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Old 08-06-2018, 05:38 AM   #1
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What all runs off my RVs batteries?

How do I determine what all is running off my battery’s so I can determine what size battery I need?
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Old 08-06-2018, 10:49 AM   #2
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Your best bet is to check your owners manual.
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Old 08-06-2018, 01:23 PM   #3
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There will be 'sneaky' things.
The air conditioners run on 120 volt, but the thermostat(s) is 12 volt.
The controller for the fridge is also 12 volt.
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Old 08-06-2018, 01:26 PM   #4
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The 2003 Adventurer Brochure indicates that your coach came with 2 Group 24 12V deep cycle coach batteries.
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Old 08-06-2018, 05:17 PM   #5
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Why not just buy the same type as your existing batteries?
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Old 08-06-2018, 10:19 PM   #6
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That's a loaded question and depends a lot on how you use your coach.

If you never do any dry camping and are always plugged in then very little actually runs off the coach batteries except for those few minutes that you shut off the engine at fuel stops and during the time it takes you to plug or unplug from a power pedestal and stop/start the engine.

If you never do any or only occasional do dry camping and run the generator all the time then you can put the smallest available deep cycle batteries in.

If you do dry camp in cold weather and run the gas furnace all night with the generator off then you want the largest sized deep cycle batteries that will fit in the tray.

If you dry camp a lot but only in warmer climates and don't keep the generator going all the time the stock sized batteries should be fine.

On my 2001 Adventurer 35U the largest house batteries I can comfortably fit in with a little finesse is 2 Group 31 deep cycle batteries. This will allow me to dry camp in the White Mountains in Sub Freezing temperatures running the gas furnace through the night without running the generator.

Basically all the house lights, vent fans, fresh water pump, refrigerator controls, thermostat, Power Panel, water heater controls, tank sensors, TV antenna, entertainment center inverter and furnace will run on the house batteries when the engine or generator is not running and the coach is not plugged into a power pedestal however that's mostly only if you turn these items on. Otherwise there are only a few parasitic draws that can be eliminated by switching the main disconnect by the entryway steps to the storage position.

The propane leak detector may run off the engine battery.
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Old 08-07-2018, 05:30 AM   #7
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Thanks to all. My manuals did cover much of the users of 12V. I presently have the largest 12V deep cycle that will fit. My dealer offered to let me try them and if not large enough upgrade to two 6 V golf cart batteries that will fit in my battery tray. We tried it this last week. We stayed conservative on lights, ran the television about 3 hours and that was about it. Batteries went from 13.4 down to 12.3 in a day of use. We run 200 V solar that should have kept them up but had heavy cloud cover for two days. I am thinking that if I would have had to run the furnace very much we would have been out of battery and had to use the generator. Thinking was there was something else drawing down my batteries but I could not find it. Maybe I need to switch to the dual 6V batteries. As fall comes we will be using the furnace also. I don't want to cycle my batteries down to 50% very often. I thought that was bad for them.
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:11 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michealwhela View Post
Thanks to all. My manuals did cover much of the users of 12V. I presently have the largest 12V deep cycle that will fit. My dealer offered to let me try them and if not large enough upgrade to two 6 V golf cart batteries that will fit in my battery tray. We tried it this last week. We stayed conservative on lights, ran the television about 3 hours and that was about it. Batteries went from 13.4 down to 12.3 in a day of use. We run 200 V solar that should have kept them up but had heavy cloud cover for two days. I am thinking that if I would have had to run the furnace very much we would have been out of battery and had to use the generator. Thinking was there was something else drawing down my batteries but I could not find it. Maybe I need to switch to the dual 6V batteries. As fall comes we will be using the furnace also. I don't want to cycle my batteries down to 50% very often. I thought that was bad for them.
NeilV, did a fine job of covering what the battery operates:
Quote:
Basically all the house lights, vent fans, fresh water pump, refrigerator controls, thermostat, Power Panel, water heater controls, tank sensors, TV antenna, entertainment center inverter and furnace will run on the house batteries when the engine or generator is not running and the coach is not plugged into a power pedestal however that's mostly only if you turn these items on. Otherwise there are only a few parasitic draws that can be eliminated by switching the main disconnect by the entryway steps to the storage position.
From the list if items, the following do not pull much power from the battery, about 0.5amp total for all of them. " refrigerator controls, thermostat, Power Panel, water heater controls, tank sensors, TV antenna,".
I believe your RV is a 2003, if so it came with an old CRT TV which pulls a lot of power. Probably 5 to 10 amps of 12V power through the inverter. Has it been replaced with a flat screen, LED TV? A 32" flat screen LED TV pulls about 1.5 to 2 amps through the inverter.
How many lights do you have on in the RV? Each incandescent light bulb pulls about 1.5amps and some light fixtures have 2 bulbs. A florescent light pulls about 2.5 to 3amps.

Here are links to a website with good detailed info about RV elect:
The 12volt Side of Life (Part 1) Batteries

http://www.marxrv.com/12volt/12volta.htm
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:54 AM   #9
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Thanks for the info. The TV is a new flat screen 32" Samsung. All interior lights and basement lights are LED except for the 3 two tube fluorescents in the main living area. We do not use those much. My solar is a Renology 200 Amp mono crystalline. On a heavily overcast day it only produces about 12.3 V . Our vent fans are used during the hottest part of the day but not once it cools down. Water pump is always on and refrigerator are the only appliances that are a constant. Water heater is only used once per day.
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Old 08-08-2018, 04:47 PM   #10
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Thanks for the info. The TV is a new flat screen 32" Samsung. All interior lights and basement lights are LED except for the 3 two tube fluorescents in the main living area. We do not use those much. My solar is a Renology 200 Amp mono crystalline. On a heavily overcast day it only produces about 12.3 V . Our vent fans are used during the hottest part of the day but not once it cools down. Water pump is always on and refrigerator are the only appliances that are a constant. Water heater is only used once per day.
BTW, do you turn off the inverter which powers the TV? Just being on, but not powering any 120V devices, the inverter will pull from about 0.5A to 1.5A depending on the inverter and size of the inverter. In a full day that means the inverter pulls from 12AH (Amp Hour) to 36AH of your 140AH of battery. (Going from memory on the AH of a group 24 battery). Of course the usable AH for the battery is from 25% discharge (35AH) to 50% discharge (70AH). Also the TV may have some keep alive current it pulls through the inverter.

Also you mentioned that the battery started at 13.4V and then dropped to 12.3V in a day. Keep in mind the 13.4V is just the surface charge left from the charger/converter. Within about 15-30 minutes of use, if the battery was really fully charged, the voltage would have dropped to around 12.6V. If the battery was not fully charged, the true starting voltage would have been lower. More details about this in the link I provided earlier. (BTW I did not write the website in the link, I just find it very useful.)

Going to a pair of 6V golf cart batteries from Costco or Sam's Club for less than $100 each (probably $80-$90) will give you about 220AH to 240AH of battery power. The RV dealer will probably charge you $130 to $150 each, plus installation, for pretty much the same battery. There is info in the links about wiring the 6V batteries.

You can buy the short 6" to 18" heavy duty #2 gauge cables at Amazon that you need to wire your 6V batteries. Do a search for "#2 gauge battery cables" on Amazon. Check the existing battery cables to find the wire size and change the above search to the proper wire size.
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