We will post all of the bundle packages that will fit any of your RV needs.
Stay tuned for our upcoming tests and assessment of our Battle Born lithium ion battery and energy management system. For our RV and our quest to boondock, this is an incredible game changer in how we roll.
If you are looking into solar panels…
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