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Reading through the many threads concerning lithium batteries in the Olly, I'm wondering if it could be simpler.

We have a 2019 EII with the solar, 4 AGM batteries, and 2000watt inverter.

It seems like the 4 AGMs could be simply swapped out for a single LifeBlue 200ah unit.

The LifeBlue has the built-in BMS and bluetooth monitor.

Zamp solar controller has a Lithium setting.

The PDI charger has a lithium setting.

Charging from shore power or solar, not from the tow vehicle.

SO, take out the old batteries, drop in the new one, swap over the positive and negative connections from the trailer, change settings on charger and solar controller... done?

I'm aware of the VERY detailed, VERY thoughtful installs others have performed... just wondering if this would work or if there's a huge gotcha that I've missed.

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2019 Legacy Elite II #488 - Delivery July 24, 2019
2018 F150 Platinum SC SB EB - Leer canopy

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17 hours ago, thirddoor said:

Reading through the many threads concerning lithium batteries in the Olly, I'm wondering if it could be simpler.

The PDI charger has a lithium setting.

Charging from shore power or solar, not from the tow vehicle.

SO, take out the old batteries, drop in the new one, swap over the positive and negative connections from the trailer, change settings on charger and solar controller... done?

 

Replaced two Group 27 100AH 12V AGM batteries with one 100AH BattleBorn Lithium yesterday. Installing a PDI board with Lithium setting and changing Renogy solar charging profile to Lithium today. We only have a 100W suitcase Renogy Solar Panel.

Believe I have the same question, if I don't charge with the TV, will the rest of the set up work without issues?

Thanks,

Edited by rideandfly
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Bill

LE2 #75

 

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Posted (edited)

I agree that Battleborn is probably the better choice for a simple install.  There was likely a good reason that Oliver only used LifeBlue for a year.

With that in mind, I think the most minimal install would be the batteries and a new monitor.

For a battery monitor, the new smart shunt from Victron is easy to install and probably the best you can buy. You don’t have to add a bus bar, just take everything that’s attached to the battery negative and attach that to the shunt itself. Then a single cable from there to the battery.  Use their app to monitor the battery just like you would with the LifeBlue.

Then change the settings on your charger and solar charge controllers to lithium like you said.

BTW, a single 200Ah lithium will give you 160 usable amp hours, so you’d be reducing your capacity vs your AGMs. Personally, I don’t see the point of doing anything less than 300. 

Edited by Overland
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Snowball • The world's only spherical Ollie

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I'm in agreement, that there is a real need for a drop and go LI upgrade.
You can in fact do a drop in LI's if you have the PD4060 with LI setting in your Oliver and be down the road pretty quickly.

I planned to do that as well but I decided after research to upgrade to a smart charger/inverter along with the new LI batteries.

Backdrop: 

Trailer manufacturers (including Oliver)  are shifting rapidly away from the older "CONVERTER" technology as typical from Progressive Dynamics to newer Smart Charger/Inverters as they provide more benefits to customers and programmable profiles for Lead Acid, AGM and Lithium's which all can have different profiles.
They are also looking at newer trailer control and wiring schemas to have touch control centers for all loads, batteries, solar etc.  The benefits to the customers are single points of control for the multiple systems, and for the Trailer Mfrs a reduction in the time to integrate and wire up the trailer systems.

My current hull 505 (2019 EII): has a PC charge converter and a separate 2000W Prosine Inverter

My Load Center is from Progressive Dynamics, is the PD4000 line, and under the dinette seat.

683067974_PD4000EII2019.thumb.jpg.ddbf4540e39a93e0728efff9410ee4b0.jpg

 


(Covers off the load center) 
437929403_PD4000.thumb.jpg.de69a5a5801287d75c6dc29c94aa2619.jpg

That power center includes the AC Breakers, about half the DC Fuses and the the PD converter model  PD4060K which has a charge wizard for Lead Acid/AGM battery charging and and a built in Lithium Setting Switch.  That LI Switch on the PD Converter when set, outputs a constant 14.6 v,  but is NOT a smart charger by any means.
 

1249709725_PD4065Jumper.thumb.jpg.edb9c1c8ca1023753eba66e04202352a.jpg

I also have a separate Xantrex ProWatt 2000 pure-sine inverter.


Battery Shopping :

As I shopped for batteries I started with Battleborn support and learned a few things about LI battery charge profiles.
They are different for each chemistry, and each battery manufacturer and each battery management system (BMS) has it's own specific charge profile that is "BEST" for battery cycle life.  

Battleborn said their products will work well with the Progressive Dynamics Converters that have the Lithium Setting, but they said at the end
that the ideal setup is to have a SMART charger with a customer settable Lithium Charge profile.
They encouraged me to consider upgrading my charger if I had the budget and space to a smart charger....but said the LI setting would work.

Smart Charger ? to PD:

My next call was Progressive Dynamics Support to find out if they had a newer LI smart profile converter that would plug into the PD4000 load center...no joy.

Speaking with Andy (Svc Mgr) at Progressive Dynamics I learned that the PD Converter units on LI setting outputs a constant 14.6V to the batteries.  
Andy said they do not have an available LI specific smart charge wizard from PD for the basic converters in the PD4000 load center.
A smart LI wizard would  drop from 14.6 bulk charge back to a LI Specific float voltage around 13.4.  
Andy said while they don't have a plug in converter with smart lithium profiles yet.
He closed by saying the PD 4060 unit works to bulk charge Lithium you may not be Optimally Charging and delivering the longest life for the new LI battery.

Oliver's newer choice - Inverter Charger combos:

What I also learned, is that in the newer inverter/chargers Oliver is using like the Xantrex XC 2000 or XC 3000 , (or Victron Inverter Chargers) they include a smart programmable battery charger specifically designed to be able to set a  lithium profile to exactly match whichever battery specs are provided by the Battery Manufacturer.
This charger replaces the former PD4060 converter section.   In the 2021 and newer trailers Oliver no longer uses PD4000 energy center. Oliver has moved ahead to the newer technology of smart inverter chargers.

The Benefit of these smart inverter/chargers are much longer battery life for the Lithiums while also delivering inverted power to the trailer.

Summary:

So while I know I could do a simple drop in of Battleborn's into the Oliver with the PD 4060 Converters set to LI and add the "victron smart shunt" , I found that the end result will be a LI battery pair with a somewhat reduced overall life.

Finally when I then spoke with Lithionics directly about my upgrade, they said they would prefer that I upgrade to a smart charger and away from the PD4060 converter as they don't meet the charge profile that would provide the longest useful life of the Lithionics batteries.

Hope that's interesting to those who are following this thread.

 

 

Craig

 

 

 


 

 

Edited by Galway Girl
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2019 Elite II (Hull 505 - Galway Girl - August 7, 2019 Delivery) 
Tow Vehicle: 2021 F350 King Ranch, FX4, MaxTow Package, 10 Speed, 3.55 Rear Axle
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Another thought for the simple installation.

I installed Battle Born batteries before ever camping in our new trailer.

I keep the AC breaker to the converter/charger off at all times and charge the batteries almost exclusively from solar.

I have only used the converter/charger to charge the batteries twice, when we camped in full shade for more than six days.  When I did, I turned  the breaker to the converter/charger on and charged from a generator, until the batteries were at about 100% and then turned it off.

I can’t imagine this very infrequent use of the converter/charger will have any negative impact on the batteries.

I must say I like keeping it as simple as possible and rarely even carry the generator. 

Andrew

Edited by AndrewK
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Andrew, Carianne and Buffy | San Diego, CA


2019 Legacy Elite II Hull #468 "California Burrito" | 2018 BMW x5 35d 

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Andrew,

That's an EXCELLENT point, if you have the PD4060 it is on a 15 Amp AC breaker.
Flipping that off will only allow the solar to charge your batteries.
That would pretty much negate the negative side effects of having the PD4060 converter.

I wish I'd thought of that one!

Craig

 

2019 Elite II (Hull 505 - Galway Girl - August 7, 2019 Delivery) 
Tow Vehicle: 2021 F350 King Ranch, FX4, MaxTow Package, 10 Speed, 3.55 Rear Axle
BLOG:  https://4-ever-hitched.com

 

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14 hours ago, Overland said:

There was likely a good reason that Oliver only used LifeBlue for a year.

Is that correct? I was told by someone in the  Oliver FB group (or maybe it was here on the forum...) that they are using  both LifeBlue and whoever the other manufacturer is due to needing more supply. But that they had not stopped using LifeBlue. Do you know otherwise?

Edited by Jim_Oker

Jim and  Yanna, Woodinville WA

2004 Ford E250 camper conversion

Oliver Elite II hull #709

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Here's my research from last night, I am not an electronic tech or engineer. We camp the majority of time with shore power and occasionally on the Blue Ridge Parkway without shore power using a 100W suitcase solar panel and 2000W gen-set for power. We do not have factory installed solar panel charging system on hull #75 LE2.

Asked BattleBorn last night about charging with the new Progressive Dynamics PD4045LICSV (Lithium) charging section I installed yesterday in Ollie's PD 4045 converter and possible damage to the TV charging system while charging the new BattleBorn 100AH LifePO4 lithium battery in Ollie.

Here's BattleBorn's reply to my question last night:

"Yes, you can charge our battery with the PD4045LICSV. You can also charge the battery using the seven pin connection via the seven pin connection with no issues. The length of the cable is so long and the size is so small that you will see about a 5-10 amp charge being delivered to the battery."

https://battlebornbatteries.com/product/progressive-dynamics-45-amp-replacement-converter-section-for-pd4045li-lithium-series-electronic-power-center/

Progressive Dynamics PD4045 operators manual for charging Lithium LifePO4 batteries with BMS system from "General Operation" section:

"The optional OUTPUT MODE SWITCH sets the converter output to either a constant 14.6VDC with the Charge Wizard® disabled (switch in ‘LI’ position) or a nominal 13.6VDC with full Charge Wizard® function (switch in ‘LA’ position). ‘LI’ mode is intended for use with lithium batteries with a BMS requiring a constant converter output. ‘LA’ mode is intended for use with lead/acid batteries where the Charge Wizard®will optimize battery charging."

"PD4045/60LThe full rated load is available for load, battery charging or both. When functioning as a regulated battery charger the converter has a nominal voltage output of 14.6 VDC. The system is designed to sense voltage on the battery and will taper the charging current as the battery becomes charged."\

https://www.progressivedyn.com/wp-content/uploads/Support/manuals/110145-English.pdf

PD4045 while installing Lithium charging section yesterday:

IMG_6018-L.jpg

Replaced two 12V AGM group 27 batteries with one BattleBorn 100AH LifePO4 lithium battery yesterday. Mounted the Renogy Voyager 20A solar charger with LifePO4 charge profile setting in the battery compartment with one BattelBorn battery. Seen up to 6 amps of charging current with 35' of 10/2 cable between the 100W Renogy suitcase solar panel and charge controller using a 10A Furrion solar port on Ollie.

IMG_6015-L.jpg

 

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Bill

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Interesting - was it supply chain issues or engineering design considerations? 

In any case - I have decided I'm going -  Li  -- just as soon as I can get 600 amp hours in a 12 cubic inch box, at a cost below $500.  I figure that will happen - oh -  say 2025 or so.

Moore's law in battery storage - one can hope.

RB

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Cindy,  Russell and  "Harley dog" . Home is our little farm near Winchester TN

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Posted (edited)

Oliver only advertises the Lithionics now, but I suppose they may have some LifeBlue's in stock if someone has to have them.  Maybe leftover stock.

On the supply front, LifeBlue got their batteries from the largest battery producer in China - same people who supply Relion and some others, so it's hard to imagine that they couldn't give Oliver what they needed.  It doesn't seem like many people were taking up the option anyway, unless all those people are on Facebook.  Perhaps there was a transition period last year when they couldn't get enough Lithionics?  

Or maybe the supply problem was that they couldn't get enough LifeBlues that worked.  🤐

Edited by Overland

Snowball • The world's only spherical Ollie

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On 4/7/2021 at 7:05 AM, Overland said:

For a battery monitor, the new smart shunt from Victron is easy to install and probably the best you can buy. You don’t have to add a bus bar, just take everything that’s attached to the battery negative and attach that to the shunt itself. Then a single cable from there to the battery.  Use their app to monitor the battery just like you would with the LifeBlue.

Took your advice and ordered a Victron shunt this morning. We use a tablet with Bluetooth when camping, so should work well monitoring battery, too.

https://www.victronenergy.com/battery-monitors/smart-battery-shunt

Thanks,

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Bill

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32 minutes ago, rideandfly said:

Took your advice and ordered a Victron shunt this morning. We use a tablet with Bluetooth when camping, so should work well monitoring battery, too.

FYI the VictronConnect app works great, but you can only have one device (a phone or tablet) connected at a time. I like to have my iPhone connected when towing in the truck, to see what is happening in back. Then when inside the trailer I turn that app off and connect with my hard mounted iPad Mini.

I disagree, just a little, with overland’s comment about attaching all the grounds to the Victron shunt, especially if you have an inverter. You should not stack more than four cables on any one connection. Having a nearby ground bus bar or stud makes it easier to manage the many cables, and to add more in the future. Simply connect that bus bar to the Victron shunt with a short, very heavy gauge jumper cable.

Be sure to attach the power wire for the shunt directly to the batteries, not on to a switched source, or the system will get confused and reset the state of charge to 100% if the batteries are disconnected, or if you have a battery master shutoff switch installed. The system uses only about 5 milliamps on standby, which is negligible. You might as well buy the optional Victron temperature sense cable and install that, it provides temperature data that is very useful. (It also has a fused power wire, so you do not need to use the one that comes with the shunt.) Your batteries may not need that temperature compensation, but YOU need the info so you can monitor what is happening in the “hot box” compartment. I am not sure if this is compatible with the model of shunt you ordered, this fit my BVM-712 Smart unit. https://www.victronenergy.com/accessories/temperature-sensor-for-bmv-702

If you add another Victron product like a smart MPPT solar controller, you can easily set up a network and they will talk to each other, and you can see the battery temp on the solar app display, for example. Very cool.

John Davies

Spokane WA

F6CF128F-8DF6-4DFE-9748-B15AE97FCD04.jpeg

Edited by John E Davies
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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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3 hours ago, John E Davies said:

FYI the VictronConnect app works great, but you can only have one device (a phone or tablet) connected at a time. I like to have my iPhone connected when towing in the truck, to see what is happening in back. Then when inside the trailer I turn that app off and connect with my hard mounted iPad Mini.

Be sure to attach the power wire for the shunt directly to the batteries, not on to a switched source, or the system will get confused and reset the state of charge to 100% if the batteries are disconnected, or if you have a battery master shutoff switch installed.

 

 

John,

Looking forward to being able to monitor the BattleBorn with a tablet in the TV and campsite, that's the only device we use that is Bluetooth capable.

Good advice about how to connect shunt to battery, was wondering about that and I do have a battery master switch installed.

Thanks,

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Bill

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Posted (edited)

Update to the original post, I've installed the single LifeBlue 200ah battery.

The battery is only 58lbs - less than a single 65lb AGM.

I used 3/4" pvc trim boards to make spacers in the tray.

The only issue I had was the supplied post bolt was not quite long enough to accommodate all the connections (about 3 threads short).

The converter/charger was able to bring the battery up from 73% to 100% in about 4 hours (the fan is on all the time for the higher lithium setting).

EDIT: The charger fan runs continuously WHILE charging, but shuts off once charging is complete.

Battery and inverter are performing as expected. No trouble running the teapot or microwave.

Bluetooth connection with the app works well.

Very happy with everything so far.

battery-install.jpeg

Edited by thirddoor
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2019 Legacy Elite II #488 - Delivery July 24, 2019
2018 F150 Platinum SC SB EB - Leer canopy

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Nice looking installation.

Wondering - on 14.6...does the converter fan shut off when batteries are full?  Sounds like it runs all the time now?
When I had my AGM's the fan would run for a time while charging but shutoff after batteries were full.

According to Progressive Dynamics this is what they told me about the converter and it's behavior:

"Whenever you have shore power (or generator power if you have one), the converter is supplying the DC power for the 12 volt accessories and fuse board.
If you disconnect the black and white converter wires that feed the 12V panel, or shut off the breaker feeding the converter,  then the battery only will be supplying DC power to the fuse board. You can turn off the AC breaker that controls the converter to turn it off in-between charges.  - Source Andy Giesen - PD Support"

 

CS

2019 Elite II (Hull 505 - Galway Girl - August 7, 2019 Delivery) 
Tow Vehicle: 2021 F350 King Ranch, FX4, MaxTow Package, 10 Speed, 3.55 Rear Axle
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Posted (edited)
40 minutes ago, Galway Girl said:

Wondering - on 14.6...does the converter fan shut off when batteries are full?  Sounds like it runs all the time now?

Yes it should shut off.  But it may take a while to charge a large bank of batteries - the PD isn't a particularly fast charger.  40 amps or 60, depending on the model.

Edited by Overland

Snowball • The world's only spherical Ollie

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1 hour ago, Galway Girl said:

Nice looking installation.

Wondering - on 14.6...does the converter fan shut off when batteries are full?  Sounds like it runs all the time now?
When I had my AGM's the fan would run for a time while charging but shutoff after batteries were full.

I installed the new Lithium power section (45 amp) and the fan does not run continuously, it has a temp sensor on the heat sink to control it, just like the older LA board. I normally leave its breaker open (off) unless I specifically need to charge from it.

It would be very nice if the charger could act as a 12 v power supply for the cabin equipment with the batteries completely disconnected, but it won’t work that way. For example, if you have to send off all your lithium batteries for repair, you can’t use any 12 volt stuff unless you install a temporary loaner battery in their place.

John Davies

Spokane WA

Edited by John E Davies

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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Posted (edited)

As Overland said, the charger fan does shut off once charging is complete. It also tapers off toward the end, cycling on and off in gradually lengthening periods and for shorter "on" cycles, as the heat build-up from charging decreases.

On the plus side, charging from solar is extremely efficient and silent, apart from a slight buzzing from the controller when the battery is actively charging.

Thrilled with the difference in performance over the AGMs.

Edited by thirddoor
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2019 Legacy Elite II #488 - Delivery July 24, 2019
2018 F150 Platinum SC SB EB - Leer canopy

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