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How can I get rid of my batteries and converter?


Captain Stick

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My camper is permanently set up on my lot. I'm set up on AC power. My converter has recently played out. I won't to know if there are any options I have to get rid of my battery/converter set up? I still need 12v for interior lights, thermostat, and water heater ignition. I know that replacing the converter and simply running it without batteries will burn up a new converter. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to run my 12v DC things without using batteries?

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There are 12V power supplies for many different uses that do not rely on a battery for reference voltage. I fly RC planes and most large chargers require a separate 12V power supply. Converted server power supplies are very popular and affordable.

 

Lipo Connection Solutions is one company I am familiar with that has provided thousands of these converted server supplies to folks needing 12V DC power from a 120V AC circuit.

 

Here is a link to converted HP server power supply that will supply up to 60 amps of 12V power. They also have converted Dell supplies for slightly more. I would think that 60 amps would be plenty for powering a typical array of RV lights, fridge, furnace, etc.

 

http://lipoconnectionsolutions.com/HP-12v-750w-Power-Supply-Bare-Wire-Leads-12750BL.htm

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I'd keep the batteries in the circuit. In addition to buffering the load on the converter, they also will keep you going when the electricity goes out. Don't know where you are, but there are few places that haven't had a power outage sometime. The batteries won't keep your a/c going, but they will keep the furnace going. If you have an inverter your microwave will also work.

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Most current converters will work fine without a battery connected, but having one gives you the capability handling short term loads that exceed the capacity of the converter. In your situation, a single battery should be adequate.

 

I haven't looked all relevant converters up, but here's what the WFCO FAQ says about it:

 

"Does the converter need a battery to operate?"

"No. The battery works in conjunction with the converter to supply DC power to the RV. A battery is typically only necessary if you do a lot of dry camping or have slide-outs and/or a leveling system."
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Most current converters will work fine without a battery connected, but having one gives you the capability handling short term loads that exceed the capacity of the converter. In your situation, a single battery should be adequate.

Absolutely true, but it is important to remember that all of the propane powered appliances require 12V-dc for the controls so if you keep your battery it means that should you loose 120V-ac power, those appliances will still work just fine until it returns, but if you should loose 120V and not have the batteries, then you have no heat, hot water, refrigerator, or lights.

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Absolutely true, but it is important to remember that all of the propane powered appliances require 12V-dc for the controls so if you keep your battery it means that should you loose 120V-ac power, those appliances will still work just fine until it returns, but if you should loose 120V and not have the batteries, then you have no heat, hot water, refrigerator, or lights.

 

Good point!

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I want to get rid of the batteries because I'm honestly tired of buying them every couple years and not really needing them. I've considered going as far as gutting the walls to run 120 light fixtures and switching to a central air unit. I can also switch to an electric water heater. My fridge and microwave are electric only. I live 30 minutes away from my lot so in the event of a long term outage, I'd just go home.

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I agree with your position. Get rid of them.

 

In your situation there is no reason to have them, as a power outage will have no more impact on you than it would in someone living in a sticks and bricks house. As I mentioned above there are numerous 120V AC to 12V DC power supplies on the market that don't need a battery in the circuit.

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Strange that you'd be losing your batts in a couple years, I've had Walmart DC batts go for 4 years and probably could go longer if I hadn't switched over to 6V GC batts. And that is with heavy use.....

Many of the less sophisticated converters hold the voltage too high and over a period of months or a couple of years will kill batteries if they are not carefully monitored for water. The fact that you use yours heavily makes me think that you probably have a 3-4 stage charger and monitor them. If someone is plugged in all of the time they may never think about their batteries until they're cooked.

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I had a 35 amp 12 volt power supply that I used for years when the batteries were disconnected. I only needed 12 volts for forced air heater sensor and fan, water pump and hotwater heater sensor which totaled 17.5 amps. It worked great. If you always have 120 volts there's no need for a battery.

I just put in 1600 AmpHrs AGM's so hopefully I won't need it for awhile.

Jerry

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