Any solar people on here use Golf cart batteries?

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Ole1830

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Joined
Jun 20, 2005
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Hi, I'm new to the forum and had a quick question.

I've got a '97 Coleman westlake that I use for dry camping and trips to Rocky Point Mexico.? I also have some solar panels and a charge controller.

Recently, I've been having trouble with my deep cycle group 24 battery not holding much of a charge.? I thought since I needed to replace the battery, and there was room available on the tongue of my trailer to convert it and use 2 GC2 6 volt golf cart batteries.? The new setup shrugs off loads on the battery 100x better than the old system.

Here's my question though:

If using a CC20 Solarpro Solar charge controller, what should my "cut out set point" be for my new and improved battery bank?? It's my understanding I should lower it, because the controller comes set up for regular deep cycle type batteries.?

Does anyone have a similar set up?? I use an 80w and a 65w panel if that makes a difference.

Thanks in advance for any help.

Matt
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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At our Silver Springs FL home
The setting for wet cell (lead acid) deep cycle batteries will be fine for your golf cart batteries too.  If your old Group 24 battery was a gel cell, you should switch to the wet cell/ lead-acid charging mode.

You will find your golf cart batteries will outlast the old Group 24 12V  as well as out-performing it.
 

Ole1830

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Jun 20, 2005
Posts
12
Thanks for your help, RV Roamer.

Here's a couple of pics of the finished setup.  I got the propane tank mounted today.  I really like the extra battery capacity.  ;D

Dual battery
Battery switch
Single battery

I got the boxes from WalMart for $3 each, the switch and hardware from Autozone for <$20, and the batteries from Sam's Club for ~$45 a piece.  :)

Matt
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Nice photos and nice workmanship!

Is the switch in the photo a battery disconnect?  It looks a little light for carrying the amperage that the whole trailer might draw. Looks like it might be rated at 20 amps?  But if you are only running some lights and a tv/stereo its should be adequate.
 

Ole1830

Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2005
Posts
12
Yep.  The switch is pretty much a light duty one.  I guess 20A would be about right.  The only thing I run on DC is a stereo/CD player, water pump, heater fan, and a couple of lights inside the trailer.

I have a 25 amp fuse B4 the switch, so that would probably blow before anything bad happened to the switch. 

Thanks for the kind comments,

Matt
 

blueblood

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Mar 16, 2005
Posts
1,082
This setups concerns me. I don't see any venting for batteries when releasing gases and a switch in the middle which will arc. What am I missing  ???
 

Ole1830

Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2005
Posts
12
There is venting in both boxes.  Both of the holes that the + and - wires go through aren't siliconed.

Also, the tops aren't even close to an airtight seal.  We're talking $3 WalMart storage containers here.  ;)    That is a good suggestion though. 

Matt
 

Karl

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Mar 3, 2005
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Elkhart Lake, WI for the summer. Work at Road Amer
Matt,

Even though they aren't airtight, you really should put some fairly large holes in them near the top - hydrogen being lighter than air; and a drain hole in the bottom of each. Hydrogen doesn't need oxygen to burn, and mixed with air you have the makings of a really nice bomb! :eek:  A 25 amp fuse won't do much to protect a 20 amp switch. The fuse should be of a lower rating, say 15 amps, than the switch. Also, you may want to consider replacing it with a weatherproof switch such as is used for home 110 volt outside lighting, and mount it outside the boxes to prevent any chance of a spark igniting the gas.
 

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