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Old 08-14-2014, 03:27 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
It is what ETI advertises- group #29 -- 126 Ah- I'll have to look at mine to verify. I'm only concerned as to what I need for one night as the solar will refill me the next day.
Jim- 126 amp hrs is what my build sheet states. Called Interstate to help me be sure their Group 29 12V is suitable for our needs. Was told it is 115 AH. I am more curious if you are having good performance from yours and whether or not you use an inverter.
A tech from Interstate is going to call me back- my feeling is that the way we camp/where we camp(lot of sun) we should be fine with this battery with the 160 watt solar.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:00 PM   #12
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FWIW, A couple weeks ago I installed the Trimetric SC-2030 and a Grape 160W panel which has pretty much the same specs as the Gopower 160. I went with the SC-2030 as opposed to the Blue Sky as it interfaces with the battery monitor giving just the one display to work with, they claim it is as good as an MPPT although it is PWM, both are 30A. So far I have only seen the controller go into the full 4 stages once, that was after I removed power from it and reapplied, need to do some more checks and call Bogart.

Two days ago in the early am I ran it down 60A to get to the 12.4v figure that the solar controller needs to initiate a full charge cycle. The voltage slowly climbs as the charge level gets higher, by the time the sun was low in the sky (perfectly clear day) it was still down 10A, it never got about 13.8 volts. Did not work as I envisioned, maybe I need more panel, max I saw was 8.4A. The next day it continued on bringing the charge back to 105%, which is what I set it for.

I also tried shore power to check the converter, max I saw was 30A output at 13.7V. Seemed to max out charging amperage wise at 30A which steadily drops as the day went on and the charge level rose. Didn't look at the finished charge level.

If I were suggesting which unit someone should buy, it would be the Blue Sky that Paul has, I don't think the kinks are worked out of the SC-2030 yet, they've only been available for a month. That's what I'll do Ii this one isn't up to snuff by the end of the season.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:27 PM   #13
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Just got off the phone with a tech named Joe at Interstate. While there is a spec for Amp hours for the dual 6V (232), he said they don't really rate the 12V except to say it is about 60% of the Reserve Capacity (RC)- which on their chart is 210, thus 126 AH as is stated on ETI's build sheet.

More important to me was the discussion about the effective difference between the two and of course it gets down to individual usage/needs and other variables such as sunlight for solar charging. He made a good suggestion: get a hydrometer, test the new battery and use as a baseline. Then test it periodically to see how its going. Also, he said that running a battery down below 50% is only significant if its done repeatedly.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:41 PM   #14
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Also, he said that running a battery down below 50% is only significant if its done repeatedly.
Well, that's a relief. Don't have to live in constant fear and anxiety.
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:48 PM   #15
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If running down the battery below 50% does have an adverse effect on the life of the battery, is there an automatic switch that will shut down high draw items to prevent this?
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Old 08-14-2014, 04:58 PM   #16
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If running down the battery below 50% does have an adverse effect on the life of the battery, is there an automatic switch that will shut down high draw items to prevent this?
My inverter alarms at 10.6 volts and then shuts down at 10 volts.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:03 PM   #17
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The ETI provided inverter?
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:09 PM   #18
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The ETI provided inverter?
No my 2500 watt Vector inverter.
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Old 08-14-2014, 05:41 PM   #19
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Battery Voltage chart
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File Type: gif voltchart1.gif (6.4 KB, 14 views)
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Old 08-14-2014, 06:58 PM   #20
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Those numbers from the SC-2030 certainly do not seem correct. With that much panel and that model of solar controller you should see significantly better charge rates, if you have the sunshine. As you said it is a new controller, I did not purchase it only because it was not shipping when I needed it in April.

Earlier in the week I called Interstate Batteries to find their table of information on "State of Charge". This is the number of volts you find on your batteries two hours after you stop the charging process. I don't know if this is a good measurement or not. For instance, my WFCO build in charger produced a wonderful 13.1 volt reading the morning after a 24 hour charge, yet the next day, after adding another 29 Ah via the solar controller the batteries only showed 12.9 volts.

I think using volts to measure batteries is a bit like nailing Jello to a tree.

At any rate, this is a table provided by Interstate Batteries for the dual 6 volt GC2-XHD's. It is significantly higher in volts.

Interstate Battery "State of Charge"
100% 12.84
90% 12.72
80% 12.64
70% 12.56
60% 12.48
50% 12.20

This example points out one of my complaints about the Trimetric 2025 RV Battery Monitor. It only shows one place to the right of the decimal point.

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