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Open Roads Forum  >  Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)

 > Use 24v Batteries to run 12v System... Possible?

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furyous68

Pismo Beach, CA

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Posted: 04/13/18 04:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sorry for the long post....

Hi everyone. I am new here. I am an RV greenhorn... don't even own one yet. But, we're in the market & the biggest thing I want out of it is to be as self-sufficient as possible. The very first thing I will be doing (besides checking over the engine, trans, rearend, and general health of the coach) is updating the charging system with a solar system. I do not want to run the generator unless absolutely necessary. I HATE when other campers run their generators for 12 hours out of the day, & I refuse to be one of them.

I'm looking at a 12v/24v solar system w/ a 60A MPPT controller. I know I could use 1 or 2 12v AGM batteries. BUT... I'm really interested in seeing if it's possible to run the RV's 12v system off of 1 or 2 24v batteries. If so, I could use 1 or 2 smaller batteries & due to you only needing to pull 1/2 the amps @ 24v's. I assume you would need a step-down converter between the 24v batteries & the 12v converter in the coach... right?

Somebody school me!

pauldub

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Posted: 04/13/18 04:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yes, you would need a step down converter. Going to 24V won't allow you to use a physically smaller battery bank.

jplante4

Cape Cod

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Posted: 04/13/18 04:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Most serious solar boondockers go the other way - multiple 6 volt CG batteries in series/parallel. True deep cycle batteries have thicker cells and can withstand more cycles than "rv/marine deep cycle". I have 4 CG-2s and 200 watts of solar for some light camping with no hookups.

However, if you're already passing judgment of how other people pursue their recreation, maybe this isn't the lifestyle for you.


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Sam Spade

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Posted: 04/13/18 04:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Trying to "design your own" 24 V battery system to run 12 V appliances is NOT worth the time, trouble and expense.

AND....you won't know how many 6/12 volt batteries will be optimum for your RV.....until you actually GET one and see how much room you have for batteries.

There are only two things that you really NEED to run a generator for:
1) Air Conditioning. Just not possible/practical from batteries.
2) Charging the batteries. Good solar will reduce this but maybe not eliminate it totally.

I find that I need to run the gen only about 2 hours in the morning and 2 in the late afternoon.

And finally.....if you have a really QUIET generator, it won't be a problem anyway. Spend your power system money on solar and a quiet gen.


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pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

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Posted: 04/13/18 05:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi furyous68,

Welcome to the forums.

What you wish to do is possible. Perhaps this series of articles may help.

https://freecampsites.net/adding-solar/

furyous68 wrote:


Hi everyone. I am new here. I am an RV greenhorn... don't even own one yet. is updating the charging system with a solar system. I do not want to run the generator unless absolutely necessary.



Regards, Don
Full Time in a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp hours of AGM in two battery banks 12 volt batteries, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

furyous68

Pismo Beach, CA

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Posted: 04/13/18 05:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jplante4 wrote:

However, if you're already passing judgment of how other people pursue their recreation, maybe this isn't the lifestyle for you.


Easy there, I didn't judge anyone. I don't go around giving people dirty looks & yelling at everyone to turn off their generators. I didn't call them horrible people. The sound of generators irritate me. I know that it irritates a lot (probably most) people that go camping to get away from the city & find some peace & quiet. I'm glad it doesn't bother you. I just plan on not contributing to it as much as humanly possible.

Look, I'm used to tent camping & backpacking. I'm an Architect, a hunter, and I enjoy motorsports (I own a 68 Plymouth Fury III pushing 680hp on Nitrous). We're looking for an RV so we can be a little more comfortable while camping as a family. I have a wife & 2 daughters, one is autistic with Type I diabetes. I want her to be able to enjoy nature. But tent camping just isn't posdible with all of her needs.I also have 2 100lb+ german shepherds I'd like to take with us.

So, when I say I'm new to RV's, I'm about as new as you get. I'm also not used to camping around them, since I typically go where very few people will be. I just want to continue my small footprint/ low impact style of camping as much as I can. I will still be looking for places where RVers don't typically go, and I don't want to dampen anyone else's experience in the boonies. I'm not into the big RV parks where generator noise isn't udually a big issue.

2oldman

Farmington NM

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Posted: 04/13/18 05:04pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

furyous68 wrote:

I HATE when other campers run their generators for 12 hours out of the day, & I refuse to be one of them.

I assume you would need a step-down converter between the 24v batteries & the 12v converter in the coach... right?


I'm with you on the generator running.. you're being considerate but not all campers are, especially the ones who "can't afford" an inverter model so they bring their loud ones. Last place I was at had one guy running his ALL NIGHT. Fortunately it was quiet enough I didn't have to call the law.

Yes, you'll need a step-down converter. Victron makes some nice ones with enough wattage for you. I run a 48v system which is nice when you're running high-wattage devices like microwaves and toasters and air cons.

time2roll

Southern California

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Posted: 04/13/18 05:05pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

To be independent you need more battery, not less. To get more from solar or from the dreaded generator consider a lithium battery. Going to be a bit extra up front but could be the last battery you buy.

Yes for a larger system going 24 or 48 volts will have an advantage. I assume you are thinking 800+ watts solar.

Yes you can get a DC/DC converter to power the 12v accessories. I recommend Victron.


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Lwiddis

Los Angeles :(

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Posted: 04/13/18 05:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Who sells 24 volt deep cycle batteries?


If OP isn’t, I am - “Passing judgment.” Runnng generators all day ruins a CG for me.


2015 Winnebago 2101DS TT & Tahoe LTZ, 300 watts WindyNation solar-parallel & MPPT, Trojan T-125s. TALL flagpole for US flag. Prefer USFS, COE, BLM, NPS, TVA, USF&WS, state & county camps. Bicyclist! 14 year Army vet - 11B40 then 11A - old MOS 1542 & 1560.


furyous68

Pismo Beach, CA

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Posted: 04/13/18 05:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

larry cad wrote:



As a greenhorn newbie who doesn't even own an RV, I wonder how many times he has camped next to someone running their generator 12 hours??


You would be surprised. On my own, not so much as I'm usually backpacking. I take my daughter tent camping for a week every year. Started doing that 5 years ago. Every trip there has been at least one other camper at the site that runs their generator all day (ok.. "almost" all day). Last year there was one on either side of me running them off & on all day. One of them sounded like a 2-stroke. I have no clue why... it wasn't unusually warm, but maybe their AC? Not crazy loud, I'm sure they had a muffler of some sort, but you still hear the hum. When I'm just trying to enjoy the scenery, that constant hum is annoying.

* This post was edited 04/13/18 06:39pm by an administrator/moderator *

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