Another extrapolation is to imagine a battery somewhere near the 3/4 charged mark. It may accept 15 amps. A pair would accept 30 amps. I have to try and keep this simple. Imagine 10 batteries each accepting 15 amps; Get the idea?
You will also have an impact if the batteries have different age and number of cycles. That is why you would be better off buying both batteries at the same time.
If things are working for you now, don't worry about swapping out the batteries until these expire. With the way you are using them, that will be sooner than later. When you get the new batteries, pay more attention to their SOC and % Discharge, or if you don't worry about money and don't mind replacing the batteries more freqently, keep doing what you are doing. With charging and discharging more batteries, you won't have to take your battery % down as far and your charge time will be shorter too.
It is always better to use two batteries in parallel than to use each individually. The longer time between cycles means greater over all life span. That's more dollars to use for camping.
As others have pointed out, charging via a generator will also be faster with two batteries in parallel.
Or, you could--go solar!
Please give an example of how charging time is less when doing both together than by doing one and then the other, specifying SOCs at start and at the end of the recharge and the charging rates involved.
Obviously if you have two chargers you can do them separately at the same time given enough gen watts to run both chargers, but that is not the question.
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Your own research into charging amps. Acceptance rates after 85% state of charge would be twice as great with batteries in parallel being charged at the same time. And at 50% the parallel batteries will take as many amps as the charger can push without overloading the generator. If there are only two batteries and the converter is large enough charging times might well be nearly the same. That, of course, is IMPORTANT if one is paying to run a generator. If there is adequate solar, it doesn't matter from a cost point of view.
its time Not volume
one battery for 2 hrs then a second battery for 2 hours is TWO separate charge cycles totaling 4 hrs
however charging 2 batteries at the same time using twice the charge acceptance rate means One charge cycle of two hrs
yes the generator has to produce more power and the charger/converter has to produce the charge, but the physical run time of the generator is reduced
its the reason we all want the biggest baddest smartest charger we can afford
* This post was
edited 04/15/12 10:38am by MrWizard *
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Pumping 40A into one battery will knock it out of bulk at perhaps 70 to 75% SOC. Two batteries will remain in bulk perhaps to 80 to 85% SOC. Absorption charging (tapered current) is slower than bulk charging (constant current).