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Old 06-02-2017, 05:58 PM   #111
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Don't get diss'd.

I am signing off.

When it comes to RVs and many other things...

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Old 06-02-2017, 06:03 PM   #112
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For us, we like the idea that driving the RV from Point A to Point B fills up the batteries (it doesn't fill up propane). Also, given conditions, you can stay out longer as solar charges your battery bank (but it won't fill your propane tank).

Lithium and solar provides more flexibility it seems to us. Plus energy produced as a byproduct from driving, or produced from solar, doesn't cost anything unlike propane.

It just provides more flexibility.
Nearly everyone that has one of the big power units, from both the bank capacity and use, says pretty much the same thing. The amount of solar you can put on a B is not enough to make a significant contribution usage coverage. That puts you back to running the engine to get power back if you are off grid, either driving or idling. Lower usage setups, primarily from running propane or diesel for heat, hot water, and cooking can get the power use down to where the solar can make significant contribution and keep you off grid without any other charging source.

IMO, running AC for more than an hour or two off batteries gets you squarely into the area of having a generator, as running the van all the time just isn't what I consider a good idea, and is quite inefficient.

Also remember when you look at charging for the engine, that the 270 or 280 amp alternator is only going to net you about 165ah per hour while driving, and probably closer to 100ah per hour idling, due to heat cycling, so your recharge times can be much longer than what Roadtrek implies them to be.

The charging off the engine is not free. At full output, the big alternator will use nearly 7hp, which is about the same as an Onan, and consume about the same fuel at approximately 1/2 gallon per hour.

Davydd says his ARV uses 100ah per day with no camping use, and upwards of 300ah per day when camping with essentially no AC use. If idling with only 100ah per hour (davydd's new Delco alternator does better), you could need upwards of 3 hours a day. Run the AC, and you will be running the engine well over 50%, if it will even keep up idling.

I understand that some people want to get rid of the propane, but I prefer it for a lot of things over electric or even diesel. You don't use much propane at all unless you are running a generator off it. I don't think we fill up our tank more than once every couple of years.
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Old 06-02-2017, 06:03 PM   #113
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For us, we like the idea that driving the RV from Point A to Point B fills up the batteries (it doesn't fill up propane). Also, given conditions, you can stay out longer as solar charges your battery bank (but it won't fill your propane tank).

Lithium and solar provides more flexibility it seems to us. Plus energy produced as a byproduct from driving, or produced from solar, doesn't cost anything unlike propane.

It just provides more flexibility.
I have 300W solar and 230 Ah batteries, I see the value at this level. For energy hoges like space and water heating you stll need LPG so once you have why you still need xxxx Ah?
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Old 06-02-2017, 06:09 PM   #114
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I have 300W solar and 230 Ah batteries, I see the value at this level. For energy hoges like space and water heating you stll need LPG so once you have why you still need xxxx Ah?
We plan on staying out of freezing temperatures so I'm not sure how much heating we would need, but I was under the impression that 1600AH of lithium with the Alde diesel underfloor heating and water heating would allow us at least a week without hookups. Is that unreasonable do you think?
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Old 06-02-2017, 06:20 PM   #115
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We plan on staying out of freezing temperatures so I'm not sure how much heating we would need, but I was under the impression that 1600AH of lithium with the Alde diesel underfloor heating and water heating would allow us at least a week without hookups. Is that unreasonable do you think?
Your diesel tank, fresh water and waste tank capacity would determine that, not battery capacity.
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Old 06-02-2017, 06:28 PM   #116
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We plan on staying out of freezing temperatures so I'm not sure how much heating we would need, but I was under the impression that 1600AH of lithium with the Alde diesel underfloor heating and water heating would allow us at least a week without hookups. Is that unreasonable do you think?
It all depends on how much power you use per day. If Roadtrek still has the 4-5 amp parasitic load per module, you will lose 100-125ah per day for every module that is on, that is why the say to use one at a time. That is going to eat up 1/2 your capacity right there, and likely more of the usable capacity depending on how much cushion they have on each end of the charge/discharge cycle. If it is 10% total you would lose another 160ah there, 320ah if it is 20%. Chose 200ah and your total down before any loads is going to be nearly 1000ah per week, leaving 600ah for use or a bit under 90ah per day. If the inverter is on all day to run 110v stuff, that will use a third of the 90, frig another third, so it doesn't leave much for actual use. Solar will give something in the 30ah per 100 watts on good days, and in this case would help as you loads have to be much smaller than davydd's to expect to last a week off grid without running the engine.

We have 440ah of battery, a compressor frig, and essentially all our stuff is native 12v except the microwave and hairdryer. Propane heat, cooking on gas grill and cooktop, hot water. The inverter is left off except to run the micro or hairdryer. In very hot weather, with fans running, and the frig using more, moderate micro use, we would be in the 80ah per day of power consumption. If we get good sun our 300watts of solar will keep up with that amount. Lower amounts of sun and it will not.
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Old 06-02-2017, 07:14 PM   #117
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We plan on staying out of freezing temperatures so I'm not sure how much heating we would need, but I was under the impression that 1600AH of lithium with the Alde diesel underfloor heating and water heating would allow us at least a week without hookups. Is that unreasonable do you think?
I think you are getting good help from actual users here, I would suggest to actually make a balance sheet of your electrical loads including parasitic losses, Alde coolant and heat exchanger pumps etc.

I like Alde, great unit for a C-class motorhome, for a B-van it could be a complex overkill. A potential nightmare after warranty expires unless you know a lot about hydronic systems. Majority of RV repair places will have no clue what to do. Espar (Eberspacher) D2 is an ideal combo, fast, quiet, low Ah consumption.

I have diesel powered furnace and water heating, with 230 Ah AGM (in Li equivalency about 125 Ah), well insulated (Thinsulate), 144WB van with all window and can stay in frigid temperatures for about 4 days in no solar harvesting conditions, with good harvesting with my 300W panels I am diesel, water tanks capacities and food limited.
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Old 06-02-2017, 07:22 PM   #118
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George, do you have a compressor frig?
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Old 06-02-2017, 07:49 PM   #119
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George, do you have a compressor frig?
Yes, Indel/Webasto Isotherm 85l/3.1 CF. I added the Smart Controller by Isotherm and noticed significant load reduction.

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Old 06-02-2017, 07:57 PM   #120
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Yes, Indel/Webasto Isotherm 85l/3.1 CF. I added the Smart Controller by Isotherm and noticed significant load reduction.

Same frig we have but without the controller. Do you also have the cold plate with it?
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