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Genesis batteries - lets do some math

PsyRN

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Finally got around to doing some updates. Figured it was necessary since the system and a fridge was ordered.

First, some tidbits. I called Fullriver to ask about the battery included in the Genesis kit. Unlike what I heard before, maybe there was miscommunication, it is 64 ah at a 20 hour rate. So that results in a total of 76.8 amps available. Notice this is total amps available. Their tech support group also recommended not going below 70% SOC. I know there are folks here and elsewhere that will debate that, but that is from their tech support so I am inclined to believe they should know what is best for their batteries. Here are a few screenshots of their graphs specifically for this battery if you care to see. (and yes, they said I am over thinking it as well, but to each their own and I want to be sure I don't have a "oops my battery died" half way through the night....)


Screenshot 2023-01-18 at 13.51.14.png

You can see here that at 30% DOD - which is equal to 70% SOC, the lifecycles of that battery decline at an increasing rate. It seems to take another dive at about 40% DOD / 60% SOC. They did recommend against going below 70% SOC, so the 50% mark where a lot of folks suggest, is drastically reducing the lifecycle. That being said, 500 life cycles for a 30% SOC could quite well be 62 years (solely by the math) if one goes camping only 2 times a month for the 4 months or so of summer (of course we know that is not realistic at all). That being said, as the aux battery degrades, it will start to pull down the main battery with it even though there is a disconnect.


Anyway, ok so now that is straight, I wanted to get the specs of a fridge. Based on what a few others on this forum have said, and some videos and reading I have done, I settled on a Engle 45 combi. (https://engelcoolers.com/collections/powered-fridge-freezers/products/45-combi-portable-car-fridge) I chose this because it has the option of being a fridge/freezer, or just a freezer, or just a fridge. I also did a decent amount of poking around at their compressor and it is well above the competition, IMO. Many of their products are used in ambulances, and even organ transport (according to them of course). It also is a smaller footprint. I have a larger 67L snomaster in the basement being used as a second freezer, and it is much larger than what I truly need... 2-4 day trips is the reality of what I mostly will do, more likely is just an overnighter. So I pulled some data from them as well.

Screenshot 2023-01-18 at 14.02.18.png

Unfortunately, this particular fridge only displays in C. There are 6 graphs here. 25 Celsius is 77 Fahrenheit. 35 C is 95 F. 5 C is 41 F and -5C is 23 F. I circled in red the 'position' my conditions are assumed to most likely to be in. You can see it is between 4 graphs, so some assumptions and interpolation had to be done to arrive at my estimated 0.94 amps per hour spec that was calculated. This is drastically different than the actual measured consumption of my snomaster which was closer to 3 or even 4 full amps per hour (it's also a 67L though).

So next I wanted to see, realistically, as in my original question to this thread, how long one could expect to run this fridge, and only this fridge, on the Fullriver Full Throttle group 25 battery (https://fullriverbattery.com/batteries/part-ft750-25/). So I plotted it out on a spreadsheet. The results, though not really surprising because I had some suspicions, are in fact humbling.


Screenshot 2023-01-18 at 14.28.16.png

According to the math, with a full battery alone (no solar) this particular fridge with assumptions and estimations made should run, with the engine off, for 1.02 days (or 24 hours) until the battery has reached the 70% SOC point where the company recommends charging at. So, that's basically an afternoon of arriving at camp, sleeping, and a few hours in the morning before taking off - not terrible, but not desired either. So I extended it. I wanted to see what a more realistic number would be considering I do plan on adding a small RV style 12v water pump, instant water heater, maybe some lights, and maybe to charge my phone or something if I forgot to have it plugged in while driving.


Screenshot 2023-01-18 at 14.32.02.png

As you can see, with all these things running, and plenty of estimations made, you get about 0.90 days (or 24 hours) out of the deal. Now that's sitting, camped out, no engine, no solar, just battery drain. Not bad really. Plenty enough for a nice fun weekend! (although recharge time is still of question!!!)


Screenshot 2023-01-18 at 14.33.08.png

Now, seeing as how Genesis also offers a kit for the Diesel and 392 options, with a larger Group 31 battery https://fullriverbattery.com/batteries/part-ft1100-31st/), I wondered - now what would the potential stay be if I added that battery and connected it to the Group 25 under the hood. Could I go on a longer trip? Say, a 5-10 day trip with a veterans group local to my area? Well...maybe. those numbers come up to 2.43 days. So that entirely depends on how much 'sitting' is being done vs driving.

Adding solar to this, would of course extend all of those numbers depending on the particular solar parts, and quality/quantity of sunlight exposure (which is why I really enjoy Caltopo for trip planning).

So here is the full sheet. Check it out. Feel free to offer suggestions if you wish, or maybe this will just help out somebody else out there who like me is not satisfied with "it will be ok". I wanted the true specs, as close as I could get them without equipment and real world testing. This is important information to make sure that just 'hooking something up' doesn't either cause damage somewhere, cause something to just not work, or ruin a camping trip longed for or worse spending thousands on something that ends up not functioning and needing a few thousand more to make it work right. I found this interesting. Hope others do as well. You will have to do your own calculations and formulas though as I can't attach the whole file

Screenshot 2023-01-18 at 14.34.17.png


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HOLY COW!

I think I developed an astigmatism and became dyslexic looking at all those graphs, spreadsheets and data points. Bless those who crunch numbers like this because it ain't me.
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chorky

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HOLY COW!

I think I developed an astigmatism and became dyslexic looking at all those graphs, spreadsheets and data points. Bless those who crunch numbers like this because it ain't me.
Haha yeah well it wasnt actually that difficult just took a bit of time making calls to get specs. But sure will help to make sure my food stays cold through a 4 day weekend trip!
 

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@Dan Grec is in my opinion the most qualified to comment on this. He lived with his system for a year all over Australia. He left the stock system alone and just added a Renogy charge controller and a house battery and a small solar panel.

https://www.renogy.com/charge-controllers/

I just wish I knew what charger controller Dan used or what the current equivalent is.
 

Lost1wing

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Haha yeah well it wasnt actually that difficult just took a bit of time making calls to get specs. But sure will help to make sure my food stays cold through a 4 day weekend trip!
I have a stock battery setup and an ARB 65qt freezer. Thursday evening I plug it into the wall. Friday morning, load it with items already cool. Head out with it plugged into the 12v plug I installed in the bed. At camp, plug it into the ARB portable power pack. Sunday evening head home with it plugged back into the bed socket. This was warm days and cool nights kind of weather. The battery pack was empty on Sunday. The fridge was still at 42f . If I was to go out longer, I will get a separate battery for those longer trips.
 
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chorky

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@Dan Grec is in my opinion the most qualified to comment on this. He lived with his system for a year all over Australia. He left the stock system alone and just added a Renogy charge controller and a house battery and a small solar panel.

https://www.renogy.com/charge-controllers/

I just wish I knew what charger controller Dan used or what the current equivalent is.
That is also a way to go and doing that is basically a larger version of the genesis kit. I am willing to bet he still did the math to make sure to get the proper size battery and solar setup to run the items he is using especially if using it extensively.

point being that to do it ‘right’ you have to run the numbers. Slapping something together and just going with it might work but it could also cause catastrophic or immediate failure of components. Or worse - set your rig on fire if you didnt use the right gauge wiring. Some of these solar charge controllers can push upwards of 150 amps (obviously for bigger situations like a earth roamer). But in plenty of smaller instances, such as using a redarc 1500w inverter, can easily pull over 200 amps. And thats at nearly 13v. Amp draw as voltage reduces also goes up.

Maybe hell hop on here and give some input.

In my situation I do not currently have a solar setup. And may or may not get one with doing mostly 1-3 night trips maybe twice a mont


I have a stock battery setup and an ARB 65qt freezer. Thursday evening I plug it into the wall. Friday morning, load it with items already cool. Head out with it plugged into the 12v plug I installed in the bed. At camp, plug it into the ARB portable power pack. Sunday evening head home with it plugged back into the bed socket. This was warm days and cool nights kind of weather. The battery pack was empty on Sunday. The fridge was still at 42f . If I was to go out longer, I will get a separate battery for those longer trips.
yeah but you mentioned the arb portable power pack. Which is really cool but had you just been running ok your vehicle battery I bet it woulda been pretty drained. I do really like that portable pack ARB came up with. It is a slick and solid option although I think they should have made another one available thats lrger
 

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Lost1wing

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That is also a way to go and doing that is basically a larger version of the genesis kit. I am willing to bet he still did the math to make sure to get the proper size battery and solar setup to run the items he is using especially if using it extensively.

point being that to do it ‘right’ you have to run the numbers. Slapping something together and just going with it might work but it could also cause catastrophic or immediate failure of components. Or worse - set your rig on fire if you didnt use the right gauge wiring. Some of these solar charge controllers can push upwards of 150 amps (obviously for bigger situations like a earth roamer). But in plenty of smaller instances, such as using a redarc 1500w inverter, can easily pull over 200 amps. And thats at nearly 13v. Amp draw as voltage reduces also goes up.

Maybe hell hop on here and give some input.

In my situation I do not currently have a solar setup. And may or may not get one with doing mostly 1-3 night trips maybe twice a mont




yeah but you mentioned the arb portable power pack. Which is really cool but had you just been running ok your vehicle battery I bet it woulda been pretty drained. I do really like that portable pack ARB came up with. It is a slick and solid option although I think they should have made another one available thats lrger
I just felt better not even using the Jeeps power while camping. There's not point for me. Keep it separate from camping gear, enjoy the camping worry free. A separate house battery with a solar charger for longer trips is a must have. The little ARB battery is fine for a day or two.
 

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BTW, I see nothing wrong with the Genesis system. I may go that way when my original batteries crap out.
 

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Here is a video of his system... I don't know Dan, but have had conversations with him here, Facebook, and on YouTube, and can say that his methodology and reasoning are very well thought out.

 
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I just felt better not even using the Jeeps power while camping. There's not point for me. Keep it separate from camping gear, enjoy the camping worry free. A separate house battery with a solar charger for longer trips is a must have. The little ARB battery is fine for a day or two.
Yeah and that is a totally fair statement. And someone on the first page said that as well because it is less headache to use a ‘power station’. I have actually considered doing that as well actually. However, I want a permanent on board system because it will reduce having to transfer gear and the cost of a 1500w jackery or goal zero is intense! Close to 2K once you get all the right components. I guess it could be the same or more for an onboard system.

But for a lot of situations they really make sense. They are less complicated and dont require as much math as I am doing because the implications of them running dead are significantly less. They also use lithium batteries so pound for pound they have more power longer and less of a recharge rate. I was trying to convince my dad to get one because they are ‘simple’ relatively to a permanent vehicle mounted system.

But for my particular use case, I want that vehicle system. It reduces a lot of steps that I might forget especially when doing one or two nights here and there on a whim. And I can power more things with a ‘clean’ setup. Like a fridge, water pump, couple lights, etc..

Here is a video of his system... I don't know Dan, but have had conversations with him here, Facebook, and on YouTube, and can say that his methodology and reasoning are very well thought out.

So I watched until the 3:40 mark and stopped right there. I have seen that video before. He is talking about a lithium system. Lithium systems are more complex and SIGNIFICANTLY more expensive. To have a lithium battery setup you must have a DC/DC converter and it cannot be hooked into the rest of your factory wiring or bad things happen. Now dont get me wrong, lithium systems Are awesome. However there are several reasons I dont want one at the moment. 1) lithium batteries dont work well in the cold. I live in the north and though they have internal heaters sometimes my jeep sits for a few weeks in -20 degrees. That will damage a lithium battery and/or kill its charge. 2) you cant hook them up to the rest of the vehicle system. I want the option to run my accessories now off of just the factory power when the engine is running and be able to upgrade or add a third battery over time. 3) lithium setups are expensive. Just a 100ah battery alone can easily be $1,000. Thats three times the cost of an AGM. 4) lithium batteries dont do as well with being shaken around. They do work and clearly people have them but AGM batteries are better suited for consistent use on rough roads where things are banged around.

and the biggest reason I am not going lithium is I am not “overlanding” for months on end. They absolutely provide ’more’ power but at a significant cost. And since I am looking to do weekend trips and not living on the road like some of the youtube guys it would be a little excessive I think. But mostly the issue is cold. Even good AGM batteries here dont last that long. I would hate to have to replace a $1,000 battery every couple years. If I lived in a warmer climate, or if I consistently did multi week trips then I would build a lithium setup hands down
 

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With the proper DC/DC charger they can be linked to your stock system. They are isolated of course, but the stock charging system can charge the other system. You can use a system like this with whatever batteries you want. You have to specify the battery type in the charge controller. They can control:
  • Deep Cycle Sealed, Gel, Flooded, and Lithium battery option ready.
I live in Arizona and have an old Jeep XJ. It sits for 3-4 months at a time. I have a simple Pulsetech charger on it. It is like 3" x 3" and mounts to the hood. I charges in any light.

There are lots and lots of answers to this problem...
 

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chorky

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I think we are using different terminology here or maybe using terminology different ways.

DC/DC is not the same as using a isolator/solenoid to disconnect two batteries of the same type. The genesis system essentially separates the two batteries of the same type and same chemistry; however, when combined the batteries are tied directly together. They are both AGM batteries, so they can be combined together directly without any type of current altering device.

You cannot do this with a lithium battery because a lithium system requires a DC/DC charger. A DC/DC charger is basically a second alternator. So it is not the same as a isolator or combiner used in the genesis system. It takes power from the main battery/alternator, and re-converts it back into DC volts to charge a lithium, or AGM, etc battery. But a DC/DC charger does NOT actually combine the batteries together. The purpose of a DC/DC is primarily due to AGM and Lithium batteries being of different chemistries, and thus they need different charge rates of different voltages. If you were to directly connect a lithium battery to a AGM you probably would get some sparks to fly or the batteries would be significantly damaged. Cant say for sure as I have never done that but I do know its bad juju to be combining two batteries of different chemistries together.

It effectively creates two different systems. So you would have one ‘system’ of AGM powered items and another ‘system’ of Lithium powered items, only that the Lithium system is being re-charged by the AGM system. This is what I do not want. Because to be able to run a fridge for example off of either system would require double the wire, more switches, and diodes. Thats a lot of work. Plus with the genesis type system, or a home made setup of just using a solenoid, you can combine both batteries to have double the available power if necessary - one example could be needing to winch out of a situation but the engine is not running.
 

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Yeah and that is a totally fair statement. And someone on the first page said that as well because it is less headache to use a ‘power station’. I have actually considered doing that as well actually. However, I want a permanent on board system because it will reduce having to transfer gear and the cost of a 1500w jackery or goal zero is intense! Close to 2K once you get all the right components. I guess it could be the same or more for an onboard system.

But for a lot of situations they really make sense. They are less complicated and dont require as much math as I am doing because the implications of them running dead are significantly less. They also use lithium batteries so pound for pound they have more power longer and less of a recharge rate. I was trying to convince my dad to get one because they are ‘simple’ relatively to a permanent vehicle mounted system.

But for my particular use case, I want that vehicle system. It reduces a lot of steps that I might forget especially when doing one or two nights here and there on a whim. And I can power more things with a ‘clean’ setup. Like a fridge, water pump, couple lights, etc..



So I watched until the 3:40 mark and stopped right there. I have seen that video before. He is talking about a lithium system. Lithium systems are more complex and SIGNIFICANTLY more expensive. To have a lithium battery setup you must have a DC/DC converter and it cannot be hooked into the rest of your factory wiring or bad things happen. Now dont get me wrong, lithium systems Are awesome. However there are several reasons I dont want one at the moment. 1) lithium batteries dont work well in the cold. I live in the north and though they have internal heaters sometimes my jeep sits for a few weeks in -20 degrees. That will damage a lithium battery and/or kill its charge. 2) you cant hook them up to the rest of the vehicle system. I want the option to run my accessories now off of just the factory power when the engine is running and be able to upgrade or add a third battery over time. 3) lithium setups are expensive. Just a 100ah battery alone can easily be $1,000. Thats three times the cost of an AGM. 4) lithium batteries dont do as well with being shaken around. They do work and clearly people have them but AGM batteries are better suited for consistent use on rough roads where things are banged around.

and the biggest reason I am not going lithium is I am not “overlanding” for months on end. They absolutely provide ’more’ power but at a significant cost. And since I am looking to do weekend trips and not living on the road like some of the youtube guys it would be a little excessive I think. But mostly the issue is cold. Even good AGM batteries here dont last that long. I would hate to have to replace a $1,000 battery every couple years. If I lived in a warmer climate, or if I consistently did multi week trips then I would build a lithium setup hands down

So I had dual Optima Yellow tops in the JKU I drove around Africa (3 years, 54,000miles) that worked well enough. I used a big solenoid to bridge then when the engine was running (so the alternator would charge both) and when the engine was off they would separate, and the starter battery would just have the factory Jeep wiring, and the house battery had everything else including a simple Solar charge controller and 200W of panels on the pop-up roof.
The system worked fine, but charging the hose battery off the alternator like that is not a good way to do it - alternators are really not designed for that. It was especially bad whenever the house battery was getting low - say when I didn't drive for a week or more.

For Australia I wanted to go better, so I had the 30A Renogy DC/DC charge controller.
(this one https://www.renogy.com/dcc30s-12v-30a-dual-input-dc-dc-on-board-battery-charger-with-mppt/ )

This thing is SLICK. It deals with isolating the batteries, it deals with charging the house battery optimally, it has built in solar input, and it will even trickle charge the starter battery from the solar when the house battery is full (say you park in the sun for a week).
It was flawless, and I'll be getting another one in my next vehicle bulid (I might get the 50A version, because I'll probably have more battery capacity).

For solar I had a single 100W flexible panel, because it was light and and it worked really well. Again, I'll do the same thing, but I'll go for a bigger panel if I can fit it on the roof (which I will).

Finally, yes, I did have a 50Ah Lithium battery, but that wasn't needed at all - the entire system above works perfectly fine with an AGM or a lead-acid - you just tell the charge controller what kind you have.
The 50Ah Lithium actually has a lot more capacity than a 50Ah AGM does , and it charges MUCH faster (the different chemistry allows for that). It is also $300
https://www.renogy.com/lithium-iron-phosphate-battery-12-volt-50-ah/
So while my House Optima for Africa was rated at 55Ah and the Lithium for Austrlaia was rated at 50Ah, the Lithium actually has a lot more capacity because you can discharge it much lower and still have usable power. The way AGM/lead-acid batteries are rated is strange marketing BS to make them seem better than they are.

Also note essentially everyone runs Lithium batteries in Australia, on horrendously bad corrugations, and they're fine. They are not a problem on rough roads (I even met plenty of people with them in Africa, zero problems). So don't worry about rough roads/corrugations and Lithium.

The 100Ah Lithium battery is $500, and you can get one with self-heating for $640 if you're really worried about the cold. (here https://www.renogy.com/12v-100ah-smart-lithium-iron-phosphate-battery-w-self-heating-function/)

So they're much cheaper than you're thinking, and offer a lot of benefits. But of course the Lithium is totally optional.

Anyway, the system was brilliant for my needs (running a Dometic 55IM fridge in the Aussie heat, lights, water pump, charging, laptop charging, camera batteries, etc. etc.).
As I said, I'll be doing essentially the same identical setup in the new vehicle I'm designing now.

Happy to answer any questions,

-Dan
 

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The purpose of a DC/DC is primarily due to AGM and Lithium batteries being of different chemistries, and thus they need different charge rates of different voltages.
That is true, but it's not the whole story.

Connecting two batteries directly to an Alternator is not the most efficient, or correct way to charge them. It works, but alternators are not designed to do that, and it takes a VERY long time to charge up a battery that is lower when it's just directly on an alternator.
(I had that system for three years around Africa. Yes it works. No, it's not the best way to do things).

The whole point of a DC/DC charger is to charge the house battery as quickly and efficiently as possible, rather than just charge it at whatever rate the alternator wants to.

So the DC/DC is the "right" way to do it, even with AGM or lead-acid batteries.

Even if I had an AGM house battery now, I would still use a charge controller and not just bridge the two batteries to the alternator with a solenoid. Yes that method worked OK in the 80s and 90s. We've got better ways now.

-Dan
 

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Lets assume that between the time you get to a camp site, and the time you start the engine the next morning, 10 hours elapse. With fridge use ONLY this would consume 29 amps. 29 amps is 45.3% of the batteries 64ah capacity, meaning you dropped the battery down to 54.7% SOC. At this percentage, the battery is now permanently damaged.
You're forgetting that the fridge has a thermostat, and will only actually be "on" for a fraction of that 10 hours in camp. If you've been driving all day and the fridge is full and it's not too hot outside, you might find the compressor only comes "on" for 30 minutes for that entire 10 hours, so you're actually only using 30 minutes of battery time, not the whole 10 hours.

In my Africa Jeep I slept upstairs in my JKU, directly above my Dometic fridge. I could hear it turn on and off (it became a nice reassuring noise). Even on the hottest of hot nights (staying above 80 or 85F all night) it would only be on for maybe 20-30 minutes every hour.

On a "regular" temperature night (maybe 50-60F overnight) it would be on for 10-20 minutes every few hours.

-Dan
 
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@Dan Grec thanks for all the great insight! One question that you might be able to explain to me is what the heck the Egon DC hub does? Is it similar to the Renogy unit? I can't figure out why it is so expensive or why I need it.

https://www.egon.com.au/dc-hub-instal/
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