Why Use Lithium Iron Phosphate Batteries with Self-Heating Technology?
You’ve finally decided to replace your outdated lead acid RV battery with a lithium one. Which lithium iron phosphate batteries, though, are the best for an RV lifestyle? Just how you intend to use them will determine this.
Do you use the deep cycle batteries in your RV too?
- Go through or through colder regions to reach a warmer location?
- Go to national parks off-season to avoid the masses?
- Go out to sea?
- Would you like to go skiing in the mountains?
- during the winter, work online while traveling?
Investing a small amount of extra money in a self-heating lithium iron phosphate battery bank will alter your life if you say “yes” to any of these questions.
What therefore is the primary distinction between these two kinds of LFP batteries?
It has to do with how the BMS handles frigid weather. To prevent damage to the battery, the BMS of the regular LFP cuts off charging when it detects that the battery’s core temperature is lower than 32°F. Nevertheless, when the BMS of the self-heating battery detects that the battery’s core temperature has dropped below 41°F (and that it has at least 4 amps of power coming from any charging source*), a tiny self-heater activates to maintain the battery at an ideal charging temperature, enabling it to charge and increasing its efficiency.
As you can imagine, for those of us who like to travel throughout the year—even in the winter—this self-heating feature is nothing short of revolutionary!
*You can use solar panels, shore power, a gas-powered generator, or a DC-to-DC charger to charge your engine’s alternator and LFP batteries.
Why Go With LFP Batteries That Self-Heat?
Since the autumn of 2012, we have traveled in our renovated vintage travel trailer, living, working, and exploring the continent of North America. Even though we frequently visit places with warmer temperatures, it is not always possible for us. During the holidays, we also enjoy visiting relatives and friends who live in cold, wintry locations, going camping and hiking in the beautiful fall foliage and snowboarding and snowshoeing in the west. In the winter, even the southwestern desert may get quite cold. Over the past few years, our regular 100Ah LFP battery has occasionally become too cold to take charge.
We decided to live modestly, have little room on the roof of our old camper, and have little storage. We utilize a 100W folding solar suitcase on a 20-foot extension wire in addition to our two 100W flexible solar panels on the roof to supplement our solar power on cloudy days or to charge when we are parked in the shade. We only needed this to maintain the fullness of our existing Maxworld Power 100Ah battery. However, we now require twice the charging current because we have twice the battery capacity.
We are really happy with this system improvement thus far.
We had to be inventive because there was nowhere to put more solar panels on our roof or in our storage area, and we had no desire to buy a bigger vehicle! The switch makes it simple for us to alternate between charging our 200Ah battery bank (for the camper) and our 50Ah LFP battery (for the fridge) using the truck’s engine via the connectors that connect to the truck and trailer. It’s a resourceful, economical, and efficient method of utilizing our current setup without requiring the installation of additional solar panels. Therefore, employing a DC-to-DC charger will greatly enhance your solar array if you usually travel every few days. There are many different types and sizes of DC to DC chargers; read this article to find out how to size one that will work best for you.
We are really happy with this system improvement thus far. Here we are boondocking on the British Columbian island of Haida Gwaii, where our coffee is boiling, our solar charger is charging, and we can work remotely thanks to Starlink. Remain tuned. Later this year, when we visit colder regions, we’ll return to discuss our experiences with the batteries’ self-heating feature.
What started as a brief vacation from work and responsibilities swiftly developed into a road-life romance. Their passion for adventure travel, their appetite for lifelong learning, and their higher education credentials have allowed them to leverage their skills in writing, photography, video production, and public speaking engagements across the nation.