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Old 08-12-2017, 02:07 PM   #581
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Tank gauges are notoriously inaccurate. ..
Most indeed are very inaccurate. For my fresh and grey water tank, I chose Wema with electromechanical floaters and analog gauge, very accurate and never had a problem. For black water tank using ultrasonic sensor on the tank top would be more accurate than commonly used capacitive sensors. Adding a rinse nozzle next to the US sensor would make it foolproof.

Senders.
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Old 08-12-2017, 03:22 PM   #582
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Tank gauges are notoriously inaccurate. If you have a macerator you can tell from experience by sound if you emptied the tanks, or just check the outlet for discharge. It it sputters it is nearly empty. I don't worry about emptying it out all the way since I still want liquid in the bottom of the tank.
Great point about the liquid at the bottom.

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It is really helpful to have a clear segment somewhere in the dump chain. There are various fittings that make this possible. What is appropriate is specific to your particular setup.
I'll definitely look into that modification.

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Most indeed are very inaccurate. For my fresh and grey water tank, I chose Wema with electromechanical floaters and analog gauge, very accurate and never had a problem. For black water tank using ultrasonic sensor on the tank top would be more accurate than commonly used capacitive sensors. Adding a rinse nozzle next to the US sensor would make it foolproof.

Senders.
This seems very useful, thanks.

I'm currently in the Olympic National Forest dry camping and going to test out how well the lithium does for an extended period during moderate weather. Can't beat this view or the feeling of being nestled in the forest like a lithium powered submarine!
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Old 08-12-2017, 04:56 PM   #583
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.

A capsule of dishwashing machine detergent; that's all you need to break down the solids and keep them suspended until your next dump.
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:40 PM   #584
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For those interested in the high idle feature we discussed, this video shows it at 5:34.

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Old 08-14-2017, 11:09 PM   #585
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The most effective way to keep the heat out of your van is an exterior cover over the windshield and cab windows. There are a few manufacturers - I have the one from Eurocampers.com
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Old 08-15-2017, 01:23 AM   #586
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Want to test out the Alde coach heat using lithium only tonight. Haven't read anything about this, only talk is about shore power or using the diesel option.

My question, does the inverter have to be on and if so, is it the main or the galley inverter?

I've confirmed that the Alde will start cycling the glycol and shows the circle (heating icon) without any inverter being on but I'm not sure if it will heat it or not. Would be cool if it heated using DC power only. I guess I'll know in the morning.
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Old 08-15-2017, 03:57 AM   #587
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Want to test out the Alde coach heat using lithium only tonight. Haven't read anything about this, only talk is about shore power or using the diesel option.

My question, does the inverter have to be on and if so, is it the main or the galley inverter?

I've confirmed that the Alde will start cycling the glycol and shows the circle (heating icon) without any inverter being on but I'm not sure if it will heat it or not. Would be cool if it heated using DC power only. I guess I'll know in the morning.
It will provide heat with just 12v power using the propane or diesel fuel to heat the glycol depending on which you have. There is an option to use 120v power to heat the glycol but probably only reasonable to use from shore power since the power via the inverter would use a lot of battery power.
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Old 08-24-2017, 07:52 PM   #588
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After the balmar was changed out twice, the GU was charging the batteries. But yesterday I didn't get the sense it was charging them. So this morning I only flipped on one ecotrek. It was in the 50s early in the morning. I drove for about six hours with the average temp being 65F until I got out of the elevation and then for the last two hours it was average of 80F which was also the speed limit of the highway.

That one ecotrek when I started read 13.1 volts. When I finished it read 13.2 volts.

The Balmar appears to be working. I'm going to install a camera under the hood to record its display while driving for several hours to see if that shows something.

Fortunately shore power still charges the batteries.
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Old 08-24-2017, 11:47 PM   #589
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After the balmar was changed out twice, the GU was charging the batteries. But yesterday I didn't get the sense it was charging them. So this morning I only flipped on one ecotrek. It was in the 50s early in the morning. I drove for about six hours with the average temp being 65F until I got out of the elevation and then for the last two hours it was average of 80F which was also the speed limit of the highway.

That one ecotrek when I started read 13.1 volts. When I finished it read 13.2 volts.

The Balmar appears to be working. I'm going to install a camera under the hood to record its display while driving for several hours to see if that shows something.

Fortunately shore power still charges the batteries.
what makes you think it's possibly not working? also lithium batteries are very difficult to read based on voltage. What caused your post.
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Old 08-25-2017, 01:00 AM   #590
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what makes you think it's possibly not working? also lithium batteries are very difficult to read based on voltage. What caused your post.
I don't know why I would think that. What could it be? Could it perhaps be the lengthy description I provided where I explained it didn't charge up from 13.1 to anything more than 13.2 after hours of highway driving?

If you want to provide a reason why that might be normal, like 13.1 isn't low enough for the balmar to charge it or something, perhaps just say that?
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Old 08-25-2017, 01:08 AM   #591
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I don't know why I would think that. What could it be? Could it perhaps be the lengthy description I provided where I explained it didn't charge up from 13.1 to anything more than 13.2 after hours of highway driving?

If you want to provide a reason why that might be normal, like 13.1 isn't low enough for the balmar to charge it or something, perhaps just say that?

I'm not trying to get you angry. Everything seemed fine from you when you made your last post. What cHanged. I have the thin plate pure lead agm battery on the zion. when plugged in about 13.1 is a constant.

However as i point out it's agm althought tppl agm's charge almost pike lithium
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Old 08-25-2017, 01:10 AM   #592
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I'm not trying to get you angry. Everything seemed fine from you when you made your last post. What cHanged. I have the thin plate pure lead agm battery on the zion. when plugged in about 13.1 is a constant.

However as i point out it's agm althought tppl agm's charge almost pike lithium
13.6 is fully charged based on what I've read about lithium and based on my experience.
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Old 08-25-2017, 01:20 AM   #593
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13.6 is fully charged based on what I've read about lithium and based on my experience.
From the information we have seen, full charge on a lithium is actually in the 14.7v range, but they are now saying that is not a good place to go to because it shortens the battery life. Most are now stopping at various points in the charge curve before fully charged to preserve the batteries. 13.6v is right about at the "knee" of the charge curve and is a decent place to stop the charging based on getting most of the capacity without going into the damaging range.

Basically, you call 90% or so, full, and go from there in you usage. They also will stop the discharge with 10-20% left in the batteries so you lose that also. In reality, you will get somewhere between 60-80% of the rated capacity out of your battery bank, depending on where they set the limits.
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Old 08-25-2017, 01:36 AM   #594
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13.6 is fully charged based on what I've read about lithium and based on my experience.
you need to talk to someone who actually has Ecotreks. Crusing7388 actually has them.

I know you also post on the Roadtrek and Hymer site. ASk someone who actually has ecotreks. several have had them for awhile. they could actually tell you based on experience.

13.1 could be the voltage put out by the charger for all i know. I have never really understood waht mine does
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Old 08-25-2017, 03:04 PM   #595
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you need to talk to someone who actually has Ecotreks. Crusing7388 actually has them.

I know you also post on the Roadtrek and Hymer site. ASk someone who actually has ecotreks. several have had them for awhile. they could actually tell you based on experience.

13.1 could be the voltage put out by the charger for all i know. I have never really understood waht mine does
Yeah, I have ecotreks. 13.1 is not fully charged. Thank you for your inputs.
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Old 08-25-2017, 03:25 PM   #596
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After the balmar was changed out twice, the GU was charging the batteries. But yesterday I didn't get the sense it was charging them. So this morning I only flipped on one ecotrek. It was in the 50s early in the morning. I drove for about six hours with the average temp being 65F until I got out of the elevation and then for the last two hours it was average of 80F which was also the speed limit of the highway.

That one ecotrek when I started read 13.1 volts. When I finished it read 13.2 volts.

The Balmar appears to be working. I'm going to install a camera under the hood to record its display while driving for several hours to see if that shows something.

Fortunately shore power still charges the batteries.
I guess i mis-interpreted this post. Your stating somethings not charging correctly and you will watch vie a video camera. Makes sense to me
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Old 08-25-2017, 04:40 PM   #597
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I've noticed my Lithiums charge to 14.6, but will settle to 14.0 to 13.8 after a bit when you remove the charging.
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Old 08-26-2017, 09:50 AM   #598
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WingedRyno would have no idea of what the remaining battery capacity is in his RV. There could be 120ah or 920ah remaining but there is no way for him to know for sure. It appears to be a challenge to even know if the batteries are charging.

Davydd mentioned the possibility of a new division at Advanced RV customizing other brand RVs - http://www.classbforum.com/forums/f7...html#post61480 - WingedRyno should try to get the first appointment and get a good battery monitoring system installed.
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Old 08-26-2017, 11:56 AM   #599
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WingedRyno would have no idea of what the remaining battery capacity is in his RV. There could be 120ah or 920ah remaining but there is no way for him to know for sure. It appears to be a challenge to even know if the batteries are charging.

Davydd mentioned the possibility of a new division at Advanced RV customizing other brand RVs - http://www.classbforum.com/forums/f7...html#post61480 - WingedRyno should try to get the first appointment and get a good battery monitoring system installed.
I really like the Victron Energy color control panel AM Solar installed in our Trend (stock photo below). It only takes a second to know exactly how much power we have to work with. Where it's coming and going from and how much longer we can run the current loads (electrical use averaged over the last 6 minutes I believe).

Hopefully WingedRyno can live with Roadtrek's system or find a way to have ARV or an electrician (perhaps a yacht or solar installer?) makes sense of the system, install a shunt, and a display. However, if there's no way around the parasitic BMS losses most of these issues may not matter since (I assume) all of the batteries would be need to be live for a display like this one to give meaningful numbers.
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Old 08-26-2017, 02:03 PM   #600
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This discussion is turning into the primo example of the consequences of Roadtrek not putting any kind of useful battery monitoring system in the Lithium batteries systems. All that can be really concluded, I think, is that none of us has a clue how to tell how much power is left, except at the single data point where a module shuts down. Personally, I think this is unacceptable in a unit that is touted as having as much power as you would ever need, especially when people do run out of power.

The argument is often made that most people don't really care as long as things come on when they flip the switch, just like at home, and I am sure there are some folks that fit that "on/of/volume" type user. If they are moderate power consumers and have driving and shore power use camping patterns that get them recharged often enough, they will be happy with the system (except maybe for having to turn on and off modules all the time).

The units are also advertised heavily as being good for running the AC off the batteries, and for those that want to do that, especially if they need to cool pets, not knowing their capacity state is really pretty important. My bet is that no matter if you have Warp Core or smaller systems, you can still run them out of power easily with the AC, except you won't know when until they go dead with no monitoring system. I think many of the customers for these units fit that category.

Long term dry campers, who don't drive often and don't want to idle, would also need to know how much power they have left.

Of course then there are the ones like me, who like to know what is going on and if the systems are working correctly.

I wouldn't be surprised if we don't see any real monitoring out of Roadtrek until the at least get their parasitic losses under control, as a monitor system would quickly show the customers just how much power is being wasted every hour of every day. After that, maybe, but Roadtrek and many other builders have always used only the most basic, and useless, idiot lights for battery monitoring, so I wouldn't hold my breath. If folks can't see how poorly systems are working, they won't be bugging the manufacturers to fix them.

I like Marko's idea of ARV coming up with a real monitoring system for the Roadtreks. At that point, at least you would get the true and complete information of what was going on all the time. It would be very, very, interesting to see how Roadtrek would react to such a modification though

The more all this kind of stuff comes out, the more I like the idea of a complete system from a third party vendor being used. ARV's looking at the Volta 48v system would be a prime example. If everything from alternator to bms to batteries to monitoring are all integrated as a unit, by folks that do that kind of work for a living, you have a much higher likely hood of good performance and reliability. It also puts all the responsibility for the system in one place, so finger pointing can be nearly eliminated.

If companies like Volta choose to get into the RV business in general, and not just do single company agreements, the entire field of high end battery systems in all the brands of RVs suddenly would get very flat, competition wise. Then buyers would be able to concentrate on the more easily understood and seen issues of build quality and convenience to make their purchase decisions. Kind of like the fact that nearly all generators are Onans, so no RV builder has any advantage over another in that area.
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