How many amps do you pull from the battery? - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 01-30-2015, 10:40 PM   #1
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How many amps do you pull from the battery?

Not in the worst case. But more like a coincidence of many items running at the same time, but in a normal situation. To be precise, I'm not asking about an inverter or other major high-drain device (that I probably don't own).

So for example: Its a cold evening and the furnace is running, you are doing the dishes and the pump comes on, refrigerator, radio and a number of interior lights are running. What would be the amp draw in that scenario? (If I missed anything in the standard configuration, please mention it.)

If you have an amp meter in your fancy battery monitor then perhaps you can give me a precise number. But if you have a informed guess than I would appreciate that also.

Thanks!
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Old 01-31-2015, 12:45 AM   #2
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14 amps is as highest draw I've seen at one time., that was with the refer on 12 volts. Other then that it would be when the pump or furnace kicks in, the only other thing that would be on would be a couple led lights, so maybe 4 amps.
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Old 01-31-2015, 05:17 AM   #3
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Other than the refer which I switch to propane if not hooked up, your Atwood furnace is probably the biggest drain. But at 2 amps/hour it is the lowest furnace on the market. so over a 24 hour period at 50% use there is about 24 amps. The lights, if LED are minimal, and the pump is not run constantly. I guesstimate an average daily use of 30 amp draw in the winter from my battery before the next solar charging kicks in. In warmer climates about 10/day. Thus your solar if equipped should refill your draw daily.
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Old 01-31-2015, 08:42 AM   #4
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power used by each appliance in 19 ft, 2011
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Old 01-31-2015, 09:50 AM   #5
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Worst case for me (not running the inverter) is around 12 amps. That would be charging & running my laptop (9 amps) cell phone amp & hotspot (1 amp) and the furnace (2 amps).

If I'm making a pot of coffee, the inverter draws 65 amps for around 8 minutes.

I generally will average about 25 - 30 amp hours per day.
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Old 01-31-2015, 07:31 PM   #6
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Worst case for me (not running the inverter) is around 12 amps. That would be charging & running my laptop (9 amps) cell phone amp & hotspot (1 amp) and the furnace (2 amps).

I generally will average about 25 - 30 amp hours per day.
Good to know the furnace only draws about 2 amps.

Anyone know how much the pump pulls?

Inverters, TV, CPAP, and similar I wouldn't consider as included in the base installation, so aren't of immediate interest.

Amp-hours or amp-days are also not my goal with this question. A closer example (but not exactly on target) would be "what master fuse" to use. Or, in other words, instantaneous draw is what I am trying to estimate in an "almost" worst case. 'Frig running, pump turns on, radio on, furnace comes on - perhaps 14 amps as 'padlin' has observed?

Since my wife got a laptop for her birthday I probably should add that to the "likely" load.

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Old 01-31-2015, 07:41 PM   #7
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I believe the ETI installed inline breaker is 30A, why do you want to go smaller?
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Old 01-31-2015, 07:53 PM   #8
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Just remember that when your furnace is operating you are probably not using the refer too much since it is cold versus when it is hot and the furnace is off but the refer is running full time.
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Old 01-31-2015, 09:26 PM   #9
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I believe the ETI installed inline breaker is 30A...
The main AC breaker is 30 amps, matching the 30-amp shore power cord and the most common campsite service - is that what you're referring to, Bob? It looks like Alan is asking about DC loads. The DC circuits are generally fused - is there a main DC breaker at only 30 amps?
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Old 02-01-2015, 08:34 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
The main AC breaker is 30 amps, matching the 30-amp shore power cord and the most common campsite service - is that what you're referring to, Bob? It looks like Alan is asking about DC loads. The DC circuits are generally fused - is there a main DC breaker at only 30 amps?
I thought all trailers have one, my Escape and my Starcraft both had a main DC breaker. This is the one on the Escape, it's between the batteries and the 12v disconnect switch, if you have the 2 6v batteries. Larger left hand cable goes to the batteries, right side goes to the switch, upper thin wire goes to the solar charger via it's fuse, I believe the thinner lower wire goes to the umbilical cord, but I could be wrong on that one.
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Old 02-01-2015, 04:15 PM   #11
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Thanks, Bob. I thought main DC fuses are more common than main DC breakers, but this is a good detail to know. Because 30 amps seems pretty small to handle the entire DC distribution panel, and happens to correspond to the AC current capacity, it looked like the two might be confused, but I guessed wrong!
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Old 02-01-2015, 06:31 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
... It looks like Alan is asking about DC loads.
Yep, DC load. Normal worst case, if there is such a thing. Example:

Cold evening after dinner. The chief dish washer is doing the dishes and the pump starts running. Frig has been opened a lot so it is still running. Furnace kicks on. Laptop is charging. And of course, a bunch of lights are in use and maybe the radio also. Just for those few minutes when everything just happens to come on.

If there is an answer, it will probably have to come from someone with a high-end battery monitor that was being watched. (And likely not by the person washing the dishes.)

The estimates below seem to be running around 15 amps. (Which would be consistent with a 30 amp fuse/breaker, but that isn't part of this question.)

Thanks!
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Old 03-28-2015, 10:08 PM   #13
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Battery life

Hello,
Newbie here with a question on boondocking. We've boondocked once and it was only overnight. Next weekend we're boondocking for 2 full days. Angie, feels we shouldn't use electric tea kettle to boil water like we usually do. She believes even though it's a small appliance, ANY item used to heat requires a lot of amps and will suck the battery dry. That it could potentially damage the battery. She seems quite sure of this and it's easy enough to bring a regular kettle we can use on the range but I'm curious is this true? I've read a few discussions and feel confident boondocking 2 days shouldn't be an issue. What should we do to avoid damaging battery? We have LED lights and our biggest usage is occassionally charging cell phones and tablet. Any advice much appreciated. - Jen
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Old 03-28-2015, 11:00 PM   #14
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Hello,
Newbie here with a question on boondocking. We've boondocked once and it was only overnight. Next weekend we're boondocking for 2 full days. Angie, feels we shouldn't use electric tea kettle to boil water like we usually do. She believes even though it's a small appliance, ANY item used to heat requires a lot of amps and will suck the battery dry. That it could potentially damage the battery. She seems quite sure of this and it's easy enough to bring a regular kettle we can use on the range but I'm curious is this true? I've read a few discussions and feel confident boondocking 2 days shouldn't be an issue. What should we do to avoid damaging battery? We have LED lights and our biggest usage is occassionally charging cell phones and tablet. Any advice much appreciated. - Jen
True enough: Converting 12v to heat requires a lot of watts. But that said, it is not a guarantee that you will do any damage to your battery. Looking at the problem from the reverse direction - the best way to damage a RV battery is to drain it way down, say to below 11 volts and fail to recharge immediately. If you can avoid doing this then you don't have to worry about severe damage.

If you want to avoid ALL damage then never discharge your battery below the 50% point, which will vary a bit according to the manufacture of your particular battery. But for rough numbers, say 12.5v could be the 50% point. These measurements are taken after the battery has "rested" (no load at all) for a few hours.

That leaves a wide range in-between zero damage and severe damage. Personally, for a nice camping trip I wouldn't worry about the details as long as you didn't make it a habit of stressing your battery every time. Enjoy the trip and recharge as soon as practical.

Hint - upgrade to the 2 battery system and you will have half as much to worry about.

Hope that helps,
Alan
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Old 03-28-2015, 11:18 PM   #15
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I'd just boil water on the propane stove. Actually, that's what I do.
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Old 03-29-2015, 01:15 AM   #16
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Thanks for the much needed advice. Propane it is and we'll look into getting 2 batteries as we're discovering quite of the places we'd like to visit don't offer hook ups or sites are sold out and we have to settle for those without
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Old 03-29-2015, 01:23 AM   #17
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I am seeing that the two six-volt battery set-up on the 19's and 21's apparently has them on the bumper now. Don't know if the 17 is the same. That is quite a change from being in the box or in the dinette and guess it requires some tongue weight adjustment.
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Old 03-29-2015, 01:40 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen & Angie View Post
Angie, feels we shouldn't use electric tea kettle to boil water like we usually do. She believes even though it's a small appliance, ANY item used to heat requires a lot of amps and will suck the battery dry.
Yes, a useful amount of heat represents a lot of energy. While all heat for cooking can be provided using energy from the batteries, it takes a lot of battery and a lot of solar or other power source to replace it. A small amount of propane provides the same energy as a massive pile of battery.

Burning just one kilogram of propane (about one tenth of a tank) can provide 46 megajoules of energy; storing that much energy in a battery of the type used in our trailers would take about ten of the 12-volt batteries used in an Escape.

As long as I have a propane stove in an RV, I would not use battery power to simply heat anything.
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Old 03-29-2015, 01:51 AM   #19
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I am seeing that the two six-volt battery set-up on the 19's and 21's apparently has them on the bumper now. Don't know if the 17 is the same. That is quite a change from being in the box or in the dinette and guess it requires some tongue weight adjustment.
If I have this straight the batteries are located...
  • 17' - rear bumper (single on left, dual one on each side)
  • 19' - tongue (possibly only dual, with single inside)
  • 21' - curbside dinette
  • 5.0/5.0TA - curbside dinette
Are you saying that the 21' has changed to bumper mounting on both 19' and 21'? I had not heard that. Can anyone with a recent 19' or 21' with dual batteries confirm this?
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Old 03-29-2015, 02:11 AM   #20
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That is seen in their photos, however, photos are often old.
Ours are in the box. I wonder who just picked up six-volts, any model.
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