The battery of your recreational vehicle is a vital component of its electrical system. The importance of this component is one reason why you really have to take the process of selecting the best RV battery seriously.
With the aid of such battery, you have the chance of using your devices and appliances off-grid without the need for a 110-volt power supply. Also, take note that a recreational vehicle requires house batteries and a starting battery for its engine.
For the house batteries, take note that they could be a few batteries wired together as a means of supplying power. The one that is needed for starting your engine is similar to that utilized in a car. The only difference is that the starting battery for an RV is larger, which also signifies the need for a bigger Cold Cranking Amps (CCA) rating.
House batteries are different from the RV’s engine batteries as the house batteries are primarily used in supplying energy for a prolonged period of time. Engine batteries, on the other hand, supply a quick energy burst with an aim of getting the engine going or starting it.
The house batteries of an RV often undergo what is called deep cycling since they are often discharged completely before recharging them again. What is good about the RV deep cycle battery is that it is capable of lasting four times longer compared to normal starting batteries.
You can also use the deep cycle RV house battery in storing energy derived from solar panels. If you are presently in search of a good RV battery to build up the power bank of your vehicle for the first time or improve the capacity of the current one, then you might find the reviews of these products helpful in picking a good choice.
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11 Best RV Deep Cycle Battery Reviews 2023
1. Weize TL12100 Deep Cycle Battery
Weize produces many of the world’s top rated RV batteries, and the TL12100 is one of the brand’s best-sellers, providing RVers and homeowners with a dependable solution for their energy needs. Worthy of a five-star rating, this deep cycle battery has a robust construction, improved formulation, and reliable performance.
Unlike the Interstate DCM0055, which delivers only 55Ah, this deep-cycle battery bests other products with a similar design by offering 100 ampere-hours. People can run more appliances and gadgets with several of these batteries in parallel. Connected in a series, they can also operate high-voltage equipment.
Powering generators, trolling motors, electric wheelchairs, scooters, and other machines is a breeze with this battery’s impressive absorbent glass mat technology in a sealed lead-acid formula. The ABS casing looks sturdier and offers better spill protection than my previous deep cycle battery. I am confident other RV owners will find this battery up to the task.
My favorite is this deep cycle battery’s positive and negative markings on the terminals. Some products do not have these indicators, making wiring mistakes common. People will no longer worry about clamping alligator clips or wiring harnesses to the wrong battery posts.
I am also glad this deep cycle battery has UL recognition and CE certification, giving users peace of mind about its quality. RV owners will never fret about this device exploding or failing during operation, provided they observe proper use and maintenance.
My only comment about this AGM deep cycle battery is its heft. It is 23 pounds heavier than the Interstate DCM0055. Although the Interstate is more compact, I doubt the three-inch size difference should account for the heft difference.
2. Interstate Batteries 12V 55Ah Deep Cycle Battery
The Interstate Batteries is a decent lead acid deep cycle battery, delivering sufficient energy to run small appliances and machines. It might not have a high amperage rating like the Weize TL12100, but it works effectively in many situations.
This deep cycle battery has a similar composition and design to the Weize TL12100, including a valve-regulated casing and absorbent glass mat technology. Homeowners and RV families will feel more confident about this power brick’s spill-proof and zero-maintenance requirements. There is also no danger of causing excessive pressure within the battery, guaranteeing safe use.
Although specifically for electric wheelchairs and scooters, this deep cycle battery should also be perfect for RV solar and marine applications. Running ten of these power bricks parallel should provide households and RVs with 550Ah worth of clean energy.
I also appreciate this deep cycle battery’s dual-coded terminals. There are plus (+) and minus (-) signs next to the clamping posts, while the positive terminal’s base plate comes in red and the negative terminal in black. People should be able to connect the correct electrical wires to the appropriate battery terminals.
RV owners concerned about the Weize TL12100’s heft will find this deep cycle battery’s dimensions more forgiving. It weighs 23 pounds lighter than the TL12100 and only requires a compartment space measuring 8.5 inches high, 9.25 inches long, and 5.5 inches wide. Its construction is also as impressive as the TL12100.
Unfortunately, some RVers and homeowners might find 55 ampere-hours inadequate for their power requirements. Moreover, I wish the carrying handle had a more robust design, not a flimsy-looking cord with a thin grab section.
3. Optima 8016-103 D34M Deep Cycle Battery
If you are in search of the best deep cycle battery for RV then the Optima 8016-103 D34M BlueTop is what I can recommend to you. I am impressed with this battery because it actually serves a dual purpose. It is mainly because aside from functioning as a deep cycle battery, it also operates as a starting battery.
If you are an outdoor enthusiast who is in search of maintenance-free and sure-starting 12-volt deep cycle RV batteries can greatly benefit from this product. It is ideal for RVs, boats, and motorhomes, providing the mentioned applications with a fantastic source of power even during harsh conditions.
I am pretty sure of its ability to deliver optimum performance on various conditions considering the fact that it has a distinctive SpiralCell design together with continuous lead plates. Aside from being unique and distinctive, I also enjoy the fact that this design is capable of supplying a safe, strong and clean source of power.
This lightweight RV battery also boasts of its high reserve capacity as well as excellent starting power. It can offer an adequate supply of power and long shelf-life anytime you need it and regardless of the weather. Another impressive benefit of this battery is its good vibration resistance.
It is even fifteen times more resistant to various forms of vibration compared to other marine batteries, according to many legitimate deep cycle marine battery reviews. It also offers a quick recharge time.
4. Odyssey PC680 Battery
One remarkable thing that I noticed right away about the Odyssey PC680 battery is its rugged construction. I noticed that this ruggedness and sturdiness is a big plus as it means that it can handle the constant pounding that it tends to encounter on a constant basis, whether it is on snow, sea, or land.
I am happy with its non-spillable AGM design, too, because it allows it to be packed tightly not only with genuine lead plates but also makes it capable of obtaining protection from vibrations and shocks that might destroy it. The presence of the pure lead plates also increases the power supplied by the battery.
I also noticed that one of its prominent benefits is its long cycle life. This means that it is capable of lasting longer compared to conventional deep cycle batteries. It is also long-lasting as it boasts of its highly stable voltage. You can expect it to recharge fast while being flexible since you can mount it in various positions.
The excellent vibration-resistant ability of this battery is also a big plus. It means that it has protection from shocks and mechanical vibrations while being capable of tolerating high temperatures. Moreover, it takes pride in its long service life, which spans from 3 to 10 years.
5. Universal UB121000 Deep Cycle AGM Battery
This is another option for those searching for reliable and dependable 12-volt deep cycle batteries for their recreational vehicles. One thing I truly like about this specific battery is its flexibility and versatility. It is flexible enough that you have the opportunity of mounting it in various positions.
The rechargeable battery also takes pride in its high level of versatility. You will instantly notice its versatility as it is a multipurpose source of power, which you can use not only in RVs but also in boats, golf carts, scooters, wheelchairs, motorhomes, and any other gadgets that require such battery.
It is based on the AGM technology, which does not only let you mount the battery in various positions but also ensures that it is resistant to vibration and shock. You also have the opportunity of regulating and controlling its performance with the aid of a valve.
I am glad of the ability of this battery to store energy well. It is also sealed, so rest assured that it is not prone to leaks or spills. You have the opportunity of operating it in various positions without causing some issues in its performance and capabilities.
6. VMAX857 12-volt 35AH Deep Cycle Battery
Another excellent choice is the VMAX857 12-volt 35AH AGM Battery Marine Deep Cycle Battery. One of the remarkable things so unique about this deep cycle battery is its plates’ chemical and physical structure. It is mainly because of the special manufacturing and treatment process that the plates went through.
With that, I am happy to say that they have the kind of strength and reliability that you are hoping for. They are also excellent in terms of performance. The fact that the battery uses the uniquely and specially designed AGM (absorbed glass matt) is also a big advantage as it makes it superior against other batteries.
Such designed also maximizes its ability to resist vibrations and shocks. The AGM completely absorbs the electrolyte, making the battery non-hazardous and non-spillable. One more thing that I truly find impressive in this battery is its ability to offer protection to the tightly-packed plates, thanks to its tough tank that seals it.
It also boasts of its long lifespan. In addition, the battery is capable of recovering fast even after doing repeated deep discharges. I would also like to highlight the heavy-duty grids used in this battery. Such offers improved performance and better service life whether you use it for cyclic or float applications.
7. Renogy 12-volt 100Ah Deep Cycle AGM Battery
Another of the best RV battery options that I often suggest to potential users is the Renogy 12-volt 100Ah deep cycle AGM battery. One thing I noticed to be favorable about this battery is that it works as a general-purpose deep cycle battery. In other words, it delivers several functions.
Among its common uses include using it as a battery for electric vehicles, golf carts, consumer electronics, garden and lawn tools, engine starters, portable tools, emergency lightings, motorcycles, medical mobility solutions, and access control devices.
Whether you are looking for a battery designed for backup power or daily use, it can serve its purpose well. Another thing I totally find impressive about the battery is that it also works well when it comes to dealing with solar energy storage applications. Aside from that, it is maintenance-free, spill-proof, and leak-proof.
One more advantage of this RV battery from Renogy is that it is capable of preventing the risk of over-discharging batteries, especially in case of series connections. With its overall design, you can charge it based on the recommended voltage, thereby guaranteeing its full and safe recharge.
8. WindyNation 100AH 12-volt AGM Deep Cycle Battery
I am also pretty sure that this deep cycle lead-acid battery from WindyNation can offer you a high level of satisfaction. What I am so glad about in this unit is the fact that it is perfectly suitable for use in recreational vehicles and for solar charging. It is also fully sealed so rest assured that it will not spill or leak.
There is also a lower risk that it will emit harmful fumes. Another favorable benefit of this lead-acid battery is that it requires the least maintenance. Housed in a durable ABS plastic material, I am also one hundred percent sure that it can last for a long time, It can also maintain its minimum self-discharge.
Another nice benefit is the fact that it is available at a truly reasonable price. You can use this model if you plan to build a bank containing multiple batteries in parallel. Such aids in enhancing its capabilities. It is guaranteed to be a reliable and trustworthy source of power that you can use in all off-grid applications.
The battery also features heavy-duty plates guaranteed to provide you with repetitive and deep discharges. It is also specifically designed to offer an excellent deep-cycle performance, especially for those applications that require the discharge and recharge of the battery numerous times.
9. Odyssey PC925 Battery
I am also glad to recommend the Odyssey PC925 battery to potential users. I am so impressed with this battery because it is powerful enough while also having a life cycle, which is 70 times longer when you compare it to conventional batteries that you can find in the market.
I also find its high recharge efficiency truly beneficial. It is designed in a sturdy manner, making it possible to resist high impact and shock. The durability of its overall construction is also noticeable with its sealed design. It can resist spills, allowing it to be reliable and safe. It also has a zero risk of leaking all throughout its full life.
Another impressive fact of this battery is that it can supply 330 cold cranking amps, thereby promoting ease in starting your vehicle or appliance. It also takes pride in its non-spillable design, which offers protection from shocks and vibrations. It is also built to withstand even the harshest weather conditions.
I can assure you, therefore, that it won’t have any difficulty performing no matter what type of weather it is exposed to. Another advantage of this RV battery is its mounting flexibility. This gives you the chance to position it in various ways. It can also tolerate even the most extreme temperatures.
10. Optima 8052-161 D31M Deep Cycle Battery
Another excellent choice, if you are looking for a starting and deep cycle battery in one, is the Optima 8052-161 D31M. One of the most remarkable things about this deep cycle battery is its 155-minute reserve capacity. I found out that it is the main reason why the battery works perfectly for deep cycling and as a battery for any trolling motor.
I am pleased to say that it operates as a double-purpose battery, which can be expected to handle both deep cycling and starting operations. Aside from its excellent total reserve capacity, I also find its starting power of 900 cold cranking amps so impressive. It makes this battery so powerful.
I am also happy that this battery is easy to mount whether it is on your recreational vehicle, boat, or any other mechanical equipment needing a dependable dual-purpose battery. The rugged and durable construction of this battery is also a big advantage. Such can be attributed to its thick polypropylene exterior.
Furthermore, it boasts of a design, which protects it from vibration and spills. It can constantly supply a reliable and consistent performance without any issues. Another thing I like about the battery is that it charges fast. It can also tolerate several recharges.
11. Battle Born 12-volt 100 Ah LiFePO4 Deep Cycle Battery
I also think that this deep cycle battery from Battle Born Batteries is an excellent choice. This battery is ideal for use not only on RVs but also in boats as well as other off-grid power systems. The versatility of this deep cycle battery is also a big advantage as you will notice it being useful in various systems, including 12, 24, 36, and 48-volt ones.
It is a lightweight battery, too. Even if it is lightweight, I can still assure most of its users that it is powerful enough while being capable of lasting up to ten times longer. It has a sleek design, too, which, I think, offers a favorable advantage as it means that managing it will be a breeze.
Furthermore, it is also possible for you to use the battery to run your RV, trailer, golf cart, or boat without the need for any additional hardware. Setting up the battery is also quick and hassle-free. I also figured out that it has its own management system designed to protect itself from anything that may harm it.
These include the weather, overcharging, or deep discharge. Another thing I find advantageous in this deep cycle battery is the fact that you can install it indoors without the risk of generating any hydrogen gasses.
NPP 6-volt 225-amp Deep Cycle Battery (Outdated)
Lastly, there is the NPP 6-volt NP6 225Ah AGM Deep Cycle Battery. I noticed the versatility of this deep cycle battery right away as I figured out that it is actually possible to utilize it in a number of applications. These include your RV, alarm system, standby power supply, firefighting equipment, and emergency lighting system.
Another thing that I truly find impressive in this battery is the ruggedness of its overall design. It has a battery case, which is rugged enough as it is constructed from non-conductive ABS plastic material.
With such strong and rugged construction, I am pretty sure that it can handle the heat, harsh weather, chemicals, vibrations, and shocks. I am happy to say that this product is easy to install, too. It does not need any costly or complicated maintenance.
What to Look for When Buying an RV Battery
Choosing the right RV battery setup is essential in making sure that your vehicle continues to run as efficiently as you have hoped for. To boost your chance of finding the most appropriate one for your vehicle, here are some aspects you should carefully consider during the time when you are still selecting the right products:
Capacity – The RV battery’s capacity can actually be measured or rated in Ah, which means Ampere hours. Such indicates the specified amount of current the battery is capable of delivering over a certain period of time. For instance, a battery model with a 100Ah capacity is capable of delivering 100A for one hour.
A high-capacity battery is ideal because it instantly means that it has the ability to store more power and serving longer. The higher, the better. However, you also have to check the weight and the size of the battery. Remember that you will be needing some room for storing your batteries in your vehicle.
When figuring out the ideal capacity for your vehicle, it would be best to compute your specific energy requirements. Provide some adjustments by adding a bit of extra or room. Also, make it a point to determine the amount of power you will need daily.
You should then choose a battery, which can supply such power without going down to sixty to fifty percent of its total capacity. The good news is that it is possible for you to recharge the battery based on how much power you consumed with the help of a generator, solar power, or a campground or park’s electric hookup.
However, if you plan to go off-grid for several days without any chance for a recharge, you should look for a battery, which can supply the power that you need without the risk of it depleting.
The depth of discharge – Another aspect you have to examine closely during your search for the high quality RV battery is the depth of discharge. It is usually expressed in the form of percentage and shows the specific amount of power discharged by the battery.
If you are planning to use a lead-acid battery then note that the life cycle and the depth of discharge are correlated. Generally, deeper individual cycles also mean that the battery will provide fewer cycles overall.
In this case, I highly recommended looking for a deep cycle battery with a depth of discharge that can optimize its life cycle when strictly followed.
Voltage – This specific factor refers to the potential electrical difference. In typical cases, deep cycle and starter batteries are designed to have 12-volt DC (direct current). In some cases, RV owners decide to put together or combine 6-volt series as a means of building 12-volt batteries that they can use for their RV.
They combine such batteries by wiring them in a series. While 12-volt batteries can serve you well in the majority of cases, take note that you also have to consider the system your RV specifically uses.
Another thing to remember is that solar power kits, as well as other chargers, are capable of working with 24-volt batteries. You need a power inverter, in such case, as a means of converting DC to AC current so it can perfectly fit your battery.
The manner of charging – Another thing to consider is the way you will charge the battery. Find out whether you will be using a generator, solar power, or shore power when charging the battery you plan to use.
Of course, you are allowed to combine the three. However, in case you do not have one yet, a smart charger or charge controller is necessary. With this device, a charging profile will be used depending on the battery type you own. Such will make it possible for you to supply the correct charge at the perfect time.
The controller is also a big help in adjusting the voltage and current automatically, thereby offering protection to your battery. Such is possible regardless of whether the power is delivered from solar panels, generator, or outlet.
Power at low and high temperatures – It is also advisable to check the ability of the battery to provide power at low and high temperatures. In terms of low temperature, you will need a battery that can supply power in that instance in case you will be using it during the winter.
With the ability of the RV battery to operate at low temperature, you have an assurance that it can supply power even if you are in a 0-degree environment. Check your chosen battery to figure out if it can indeed survive even the lowest temperature in certain environments.
You also need to find out whether the battery is compatible for use in high-temperature areas. This capability is of equal importance to the one that is ideal for low temperatures. Such is even more important, especially if you plan to stay in a humid and hot area. Choose a battery that can sustain a temperature of at least 35 degrees.
Ability to withstand vibrations – Another vital consideration is the overall build quality of your chosen RV battery. Note that you need a solid and sturdy build quality as this makes the battery capable of withstanding shocks and vibrations that it might encounter.
It should be shock-resistant and should be able to handle vibrations; otherwise, you might end up spending more on repairs because of the damage that the mentioned scenarios can do to the battery.
Other Important Factors to Consider
What is an RV Battery?
An RV battery contributes a lot in ensuring that your onboard appliances will continue to function as you desire. Note that all the things stored in your RV fully depend on a 12-volt battery system as a means to function. With the batteries in your RV, you can’t expect your onboard devices and appliances to work.
In most RVs, there is what we call as the best RV house battery, which can be defined as a deep cycle battery mainly designed to store huge amounts of power. Such ability allows the battery to work for a long period of time.
To make things a bit clearer, take note that your RV battery serves as an effective storage device for electric power. In other words, it does not produce power. What it does is simply store the power in such a way that it turns into a chemical form.
How does it Work?
If you are still unsure about how RV batteries function then do not fret as there are also a lot of RV owners who are still unfamiliar about how these devices work. Fortunately, this article can now shed light on some of the most complicated issues behind the way the batteries function.
As a whole, RV batteries and electrical systems are quite complex. To make it easier for you to understand them as well as topics related to RV battery charging, then I highly advise learning more about voltages. It should be noted that RV batteries operate at 12-volt direct current (DC) deep cycle electrical energy.
In most cases, such energy is enough if your goal is to have some source of power for small RV appliances and systems. However, you can’t expect it to run all your systems. The batteries, especially the deep-cycle ones, are actually manufactured to recharge and discharge repeatedly without causing damage to them.
One more thing that you have to understand in the way they work is that most of these batteries have amp-hour measurements. This means that a single amp drawn for just an hour. In other cases, the batteries can draw amps over a period of 20 hours.
The 12-volt batteries are mainly utilized as a means of charging specific systems all throughout your vehicle. In case you do not rely on the battery to obtain power then expect to be plugged to a shore power. This often has 120-volt alternating current (AC) power.
You can expect this to supply a lot of power to the systems in your recreational vehicle. Moreover, it is useful when it comes to charging the batteries in your RV. Each time the battery loses its power or discharges, you can’t expect it to recharge itself just like what happens in an automotive battery.
With that said, be responsible when it comes to keeping track of your battery levels. Such monitoring is helpful in ensuring that the charge does not fall too high nor too low. Once it is time for you to charge the battery, what you have to do is to just plug it into your vehicle.
Just look for an outlet, which runs at 120 volts AC, and plug the battery there. Note, however, that such outlet puts out AC power, instead of the 12-volt DC power often required by the battery. With that in mind, ensure that you also own a power converter.
Having this converter around can minimize the risk of dealing with unwanted electrical issues. Also, take note that using both the converter and shore power at the same time takes a long time to function, especially if your RV battery has a low charge or is already depleted. It can be quite annoying, especially if you need power right away.
Types of RV Batteries
The majority of recreational vehicles today depend on deep cycle batteries to work. Things like small water pumps, portable coffee machines, and large appliances, such as televisions, refrigerators, air conditioning units, and microwaves rely on this battery.
Note that deep cycle batteries supply a specific amount of current steadily over a long period. That is the main reason why many consider it as one of the most crucial parts of the electrical system of a recreational vehicle. With its help, all your onboard electronics and appliances will be able to run in case there is no supply of 110-volt power.
Your deep cycle batteries also provide you with a way to pump water to your freshwater tank or run your fridge and electric fan. By having it around, your electrical needs while you are inside your vehicle will constantly be met. Also, take note that a deep cycle battery for a recreational battery can discharge 50 to 70 percent of its full capacity.
Each time you recharge the batteries, you can expect them to redeposit energy into the bank, allowing the cycle and process to begin. This battery also features thick plates with less surface area.
However, you have to know that it comes in various types and you have to gain full awareness about what each one can do so you can better decide which one to choose.
Flooded lead-acid – Also called wet cells, this type of deep cycle battery is based upon the lead-acid chemistry that was discovered by Gaston Plante in the year 1959. It is the most famous deep cycle battery used for RV’s today. It used the word flooded since it comes with electrolyte fluid, allowing the plates to be fully submerged.
It is mainly composed of lead-oxide and lead plates and has an electrolyte that surrounds them. If you take electricity from the battery, which is referred to as discharging, you will notice that the plates start to change into lead sulfate. This also results in the dilution of the electrolyte.
Charging it, which involves putting electricity back to the battery, can take the sulfate coating out of the plates, moving them back to the electrolyte. This results to it being more concentrated. This eventually causes the plates to go back to lead-oxide and lead. During charging, oxygen and hydrogen will also be released.
This type of RV battery is actually popular for its numerous benefits, including the following:
Works effectively in handling overcharging – In comparison to other types of deep cycle batteries, the flooded lead-acid can manage the process of overcharging more effectively. It is mainly because of the hydrogen venting process as well as the fact that it is not sealed.
Long life – Another benefit of the flooded lead-acid battery is that it has a long life. You can expect it to be able to serve its purpose for quite a long time. While this battery requires constant maintenance through watering, maintaining the cleanliness of the terminals, and equalizing charges, an hour annually will do just fine in keeping its good condition.
AGM (Absorbed Glass Mat) – This is another type of deep cycle battery that is ideal for RV applications. In fact, it works well for the majority of applications. It is compatible not only with RVs but also with trucks, boats, and trolling motors. In comparison to the flooded battery, AGM is often tougher and stronger.
It also requires less maintenance. It is actually a form of a lead-acid battery wherein a fiberglass mat absorbs the electrolytes. Among the distinguishing features of AGM are its plates that appear as flat-like flooded lead-acid batteries. You may also notice them winding into a tight spiral.
It has a lower internal resistance than flooded cells and is capable of handling high temperatures. AGM is also known to self-discharge slower than other batteries. It is different from flooded batteries considering the fact that glass mats are used in holding the electrolyte instead of freely allowing the plates to flood.
It also makes use of thin glass fibers. The manufacturers weave these fibers into the mat as a means of increasing their surface area, making it possible for them to hold enough electrolytes for a long time. To know whether AGM batteries are good for your RV, here are some of the benefits you can gain from them:
Maintenance-free – What is good about AGM deep cycle batteries is that they do not require a lot of maintenance. The flooded lead-acid battery actually needs regular maintenance as well as a topping charge semi-annually to minimize the risk of accumulating sulfation.
AGM, on the other hand, is not that vulnerable to sulfation. With that, you have an assurance that you can easily store it for a longer period without worrying about potential damage. You can even expect it to maintain its good condition for up to a year, provided proper care is given to them.
Even after such a long period of sitting idle, you can recharge it and expect it to perform its job again without any damage. It makes a great choice, especially if you are looking for a battery, which does not need too much maintenance.
Does not spill – This specifically means that the AGM battery does not cause its electrolyte to spill out even if it is turned upside down.
Does not emit hydrogen or gas – Another impressive advantage of AGM batteries is that they do not emit hydrogen or gas during charging. With that, you no longer need to worry too much about ventilation each time you charge them. This benefit can also ensure that you will stay safe when using the battery within your motorhome.
Stable and sturdy – AGM batteries are stable and sturdy enough. In fact, you can expect them to stay in good condition even during extremely low temperatures. They do not freeze in such a case. The batteries are also great options because their sandwich construction makes them even more vibration-resistant.
Deep cycle gel – You can also opt to install the deep cycle gel battery into your recreational vehicle. It has some of the advantages offered by the flooded lead-acid battery, such as being easy to transform. The only difference is that it comes with gelled electrolyte, which is highly viscous.
Recombining the gases that you have generated while charging also takes place at a slower rate. In other words, charging the battery needs to be done slower when compared to AGM and flooded lead-acid. Also, charging it too high might cause the formation of gas pockets on the plates.
This might decrease its capacity as it forces the electrolyte away from the plates. Another thing to take note of about deep cycle gel batteries is that they come with narrow charging profiles. This is the main reason why they get easily damaged through inappropriate charging.
With that in mind, take note that while it is one type of RV batteries, many still prefer the others to ensure that they will not end up dealing with certain issues when using them. It would also be best to avoid using it in case you have no experience working with battery chargers and batteries.
Lithium-ion – You can also go for lithium-ion if you are looking for the perfect type of deep cycle battery for your recreational vehicle. Some even say that it is the right RV battery out of its different types. One reason why lithium-ion is a better option than AGM and flooded lead-acid is that it is lightweight.
It is also capable of offering users with a high charging efficiency as well as life cycles from 3000 to 5000.
Benefits of RV Batteries
Here are just some benefits that you can get from choosing lithium-ion deep cycle RV batteries:
Guaranteed to be safe – One thing that sets lithium-ion batteries apart from the rest is the inclusion of a built-in safety measure. Once the battery is already close to overheating temperatures, it shuts down automatically, thereby preventing explosion or fire.
Goes further – Another benefit of the lithium-ion battery is that it is capable of going further compared to lead-acid, which only lets you utilize approximately 50 percent of its rated capacity. With that, you have an assurance that lithium-ion works well if you want to extend dry camping.
It also features highly sustainable voltage levels, making it possible for it to provide up to 99 percent usable capacity. With that, you will have extra time on the road while you are away from your actual home.
Weighs less – Another great advantage of this type of battery is that it is lightweight. Note that your recreational vehicle is already heavy and big, so you may want to look for a battery, which is not that heavy. This is something that the lithium-ion battery can guarantee.
It weighs less than the traditional lead-acid battery. With a lower weight, you can expect it to be a major help if you want to boost your RV’s capacity as far as speed is concerned.
Eco-friendly – You will also love the fact that lithium-ion batteries are environmentally friendly. They are totally safe for the environment, making them ideal green options. They are designed to supply power to your travels through clean energy while minimizing CO2 emissions.
Disposing of these batteries is safe and friendly to the environment, too. Furthermore, these are often constructed out of recycled materials and are recyclable.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are the different types of RV batteries? Which one do I need?
The battery used in powering an RV’s coach often requires to have a deep-cycle design. It is because this design makes it capable of withstanding deep and frequent discharging as well as its typically received recharging. You can’t expect engine-starting batteries to last long in case you use it as an alternative to deep-cycle batteries.
In this case, one of your most reliable choices for the RV battery is the lightweight lithium-ion battery. This specific type of battery starts to gain recognition in the market because aside from being lightweight, it is also maintenance free. It also offers more power storage based on its weight and size.
However, some RV owners find it too expensive. For those who are interested to go for deep-cycle RV batteries, the most commonly used types and designs under this category are divided into three – the conventional flooded cell battery, the gel battery, and the absorbed glass mat (AGM) battery.
The flooded cell battery is usually installed as an original equipment. Offered at a low price, it is possible for this battery to deliver a good capacity for power. It should be noted that it falls under the category of using wet cells that require the periodic or regular filling of water.
Ensure that you are using distilled water for this purpose, though, to prevent the buildup of minerals. Also, take note that since wet cell batteries utilize more water during a hot weather as well as during frequent recharging and discharging, it is crucial to service them in a more frequent manner during that temperature.
Being a wet cell battery also means that you need to do terminal cleaning regularly. Another type of battery that you can use in your recreational vehicle is the gel battery. This type of battery comes with a thick-jelled electrolyte, not liquid, to prevent it from spilling just in case it is tipped briefly on the side.
It does not also need frequent water refills. While it costs higher than wet cell batteries, many still prefer the gel battery because it tends to last longer. The AGM RV battery is also another type that you can use for your RV. Just like the gel type, it does not require the use of water.
It is mainly because it has a fiberglass matting wrapped around its lead plates designed to soak the electrolyte. You can mount it on its side. The AGM RV deep cycle batteries are the most expensive types of battery but expect them to be maintenance-free and long-lasting.
With the mentioned qualities of each battery, you might be able to choose the right one for your needs.
What is an RV deep cycle battery?
An RV deep cycle battery is where the majority of the onboard appliances and electronics in an RV, like coffee machines, water pumps, TV, air conditioner, microwave, and refrigerator rely on. It is designed in such a way that it can supply a steady current for a prolonged period of time.
This type of battery is different from starting battery, which is mainly designed to supply high energy burst for just a short period as a means of cranking the engine’s starter. The RV deep cycle battery is actually designed in such a way that it can discharge around 50 to 70 percent of its overall capacity based on its construction and manufacturer.
Each time you recharge the battery, the energy will be re-deposited into its bank, stimulating the start of the cycle or process again. In comparison to starting batteries, the deep cycle comes with thicker plates. It is also built to be solid, instead of a sponge. The thicker plates used in the deep cycle also come with less surface area.
This subsequently means that it requires less instant power than a starting battery. It is also designed in a way that it can discharge up to 20% of its max charge on a repetitive manner. It is mainly because of its thick lead plates that are sturdier compared to its sponge counterpart.
What is the best charger for the RV battery?
Many recreational vehicles are equipped with battery charging systems. However, some of them are also poor performers. Others, on the other hand, are primarily designed to top up the battery when you plug it at RV parks. In some cases, the built-in chargers in old RVs might also damage the batteries through overcharging.
With that in mind, it is really a must to locate the ideal charger for your RV battery. One of your best choices is the converter charger. The main objective of this charger is to convert 120-volt of shore power into 12-volt DC power. This is necessary in ensuring that your RV battery no longer has to supply DC in case you are plugged in.
Another function of this battery charging option is to charge your battery during those instances when it has an excess capacity. Rated in amps, it is capable of supplying the circuit boards of your RV’s lighting and appliances with enough power. It is also enough to provide charging.
In most cases, the converter charger used for RV batteries is combined with the primary power distribution panel. You may also choose the inverter charger. It is usually used in Modern Class A motorhomes, as well as a few other trailers and vehicles. It is capable of delivering similar functions as the converter charger.
The only difference is that it has the ability to deliver 120vac from a 12-volt battery in case there is no available shore power.
Can you use a marine battery as a deep cycle battery?
Yes, you can use a marine battery as a deep cycle battery for RV trailer units or other purposes. However, you must ensure that the marine battery is a deep-cycle version and not a starting (cranking) battery.
A starting battery is similar to what you have in your car’s engine compartment, delivering electricity to the engine to start it. That is the only purpose of this battery type.
On the other hand, a deep-cycle option produces electricity to run various electrical components in an RV or boat. For example, this device lets you operate the motorhome TV, refrigerator, microwave, and other appliances.
We use deep-cycle batteries for continuous power delivery, allowing us to enjoy electrical gadgets for extended periods.
Marine batteries come in either deep-cycle or starting varieties, too. Hence, it will be okay to get a deep cycle marine battery for RV for your RVing requirements.
Is it better to charge a deep cycle battery slow or fast?
It is better to charge deep cycle camper batteries slowly to preserve battery integrity and extend the battery’s lifespan. Batteries have complex chemistries that can produce excessive heat if electricity runs through them faster than ideal.
Moreover, quickly charging a deep-cycle battery increases the risk of not filling it to its rated capacity. Instead of a 100Ah battery, you might only get a 95Ah power brick.
A multi-stage charger for deep-cycle travel trailer batteries is perfect for such a purpose. These devices can quickly get the power brick up to a certain level before it whittles its charging rate to ensure a full charge. Highly advanced chargers have built-in safety protections to safeguard the battery.
You can use an ordinary charger to replenish your deep-cycle battery if you are not convinced about multi-stage chargers. However, battery charging might take a long time, depending on your power brick and charger’s amperage ratings.
Can you charge 2 RV batteries at once?
Yes, you can charge two motorhome batteries at once in a series or parallel configuration. Series connections increase the battery bank’s voltage, while parallel formats increase the amperage capacity.
For example, suppose you have two 100Ah 12-volt batteries for camping applications. Connecting these power bricks in a series produces a 24-volt, 100Ah battery bank. On the other hand, linking the batteries in parallel creates a system delivering 12 volts and 200Ah.
Either way, the battery bank still produces 2,400 watts (24 volts x 100Ah or 12 volts x 200Ah).
Charging two batteries in a series requires connecting the charger’s plus (+) cable to the first battery’s positive post. The charger’s negative lead contacts the second battery’s negative (-) terminal.
Parallel battery charging is also straightforward. You only need positive-to-positive and negative-to-negative battery terminal linkages. Next, connect the charger’s plus (+) and minus (-) leads to their respective posts on one of the batteries.
RV owners must charge batteries with similar amperage and voltage ratings, regardless of the battery bank configuration.
How do you increase the capacity of your RV battery?
The only way to increase the capacity (Ah) of a single battery for RV trailer units is by replacing the electrolyte with a high-density solution. Unfortunately, this is almost impossible if you have sealed lead-acid batteries because you cannot pry open the power brick casing.
However, if you want to increase your battery system’s amperage rating for the whole motorhome, you can add one or two batteries with identical voltage and amperage ratings. For example, you can link a 12-volt, 100Ah deep-cycle battery to an existing 12V, 100Ah power unit in a parallel configuration.
Setting up several batteries with identical electrical ratings in parallel increases the battery bank’s capacity or total ampere-hours.
For example, three 100Ah batteries will produce 300Ah. On the other hand, connecting three 12V batteries in a chain will increase the voltage rating to 36 volts but retain the 100Ah capacity.
Hence, connecting identical batteries in parallel is a great solution to increase battery capacity for your rig.
How to charge an RV battery with solar panels?
You have an option of charging your RV battery with the help of solar panels. What is good about the solar panel is that it is capable of producing up to a hundred percent full watt output when you place it in direct sunlight.
Charging your RV battery with the right solar panel, however, requires you to first consider some factors and answers to some questions. One thing to determine is the length of time it would take for your solar panel to charge the 12-volt battery completely. You also need to determine the perfect wattage for the solar charger.
Furthermore, you have to make use of a controller just in case you picked a fully functioning solar panel. Some models actually come with illuminated LEDs that provide information about whether or not the solar panel charges your RV battery. Some models also come with built-in controllers designed to block the charge in case of full battery.
How to charge an RV battery with a generator?
If you are planning to use a generator to charge the RV battery then take note that it is also advisable to follow some steps. The first thing you have to do is to charge the generator fully or plug it into your AC outlet. Turn off your recreational vehicle and engage the emergency brake as a means of preventing accidents.
Determine the exact location of the battery then inspect it to see if there are cracks, corrosion, and bulging. The next step is reconnecting the RV battery. You can do that by connective the positive (red) cable then the negative (black) one. Use a wrench to fasten it securely.
Maximize the charging process by unplugging all the onboard electronics and appliances in your RV. The lights should be turned off, too. If it’s possible to plug your generator into an AC outlet, which runs at 120 volts, plug it in. Also, remember that if you use a portable generator, which uses a 12-volt C output, the charging process might take slow.
The time it takes to charge the RV battery is also dependent on the weather. It is greatly possible for you to be unable to obtain the full capacity in case the temperature is just below 40 degrees. The next thing to do is plugging the plug of your recreational vehicle to the generator.
Note that it might take a max of two hours to charge the battery fully in case it is not depleted. However, if the battery has already dropped lower than 20 percent then it might take longer to charge it.
Once you have successfully charged the battery using your generator, make sure to use your electronics and appliances wisely until you reach the campground. Plug your generator as soon as possible so you can use it in the future.
How to charge RV battery while driving?
In case you need to charge your RV battery when you are driving, rest assured that you can do that using simple steps. The only things that you need are Anderson plugs, high-quality and high-amp cables, and VCR or the voltage controlled relay. Begin the process of recharging by preparing the VCR.
This VCR will disconnect automatically and parallel the auxiliary. It also works in starting the batteries. This will close the relay and cause your truck and its batteries to be parallel based on the preset level. When you turn on the vehicle, it opens the relay. You can also expect the two batteries to be disconnected in case the vehicle is off.
It will then bring the voltage to a preset level. The next step is using the high-amp cables in combining the batteries as means of reducing the drop in voltage. You should use the Anderson plugs as these are designed to provide an excellent connection while minimizing the loss of voltage. The plugs can also carry a high amp.
Ensure that the cables are easy to detach at the tow bar. It is also possible to get rid of any fire hazard using the circuit protection that usually comes in a 50-amp auto reset circuit breaker form. Several rubber boots can also be slipped on into the breakers as a means of insulating them, thereby preventing them from shorting.
How to install an RV battery disconnect switch?
The battery disconnect switch of your recreational vehicle looks similar to a plunger switch. You can often find it either outside close to the battery compartment. In some cases, it might also be visible on the inner control panel. This disconnect switch is essential in cutting the flow that comes to the negative cable.
With that, there is an assurance that nothing will be capable of drawing power from your RV battery. In case the switch is not present in your vehicle, then rest assured that you can install an aftermarket switch or remove the connection of the negative cable to obtain a similar effect.
In terms of installation, rest assured that the process is easy and quick. In most cases, the installation involves running the negative cable of the battery – the one, which comes from the vehicle to one of the switch’s side. You also need to run a shorter cable coming from the switch then to the RV battery.
Turning the switch will disconnect the two cables, allowing you to have a disconnected battery, which is possible without the need to use a wrench each time.
How long does an RV battery last?
An RV battery has a different lifespan, and this is dependent on the way you use it. In most cases, though, it can last for up to 5 years provided you use it correctly. You need to give the battery proper maintenance. Note that the battery in your RV works similarly to a marine battery, so you need to use it completely.
When it comes to replacing the battery, note that it is essential to take the negative cable out first. In terms of reconnecting, rewiring the positive cable should come first. It is also advisable to clean the connections prior to securing them on their places.
Another thing you have to do is to monitor the battery’s electrolyte level. It is mainly because your battery might fail prematurely in case it has a low level of electrolyte. Avoid overfilling it, too.
The best RV battery can help ensure that you will enjoy an uninterrupted journey. With a fully functioning and high-quality RV battery, you will never end up facing the consequence of your vehicle dying on you in the middle of the road. It ensures an uninterrupted and enjoyable trip.
We would like to thank you for reading this article. Find out more about how to choose the top-rated RV surge protectors and RV generators with our reviews and ratings. Furthermore, please take a look at the most popular RV converters, RV inverters and RV solar kits to buy the right one for your RV power and electrical supplies.
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