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Old 03-27-2021, 02:10 PM   #1
hemiallen
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Information on Factory PD and charging Lithium batt's

Doing some more research on how to top off my Lithium batteries, I was researching how to best recharge them with the Solarflex's 300w not being able to keep up with my battery use, according to my math. One reason is that I dry camp in pine tree's, and the solar won't be much good unless I change where I park, and even then I won't get a full day's solar charging.

So my next recharging solution is to run my 2000w Honda, and the factory Progressive dynamics 75A house converter's charging system, VS buying an ac- charger like a PD stand alone, Renology, etc, at another $200-400!

On progressive's website I found this Question and answer:

Can I Use My Present Progressive Dynamics PD9200, PD4000 or PD4500 Series Lead/Acid Units With the Charge Wizard to Charge My Lithium Battery?
Yes, if you are willing to live with an expensive battery that is only partially charged. The Normal Output voltage of the PD9200, PD4000 and PD4500 Series voltage provides only 13.6-volts and a full charge voltage for Lithium needs to be 14.4 14.6 Volts. The PD9200, PD4000 & PD4500 Series Charge Wizard will initially jump to 14.4-volts in the Boost Mode when first connected to 120 VAC power and will remain there until the battery voltage reaches 13.8-Volts, then automatically drops down to the Normal Mode of 13.6-Volts. The faster charge rate of Lithium means that in the Boost Mode it will reach this 13.8-Volt point after only a few minutes of recharging and then the charging current will drop to ZERO AMPS and will not add any additional charge to your Lithium Battery. This lower charge state will not damage your battery, but will eliminate most of the advantages you paid for.



Very interesting information that took me quite awhile to learn. Hoping it saves others from researching this also. Here is the direct webpage:

https://www.progressivedyn.com/frequ...hium-charging/
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Old 03-27-2021, 03:39 PM   #2
Carl n Susan
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The newest Progressive converter/charger has a switch you set if you have Lithium batteries. I would have assumed that changed the charging profile to match what is expected for Lithium.



Is it possible that article (which is undated) precedes the new Lithium capability of the Progressive unit?
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Old 03-27-2021, 03:48 PM   #3
hemiallen
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I did send in a "question" asking this same thing last night, then found this on their website today. I will update what they reply with.

This is posted on their website, and if I read it correctly, it states the Converter's charger won't supply the Lithium's needed 14.4 volts long enough to recharge them properly. I am assuming they know their own product, but maybe it is old information they failed to remove from their Q&A.

I also wonder why Battleborn suggested only 60A charger for 300Ah's of battery, but do know they recommend a max of 50A charger for a 100Ah battery, more if a larger battery Ah is used. I will ask Cory at BB before I order their batteries.

Allen
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Old 03-29-2021, 03:21 PM   #4
hemiallen
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After re-reading my link, I think I missed that the question was for an older lead-acid center w/o the lithium switch.

Funny thing, I got a reply from Progressive Dynamics, and I asked if the PD 4575 will charge my Lithium the exact same as a PD9160Alv and his reply was "I don't know the charge profile of the 4575!!!! So I replied, can you tell me who knows these 2 units to tell me the charging similarities or differences.

Hoping whomever sent my message to their ask a question website , or he, can re-route my question to someone who does know the answer, LOL.

Very frustrating he answered me vs hand it to someone who knows the answer.

I may have to ask Battleborn to answer this, as they do sell them and mention they know which are best. I had hoped Progressive could answer me the best.

Allen
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Old 03-29-2021, 05:26 PM   #5
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I just swapped out four lead-acid batteries to four Battle Born GC2s recently. I also installed the Victron 12/3000/50-120 inverter/charger to replace the factory installed 2000W Magnum and PD4575 charger. I disconnected the power to PD charger and programmed the Victron to charge at 120A (the max) with the charge settings on Battle Born's website. I also added a couple more PV panels on the roof (now up to 1175W). If I wanted to charge fast, I can run my 5500W Onan. Otherwise, I just let the PV panels do the work. I've saw a peak of PV charge current of 65A (over 900W) coming through over the weekend in the late March sun at my latitude. This is over the factory 10ga wire (PV side operates at ~70V and max 17amps). You could upgrade your PV charge controller and add more panels on the roof to overcome the shading problem.
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Old 03-29-2021, 05:44 PM   #6
hemiallen
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Thanks

So I assume you have the solarprep that got you the 2000w inverter?
Hoping to hear if the PD 4575 will work at 75A for the Lithium upgrade we are doing. Sounds like the Victron is the way to go for an all in one and upping to 3000w. I don't see mention of solar charging. Does it do solar also?

I really am getting my feet wet with the solarflex, and unfortunately we usually park in the shade so the solar is a bonus to get the inverted 5 outlets and after researching might have opted out of the solarflex. Upping the Lithium to around 300Ah will be a huge jump over our experience with 4-6v wet cells. We did ok with the wet cells, but in the cold our ultralight had issues with dropping to a draw voltage of 12.2 at o-dark 30, and my goal is to eliminate that issue.

I've opened a link to peruse that victron system.

Thanks

Allen
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Old 03-29-2021, 08:46 PM   #7
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Yes, I had the 2019 version of the solar/inverter package. 265W panel, 100/30a solar controller and the 2000W magnum. The magnum was wired to the refer circuit, one outlet by the TV in the bedroom and the pop-up on the counter next to the fridge. It was poorly implemented. I had a thread in Sept 2018 where I added a subpanel and another transfer switch to power all the outlets, microwave and vac off the inverter. The A/Cs, RV refer, converter, washer/dryer circuits stayed in the main panel for shore power or genset use only. I have since added the A/Cs to the subpanel and added easy start modules to each. I can run one off the batteries/inverter for a 2-3 hours with the lithium batteries. I installed the Victron 150/85 MPPT controller to replace the 100/30. It's good to 1200W with a 12V battery bank.

I also installed the Victron Cerbo GX/GX Touch to monitor and control the whole system. I was able to program and wire in a generator auto-start with it. It's a nice feature. I set conditions for SOC < 30% or battery discharge current > 230Amps for 20 seconds. You can program a minimum run time, stop at a charge state, load, whatever.

I used the Victron components since they communicate with each other through the Cerbo.

Worst case, you can simply change the charge section in the PD unit to be Lithium compatible.
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Old 03-30-2021, 07:36 AM   #8
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If you boondock a lot you may want to have a look at a DC to DC charger. Especially if in shady areas.
I installed one a couple of weeks ago in preparation for our current road trip. I did not want to bring the generator since we will only be boondocking for a few days on this trip.
Here's a link to my write up.

https://www.montanaowners.com/forums...ad.php?t=83767
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Old 04-07-2021, 01:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hemiallen View Post
Doing some more research on how to top off my Lithium batteries, I was researching how to best recharge them with the Solarflex's 300w not being able to keep up with my battery use, according to my math. One reason is that I dry camp in pine tree's, and the solar won't be much good unless I change where I park, and even then I won't get a full day's solar charging.

So my next recharging solution is to run my 2000w Honda, and the factory Progressive dynamics 75A house converter's charging system, VS buying an ac- charger like a PD stand alone, Renology, etc, at another $200-400!

On progressive's website I found this Question and answer:

Can I Use My Present Progressive Dynamics PD9200, PD4000 or PD4500 Series Lead/Acid Units With the Charge Wizard to Charge My Lithium Battery?
Yes, if you are willing to live with an expensive battery that is only partially charged. The Normal Output voltage of the PD9200, PD4000 and PD4500 Series voltage provides only 13.6-volts and a full charge voltage for Lithium needs to be 14.4 14.6 Volts. The PD9200, PD4000 & PD4500 Series Charge Wizard will initially jump to 14.4-volts in the Boost Mode when first connected to 120 VAC power and will remain there until the battery voltage reaches 13.8-Volts, then automatically drops down to the Normal Mode of 13.6-Volts. The faster charge rate of Lithium means that in the Boost Mode it will reach this 13.8-Volt point after only a few minutes of recharging and then the charging current will drop to ZERO AMPS and will not add any additional charge to your Lithium Battery. This lower charge state will not damage your battery, but will eliminate most of the advantages you paid for.



Very interesting information that took me quite awhile to learn. Hoping it saves others from researching this also. Here is the direct webpage:

https://www.progressivedyn.com/frequ...hium-charging/
The standard RV converter is designed to be always plugged in. As such, it is more of a trickle charger. Lead acid is verrrrry slow to fully charge while LiFePO4 is a straight line. A Lithium specific charger is a good investment.
When boondocking, you will not be using the converter, you aren't plugged in. I removed my converter and installed a proper Lithium Inverter/Charger. Now I can charge from 10% to 100% 6 100AH batteries in a little over 4 hours, less if the sun is shining. I set the allowed charge to 190A which is way below the amount allowed for LiFePO4 but it's all I have, 120 charger + 70 solar. I have 1,080W of solar.
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Old 04-07-2021, 03:41 PM   #10
hemiallen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcrvman View Post
The standard RV converter is designed to be always plugged in. As such, it is more of a trickle charger. Lead acid is verrrrry slow to fully charge while LiFePO4 is a straight line. A Lithium specific charger is a good investment.
When boondocking, you will not be using the converter, you aren't plugged in. I removed my converter and installed a proper Lithium Inverter/Charger. Now I can charge from 10% to 100% 6 100AH batteries in a little over 4 hours, less if the sun is shining. I set the allowed charge to 190A which is way below the amount allowed for LiFePO4 but it's all I have, 120 charger + 70 solar. I have 1,080W of solar.
Thank you.

Question, my research has me believing that the new rigs inverter / charger has boost at 14.4, but will drop back to 13.6 once the state of charge meets 13.8. If this is correct, that gives 90+ % charge state of the lithium batteries. I believe this is correct?

I realize not ideal, and why I posted this information, which may be old information ( mentioned by Carl) on PD's own webpage for Q&A. I do know PD a month ago spilled the beans they have a new design forthcoming, I will wait to get my Montana and try the factory inverter part of the converter ( powered by my generator) and upgrade if by then there is a new charger available, or just add another charger to the system bypassing the PD from Montana.

I am curious, you mention you can charge in 4 hours, a less time to recharge if the sun is out. My problem is, when I camp in the shade I have read I will likely get zero charge out of my 300w cell. Am I missing something ? And I noted I will use the converter system when I recharge with my generator, but I do understand the factory-supplied 75a is not much for recharging say 300Ah's of battleborn batteries, and I could use 150A of charge while running the generator without damaging the batteries. I am not sure if the generator can support the 150A charger, but it would be great to recharge at the maximum rate suggested.

As an option if I need more recharging capability I can get a suitcase 200w solar panel to max my Jaboni 30a mppt charger that I could place in the sun and chase it, but prefer to not do that while vacationing.

Thank you

Allen
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Old 04-07-2021, 03:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hemiallen View Post
Thank you.

Question, my research has me believing that the new rigs inverter / charger has boost at 14.4, but will drop back to 13.6 once the state of charge meets 13.8. If this is correct, that gives 90+ % charge state of the lithium batteries. I believe this is correct?

I realize not ideal, and why I posted this information, which may be old information ( mentioned by Carl) on PD's own webpage for Q&A. I do know PD a month ago spilled the beans they have a new design forthcoming, I will wait to get my Montana and try the factory inverter part of the converter ( powered by my generator) and upgrade if by then there is a new charger available, or just add another charger to the system bypassing the PD from Montana.

I am curious, you mention you can charge in 4 hours, a less time to recharge if the sun is out. My problem is, when I camp in the shade I have read I will likely get zero charge out of my 300w cell. Am I missing something ? And I noted I will use the converter system when I recharge with my generator, but I do understand the factory-supplied 75a is not much for recharging say 300Ah's of battleborn batteries, and I could use 150A of charge while running the generator without damaging the batteries. I am not sure if the generator can support the 150A charger, but it would be great to recharge at the maximum rate suggested.

As an option if I need more recharging capability I can get a suitcase 200w solar panel to max my Jaboni 30a mppt charger that I could place in the sun and chase it, but prefer to not do that while vacationing.

Thank you

Allen

At 110A-120A charge rate, my inverter/charger show around 2000W @ 120VAC. There are specific charge parameters for bulk and absorption for LiFePO4 batteries. You can set those based on the size of your battery bank. 13.6 and 14.4 are the standard voltages, you have to adjust the absorption time depending on the total AH. You have to change it in both the MPPT charger and the converter or inverter/charger. On the BB batteries, it's 30minutes per 100AH for the absorption time. You also don't want to exceed 0.5C for a charge rate. I.e. 400AH = 200A max charge rate.
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Old 04-07-2021, 05:53 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by hemiallen View Post
Thank you.

Question, my research has me believing that the new rigs inverter / charger has boost at 14.4, but will drop back to 13.6 once the state of charge meets 13.8. If this is correct, that gives 90+ % charge state of the lithium batteries. I believe this is correct?

I realize not ideal, and why I posted this information, which may be old information ( mentioned by Carl) on PD's own webpage for Q&A. I do know PD a month ago spilled the beans they have a new design forthcoming, I will wait to get my Montana and try the factory inverter part of the converter ( powered by my generator) and upgrade if by then there is a new charger available, or just add another charger to the system bypassing the PD from Montana.

I am curious, you mention you can charge in 4 hours, a less time to recharge if the sun is out. My problem is, when I camp in the shade I have read I will likely get zero charge out of my 300w cell. Am I missing something ? And I noted I will use the converter system when I recharge with my generator, but I do understand the factory-supplied 75a is not much for recharging say 300Ah's of battleborn batteries, and I could use 150A of charge while running the generator without damaging the batteries. I am not sure if the generator can support the 150A charger, but it would be great to recharge at the maximum rate suggested.

As an option if I need more recharging capability I can get a suitcase 200w solar panel to max my Jaboni 30a mppt charger that I could place in the sun and chase it, but prefer to not do that while vacationing.

Thank you

Allen
If you get a 150A charger the generator will have no trouble powering it, it's only 150x12 or 1,800 watts. With a 30A MPPT and 300AH of BB's it would take more than 2 days to go from 10% to full. You need a lot more solar. Minimum size RV panels (2'x5') are about 180-200 watts at the moment. 4 of them will give you close to 60A when the sun is brightest (4 - 6 hrs depending on time of year and latitude)
I removed my converter, too small, not programmable, simply low quality. It's like a Yugo compared to a Lexus or Mercedes. There is no magic, just do the math for charger, solar, usage etc. Portable panels tend to be very overpriced and underpowered, a lose lose purchase. Yes you can charge at 150, but that will shorten the life of the batteries. 75 is a better match for only 300AH. 150 is good for 600AH.
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Old 04-07-2021, 06:57 PM   #13
hemiallen
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Thank you again.

Excellent on the Generator's size working.
Interesting on the solar. I ordered it to get the "starter kit" with the inverter and outlets, before doing much research. If we start setting up in the sun, more roof solar panels will be in order, and it seems a larger MPPT control setup. Thanks on the portable issue, but Renology 200 A panel vs suitcase is not much $ difference, unless I messed up. $329 with charge controller, which I wouldn't need up to 30A of the Jaboni.

Interesting on the Lithium charging, I thought .5c is the recommended charge rate, ie 150A for 300A of Lithium. Battleborn says this:
Our recommended charge rate is 50 amps per 100 Ah battery in your system. For example, if your charger is 20 amps and you need to charge an empty battery, it will take 5 hours to reach 100%.

Trying to learn, not make an argument. If you recommend less, I understand. Owning a system vs selling batteries can make one's point of view different.

Allen
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Old 04-07-2021, 07:13 PM   #14
bcrvman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hemiallen View Post
Thank you again.

Excellent on the Generator's size working.
Interesting on the solar. I ordered it to get the "starter kit" with the inverter and outlets, before doing much research. If we start setting up in the sun, more roof solar panels will be in order, and it seems a larger MPPT control setup. Thanks on the portable issue, but Renology 200 A panel vs suitcase is not much $ difference, unless I messed up. $329 with charge controller, which I wouldn't need up to 30A of the Jaboni.

Interesting on the Lithium charging, I thought .5c is the recommended charge rate, ie 150A for 300A of Lithium. Battleborn says this:
Our recommended charge rate is 50 amps per 100 Ah battery in your system. For example, if your charger is 20 amps and you need to charge an empty battery, it will take 5 hours to reach 100%.

Trying to learn, not make an argument. If you recommend less, I understand. Owning a system vs selling batteries can make one's point of view different.

Allen
I might have misspoke. .5C is fine, but .4C, .3C, .2C will all yield longer battery lives. At .5C 10 years is still probable as long as you don't abuse them in other ways (overheating is the worst) I used to have 400AH and 170A theoretical so .425C but now I have 600AH and replacing solar with better panels, 6 x 180W for an additional 70 amps in theory. Total then is 190A or .32C.
I modified the RV main power panel by moving a couple wires, removing the converter and now power 1/2 the panel with a 3,000W inverter. What is left out is 1-spare, 2-Fireplace, 3-Water Heater Electric, 4-Washer, 5-Dryer, 6-MBR AC. If we need any of those items while boondocking then hooking up one or two of my Honda EU2000's will be fine. I have the ability to control the amount of power on the inverter and non-inverter legs plus an extra 20A or 2,400W from the batteries. Normally none of those items are needed for the 5 days out of 7 we plan on boondocking.
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