A battery is one of the most important parts of recreational vehicles. It helps you get power even in the most secluded areas. Without it, you won’t be able to use the RV heater, refrigerator, charge your devices, and on top of everything, start your engine. This is why it’s essential to invest in the right battery that works best for your RV. The most popular choices are lead-acid and lithium batteries. The first ones are the most popular and the same type of batteries that are used for cars, boats and golf cars.
Lithium batteries are smaller and lighter and don’t require too much maintenance. They are more durable and can last at least 5000 cycles. Most campers prefer connecting their RVs with lithium batteries. They are a bit more expensive, but the fact that you won’t have to maintain them will save you money in the long run.
When buying lithium batteries, it’s important to purchase them from a trusted company. Enerdrive battery is one of the types you can be sure is a quality investment. Enerdrive is part of the Australian electrical market for almost 12 years. It started as Advance Trident Limited in 2003 mainly servicing the marine industry. Soon after, ATL saw incredible growth potential in the mobile and recreational vehicle market – the rest is history.
What Are Lithium Batteries?
A lithium-ion battery is a rechargeable power bank and as the name says, it uses lithium ions to form an electrical current with a chemical process that is different from the one of a lead-acid battery. Lithium ions move between the positive electrodes when discharging and the negative cathodes during the charging process. The simple movement between poles creates free electrons, which create the charge in your battery. The charge can power whatever it’s connected to (for RVs, it creates power for the gadgets, engine, refrigerator, microwave, etc.).
Why Choose Lithium Batteries for Your RV?
One of the biggest reasons why campers go for lithium batteries is their durability. For instance, an Enerdrive battery can provide 3,000-5,000 cycles. It sustains deep discharges that are better than lead-acid batteries. This means that your Enerdrive lithium battery can drain down to 20% without damage.
The lithium battery will allow you to run several devices and appliances at the same time. This battery can operate most or all gadgets and appliances in your RV, and can deliver top power with constant voltage, no matter the load. A lithium-ion battery can be charged at a higher amperage, which means it can charge faster than a lead-acid battery.
A lithium battery is more lightweight and compact than its lead-acid counterpart. It has four cells (lead-acid battery has six) so besides you’ll get more power with the lithium battery, you can pack your RV with much more stuff.
It’s important to get a warranty when you buy anything, especially things like RV batteries. Most lithium batteries have a warranty of ten years or more. This is quite a long time and far longer than you’ll get for any lead-acid battery (they usually come with a three-year warranty). This will surely cover you for a long time, allowing you to save money for potential reparations or repurchases.
Can You Use Lithium Batteries in Your Class A RV?
A Class RV is a bigger vehicle than a regular RV. It’s between 8.8 and 13 metres in length and has 283-378 litre tanks. These big boys have most amenities like big-screen TVs, big residential refrigerators, washing machines, dryers and other power-hungry facilities. A lithium battery can be used in a Class A RV, and there are advantages to this. It will last longer, work more efficiently and the fact that it weighs less will allow you to get more things that you need for your adventure. Also, a lithium battery has a better economic footprint. Once you get it, you won’t return to a lead-acid battery.
RV Battery Maintenance and Failures
The maintenance depends mostly on the type of battery you have. Lithium and acid-lead batteries both should be checked every month to ensure that the charging works well. This should especially be done in the winter months when you don’t use the RV as often. Even with proper maintenance, there is always a chance that your RV battery could fail.
The most common problems are overcharging and undercharging. Undercharging results when the battery isn’t left to get fully charged in between cycles. The overcharging causes plate corrosion; it occurs because the power was connected to a power source for too long.
During the winter months, when you don’t drive your RV that often, the battery will naturally discharge over time. When you want to use your RV again, the battery might easily be empty (especially if it didn’t get proper maintenance during the inactive months). Make sure to store your RV in a warm and dry place. If your RV is exposed to the elements, especially if you live in an area with harsh winters, the battery could easily get damaged. Freezing temperatures can flood the battery cells and damage them to a point where they won’t be able to work at all.